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Dear Debra
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1835
Experience:  I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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Here is a situation facing a colleague of mine, but Im curious

Customer Question

Here is a situation facing a colleague of mine, but I'm curious about an experts thoughts on the matter. He is a volunteer running coach, and has started a relationship with an athlete. Their ages are 32 and 27. The athlete is not on a competitive course for the olympics or anything, and is interested in running for fitness only.
In coach development training, there is plenty of literature about coach/athlete relationships when a minor is involved, or in an academic environment, and particulalry in team sports. In this context, there really is no guidance, and no case studies.
What are your thoughts? Should these types of relationships be forbidden?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 1 year ago.

Dear XXXXX :

Thank you for your question.

Dear XXXXX :

They are both adults and they would be able to have a relationship because of their ages.

Dear XXXXX :

But it all depends on what is the rules on where they practice. There might be rules in place where the volunteers are not able to date the athletes they are training.

Dear XXXXX :

A lot of places do not allow co-workers to date in offices. It all depends on what the rules are for that facility.

Dear XXXXX :

The reason is usually because it would cause a problem in the work place. It could end in a bad break up so people do not want that kind of tension to cause problems from doing their work.

Dear XXXXX :

When you have a job the job comes first. Mostly people try to discourage dating in the work place. It does happen where trainer begin to date the people they are training. But it is usually on the facility if it is allowed.

Dear XXXXX :

When it comes to being an athlete people want to be fully focused on their training and these types of relationships can distract the person training. But if they both feel they can have a relationship and it will not effect the training then it is their choice on wether they want to continue a relationship. But if there is rules on volunteers dating people they are training then it is not allowed.

Dear XXXXX :

I am sure their are policies that your colleague can look up to see what the rules are. I know teachers are not allowed to date students even if they are of of legal age. But this is a volunteer and is not employed by the facility. So that is why it is important to know the rules before your colleague continues with this relationship.

Dear XXXXX :

When it comes to schools and colleges their are certain rules in place that people need to follow and their are always handbooks on the rules of the school.

Dear XXXXX :

Have you colleague either ark or read the rules if available.

Dear XXXXX :

It is best to know then to cause any later problems.

Dear XXXXX :

Its best not to know and not wonder if this is going to be a problem and he will no longer be able to volunteer.

Dear XXXXX :

*It is best to know and not wonder.

Dear XXXXX :

If someone mentions it to someone and then someone disagrees they might say something to someone that could effect the person volunteering. They also might disagree with this relationship happening between a trainer even though he is a volunteer. I would found out if this is allowed.

Dear XXXXX :

It is best he knows the rules first before he continues seeing this person.

Dear XXXXX :

Thank you for your question.

Customer:

Thank-you for your insight. I have checked on the rules, and there is nothing explicit regarding adult relationships. Everything is focussed, quite rightly, on minors.

Customer:

I am still concerned, but I see no reason why they can't pursue a relationship. They met through their common interest - and the relationship developed slowy. They are crazy about each other, and have asking me if they need to leave the sport in order to continue dating. I think they should be okay, but I've cautioned him that some may have a problem with it. Do you think that there is a significant power imbalance in this situation?

Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1835
Experience: I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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Expert:  Dear Debra replied 1 year ago.
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