The Office Spouse: Rules of Engagement
You’re married, but you’ve got a close relationship with a co-worker -- otherwise known as your office spouse. Is it possible to keep it platonic, or is an affair in your future?
The Reality of an Office Spouse Â
While an office spouse might be a great friend, a strong support system, and
a shoulder to cry on, it can be risky. So ask yourself, is an office spouse
"If your spouse has an affair, it will be the worst experience of your
life," says Harley. "You want to take extraordinary precautions to make sure it
doesn't happen to you, because nothing will compare to it. So look at the
conditions that make an affair possible: most affairs take place on the job,
and among really close friends at work."
It's a risk-benefit scenario, so if your marriage is important to you, you
might want to give serious consideration to keeping your office relationships
"The idea of an office spouse is a huge danger -- you would not want your
husband to have an office spouse," says Harley.
While an office spouse poses a threat, it's not beyond the realm of
possibility that the relationship can remain platonic.
"We are considering a survey about whether or not these relationships turn
into affairs," says Vault.com's Oldman. "It's a phenomenon to look at because
it makes sense that an affair would be the next step. Still, that's not always
the case, and a healthy office spouse situation is between people who would
never let it get there -- who understand the line and stay far from it."