e’re aware that not every office romance is fated to end up like Jim and Pam from The Office, but there is a chance that it might be. Call us hopeless romantics, but we believe that if you really like someone, the pros outweigh the cons of an office romance. But we’ll let you decide for yourself.
Keep reading if you want to know:
- The benefits of dating your coworker
- The cons of dating someone you work with
- Why it just might be worth it no matter what
Pros of Dating a Coworker
Seeing Each Other All Day, Every Day
If you’re the type of person who misses their partner as soon as they walk out the door, seeing your partner at work every day would be a huge plus.
You spend so much of your day at work, so much of your life, actually. It would be nice to have the person you most want to spend time with there with you. Think car rides to work, lunch breaks, and small moments throughout the day. What could be better than spending time with the person you love?
Dating someone who works in the same field as you guarantees that you have a shared interest, provided you both like your chosen field.
Having a shared interest as deep as this one could allow you two to have a deeper bond than some couples who work in two completely different fields. You are both interested in the work you do, the area of work you’re in, your company itself - you two could probably talk forever and never tire of the topic.
Given that many couples struggle to find a shared interest and things to do together, you’ll consider yourselves lucky that you have this to share.
Your Problems are My Problems, Literally
Good couples often remind their partner of this famous quote when one is venting and the other is listening. But this quote takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to sharing a workplace and all of the problems that come with that workplace.
Typically, when one partner comes home after a long day of work, they share all of the day’s struggles with their partner. The listening partner swears that they are listening and that they are truly invested, which, with good couples, is true, but there is absolutely no doubt of investment when both partners share a workplace.
Since you both work in the same place, you probably share work problems. Like your boss is being the worst, or that person brought tuna for lunch again and stunk up the office. It would be nice to be sure that your partner cares about your work problems, because your work problems are their work problems, too.
If you like the people you work with, you become friends with them outside of work as well. Having your partner share in that could be really great for your relationship. You have a group of friends you both enjoy hanging out with, rather than you hanging out with your partner’s friends or your partner hanging out with yours.
Sharing a group of friends allows you to hang out together more and share more memories together. If you are a people person, it also certainly helps if your partner gets along with the people you surround yourself with. Sharing a group of work friends ensures that you at least have one group of people you can both hang out with.
Look Forward to Work
Even if you like your job, there’s a reason it’s called work and not play. It’s not always enjoyable and it calls for a lot of hard work, so some days, if not most, you really dread heading into the office. But knowing your partner is in it with you might have you looking forward to work on more days than not.
Instead of struggling to get yourself out the door and away from your partner, they’ll be honking the car horn at you to hurry up and you’ll get hurrying to the car with a smile on your face.
Since you work nearly every day, looking forward to working with your partner will have you looking forward to nearly every day of your life.
Cons of Dating a Coworker
Seeing Each Other Every Day
Yes, we’re well aware that this is also listed as a pro, but depending on multiple factors, it could be more of a con than a pro.
You might spend a lot of time with your partner already, and work is the one place you get to do something on your own. In this case, dating your coworker might leave you feeling trapped and wanting to get away from them.
Remember, too much of a good thing is a bad thing. You could have a really great connection with a coworker, but if you’re not up for spending so much time with your partner, you may want to reconsider dating a coworker.
You Would Still Have to See Each Other if You Break Up
This is a worst-case scenario, but still an important one to consider. If you and your partner break up, are you going to be okay still seeing them every day at work?
You might begin to dread going to work at a job you once loved, or it might worsen your job performance. In this case, breaking up with your partner would alter your life in more ways than one.
If you feel like you couldn’t possibly continue working at your current job if you and your partner broke up, you may want to consider whether they are worth losing your job over.
The power dynamics in any relationship are already complicated, and they only become more complicated when the people in a relationship work together.
Is your partner your boss? Are you theirs? If you’re dating your boss, you may be afraid to voice problems in your relationship because you fear losing your job. And likewise if your partner is your boss, they may feel as though they have more power in the relationship as well as in the workplace.
This power dynamic not only complicates your relationship, but it also might make your relationship against policy in your workplace.
Working with your partner can make you distracted at work, especially if they are the kind of partner who hovers around your desk repeatedly throughout the day and you’re the kind of person who needs peace and quiet in order to get their work done.
This can cause problems in the relationship because as you get frustrated with not completing your work, you’ll also get frustrated with your partner for essentially preventing you from completing your work.
Think about how you work and if you can bring a partner who is a coworker into that style of work or not.
Everyone in the Office Would Know Your Business
Instead of being able to vent to your coworkers about how your partner is on your nerves, your coworkers will already know your partner is on your nerves - and they’ll have their own opinions about it.
Everyone in the office would know your business, and you have to consider whether or not you’re okay with that. Some people like to keep their relationships private, and at work, where someone’s partner isn’t usually there, this is no problem. But in the case of dating a coworker, this type of privacy just isn’t possible.
In a similar vein to the issue of the powder dynamic, there is also the problem of if one partner makes more money than the other, which grows even more complicated if they are working the same job.
If both partners have different jobs and one makes more than the other, this may cause problems in the relationship if the person who makes more money feels superior to the partner who makes less money.
If both partners work the same job and one makes more than the other, which can be the case due to the gender wage gap, this also may cause riffs in the relationship because one partner does not feel equal to the other despite doing the same work, and may take this out on their partner.
So... is dating a coworker worth it?
In conclusion, there are both pros and cons to dating someone you work with. But here’s why it might be worth it to date your coworker.
Lots of people meet their partners at work. According to associate professor of psychology at University of New Haven and author of several papers on workplace romance Amy Nicole Baker, research shows we tend to fall for people who are similar to ourselves, and people who are similar to ourselves often find themselves in the same places of work.
The person you’re meant to be just across the room at another desk, so if you think they may be the one, you should go for it.