Who is Alex and what is this? This is an advice column where I, Alex, answer your questions about dating and about life. Got a question you want to see featured? Submit it in the comments below!
“One of my coworkers is dating one of our supervisors. The supervisor and him are fairly respectful with their relationship, clearly taking care to avoid PDA’s or other things that might make the rest of us uncomfortable. That said, I can’t help but feel as though he’s getting preferential treatment from the supervisor. I don’t want to get them in trouble but it does bother me. What should I do?”
I think before you do anything, you need to outline in your head (or possibly even on paper if you have concrete examples) the extent of this preferential treatment. If your coworker is just being alerted to or made privy to things before the rest of you all, it might be just a matter of proximity. If that’s the case, your supervisor might just need a little kick in the ribs to remind them to keep their mouth shut outside of work.
If you believe that this preferential treatment is resulting in your coworker receiving financial gains or furthering his career, then you need to take your list (and hopefully you made the paper list in this case) to HR. If your supervisor doesn’t know better than to engage in this kind of behavior, then they shouldn’t be a supervisor. If your supervisor does know what they’re doing, well, then they also shouldn’t be a supervisor. Either way, you owe it to your employer and yourself to help create a level playing field for all of its employees, regardless of who they are or are not sleeping with.
“I’m thinking about asking my partner to move in with me when my lease is up in a few months. I’m confident in this relationship and we already spend a lot of time together but there is one issue: I make a lot more money than he does. I’m okay with paying more than half of the rent, but I am worried that bringing this up might make him feel uncomfortable or insecure. What should I do?”
A serious relationship—particularly one where the participants are living together—has its own currency and economy that is much larger than each party’s financial inputs. You are obviously satisfied by the inputs your partner is currently making and you’re also likely satisfied by what you perceive to be the inputs he could make in a situation where the two of you are living together. I think you should think about what those inputs are currently and what they might look like while you two are living together. And you should think about those things before you have this conversation with your partner.
In most—if not all—relationships, one person makes or has more money than the other. And a discussion similar to the one you’re about to have is healthy for any kind of serious relationship. Sometimes it goes smoothly, sometimes there’s a bit of fuss. If you are in an opposite-sex relationship, statistically, you might be more likely to run into some fuss in your case, given your partner is male. But regardless of gender expectations or how much fuss there is or isn’t in this conversation, it will definitely be good form to go over those inputs of value that you perceive your partner to be contributing or to be able to contribute when you have this conversation. Good luck!
“I work from home and my partner does not. When she comes home, she wants to relax on the couch and stay in. When I am done with work, I want to get out of the house. What should we do?”
You’ve got a handful of options here. If your work is laptop-centric, you could try working at a coffeeshop instead of in the house. This will help with some of the cabin fever. Plus, you never know, maybe you’ll run into your friendly neighborhood advice columnist at the coffeeshop! Leave me alone if you do, though; seriously, I’m working.
If that’s not an option, you could try getting into some kind of routine or schedule. Maybe Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays can be going out nights and the rest can be staying in nights. You could also find something to do without your partner one or two nights of the week. A book club or a bowling league or a bike riding group. The activity also doesn’t need to start with the letter “B”.
Finally, make sure your partner understands the importance of you getting out of the house at least a little bit each day. Us working from home people can be mighty susceptible to the old cabin fever. All work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy and all of that.
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This article was originally published by GREY Journal.