Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Working With The One You Love

So last week, I wrote about the different types of personalities in the office (feel free to revisit and add any personalities that you think I missed). Well, there is one group that I specifically left out, because I feel that they deserve a post all to themselves: the office couples.

Yes, ladies, in my office we have at least four confirmed, "it's all out in the open" couples. Let's take a look at these couples, shall we?

The Married Couple: The Husband has worked at the company for a good while and about 6 months ago, his Wife joined the team. Before his Wife came, he was constantly surrounded by other women in the office, one of whom my colleagues and I had labeled his Work Wife. Lucky for the Work Wife, she didn't have to suffer being dethroned because she left the company just before the Real Wife came to work with us. I rarely see the Husband and Wife together during the day, except maybe having lunch together. I think this is the way it should be. Most people who don't know them probably don't even know they are married.

The "We Met On The Job" Couple: We have two of these (possibly more that haven't been confirmed). As the label suggests, these couples met each other at work. They didn't know each other existed before walking through the doors of the company. They started working closely together and BAM! Next thing you know, they are sleeping over each other's houses, riding to work together, and listed as each other's emergency contact. I kid you not. To these couples I say, BEWARE. What happens when you break up? Will there be break-up drama? How will you keep from bringing that drama to work? Will you guys be able to continue working together after the breakup?

The "We Tried To Hide It But We Were So Obvious" Couple: This couple was "hooking up" long before they were an official couple. They thought that no one knew, but it was so obvious. Most never thought that they would actually make it to coupledom. Well, they fooled us all. They are now the office super couple - when you see one, you see the other. They are practically joined at the hip. We are all awaiting the day she comes in with a ring on her left hand.

So that made me wonder, "Could I work with my boyfriend or husband?" (This really isn't even something that I have to concern myself with since there is absolutely no eye candy at the office, in my opinion.) If we worked closely together, probably not. As I've said in previous posts, I like having my space and a life apart from the guy in my life. I wouldn't want to work alongside him all day and then go home and spend our evenings together as well. I think that's too much "us" time. On the other hand, I guess it could be comforting to know that you've got at least one person in your corner at work. You've got a permanent lunch buddy. And when it's time for those company events/outings/happy hours, you've got someone you actually enjoy talking to to keep you company.

But what happens if your significant other gets promoted to a position above you? This would obviously change your working relationship, but would it also change your romantic relationship? If this happened to me, I would be afraid that others would think that I'm receiving special treatment because of the romantic relationship and not on my own merits. Why would I think people would think that? Because I think that sometimes of one of our office couples.

Working Girls, what do you think about working with the one you love? Have you had a romantic relationship with someone you work with? Are there office couples where you work? (Better yet, are you lucky enough to have eye candy at your office?? Do tell!)


Anonymous said...

It would never happen - we work in polar opposite fields.

And no, I'd hate it. I would never want to be with someone who also worked in media.

One getting promoted would be weird...I am a rung above one of my fellow grads from uni (wouldn't say we are quite friends, but we are friendly) and I definitely feel a bit awkward making requests of her, but luckily that doesn't happen often. I'm also a step up from one of my old friends (who's working here temporarily) but I kind of make a joke out of it and make ridiculous, sweeping, OTT effusive requests when I need his help on something.

Angeline said...

My husband and I actually met on the job in college. We were both resident advisers in the dorms (in different buildings). According to our supervisors, other couples had gotten together and eventually gotten married after being RAs together, too.

Nowadays, my husband's and my job are pretty different, so even if we were employed by the same employer (which is still possible), our duties and departments would really have nothing to do with each other. I think it would be awkward--I definitely put on a different hat when I go to work and try to pry it off when I get home.

There aren't any office couples that I know of at my work, although our current design intern is the girlfriend of our former design intern (he recommended her to fill his position when he left, so they never overlapped).

Leanne...the walker said...

I never thought it would happen, but my husband and I work on the same campus. He works as a minister in the church and I work for a non-profit organization also housed at the church. While our areas have little to nothing to do with each other, we are at the same staff meetings and our offices are just a few yards from each other. In my single working girl years I thought I would HATE this. I was fiercely independent and very focused at work. Turns out, I really love it. We didn't start working together until after our first year of marriage, which helped. I love that we don't work directly with each other - we don't have to make requests of each other or even report to the same supervisor. But it's wonderful to have someone to eat lunch with, someone who understands personalities, and the inner workings of the job. He gets my frustrations and sets me straight when I'm wrong. We leave work at work when we go home - it's a work-free zone.

I don't think I would have enjoyed working with a boyfriend and don't think the dating a coworker thing would have worked for me either. But having my husband around works for me.

MonsteRawr said...

My husband and I work together a LOT, in various different capacities. Sometimes he's my boss, sometimes I'm his boss, and sometimes we're working in totally different departments. The dynamic between us changes, constantly, but honestly, it doesn't bother us. We keep our personal squabbles out of the work place, and we respect each other as professionals. I love working with my husband, because I know that no matter what happens, I know that there's at least one person on the crew who always has my back. Plus, my job is one that is very all-consuming, often involving 14 hour days, and can be very emotionally taxing. It makes the long days soooo much easier for me emotionally, plus it means getting to spend the 40 minute commute with my husband, instead of alone. I love working with my husband, and hope it happens more often!

Corporate Chickee said...

My husband and I met at work! We skipped the "hooking up" phase and went straight into the relationship, and successfully kept it a secret at work for a full year. Not until I gave my 30-day notice did we stop trying to hide it.

It was hilarious seeing everyone's reactions, we did manage to actually keep it a secret from everyone! We worked well together, but we prefer to keep our professional lives separate going forward. Mainly because we don't want to me the married couple that works together :)

In Transition Working Girl said...

I met my boyfriend at work and its been three years! We work in different departments which I think is important! I love your take on the different personalities!

Lawyer Working Girl said...

Thanks all! Should my bosses bring in some eye candy, maybe I won't be so hesitant to at least flirt a little. ;-)

Kelly O said...

My husband and I work for the same company. When we relocated to the small town where the company was headquartered, there really were not many options for office work, and in December of last year I came on in a position that works with his job, however not necessarily on a daily basis.

Since going on maternity leave, the office has moved south to a larger Houston suburb, and the position I had formerly filled is now being handled by an employee who could not make the move. I'm going to be working in some administrative capacity in the new office (they're still waiting to see who makes the commute and who doesn't to determine the full scope of my new duties.)

He and I work well together. We both try very hard to keep work and home separate, and I think we go out of our way to be harder on each other simply to show that we're not "playing favorites" even in our small company.

I will say that he did not have a "work wife" before I came on board, and we have joked a bit that I was functioning as his secretary and "off-site data storage" brain before I came on.

The Relationship Company said...

I just happen to be passing by when I read your post. Nice post and keep up the good work!

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