Do you have a Work Wife or Work Husband? And if so, is it a recipe for a disaster?
During the last decade or so, the title Work Wife and Work Husband has gained traction in our pop culture glossaries. It’s a phrase that describes a woman or man in the office whom you may or may not be close to who plays the “role” of a spouse while at work. This often means that they are attentive to your needs, asks you if want something for lunch, helps you out even when it isn’t warranted, and basically dotes on you throughout the day.
This person plays the husband or wife character quite well, and may make a day at work easier for you, and even fun too. But, it can become a confused portrayal, as the lines between business and personal could get skewed.
I am here to break down the real truth about work wives and work husbands in hopes that it not only clears up confusion, but acts as a guide to anyone who is currently undergoing this type of relationship. Symbiotic, playful, or not, it’s a must-read for anyone who is employed and works with others.
Myth: Work Wives and Work Husbands are the precursor to an affair
If you are in a Work Wives and Work Husbands type of relationship, there are plenty who think that it will lead to something else. The closeness and bond that you two share in the office will most likely spill out into personal territory. This exchange is destined to go from the board room to the bedroom, and will break up your family and/or your relationship.
Truth: Not true. At least, not always
Work wives and work husbands can be a platonic entity that serves you both well while you are at work. It can also teach you a thing or two about your own relationship, and how to pay attention to that special someone once you are off the clock. This type of office situation doesn’t exclusively mean that it will transfer into a soap opera type of event where the both of you are stepping out on your spouses or mates. As long as you make sure those boundaries are not crossed, your Work Wife/Work Husband scenario can still thrive and be totally colleagues/coworkers/friends only.
Myth: If you have a Work Wife or Work Husband, you are
The reason why you have this type of person at work is because you can’t get one in real life. The attention that you crave from a Work Wife or Work Husband is surrogacy—you’re not getting it from home, so boom.
Having a Work Wife or Work Husband doesn’t mean you are in need of attention, lonely, or pressed. It’s usually the opposite, meaning that you are a person that invites comfort, friendship, and partnership during work hours.
Myth: You spend more time with your Work Wife or Work Husband more than you do your real one.
With 40+ hours a week spent in the workplace, you are spending more time with your Work Spouse than you do with your real one. This could create trouble in paradise if you aren’t careful.
Truth: Correct. But it’s all about quality over quantity
It’s hard to fit in 40+ hours during the week with your spouse, especially if you have a growing family and other responsibilities. But, it doesn’t mean that your work relationship supersedes your real one. Make sure that you and your spouse are spending quality time together when you can. Create memories, go on dates, cuddle and get cozy, and try to get away whenever you can. This will make for a joyful union and a stronger connection that will last a lifetime.
Myth: You must be attracted to your Work Spouse
Since you guys are in a partnering relationship at work, it means that you are attracted to one another. Why else would you be connected in this way?
Truth: Not necessarily
You could be attracted to your work spouse, but you don’t have to be. In fact, oftentimes in Work Wives and Work Husband relationships, it’s not about attraction at all, but a need to have a comforting person in your corner throughout the day. At my last job, I had a Work Husband and he was gay—we were not attracted to one another at all, but he always had my back and I was there for him when he needed me. It wasn’t about magnetism or enchantment, but about us having inner-office support and camaraderie.
And if you do find your work spouse attractive, that doesn’t mean you are going to blow it out of proportion. As humans, we are attracted to many people, but it doesn’t mean there is anything more to it than that.
So you see—having a work spouse isn’t necessarily bad at all. As long as the two of you are professional and don’t cross any boundaries that shouldn’t be crossed, your Work Wives and Work Husbands status is perfectly okay.