I used to cheat on my boyfriend five days a week. For hours. At least eight hours a day, as a matter of fact, plus overtime. Monday through Friday, I’d go to work and spend all day as someone’s “work wife.” You know the concept? A “work spouse” is someone you totally click with on the job—the person you can joke around with, complain about your boss to, exchange eye rolls with during meetings. A “work husband” makes your job bearable.
I don’t know how I would have gotten through the day without K (he shall remain nameless). We had each other’s backs, we saved each other’s sanity, kept each other’s secrets. I’d go home and describe my boss’s latest temper tantrum to my boyfriend, but it wasn’t the same. He didn’t get it the way K did.
Was there sexual tension? Sure. The few times my boyfriend and work-husband met, I caught some suspicious looks. The undercurrent of sex was always there. But did we do anything about it? No. Why ruin a perfectly good work marriage with sex? That wasn’t the point for me. The point was that K gave me something my boyfriend didn’t. We connected in a different way. We needed each other.
The idea that one person should take care of all our needs for the rest of our lives seems nuts. I saw a gay friend recently who told me about his “triad.” His triad consists of the guy he fucks, who’s totally on the downlow; his longtime friend who he vacations with, hangs out with, confides in, but never sleeps with; and his therapist. It takes those three people to fill his emotional needs.
It’s not, strictly speaking, a ménage. But it rang true for me. We all need many people to support us as we go through life. I wonder if ménages are so popular because they acknowledge that one person can’t give you everything you need. I love my husband, but I can’t vent to him the way I could to K. I love my husband, but he wouldn’t get our jokes about our girl-Hitler boss.
Ménage stories are honest about that. They bring that hidden truth to the surface. They take all those sexual undercurrents to the logical extreme of getting naked together.
What do you think? Am I overthinking this or am I onto something? Have you ever had a “work spouse”? Do you think One Isn’t Enough when it comes to satisfying all our emotional needs?
By the way, my Receptionist series takes a three-way work relationship to its absolutely naughtiest extreme. Here's the cover and blurb for the latest in the series, Restraining the Receptionist. Click here for more.
Every deal has a loophole.
…the Receptionist, Book 2
Dana Arthur’s new job with the firm of Cowell & Dirk is going well. Translation: the occasionally kinky ménage with her two bosses, Ethan and Simon, has been several months of politically incorrect bliss.
Except the relationship feels unbalanced. While Ethan is the undisputed master, the partners’ iron-clad agreement stipulates that Simon must be present as she performs her “duties”. And she senses there’s a subtle, powerful tug-of-war developing for more than just her body.
Simon had agreed to share the firm’s fiery, sensually daring receptionist…to a point. With Simon out of town, Ethan plans a feast of erotic temptations designed to have Dana begging him to break the deal. He didn’t realize his heart would be a casualty.
Once she surrenders to his wicked demands, Dana realizes there’s no going back. It’s time for a three-way renegotiation…this time, all or nothing.
NSFW!! Do Not Try This at Your Job. Contains highly inappropriate workplace behavior including m/f/m, m/m, bondage, creative use of office space and a high-stakes trip to Atlantic City.