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Office Romances - Are They Ever a Good Idea?

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So, I’m sure at some point in our working lives we’ve all had a crush on a co-worker. That one person that makes going to work that little bit more exciting and makes your heart beat that little bit faster when they walk past. You’ve probably even fantasised about what it would be like to go on a date with that person or imagined being with them in a relationship. But, are office romances a good idea?

A little harmless flirting with a colleague can be fun, but what happens when you take that a step further and actually start dating a colleague? Unfortunately, I’m still yet to hear of any couples that got together at work and have stayed together long term. The majority of people I spoke to that had dated a colleague, told me that it end badly and resulted in either them or the other person leaving for another job.

There are many things to consider if you are thinking of dating a colleague. Firstly, when everyone else finds out that you are dating, you may find that you’re the subject of office chat for a while. This might not seem so bad as eventually they will find something else to talk about. But if you and your partner have an argument, it can be difficult to keep this from being public knowledge around the office.

It can also cause an even bigger issue if one of you is higher up in the work hierarchy. For example, other staff may start treating you both differently, thinking that the only reason you get praise for a job well done or chosen for sought out jobs is because of your relationship with the boss (even if it isn’t), leading you to become fairly isolated at work.

You also have to consider that at the beginning, seeing each other all day at work and then at home after can seem great, but eventually that can wear a bit thin. You will most likely steadily find that you have less and less to talk about and also you may be wishing that you had more of your own space.

Another thing to factor in is that if the relationship ends, where does that leave you in relation to your career? I wouldn’t want to work with my ex, it can be hard enough to get over a relationship as it is, without having to see them every day. It could also create an awkward atmosphere for other people that you work with and this nightmare is only magnified if your ex is your boss!

So, what about if your crush works at the same place, but it’s a big office and you don’t even work in the same department? Well, this can definitely heighten the chances of it lasting, as you’re not spending every minute with them and probably have different social circles within work. It also shouldn’t create too much of a problem if you broke up as you wouldn’t have to see them all that much.

In conclusion, a little harmless flirting can definitely make work more interesting and could be taken further if you work in separate departments. If you work in close proximity however, be prepared for it to get messy!

Written by: Liz Harwood