Romances in the workplace

Good idea? Bad idea? Depends on the situation?

I don’t see a problem with it, as long as it doesn’t interfere with your work. Work is one of the best places to meet women. You are both in your “natural” environment rather than some seedy bar trying to pick someone up.

In adult life you tend to meet people at work, through some other activity (club, church, etc.) or around your home. So it’s not unusual to make the acquaintance of someone to whom you’re attracted at your place of employment.

That’s the tricky part. It can quite easily become a major problem, both iif it moves along swimmingly or if it crashes and burns. I swore off work associated romances several disasters ago.

But, yeah, it could be OK. Who’s the superior at work?

Depends. I married mine.

I met my husband at a mutual workplace, and we were careful to keep the romance out of work. While we only worked together about 6 months or so (the place ended up closing) we did reasonably well.

I really think work place romances are a bad idea. If you both are mature and can keep the whole thing a secret, then go ahead. But, the majority of people can’t do this, and then you realize that your relationship is the topic of gossip, and alot of strangers know things about you that you didn’t want to share. Many relationships don’t work out, and that’s where the maturity thing comes in. You just don’t know how this person will react to a breakup, and it could be ugly.

That said, I too met my husband while we were working together. I was his superior. And, we never went to lunch together, never talked about it at the office, and when we finally announced the engagement, only one person had figured out that we were secretly dating. It was a huge surprise to everyone else. But, having to do objective performance reviews on my boyfriend was very difficult. And, it was difficult for him when we had our discussion about the review to hear me criticize his performance–not that he was a bad worker, everyone needs some constructive critisism. Many times, the stress of not being able to be open about our relationship almost did us in. It was worth it, yeah, but I’ve seen so many other people have big problems because of office romances.

So, that’s my story and opinion. But, we all need some more facts to give good advice, like are you in the same department, is someone a supervisor (different levels, even in different departments can be tricky), and what is the office regulations concerning this? If the regs say no, it’s better not to risk losing your job over it.

On the plus side, if you have the same hours you could commute together, save some money.

That’s about the only plus I can think of.

Personally, I wouldn’t like all that togetherness, even on the drive to work. And I sure couldn’t do what Seldon did and review my husband’s work.

Where I work, two management employees are having an affair. One supervises the other, and is (on the org chart) the person you’d speak with if you had a problem with the other one.

How are you going to do that?

You’ll have to pretend you don’t know about the relationship, of course. You’ll have to trust that John won’t take offense that you’re complaining about Mary, get all protective.

You’ll also have to trust that John doesn’t know that you know, so he won’t think you’re judging him, or her. John cannot for a second think that the affair has anything to do with the work issue. (And better hope you’re not a friend of John’s wife.)

But an affair is different than an open relationship. So, if one partner has any authority over the other one, then I’d say no. One of you should either transfer to a different department, if you can, or look for another job. If you’re equals and likely to stay that way, then maybe it’ll work out okay.

Like people said it really depends on the workplace.

Personally I have never had a workplace romance. Though I have flirted with the guys I worked with. One I still keep in touch with off and on (he left the store before it closed) and now, well one guy I kinda like but we work different shifts. I work graveyard he works morning. So our shifts only overlap by an hour/half an hour.

It depends.

Ever have a girlfriend/boyfriend turn into bitch/bastard from hell upon breaking it off.

Ever have a boyfriend/girlfriend dump you and have seeing that person be very difficult.

If it NEEDS to be done by both parties - and you’ve done the friend thing - and both parties are mature and really want to change the nature of the relationship, go for it - and both of you should start looking for other jobs, just in case.

(The supervisor thing - uh uh. Gets you fired. Even if your boyfriend/girlfriend is ok with it forever and ever, the co-workers have a case for a preference suit.)

In general, I believe the potential for disaster from dating someone at your job is a lot greater than the potential for a favorable outcome. I’ve had a relationship with with someone I worked with twice; once it turned out OK. The second time was a nightmare.

This second time, I dated someone I worked the same shift with at a hospital, and I discovered every reason why you’re not supposed to do this. The relationship ended badly (meaning: she was pretty much a psycho), and working with her meant that I couldn’t really cut the relationship off until she was fired a couple of months later for psycho-like behavior that had nothing to do with our history. And of course everyone at work knew all about our relationship.

Just measure your potential for happiness against the potential for dating disaster. My suggestion is: Do NOT consider dating someone you work with directly. If Psycho Babe and I had worked at the same company but different departments or shifts, it wouldn’t been nearly as nasty.

I’m surprised no one has given the standard quotes:

“Don’t get your honey where you get your money.”


“Don’t sh** where you eat.”

This thread has gone through about a dozen replies and I’m the only one to ask " Are You F-ing Insane!?!?"

Never, Never, Never date/see/ sleep with/pork/f-buddy (whatever you want to call it) anyone you work with. Ever. Doesn’t matter what they say/do etc. Never.

You Will get caught, you Will be the subject of office gossips, you Will lose your position on the promotion list ("…well, you can’t be trusted around the girls in the office.") You Will have to start looking for another job. The personal discomfort alone should lead you towards a cold shower.

Join a gym, shop for food more often, take out a f-ing personal ad, but Never Never Never get involved with a co-worker!!! She’s just setting you up, the laws are All on her side; you’re just a stepping stone into a corner office. And if you don’t see that then You’re the fool…

Wow, quietman. I sense you have some experience with this.

Here’s a story that may convince you that quietman isn’t so far off base. After work one evening, I went out for drinks with some co-workers. One of them used to date my boss pretty seriously, and I take it the relationship ended badly, b/c he talked so much smack about her that I was embarrassed to be listening. I mean, he spilled some very personal information about their sex life that I didn’t need to hear. If she knew about it, I have no doubt that she would be extremely ticked off and probably pretty humiliated too.

Anyway, that incident alone has convinced me that I would have to think loooong and hard before I’d dip my pen into the company ink. That said, I know many people who have married co-workers, and it seems to have been a great decision for them. I wouldn’t say never to do it, but you’d better feel pretty confident that it’s going to work.

You shouldn’t dip your pen in the company ink. If you do, make sure your wife doesn’t find out.

Another maxim would be “You shouldn’t fish off of the company pier.”

I believe that dating anyone you work with is always a Bad Idea, for many of the reasons mentioned above. I try to keep my romantic life as separate as possible from my career. Romances come and go, but your professional reputation is with you for life, and it’s your professional reputation that feeds you and keeps a roof over your head.

I think it depends on how both parties handle the relationship. Some of my co-workers have handled the situation admirably, others didn’t.

For example, “B” and “A” started going out while working in separate departments. Eventually, they were both placed in the same department, and later they married. But to watch the two of them working together, you’d never think they were a couple. They kept their relationship out of the workplace, and concentrated on their jobs during office hours. I’d say they acted very professionally, and gained our respect as a result.

On the other hand, “P” and “J” got it together in pretty much the same circumstances, and also married eventually. However, they couldn’t seem to keep the lovey-dovey stuff out of the office. Lunchtimes were the worst; we all had to sit there in the lunch room while they whispered and giggled, and spoon-fed yogurt to each other. “J” was also the Queen Of TMI, and quite frankly I knew more about her sex life than I ever cared to find out. God forbid they ever had an argument, too, because then we’d all be hearing about it. Suffice to say, most people in the office disapproved of their conduct, and there was a fair bit of gossip flying around too. I guess you could say they were considered to be a bit of a joke.

From my own perspective, I don’t think a workplace relationship is something I’d ever want to get into. When somebody slights me, I never want to speak to them again… the thought of facing an ex every day of the week just makes me cringe. I prefer to leave a job when it suits me, not because the situation forces me into it.

Bad idea. Very bad idea. For all the reasons mentioned above, and a few more.

If this one is going to be the Love of Your Life, transfer to another job first and then come back for her after you’re working elsewhere.

If it works out, it is great (seen it happen with some colleagues).

If it does not, it is hell (been there done that, myself).

From my own experience, I wouldn’t recommend it. We successfully kept our relationship a secret, which meant that I had to watch all of the other gals in the office hitting on him. And endure the pity of those same women who felt sorry for my (supposedly) lengthy dry spell. He was paranoid about being seen with me even just to have a friendly lunch together.

And when we broke up (several times) it was hell. When I started a relationship with someone new, he pestered me during work hours for details and to try to convince me to come back to him.

Obviously, some people manage it without any problems, but I think it puts an added stress on a relationship. I’m assuming the type of workplace would make a difference to how easily it could be managed.