Millennials say it's inappropriate to have a work wife but most Gen Zers and boomers are cool with it, poll finds

Software developers talking to each other at work
Millennials aged 25-34 years old largely disapprove of work marriages, a poll found.Luis Alvarez/Getty Images
  • Gen Zers and millennials disagree on whether it's appropriate to have a work spouse, a poll found.

  • More than half of millennials disapprove of such relationships, per Newsweek's study.

  • However, fewer than half of Gen Zers and boomers think having a work spouse is inappropriate.

Gen Zers and millennials are clashing on the topic of work spouses, a poll has found.

Work wives or husbands are coworkers who are especially close, often relying on each other for support and friendship in the workplace. The deep workplace relationships have long been compared with marital bonds, without the romantic element.

However, a poll conducted in March for Newsweek by Redfield & Wilton Strategies found that more than half of millennials disapproved of such relationships. In a poll of 1,500 US adults, 57% of millennials, which the study categorized as 25-34-year-olds, said it wouldn't be acceptable to have a work spouse.

Only 18% of those polled in that age group said they thought work marriages were ok, 17% said it depended on the circumstances, and 8% said they didn't know, Newsweek reported.

The study found that most Gen Zers and boomers were fine with the relationships. Only 39% of Gen Zers and 40% of boomers said having a work partner was not ok.

Of the total adults polled, 21% said they thought it was ok to have a work spouse, while 45% said the relationship was inappropriate.

Although these relationships are typically platonic, one employee, who is referred to as Emily to preserve her anonymity, told Newsweek her work husband became her real husband. She said she believed work spouses could be non-romantic. However, the work relationships could also serve to fill "a void that exists in someone's romantic relationship," she said.

Jennifer B. Rhodes, a psychologist and dating coach, previously told Insider that workplace "marriages" were an unsurprising part of office life. They weren't typically an issue unless they were being used for something more intimate than would be appropriate in a work setting, she said.

Rhodes added: "There is a tendency for people to have an emotional affair with their work wife or work husband when things are not really going well at home."

Read the original article on Business Insider