Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

Don’t Shit Where You Eat (?)

Work and dating – I’ve always been of the opinion that they don’t mix, but then, I’ve never really been in  a situation where I wanted to date anyone I worked with.  The few times I’ve had guys I worked with ask me out, I politely turned them down saying that I didn’t date co-workers.  But if these were guys I’d met in some other way, I still wouldn’t have gone out with them.

According to this video over at YourTango, 47% of people have dated co-workers, with 44% of office romances leading to marriage.  I’d believe that.  I know several people who met their spouses at work.  In most of those cases, one of the two found new employment shortly after their relationship became public.

I actually have a funny little story that I can’t resist telling.  The video gives a little how-to and how not-to.  They smartly suggest not publicly making advances towards a co-worker at an office function or holiday party.  Years ago I worked at an organization that threw these wild Christmas parties.  And one year a very senior member of staff was found (as in, several people saw it with their own eyes) having sex with a much junior staff member in the men’s room.  That would definitely fall into the not category.

Anyway, back to the topic at hand -shitting where you eat.  Even though so many people do it successfully, I still think it’s a bad idea.  What about you?  What do you think?

Would you date someone you work with?

  • Yes. (33 votes)
  • It depends. Only if we didn’t have to work directly with one another on a daily basis. (44 votes)
  • No. No exceptions. (15 votes)
  • Other. Please explain in the comments. (7 votes)

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20 to “Don’t Shit Where You Eat (?)”


  1. SimplyLSC says:

    Whoa, I have a hard time believing that 44% of office romances lead to marriage. Maybe I should date where I work. haha NO. The teachers where I work are more of a gossip than the students. The students will ask me to my face am I dating Mr. Art teacher. The teachers will start a rumor that we are engaged.

  2. Deanna Leigh says:

    I tried to date someone I worked with indirectly and it was awful when he got laid-off! Drama.

  3. NYCtravelgrl says:

    I completely agree with this (kind of gross) analogy…and think it should apply to your apartment building as well!

  4. LPS says:

    Haha – yes teachers are major gossips! I don’t know why. I’d date someone if the office wasn’t competitive. In our company, we all get on with our work, it’s very quiet, when we’re concentrating, we don’t have loud characters clamouring for attention, and the guys are all nerds anyway, bless their hearts, so they don’t flirt. They’re too busy figuring out code. So in this environment, I would date someone if I liked them. In a gossipy, competitive, with way too many personalities, I would choose not to. Other people, not in the relationship, like to talk too much I’ve found and get in the way of budding romances. It kills the joy. No matter how discreet one tries to be. Someone talks. I hate that.

  5. onedatewonder says:

    The complex where I work is a huge multi-building campus with roughly a zillion different offices. So yeah, I’d date someone on campus. Just not someone in my immediate area.

  6. TerrySimpson says:

    No hard fast rules- but the last person who was in my life and in my office was a disaster and that will never happen again.

  7. snowman expert says:

    Disqualify my ‘yes’ vote. I’m a cartoonist who works at home and has never worked in an office and so because it feels like I’m missing all this amazing romance going on. Do they still have Casual Sex Fridays?

  8. Anonymous says:

    At this point in my life, I wouldn’t. I made the mistake of dating a co-worker at my first job. He told me he was on his way out when we started dating and so I thought it was fine. Big mistake- he was a one of the most unambitious people I’ve ever met in my life and we worked together for over two years until I got tired of it and left. It would have been easier to break up with him if I didn’t have to think about the awkwardness that would have came working closely with an ex.

  9. starangel82 says:

    I wouldn’t. At least not right now. I’ve heard too many horror stories from people who have. Maybe if I ever lived in a big city in a big company… but not now. No way.

  10. Tales From A Bar Stool says:

    I’ve made out with men I work with… Actually there have been 5 of them. Four are in my current workplace. It’s usually pretty awkward for the first couple days after it happens, but in each case it’s now like it never even happened. Back to normal. Would I do it again? Yes.

    But would I actually have a relationship with someone I work with? I’m going to say no. This is because I think people in a relationship need to have their separate lives and be independent of each other. Working and dating is just too much time spent with each other.

  11. Dating is my hobby says:

    I’ve dated 2 guys I’ve worked with. The first time I was an intern and he was way older than me– it was more of a flirtation, but I look back and feel like an idiot thinking my co-workers didn’t notice that we’d leave for lunch for an hour every day together….the second was a slow progression from friendship to a relationship and by the time we were together he had left the company. Much easier that way.

  12. lostplum says:

    I think it all really depends on the workplace environment and the people in the said relationship. some people can’t even live in the same city as someone if the relationship goes south, where as others ‘the normal ones, and I wish i could say the masses’ are able to sit right down beside an ex and do their job….I’m all for it! If the two people are right and smart daters in general!

  13. dazediva says:

    I’ve voted for no – no exceptions however I have dated someone from when I used to work in a corporate bank … We were both on the same floor but different divisions and I pretty much left the company within 2-3 weeks of us starting to date … In my entire dating history – I have otherwise managed to avoid dating anyone from the same office as myself … I’m in the events industry – so not only do I not date my colleagues, but there’s a big no-no for any clients and even potential clients !

    I have a friend of mine who is dating a girl in the same company – different divisions, different floors – and that woman makes his life living hell with the amount of questions she throws at him i.e why didn’t you meet me for lunch, how come you are still here, why didn’t you wait for me, etc etc ! I wouldn’t want to go through that !

  14. pansophy says:

    Over the years I have dated several women I work with and I haven’t had any problems. That said, I’ve also not dated women from work that I could date. You kind of have to know ahead of time if you like them enough to see them for a while (even if just causally) and who will be an adult if dating no longer seems to work.

  15. Simone Grant says:

    First a couple of welcomes (I think we have a couple of new people?) to Deanna Leigh and NYCtravelgrl.
    So it sounds like this is one of those things that’s both situational and personal. The more cautious amongst us might be more cautious (and then some of us work in esp gossipy workplaces – schools being the worst). Sorry, Snowman Expert, Casual Sex Fridays has been phased out of most offices.

  16. Pinay photos says:

    I don’t date with my co-worker..it is because I don’t like to be watched all the time.

  17. BrownEyedPanther says:

    I said other because it really depends on how I feel. Normally, I’d opt not to date anyone I work with, especially if my plans are to continue up the chain at the company. However, I’ve had my fair share of experiences dating coworkers. Is it something I’m willing to try in the future? I don’t know.

  18. Singletude: A Positive Blog for Singles says:

    Although I’ve never done this–the offices I’ve worked in have been very small and usually filled with women–I wouldn’t have a problem with it. I think one of the reasons people seem to have such a hard time finding matches these days is because we have all these hard, fast rules about where we can and can’t meet people and who’s ineligible because he lives five floors above us or used to date our sister’s best friend. All relationships involve taking chances, and I think it can be better to take a chance and fail than always wonder if you missed out on someone great.

  19. aileenandalex.com says:

    my co-worker proposed on vday and we’re getting married next spring. we almost asked our manager to officiate, haha!

  20. Simone Grant says:

    aileenandalex.com
    Congrats. I love happy love stories (such a nice change). Oh, and welcome to the blog.

    And please forgive me to everyone else I missed welcoming – BrownEyedPanther, Pinay photos, Dating is my hobby.