Most people wouldn’t necessarily recommend seeking a partner out in the workplace, but sometimes love just happens without your say.
When it happens at work, you have a big decision to make. Do you go forward and hope for the best? Or do you shut it down before it gets out of hand? As with any situation, it helps to consider the pros and cons of dating a coworker.
1. You already have things in common.
Instead of boring your partner to death with work talk, you’ll have a partner-in-crime for obsessing over the same work issues. No time wasted giving him/her the back story.
2. You’ve already gotten to know each other (to a point).
Your work environment has allowed you to get to know each other as co-workers before jumping into a relationship. You’ve already learned things about each other, which can be better than going into it blind.
3. Extra time together.
You’ll get to grab lunch together, maybe carpool to work together and take advantage of those extra moments that you would miss out on if you and your partner worked in separate offices.
4. The forbidden can be a turn on.
It might make things more exciting to have a forbidden, secret relationship at work. Just remember, it should be based on more than that—if it lasts, you’ll have to tell people about it eventually.
1. You might end up with too much in common.
In the beginning, it might be amazing to be able to talk with and work with a partner who really gets it, but over time you might end up longing for a little more separation between your two lives.
2. Too much time together.
Again, in the beginning when you want to spend as much time together as possible, it might be amazing to go to work together, get lunch together and then go home together; but once you have been doing it for months (even years), you might feel differently. You might long for the time when you could lunch alone or with friends once in a while without hurting your partner’s feelings. Too much time together could also make the spark begin to fade. Absence makes the heart grow fonder… so does a little independence.
3. What happens if things go south?
It would be great to think that if you broke up you and your partner would be able to stay friends, or at the very least, cordial co-workers, but we all know that there is no way to guarantee that. Even if you’re both able to remain professional, it might be torture to see each other day in and day out when all you want to do is heal and move on.
4. Work disputes complicate your personal relationship.
You might not always see eye to eye about things at work, which could cause work problems to become relationship problems.
5. You might end up competing for the same projects/promotions.
How closely do you work together? Competing for the same projects or promotions could cause serious problems in your relationship; it could also cause one of you to bow out and losing out on great opportunities to grow professionally.
Regardless of the pros and cons, most people who find themselves in a co-worker romance have already made the decision that they want to give it a shot. If that’s the case, consider the following tips for keeping the relationship happy and healthy:
- Make sure the relationship has long term potential before diving in.
- Try not to date anyone you work very closely with so you can maintain some independence.
- Agree not to lunch together everyday.
- Put limits on work talk, maybe allow yourselves a designated amount of time, then you have to change the subject.
- Talk about what would happen at work if things didn’t work out between you.
- Stay professional while at work, keep the relationship talk for after hours.