I have a client who wants to hang out and have me over to her house all the time. She also texts me all the time, with non-related personal training stuff, and wants to take me out to eat for special occasions.
I told her that she doesn’t need to do that for me. I try to limit my texts to her now because I did go to her house 2-3 times before to be nice to her and have dinner. But it is weird because no one else is at her house and she is 45 years older than me, not friend age!
I am a straight woman, just 25 years old, but it just doesn’t seem like a good idea anymore—I was trying to be nice but I believe she thinks I am her long lost granddaughter (or worse).
I don’t want to be friends, just have a good client to trainer relationship and she seems to think I am to be her best friend. How do I tell her kindly that she needs to stop. Is there a code of ethics that specifies this, something sort of “excuse” as to not offend her—or is that not possible? I tried to be nice and kind by changing the subject when she asks me over, or say no thanks “you do not need to do that for me—etc., ” but she is taking it way too far with texts/dinner/always wanting me to come over.
Suggestions on how professionally tell her to stop or is there a code of ethics that I can use to tell her she has to stop?
Hello No Name,
I can appreciate why you want to remain anonymous. Your situation is truly very challenging.
Before I offer a suggestion, here is what I understand. The individual you are training is 70 years old. This tells me a lot. It tells me that she has loads of life experience and likely has motives for getting for pally wally with you. The motives don’t necessarily have to be negative. All I am saying that this is a person who has considerably more life experience than you.
I don’t know if she is divorced, has children or even grandchildren for that matter. For me I would question, after all these years of living on this earth, where are her friends.
Because of her age, it is quite possible that she has lost friends in death or even a husband.
However, here is how I would approach it.
I am of the opinion that this will not be the first time someone has told her “No. I am unable.” and I would then graciously say thank you for the invitation. From that point on I would continue to say No and graciously say thank you for the invitation.
I wouldn’t give any explanations as to why I am unable to do whatever the request is. However, if your gut feeling is telling you not to do something you should honor your gut feeling.
She’s a big girl. She’ll get over it.