I'm not 100% sure this is on-topic. The essential core of the question is about a personal relationship and a personal issue. While there may be workplace aspects to this situation, none of them have been addressed in the question. Just because two people happen to work together doesn't make it a workplace issue.

From: How should I deal with an employee who has slept with my wife?

The "Sleeping with my Wife" question is probably the most salacious question that I've ever seen on Workplace.SE. And in light of the fact that "sex sells" in Hollywood, who wouldn't want to discuss this issue on Workplace.SE?

But consider the verb I chose: Discuss

Is Workplace.SE really the best venue for advising a man about how he should confront a coworker who has been sleeping with his wife?

  • Loaded question. Regardless whether you think something might make a good soap opera plot, there is no evidence of that being at all relevant here, much less having "the workplace" be the only reason this question is on topic.
    – Nicole
    Jan 9, 2013 at 17:34
  • 8
    @Jim: I re-opened it because - as the quote you post illustrates - you're not the only one who made this mistake, and therefore having this question can probably avoid further discussion in the comments there. That said, I think you've missed the point of the question badly - see my answer. Try to assume good faith when reviewing questions - look for (and then emphasize) the on-topic aspect when possible.
    – Shog9
    Jan 9, 2013 at 17:39
  • @Shog9: Fair enough. Will do. // For all of the times that I've been the first one to make an assertion, I thought I was in good company this time because a moderator had the same misgivings about the question.
    – Jim G.
    Jan 9, 2013 at 17:44
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    @JimG. Make sure you check the timestamps and the edit history. The comment you are talking about is not about the same version that exists now, and the post was closed and then reopened.
    – Nicole
    Jan 9, 2013 at 17:47

4 Answers 4


Is Workplace.SE really the best venue for advising a man about how he should confront a coworker who has been sleeping with his wife?

No, it's not. But that's also not really what the question is about.

Put the popcorn-worthy aspects of the question aside; they've already been dealt with. What remains is a common workplace problem: how do you deal with an employee who you've been deeply hurt by and no longer feel you can trust?

The edits made to emphasize this aspect saved the question, IMHO.


The core of that question is "how do I deal with this situation in the workplace?"

In fact, it's even more relevant, because:

  • The employee is an employee (not coworker)
  • The employee is a critical employee
  • The asker is the business owner

So all responses will directly be relevant to the workplace because fundamentally, any response the asker takes is a workplace response.

Why would this not be a Workplace question is a better question...

downvote answers there which don't answer the question but rather discuss. If enough people do this (which I don't believe happens here, but, whatever) to "bad" answers this problem doesn't exist.


My concern is that the Workplace SE could turn into a help forum for things that aren't really related to the workplace, and since I knew this would be a popular question, I closed it to give the people who wanted to edit it some time to get their edits in before the community reopened it and more answers started flooding in, which I knew they would. :)

As we know from experience, editing a question is much harder if there are a lot of answers.

I don't disagree with Thomas Owens's assessment, and I think he makes a great point. However, we now have a better question, with answers that should match the question in its current form, and hopefully better answers as a result.

The edits definitely help make it more constructive and on-topic, even if it were on-topic and constructive in its previous state; I'm happy with the results, and I've tweeted the question to use this as an opportunity to bring more interest to our site.

Nice job everyone! :)

  • 7
    At this point, though, due to the popularity, I think we need to police the answers. The question has been improved considerably, but a good question with bad answers isn't that useful (to other people with the question or as a good advertisement for the site). I haven't read through the answers recently, but it's up to the community (and to some extent, the moderators) to use comments and votes to improve the answers, challenge any questionable statements, and vote on or flag any new non-answers because of the popularity of the question. Jan 9, 2013 at 18:17

If I recognize a story copied from Godfather I'll probably be the first to complain about it. On the other hand, I am not going to enter paranoid mode just because post makes a good reading.

It sometimes just happens that relevant, on-topic, authentic posts have signs of an art - intrigue, emotions, suspense. This could happen to questions and answers, at Workplace and at other SE sites.

  • nearly 100% of Sheakspeare's plots were recycled. I seriously doubt most workplace dramas are unique and new and never heard of before.
    – user13655
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:50

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