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“She Warned Him”: Wife Ignores Husband’s “Work Wifey” Until She Crosses A Line
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“She Warned Him”: Wife Ignores Husband’s “Work Wifey” Until She Crosses A Line

Interview With Expert
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You’ve heard of the “work best friend,” and unfortunately, many of us have a work nemesis as well. But what about the work spouse?

Considering how many hours we spend in the workplace, it’s perfectly normal for some of our professional relationships to mimic those in our personal lives. But after discovering that one of her husband’s colleagues considers herself to be his “work wifey,” this woman started wondering if she should be concerned. Below, you’ll find the full story that she recently shared on Reddit, as well as a conversation with marriage therapist Dr. Lee Baucom

We all trust our partners to spend the whole day at work and return home to us at night

Image credits: FoToArtist_1 (not the actual photo)

But after meeting her husband’s “work wife,” this woman started to wonder if she should intervene

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Image credits: Liza Summer (not the actual photo)

Image credits: Itchy_Muscle47

Later, the woman shared about one more conversation she read

She also replied to several readers and provided more info on the situation

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“The term blurs the boundary between work and intimate life; it creates the expectation of emotional intimacy that is beyond the tasks of work”

To learn whether having a “work spouse” is inappropriate or simply a joke, we reached out to therapist and creator of Save the Marriage, Dr. Lee Baucom. “Most people use that phrase without giving it a thought,” he told Bored Panda. “And for many, it isn’t an issue. But the term blurs the boundary between work and intimate life. It creates the expectation of emotional intimacy that is beyond the tasks of work.”

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“Why not simply say, ‘co-worker,’ or ‘colleague’?” the expert asks. “Because it infers a greater level of connection. And yes, that can lead to deeper issues, including at least emotional infidelity — the result of sharing too much about personal or relational issues that are beyond the scope of work.”

We were also curious if it’s ever appropriate for a spouse to snoop through a partner’s phone if they’re suspicious about their activities. “It is always okay to ask permission to see a spouse’s phone, if there is concern or suspicion,” Dr. Baucom says. “But looking through without permission is always problematic.”

Image credits: Desola Lanre-Ologun (not the actual photo)

“If you have concerns about communication between a spouse and someone else, asking to see it is fair”

“There is clearly a trust issue already in the relationship,” the expert explained. “Now, it is compounded by an actual betrayal of trust. If you have concerns about communication between a spouse and someone else, asking to see it is fair. They can refuse to, which can lead to a conversation about why the refusal? It may be they would be uncomfortable with their spouse seeing the actual communication. It may also be they are simply feeling their privacy is being invaded.”

But Dr. Baucom notes that, often, when a spouse snoops without permission, the issue is no longer about the concern between them and someone else. “The focus is suddenly about the invasion of privacy and the sense of betrayal,” he explained.

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As far as what couples should do in situations like this, the marriage expert says that any time concerns about the relationship arise, it’s a good time to have a conversation. “A concern can be a reflection on the spouse’s actions. It can be a reflection of someone’s own insecurities. And it can be a reflection of both,” Dr. Baucom says. “But you can’t figure that out without talking it through.”

Image credits: Felicity Tai (not the actual photo)

“You can’t make a spouse follow your expectations; you can, though, come to an agreement about how both will protect the relationship”

“It is also a good time for couples to talk about what boundaries they agree to, in order to protect the relationship,” the expert told Bored Panda. “You can’t make a spouse follow your expectations. You can, though, come to an agreement about how both will protect the relationship.”

“What needs to happen for both to feel safe, and each to protect the marriage? That’s a great conversation. One that is best had at the beginning,” Dr. Baucom shared. “But if not then, when there is a concern.”

The marriage expert also noted that we all have “blind spots” in relationships. “Maybe one person is missing the actual threat… until it is too late. But agreeing together on the boundaries, and on the importance of having open conversations when one is uncomfortable, can help keep a marriage safe,” he explained. “And can help both partners feel safe.”

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If you’d like to hear more wise words on marriage and relationships from an expert, be sure to visit Dr. Baucom’s site Save the Marriage!

The story received mixed reactions from readers, with some sharing support for the wife and others saying she needs to work on her communication

Some readers even had similar stories of their own to share

Later, the wife provided an update and shared how she has decided to proceed

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zedrapazia avatar
Zedrapazia
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wow, that work lady is the worst Pick Me Girl I've ever seen described to me. I'd be furious if someone went around behaving like that and calling my husband a work hubby. She can gladly live in her deranged fantasy world, but wtf

viviane_katz avatar
-
Community Member
3 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

She seems to get a kick out of attracting men and "stealing" them. Work crushes happen, but why complicate things with an affair? Most people attracted to a married/partnered colleague distinguish between the two and stick to fantasies.

Load More Replies...
cvirtue avatar
CV Vir
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The “work-spouse” concept is repugnant in all manifestations. Having friends at work is fine. Having this role play thing is extremely inappropriate.

juliestevens avatar
Giraffy Window
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My partner got a "work wife" because his coworker friend's wife started calling her husband his work wife. As a shared joke I think there's room for it. As far as one coworker deciding on the titles as in OP'S story, those are the situations that need to be watched.

Load More Replies...
rhondamarkem avatar
Rhonda Markem
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I'm 63 and this young co-worker is a Classic Predator. Her game plan is classic and unfortunately It Works. "If he is going to cheat - he's going to cheat" I just have to trust my husband is naive and not necessarily true. I have seen many "basically Good Guys" who would never stray fall for the daily "subtle - then not so subtle" comments about his partner's short comings" "subtle - then not so subtle Wow We Are Soulmates-I like Everything You Like" (As if she had not done her homework). It takes another Woman to sense the danger. And following your instincts instead of trying to ignore them could make all of the difference when a Classic Predator is on the Hunt. To say "Men are Dumb" is an understatement when it comes to "Females" of this type! Be Proactive and Calmly Open Dialogue with your Husband and Nip This In The Bud. Once these Predators have "Won the Game" quickly become bored and move on to their "Next Hunt" Leaving Total Devastation in their Rear View Mirror.

jeshala avatar
Jesha
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

God, I've seen several instances of someone seeing a marriage, wanting the stability, and thinking they could just copy-paste themselves into an established family.

Load More Replies...
Load More Comments
zedrapazia avatar
Zedrapazia
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wow, that work lady is the worst Pick Me Girl I've ever seen described to me. I'd be furious if someone went around behaving like that and calling my husband a work hubby. She can gladly live in her deranged fantasy world, but wtf

viviane_katz avatar
-
Community Member
3 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

She seems to get a kick out of attracting men and "stealing" them. Work crushes happen, but why complicate things with an affair? Most people attracted to a married/partnered colleague distinguish between the two and stick to fantasies.

Load More Replies...
cvirtue avatar
CV Vir
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The “work-spouse” concept is repugnant in all manifestations. Having friends at work is fine. Having this role play thing is extremely inappropriate.

juliestevens avatar
Giraffy Window
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My partner got a "work wife" because his coworker friend's wife started calling her husband his work wife. As a shared joke I think there's room for it. As far as one coworker deciding on the titles as in OP'S story, those are the situations that need to be watched.

Load More Replies...
rhondamarkem avatar
Rhonda Markem
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I'm 63 and this young co-worker is a Classic Predator. Her game plan is classic and unfortunately It Works. "If he is going to cheat - he's going to cheat" I just have to trust my husband is naive and not necessarily true. I have seen many "basically Good Guys" who would never stray fall for the daily "subtle - then not so subtle" comments about his partner's short comings" "subtle - then not so subtle Wow We Are Soulmates-I like Everything You Like" (As if she had not done her homework). It takes another Woman to sense the danger. And following your instincts instead of trying to ignore them could make all of the difference when a Classic Predator is on the Hunt. To say "Men are Dumb" is an understatement when it comes to "Females" of this type! Be Proactive and Calmly Open Dialogue with your Husband and Nip This In The Bud. Once these Predators have "Won the Game" quickly become bored and move on to their "Next Hunt" Leaving Total Devastation in their Rear View Mirror.

jeshala avatar
Jesha
Community Member
3 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

God, I've seen several instances of someone seeing a marriage, wanting the stability, and thinking they could just copy-paste themselves into an established family.

Load More Replies...
Load More Comments
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