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Thread: Ethical dilemma

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Default Ethical dilemma

    How bad would it be to get involved with one of your instructors? She's an undergrad instructing one of my labs and we share a couple other classes. There's definitely some attraction and chemistry, but I'm having a difficult time deciding what to do.

    What I'm worried about is this. If I got involved with her, that would probably put her in a compromising position, conflict of interests and all that. Also, what if I'm misreading her? I don't think I am, but if made a move and she's not receptive...that would be extremely awkward. Under normal circumstances, I wouldn't hesitate, but I'm wondering if I should just scrap the idea.
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  2. #2
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Haight's Avatar
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    "Ethical dilemma"? That's a stretch.

    Either way, if you are wrong then the class will get easier. But if you are right and she's up for getting down, then the class will get harder.
    "The only time I'm wrong is when I'm questioning myself."
    Haight

  3. #3
    Per Ardua Metamorphosis's Avatar
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    I'd do it.
    "You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit."

    Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office
    than to serve and obey them. - David Hume

  4. #4
    Mamma said knock you out Mempy's Avatar
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    What I'm worried about is this. If I got involved with her, that would probably put her in a compromising position, conflict of interests and all that.
    What conflict of interests?

    Also, do you think the repercussions of being caught having a relationship with a student would be the same for her as for a professor? You said she's an undergrad; does your school even care if undergrad instructors become involved with students? She seems to have way less professional responsibility than a professor, but I don't know.

    Also, what if I'm misreading her? I don't think I am, but if made a move and she's not receptive...that would be extremely awkward. Under normal circumstances, I wouldn't hesitate, but I'm wondering if I should just scrap the idea.
    Does it have to be a huge move? Even just a small risk on your part would open the door for her to reciprocate. In other words, take a small risk, a small step forward, and see if she reciprocates by taking a risk of her own. If she doesn't, maybe she's not that interested. But you don't have to put both your balls on the line, so to speak, to get a better idea of how interested she is.
    They're running just like you
    For you, and I, wooo
    So people, people, need some good ol' love

  5. #5
    Senior Member Anja's Avatar
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    I agree with Metamorphosis in the sense that the onus of responsibility is on her and not you.

    But from my viewpoint, the fact that you recognize the conflict of interest, means to me that you are an ethical human. And as such may feel a need to draw a boundary if she's clueless.

    From personal experience, no situation where an instructor showed more than a professional interest in me, turned out well for either of us. There's always that issues of grades. . .

    But then there is the future beckoning and not all relationships need to be decided upon in the present.

    Good for you for seeing the difficulties you may be facing.
    "No ray of sunshine is ever lost, but the green which it awakes into existence needs time to sprout, and it is not always granted to the sower to see the harvest. All work that is worth anything is done in faith." - Albert Schweitzer

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    Senior Member Anja's Avatar
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    Didn't mean to bypass you Memphy. Apparently we were posting at the same time.

    I don't see Lateralus's concern as being about whether the school notices or cares as much as that he has expressed a concern about personal ethics.

    I don't see this as a matter of getting caught, being punished by an authority. To me it's more a matter of what kinds of things may happen to each individual in a personal sense.
    "No ray of sunshine is ever lost, but the green which it awakes into existence needs time to sprout, and it is not always granted to the sower to see the harvest. All work that is worth anything is done in faith." - Albert Schweitzer

  7. #7
    Senior Member Lookin4theBestNU's Avatar
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    You aren't much of a gangster after all.
    "At points of clarity, I realize that my life on earth is meaningless, and that I am merely a pawn in a bigger game. A game I cannot possibly understand or have control of. Thankfully, before depression sets in, I drift back into my cloudy, bewildered daily routine." **Joel Patrick Warneke**

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    If you're both undergrads, GO FOR IT.

    If it was a professor...hoo boy.
    I am an ENTJ. I hate political correctness but love smart people ^_^

  9. #9
    Mamma said knock you out Mempy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anja View Post
    Didn't mean to bypass you Memphy. Apparently we were posting at the same time.

    I don't see Lateralus's concern as being about whether the school notices or cares as much as that he has expressed a concern about personal ethics.

    I don't see this as a matter of getting caught, being punished by an authority. To me it's more a matter of what kinds of things may happen to each individual in a personal sense.
    I like your way of looking at the topic; it gave the topic a more personal angle that I hadn't considered, and it's all the more interesting because you have personal experience with this type of situation.

    I agree that the personal angle of ethics is an important thing to consider here. Regardless of what's expected of her as an undergrad lab instructor, she's going to have her own ethics and morals that she holds herself to, and Lateralus will have his. Say the rules don't prohibit undergrad instructors from having relationships with their own students; based on her ethics, she may STILL have a qualm with having those relationships, even if the rules don't prohibit it. I understand. Grades is one area where I can see myself having an ethical dilemma about these kinds of relationships. Edited to add: I'm also really interested in hearing more about the dilemmas you faced in these kinds of relationships, if you're willing to share.

    Mainly I wanted Lateralus to clarify what he meant by "conflict of interests." But additionally, I still want to know how much and what kind of professional responsibilities she has according to school rules and guidelines. In other words, what is expected of her as an undergrad lab instructor? Do the same rules that a professor must follow, particularly with regard to student-teacher relationships, apply to her as well? If not, how do those rules differ?
    They're running just like you
    For you, and I, wooo
    So people, people, need some good ol' love

  10. #10
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    She'll be grading my lab work...
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

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