- Warner Bros.
• Dating in the office can be tricky business.
• Specific rules surrounding merging your love life and your work life vary depending on your role and your organization’s work culture.
• Either way, you want to be especially careful about what you say at work for the sake of both your job and you relationship.
You know how the cliché goes: All’s fair in love and war.
But the same can’t be said for love and work.
Falling in love with a coworker can be pretty rough. It’s not like office romances are a rarity, though. According to a study by Vault.com, 57% of people have participated in a workplace fling at some point in their career – and a heartening 16% of those people got married to their office love.
Most importantly, you need to make sure to not mess it all up. Certain impulsive statements could alienate your colleagues, offend your partner, and even get you fired.
Here are 12 things to avoid saying to bae – when you’re in the office:
‘I don’t care that you’re married’
- Pavel Yavnik/Shutterstock
Truth be told, shacking up with the married man or woman of your dreams should probably be left to soap-opera characters.
‘Give me some sugar’
- Avinash Haldankar/Flickr
Even if your boss is cool with your relationship, too much PDA is sure to annoy your coworkers. Save the sweet talk for when you get home.
‘Don’t talk to me at work’
- Alex Holyoake/Flickr
When it comes to interacting with your office love interest, it’s probably better to err on the side of professionalism.
That being said, don’t give them the cold shoulder. That could raise suspicion – not to mention offend your special something. Just treat them like a normal person.
‘Did you just make eyes at him/her?’
Office relationships are tricky enough when only two people are involved. Don’t go dragging a third wheel into the mix.
Angst-ridden love triangles are for YA novels, anyway.
‘You’re the best’
Obviously, it’s great that you think your boo’s the best.
But you’ve got to keep the favoritism on lock at work. You don’t want to display bias toward this person. It may arouse suspicion or cause some serious resentment.
‘Let’s do it in the office’
This is a truly terrible idea. Have fun explaining this one if someone catches you in the act.
‘Let’s tell everyone right now’
Depending on your situation, the only person who may need to know about your relationship is your boss. Look into the company’s policy before telling anyone about your romance.
And maybe hold off on sending out that sappy announcement even once you’re clear on the rules. Why involve the entire office in your personal business?
‘Honey,’ ‘sweetheart,’ ‘babe,’ etc.
- Flickr / mbtrama
Pet names are like fluffy-bunny bedroom slippers: awesome and adorable, but not appropriate for the office.
‘Let’s take an office selfie together’
- Flickr/Mona Varga
If you’re trying to keep things on the DL, then taking lots of pictures together is a surefire way of playing your hand – especially if you’ve got colleagues following you on social media.
And even if your relationship has gone public, then this just looks really cheesy.
‘Let me help you with that’
- JOHNNY LAI/Flickr
It’s great that you want to see your main squeeze succeed, but you’ve got to keep things ethical. Don’t go showing them preferential treatment.
‘I love you so much’
- Wikimedia Commons
Again, love is great, but this isn’t something that you should be broadcasting across the office. It’s just neither the time nor the place for your sweeping, romantic declarations.
‘Will you marry me?’
- Flickr / BuzzFarmers
This is not “The Proposal.” You’re neither Ryan Reynolds nor Sandra Bullock.
Work is for work, not outlandish marriage proposals. So don’t pop the question on the job unless you want to go down in infamy as the tackiest people in the office.