Should You Be Using the Word “Work Spouse”?

I heard about the term “Work Spouse” for the first time just a couple of days ago. As the curious cat I always am, I looked it up on Wikipedia. I was surprised to find out that the origins of the term work spouse go back to the 1930s; to a novel called The Office Wife. And it appears that nowadays, you can hear a variety of labels such as work husband, wusband, or workplace spouse that describe the support between colleagues in the modern workplace.

It’s true that the modern working man and woman spend at least eight hours in an office environment. If you think about it, some people spend more time with their colleagues than they do with their actual spouses at home. And to get things done harmoniously in an office environment, it’s critical to have people who trust, support, and encourage one another. But do you think it’s a bit of an exaggeration to call any of your colleagues a “work spouse”? Does it sound professional? And if you do really have someone at work whom you call “work spouse”, how does your real spouse at home feel about it? Do you think it can hurt your real spouse’s feelings?

It’s very important to work in an environment where you can also enjoy yourself and feel comfortable, like a place where you feel you are surrounded by family. But maybe there are other ways to address the colleagues who support you at work. Like “work buddy”, or “support buddy” etc. What do you think? How do you call your closest colleagues at work?

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