Life lessons

Space Invasion. Or not.

I have been watching FRIENDS (again!) Just enjoying the DVDs I have and laughing all over again. I just finished watching the episode where Rachel and Ross break up (the first time). And it got me thinking. About what led to them having to go “on a break”.

For those who haven’t seen it, basically, Rachel gets a job in the fashion industry through the help of some guy Mark and Ross starts to get jealous. And then with Rachel spending more and more time at work (actually working), Ross starts getting frustrated and jealous and feels like he doesn’t have a girlfriend because she spends so much time at work. He gets really annoyed when she has to work over time on their first year anniversary and ends up at her work place with the plans they had for their anniversary night and making a mess of things. When they later argue at home, Ross tells her it’s “just a job” and eventually they take a break from the relationship on Rachel’s insistence.

Now, the point here was not for me to tell you all about FRIENDS. But when I saw this episode this time around, there were other things that stood out for me. Like how possessive Ross is. And that how Rachel’s job doesn’t seem to matter as much as his does (especially because when they first start going out, he has to work late on one occassion ruining their date). And that he needs to call her and be with her at all times to feel like he has a girlfriend. And it also reminded me of some people I work with and have worked with in the past. Where they would call their partners at least three or four times a day from work or vice versa! And talking about stuff like “Whatcha doin?

And I find myself thinking… why???

Is it because people are so insecure about the relationship that they feel the need to call their partners every few hours?

Or is something stupid like they just want to brag about their relationship? (Yes, someone at work currently does that…each time her partner calls or she calls her partner is an opportunity for her to brag about the relationship and their upcoming holiday where they are flying business class)

Is your partner calling you at work or coming over to work supposed to be romantic? Or does it in some weird way mean they love you so much more??

I would hate it if my partner called me every single day at work. After all, my work place is my place. (I could so relate to Rachel’s speech about liking not having Ross in that part of her life). It’s where I am a professional. Where I am a psychologist. And I don’t particularly like mixing personal with professional. My partner calling me every day at work or god forbid, visiting me at work, would drive me nuts!!! It would feel like he was invading a part of my life and smothering me. I don’t think I would handle it too well and the end result would probably be like Rachel and Ross. Without getting back together.

What about all of you out there?

Do you or have you in the past called your partner every day from work? Or had them call you every day? [I’m not thinking about having to call them for something urgent once in a while.] If you do, please explain the reasons if you don’t mind.

Or are you more like me where you like your space?

Do share.

Until next time,

Cheers!!!

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  • Reply
    Richa
    December 4, 2010 at 6:11 am

    It depends. Of course, I hate being disturbed when I am busy and I am working but I don’t mind talking during lunch hour. And then, my first question would be if the other person is busy or can talk.

    Long distance relationship with partners living in different time zone can be a possible explanation…

    But I confess I don’t know people who keep calling all the time and then proceed to tell everyone in the earshot about their personal life.

  • Reply
    Scribbler Utters
    December 4, 2010 at 11:18 am

    I don’t know but we never call each other often in a day especially when at work..

    even when we are at home on holidays,along with spending some time together, we give each other our own space to do things we individually like 🙂

    So there! I think too much calling or being together makes it sticky…if you know what I mean 🙂

  • Reply
    Aditya
    December 4, 2010 at 11:54 am

    Not just my partner, I would hate it if anyone tries to invade my privacy, be it my work place or home. May be I am cribbing, but thats how I am. Agreed totally Psych! 🙂

  • Reply
    writerzblock
    December 4, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Loved this post, PB. First of all, I loooove Friends. Secondly, I liked the point you have chosen to highlight here in this post. As for me, I have never called my partner simply because my need for space is way too much!! Also, I’ve noticed that it is mostly Men who do the calling and checking on the partners and not the other way round! Strange, isn’t it? For all the branding that people do, about wives being ‘nags’ or ‘curious’, I actually feel its the men who are insecure and crave attention and ownership!!!

  • Reply
    starry eyed
    December 4, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    Hmmm…there have been phases when SH and I would talk a lot when he was at work, when I wasn’t working too. But I’ve been working now from home for almost 3 years now, and I’ve again found different phases…where sometimes we chat 1-3 times a day, sometimes when he calls me I get annoyed, coz like you said, I like not having him in that part of my life. As to why I call him, it’s that there are always a dozen things to be discussed…and with 2 kids around, we forget and we don’t get the time, space and privacy to talk. Also with the working hours he keeps, which don’t match my working hours, and the long-pending tasks and issues we have in our life, it makes sense to just talk whenever the thought comes to mind, if the spouse is free-ish…

    And there have been times when we’ve had fights or disagreements, and it’s easier to talk on the phone as soon as we’ve cooled down, even if it’s during working hours, rather than face-to-face at home where it gets all intense again. Somehow it always gets sorted out better.

    But your post got me thinking. When I was a SAHM, I used to feel hurt sometimes when SH would not call me all day…but when I started working too…I realise that it’s not personal…just professional 😀 Reading your post reiterated that too!

  • Reply
    Titaxy
    December 4, 2010 at 5:57 pm

    As far as what happpened with Ross and Rachel, I side with Rachel. If my partner was like Ross – insecure, calling me at work when I am super busy and telling me that it’s not fair on my part to concentrate so much on my work and such, then I would definitely react the same way Rachel did.

    But, I do take personal calls at work, whenever time permits. If I don’t have a lot going on, I don’t see why I wouldn’t pick up a call to say hi/hello. Not because I am insecure or jealous or too dependent. But just because. It’s a nice way to give my mind a break for those few mins and it’s nice to hear a loving voice at the other end, be it partner or my mother (i call my mother everyday during lunch) or whoever. Anyway, not sure if I am making sense, but all I am trying to say is that I do take calls and chat for a couple of mins here and there.

    But if someone were to push me over the edge with constant calling, even after I’ve told the person that I can’t talk..and visit my work place and such, then that would definitely be going overboard.

  • Reply
    Harini
    December 4, 2010 at 6:45 pm

    Talking about Ross and Rach… in season 4 episode ‘The One with Rachel’s new dress’ Monica and Phebs realize that Ross is the way he is because of his ex-wife. In reality too I guess sometimes something like that happens and you are bit shaken up and find it hard.

    But coming to actual question of calling everyday at work. Well, that totally depends. One of my friends keep calling each other at work because they miss each other and want to know if other had their lunch so on and so forth. Anyone would think they are newly married but they have been for like 5 years now. And the weird thing is they dont brag about. Its just a routine for them which they follow.

    For me personally I dont know yet. But I dont think I would mind much but only and only if it doesnt get over done. I dont like clingy people somehow :P.

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 5, 2010 at 9:09 am

    @ Richa: I guess the long distance thing can definitely be an explanation but in what I have witnessed so far, that’s definitely not the case. Funnily enough I find that I don’t even make personal calls to partners/friends even during lunch…unless it’s something urgent.

    @ Scribbler Utters: I know what you mean…it’s nice to give each other space!

  • Reply
    Shalet Jimmy
    December 5, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    I also don’t like my partner invading my privacy during my office hours. It’s like he does not have any trust in me.

  • Reply
    Soulmate
    December 6, 2010 at 5:31 am

    This reminded me of the scene from Chak De India where Preeti Sabharwal wants to go for Hockey world cup and her fiance(a cricketer) remarks snottily, since their wedding date needs to be postponed, ‘Its just a game’….

    Why a women’s job be less important than a man’s job!!! I fail to understand..
    Also I would hate it if my partner calls me every day at work.. I need my own space and need a life of my own as well…

  • Reply
    celestialrays
    December 7, 2010 at 12:44 am

    My reader dint show this lovely post 😐

    The way it is for AB and me is that our work timings are different. When I work, he’s at home, when he works, I am at home. So the one at home, out of sheer boredom sends a text 😛
    But calling is always done only by the busy person to the free one when we find the time/need/mood to call.
    I am guilty of wachu doing calls as well but only when he’s at home and I am taking a break from work… It works for us. We have our own space and when it’s not cluttered, you can make room for a little of everything you want 🙂

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 9, 2010 at 8:32 am

    @ Aditya: I agree with you…kinda like that myself. 🙂

    @ Pal: I’m like you when at work…need my space!! 🙂 Lol @ your observation…I have however seen both ways…girls calling their partners and vice versa. But I do reckon the insistent calling is definitely a sign of insecurity no matter what the gender…

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 9, 2010 at 9:06 am

    @ Starry: I guess when you have kids it’s different…and I’m all for talking at work when it’s something urgent. And had to smile at how your views changed… 🙂 It’s not personal. It’s professional. 😀 Personally with the fights bit, I could never do that…would be too distracting from my work issues…

    @ Titaxy: Oh I definitely side with Rachel as well! 🙂 And I doubt I’d go out with Ross in the first place 😛 I guess that’s one way of looking at it…giving your mind a break. I have sometimes called family from work but that’s only on their birthdays/anniversary. Not sure why, even if it’s a partner, I prefer calling only if it’s something urgent. I think I find that it interferes with my head space at work if I take or make personal calls often. 🙂

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 9, 2010 at 9:38 am

    @ Harini: Totally understand why Ross is messed up and insecure but still…if it got to that stage for me with a partner, I’d do exactly as Rachel did. Realistically though Harini, re the example you’ve given, if two people are living together every day, why would you miss the other person for only a certain part of the day?? Dunno…but I just wonder about that. How much of that missing is insecurity? Sorry…I’m a cynic. 😐

    @ Shalet Jimmy: We agree 🙂 Yeah, unless it’s for something urgent, don’t particularly like it.

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 9, 2010 at 10:17 am

    @ Soulmate: I never get that…it’s always a woman’s job that’s portrayed as ‘just a job’. You don’t see shows with women telling their doctor partners, i’s just a job!

    @ Celestialrays: Didn’t know you and AB worked different shifts. Thanks for sharing why you call 🙂

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler™
    December 13, 2010 at 8:11 am

    @ Soulmate: I never get that…it’s always a woman’s job that’s portrayed as ‘just a job’. You don’t see shows with women telling their doctor partners, i’s just a job!

    @ Celestialrays: Didn’t know you and AB worked different shifts. Thanks for sharing why you call 🙂

  • Reply
    Soulmate
    December 13, 2010 at 8:11 am

    This reminded me of the scene from Chak De India where Preeti Sabharwal wants to go for Hockey world cup and her fiance(a cricketer) remarks snottily, since their wedding date needs to be postponed, ‘Its just a game’….

    Why a women’s job be less important than a man’s job!!! I fail to understand..
    Also I would hate it if my partner calls me every day at work.. I need my own space and need a life of my own as well…

  • Reply
    starry eyed
    December 13, 2010 at 8:11 am

    Hmmm…there have been phases when SH and I would talk a lot when he was at work, when I wasn’t working too. But I’ve been working now from home for almost 3 years now, and I’ve again found different phases…where sometimes we chat 1-3 times a day, sometimes when he calls me I get annoyed, coz like you said, I like not having him in that part of my life. As to why I call him, it’s that there are always a dozen things to be discussed…and with 2 kids around, we forget and we don’t get the time, space and privacy to talk. Also with the working hours he keeps, which don’t match my working hours, and the long-pending tasks and issues we have in our life, it makes sense to just talk whenever the thought comes to mind, if the spouse is free-ish…

    And there have been times when we’ve had fights or disagreements, and it’s easier to talk on the phone as soon as we’ve cooled down, even if it’s during working hours, rather than face-to-face at home where it gets all intense again. Somehow it always gets sorted out better.

    But your post got me thinking. When I was a SAHM, I used to feel hurt sometimes when SH would not call me all day…but when I started working too…I realise that it’s not personal…just professional 😀 Reading your post reiterated that too!

  • Reply
    Aditya
    December 13, 2010 at 8:11 am

    Not just my partner, I would hate it if anyone tries to invade my privacy, be it my work place or home. May be I am cribbing, but thats how I am. Agreed totally Psych! 🙂

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