In today’s world, working couples are more of a rule than an exception. Both partners have their respective careers, their goals and their expectations as well, and since double income is more of a necessity than choice, couples often immerse themselves in their work.
The flipside, however, is that with too much focus on work, relationships often take a beating.
Most couples find themselves spending less time with their spouses and more time at the office. In such a scenario, while they end up thriving professionally, their personal lives leave a lot to be desired.
Take the case of Mahesh and Tanya. Their marriage almost broke down due to Mahesh’s extreme focus on his career.
“His work required him to travel a lot and he would be gone for days. I had to be by myself for long periods and it didn’t bother him that we hardly spent time together. I started feeling unwanted and unloved and finally told him I want out,” she said.
Counsellors say it is very natural for partners of workaholics to feel estranged from their spouses. There is also a possibility of deep resentment setting in and eventually so much the distance creeps in that it becomes difficult to bridge.
Sometimes there is also a lack of awareness about how much is too much with regard to the time one is giving one’s work.
Some couples also find themselves so overwhelmed by their professional life. They unconsciously start putting in too much of their time, thought and energy into work and before they realise it, thewir professional life takes over their personal life.
When Nishant and Diksha joined work, they were both very clear about what they wanted from life.
But when her company started laying off people, Diksha started putting in a lot of time and energy into her job. Though she managed to retain her job, she continued to be stressed out by the amount of time and energy she had to put into it.
Soon it started taking a toll on their marriage. Nishant started feeling neglected and ignored, as Diksha started focusing more on cementing her position in the office.
“She would come home late and then have a quick meal and start working on her laptop again. We barely spoke and our sex life was down in the dumps since she was always tired. I started feeling like I didn’t matter to her at all,” said Nishant.
Diksha, on the other hand, was so pre-occupied with her work that she failed to notice their marriage failing.
Being under the kind of stress she was in, the two would often end up fighting and before they knew it, things came to a point where the two could not hold a decent conversation.
Experts say that it is important for couples to realise that personal life is as important as professional life and maintaining a balance between the two is crucial. They also suggest that the couples share their work stress with the other so that there is no misunderstanding and displaced feeling of neglect.
Counsellors advise that professional life should not seep into personal lives to the extent that there is nothing left to hold a marriage together. They suggest that once home, couples should shut out the office work and focus on each other.
It’s also a good idea to ensure that the couples draw a line between their work life and personal life. For this they need to work out ways to spend time together – go on a vacation, go for a walk, participate in shared activities – so that both partners feel they are important to each other.