How to tell your significant other you are working late again
We’ve all been there, you get a last minute email or call you’ve been waiting on all day just as you’re getting ready to leave the office and suddenly you’re looking at spending the next few hours dealing with the request that’s just come in. If this has happened before, and you’ve had to tell your partner you’re going to be working late, you might not relish the thought of having the conversation again. It can be frustrating and even upsetting for your significant other, to hear that last minute you’re going to be staying at the office and not going home to spend some time with them. We’ve listed out some of our tops tips for dealing with this situation so that it become less stressful for you and your partner.
Prepare for the inevitable
If you know that your plans may have to change last minute because you’re waiting on a specific outcome, try to give your partner a heads up as soon as possible. If you know the day before or in the morning that work will have to take priority once the email or call is received, pre-empt any extra work you might have to do and give your partner as much warning as possible. This way, if you do find out towards the end of the day you’re having to stay late, it won’t come as quite as much of a shock to the person who’s waiting for you at home.
Communication is key
If things have been out of your hands and you find out only last minute you’re going to have to work late and you haven’t had chance to pre-warn your partner, consider the language you use to break the news. Understand the recipient of the call is going to feel disappointed not to be spending time with you, so going into the call with a level of empathy is the best way to ensure the call doesn’t end in an argument. The person on the other end of the phone might sound angry and argumentative, but try to understand this is based on wanting to spend time with you and a frustration at the situation, not because they are angry at you as an individual.
Know the situation
Before you place the call home, consider how long you think you’ll need to work that evening and whether you can still find the time to eat or cook together, or watch your favourite TV show. If it doesn’t look possible that day, then before you make the call think of an evening or day you can spend some quality time with the person so that they understand they’re very much a priority too. Going into the phone call with a practical solution for when the time can be made up between you can go a long way in softening the disappointing news you’re about to deliver.
Ultimately, the best way to tell your significant other you’re working late again is to put yourself in the shoes of the person receiving the call and find the words you would want to hear if you were the recipient of the news.
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