Funny Things That Happen When You Both Work From Home
My partner and I are now both officially and full-time working from home. Our apartment used to be just my office. When I’d get up in the morning, my partner had already gone for the day. There were no interruptions, all day long. The apartment was my oyster. Now I get up and I already hear the typing of keys. I already hear a podcast playing. My partner is working at the desk, on his laptop. It’s honestly very nice to have him here, and it makes working from home less depressing, but it is an interesting and sometimes funny dynamic. This apartment isn’t really built for two people to work from home. And it’s not really normal for two romantic partners to work side by side, in their home, essentially ignoring one another. We see a different side of each other that is usually hidden from us. Here are funny dynamics that arise when you both work from home.
Walking past Skype meetings
I have definitely, more than once, sauntered into the living room in my underwear not realizing that my partner was on a Skype call with a client. Camera on and the whole thing. He could’ve warned me, right?!
Laptops in the bathroom
You learn about the strange things you both do when you work from home, like bringing the laptop into the bathroom, or doing your skincare routine while on an important work call, the person on the other end oblivious to the fact that you have a mud mask on your face and wine in your hand.
Sounding serious in sweatpants
Watching my partner talk very seriously and authoritatively about Excel documents and asset appreciation while he’s wearing the boxers with the little kayaks on them that I bought him is hilarious. He probably feels the same about me when I speak to my boss on the phone while wearing slippers shaped like basset hounds.
Side by side and silent
It’s weird to just sit next to your partner—the person you’d usually be riffing and cuddling with—completely silent for eight hours. It feels very unnatural. Before, when he went to an office, he just got to see me when I was ready to pay attention to him and have fun. Now he’s there for the hours when I cannot really talk to him.
Uncoordinated break times
It’s pretty funny when one person takes a break and wants to shoot the sh*t with the other, who is not on break. When my partner does this, I can just feel him standing around, staring at me while he eats his snack, looking for an opening to tell me a funny story.
Sharing the desk
We only have one desk. We never planned to have two of us working at home. So at any given moment, one person is working at the desk and the other is working on the couch, with the dog by their side or at the kitchen table, moving the saltshakers around to make room for their computer and documents.
When one wants to watch TV
We both have some work we can do with the TV on in the background. Of course, we don’t want to watch the same shows. So if we find ourselves at that point of our work at the same time, one person is deeply devastated to have to watch the other’s show.
Listening in on work calls
My partner feels very insecure if I overhear him on a work call. He just uses a different tone that I’m not used to hearing, and he feels like I’m judging him. So he hides himself in the guest room. But if I’m doing something like cleaning the house and moving from room to room, he just keeps having to relocate to escape me.
Taking work calls outside
Sometimes either one of us will just take a work call outside to get some privacy. But there is no real privacy out there—that’s where we run into neighbors who want to talk about building drama or dogs that jump all over us.
When one finishes early
We never finish our work at the exact same time. The one who finishes first just anxiously waits for the other to be done so we can hang out. And the one who is still working feels pressured and rushed.
Hearing the other get in trouble
We’ve both heard the other on phone calls in which they were clearly getting chastised by a boss or client. We so badly want to vent to each other after these but, there isn’t really time—it’s still the middle of the work day.
Taking turns on the good chair
We only have one really good work chair—like a comfortable office chair that holds you at a nice posture and rolls around. So we take turns using it.
Dog walk disputes
Now that we are both home, there is no reason for just me to handle all of the dog walks in the middle of the day (we have a little dog). My partner did not foresee this dilemma but he knows I have a point, so now we alternate who does the mid-day walk.
Waiting to share updates
Sometimes we will get exciting work updates during the day. We want to share these and celebrate these then and there…! But we have to wait until the workday is done.
Turning love off and back on
It’s just odd to have to turn off that part of you that is amorous and playful when your partner is right there. I used to get to hide the serious, professional side of myself from my partner and visa versa, but now we witness it. We don’t get to access the person we know until around 5pm.