My husband and I are no strangers to working in the same office — that’s how we met, 10 years ago next month. Much to our relief, the dating and working together overlapped only briefly. But last fall, just when I quit my staff job to freelance full-time, Chris got a job offer he couldn’t refuse. The catch? He’d be working from home, too.
So I laughed out loud when I flipped to this he said/she said piece in April’s Marie Claire about a married couple, both writers, who were recently relegated to working from home together. I enjoyed the piece, but I actually didn’t relate all that much to their particular gripes. I’m no domestic goddess and Chris knew that when he married me, so his expectations in that area are pretty low. He doesn’t seem to mind when I pop my head in to ask a question or complain that a source stood me up. And we’re lucky to have 1,000 square feet and, most crucially, two floors.
We do have our moments, though. I worry he’s judging my work habits when I go out midday to “run errands” (read: shop), but feel superior when I get out of bed first. As a music editor, he’s contractually obligated to blast painfully hip music all day, while I really write better in silence or to the dulcet tones of the Indigo Girls. Oh, and the other day he complained that I’m “always in the kitchen” when he wants to be in there. I said, “You mean at noon? What are the odds?”
But honestly, six months in, this has been easier than I thought. We’re both feeling renewed by the job changes, so the personal space seems like a small price to pay — to me anyway. I sense the 24-7 togetherness is a little harder on him, which means I’m either more tolerant or more annoying. I’ll pretend it’s the former.