together, yet not too near

Let me start with this: I don’t believe in love-at-first-sight (except for in the novels,which I absolutely love to read, if written well) and I don’t think work place romance or office romances are good. Recently office romance was something I kept hearing from various sources and that prompted this post. A few weeks back one of my friend told me that he fancied a girl in his office. Even before he could continue, I told him ‘It’s not that I am discouraging you from romance of any sort, but if you ask me, I won’t encourage office / work place romances. If you really want to find that someone, try finding her outside of your work place’. His argument was that since he doesn’t go out much, he could get to know about people in the work place much better and what was wrong with that. Well, nothing wrong with that, unless the people involved are matured enough to handle things in a decent manner if things don’t go that well between them. Also there are lot of policies that you need to adhere to while at work place, which makes it all the more difficult. Honestly, that is a bit too daunting if you ask me.

Let alone romances, I personally don’t feel that a couple should work in the same company. Of course, I have been proved wrong by a lot of couple’s who found each other in my company and have been happily married and are still here (and I have been in this company for more than a decade now, so yeah, I have seen quite a few of them right from their initial stage of romance). Even in my first company, one of my close friend was married and I didn’t know that her husband worked in the same company and in fact in my department, while she was working in another department. I knew about it only because she mentioned him. I would have never guessed it. They hardly saw each other, never acknowledged except for a ‘hi’ , treated each other just like another colleague-from-another-department. When I asked her why she wouldn’t want to hang out with him, she said ‘its more than enough that we have only each other at home, otherwise it would get very boring’. I agree with her on that totally. Imagine looking at a person and being in each other’s space 24/7. I am sure to go mad after a couple of days. I remember Khalil Gibran’s quote

     You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when white wings of death scatter your days.
Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,


Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together, yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

I have seen the downside of a couple being in the same organization. In my first company, when it got downsized, they had a policy that they will allow the couple to choose on who is going to remain in the company because they rather retrench from the set of couples instead of keeping both of them in the company and letting go of others so as to be fair. I am not expert on human resource stuff but from a couple’s point of view, just imagine the kind of pressure on them. Also recently, one of the companies has announced that they are closing down their offices completely.  If a couple is working there then at a single shot, both of them will be out of work. Its just not easy. Especially if they have kids, loans and other commitments.

So yeah, no office romances, no couple working in the same organization and no love at first sight. Hmm.. I thought I was romantic!