Work can be an incredibly taxing, tedious, 40 plus hours per week of your life. To survive, sometimes we need to be able to vent to someone about the trials and tribulations, the angry boss or uncooperative employees.
But what if that venting takes place with someone other than your wife or husband?
Having a relationship at the office with a close confidant isn't anything new, it just has a label now: "work wife or work husband". Roughly 32% of office workers have no problem stating that they have someone at work that fits that description.
The idea that you're living a double life might be a bit of a stretch, but this match made in work heaven is more about keeping your sanity within the office than moonlighting with another man or woman. Husbands and wives are stressed about their job on almost a daily basis; bringing that stress home and unloading it on your spouse isn't exactly the best dinner conversation for a number of reasons.
That's not to suggest that your husband or wife isn't interested in your job, but they're probably dealing with their own inner office politics or maybe an equally stressful day taking care of the kids or running errands.
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At the end of the day, a work spouse is hardly reason for panic, if you happen to be the husband or wife that is watching this budding office relationship unfold. The main purpose of sharing thoughts, feelings or sentiment isn't to escalate the relationship to more than just a "work spouse" but rather connect with someone who is in the same situation and easily understands exactly what you're going through in the office, good or bad.
That's because they live it, too.
, a career expert and correspondent for NewYork.com, goes as far as to suggest that the relationship could lead to career advancement as far as having someone in your corner and can communicate on your behalf.
Having a friend you can trust at work or can empathize with any number of situations is hardly worth worrying about and can actually work as a positive. Letting off steam to someone other than your spouse bodes well for the at home conversation not always being overly negative or only about work.
Those experts who suggest that the work spouse relationship is a path toward infidelity might be over thinking the work dynamic at bit. Feelings of trust and care between employees occurs because the situation dictates it, along with the hours upon hours you spend at your job.
Of course, there are limitations.
Work spouses should end the communication at work; that means candle light dinners aren't acceptable or calling your "work wife" at midnight three or four times a week.
The relationship, like any good partnership, should have its boundaries parameters and should proceed with both common sense and caution.
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