Can work-related stress affect your romantic relationships?

Finding a balance between work satisfaction and romantic relationships is considered a goal for the majority of couples worldwide.


It is clear that couples who don't have high psychological #wellbeing show negative emotional states such as dissatisfaction, disappointment, and frustration in their romantic #relationships. On the contrary, couples who are in healthy relationships experience feelings of self-worth, happiness, and satisfaction.

Whereas work is a tool to reach goals and achievements including self-esteem, motivation, self-perception, and identity formation, it can negatively affect different aspects of a person's life, including physical, psychological, and interpersonal. For example, burn-out is a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress as well as bullying that has not been successfully managed.


Bullying in the workplace is characterized by harassing, offending, socially excluding someone or negatively affecting someone’s work tasks repeatedly and regularly. Stress, anxiety, depression, a tendency towards asking for sickness absences or intentions to leave the organization are some of the signs of a bullied employee. But can work-related stress affect the romantic relationships of employees?

External stress, not only impacts the individuals’ physical and psychological well-being but it also might spill over into their relationship with the romantic partner. Considering burnout and workplace bullying as stressors in one’s life, the experienced occupational stress could spillover into the affected individual’s romantic relationships, resulting in relationship conflicts which might eventually lead to relationship dissatisfaction and breakdowns.

A study by Parisa Gharibi Khoshkar, 2020, aimed to assess the relationship between such work-related stressors on academics’ romantic relationships since the complications of such harms should be taken into account.


The results of the study showed that burnout has a negative impact on individuals in terms of their tendencies towards sexual relationships, communication, affection level, intimacy, and their perceived self- esteem. Individuals with higher scores in burnout reported lower scores in the above-mentioned elements regarding their romantic relationships, which indicates a rise in relationship conflicts level. Therefore, being unable to manage these relationship problems might lead to relationship satisfaction and eventually, the relationship might fail.


Moreover, workplace bullying is also found as a predictor in the likelihood of romantic relationship dissatisfaction.

Source: Assessing the impact of Burnout syndrome on romantic relationship Satisfaction: The dark side of Workplace Bullying.
Parisa Gharibi Khoshkar, 2020
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