They say any potential partner should have something in common with you. Its advice that sounds quite sane and logical. The problem is theres often no asterisk attached to it. This asterisk should contain a list of exceptions to this rule because there are a number of things in common that should make you run the other way.
For freelancers, at the top of this list are fellow freelancers. Yes, we tell people to network all the time, but here are six reasons why you should never take it to the next level.
- Alone Time
Everyone wants some alone time where their partner is at work and theyre at home. You cant have this when dating another freelancer. Youre living in the same house together. Your only option is to go out of the house, and this defeats the point of alone time.
Unless youre going to tell your significant other to go away, this isnt going to work.
- Financial Stress
Freelancing is an industry that invokes images of feast and famine. With such chaos, the last thing you want is to be attempting to build a future on two unstable incomes. Dating another freelancer is akin to building the foundations of your future on sand. You dont want to bring this additional financial stress to an already stressful lifestyle.
- Pets and Discipline
We all love pets, but raising a pet in a relationship with two freelancers is borderline pet abuse. Although not all cat and dog owners will raise great pets, freelancers live chaotic lifestyles that arent adjusted to owning a pet. Two freelancers living in the same house and you could have a situation where Fido literally has to crap all over your keyboard to tell you he wants to go for a walk.
- Raising a Child Presents Challenges
Any parents know raising a child is always a difficult proposition. The difference between a freelancer and someone who works in the city is you can pretty much predict when theyre going to be back. The freelance lifestyle could involve eighteen-hour days and days where you dont do anything at all.
Children need some sort of structure if theyre going to grow up to be well-adjusted human beings.
- Who Waits for the UPS Man?
Most relationships involve dividing the tasks according to time constraints and lifestyles. When freelancers do the exact same job, it can become a battle over the tiniest of things. Even if you have a rota set out and stuck on the fridge, it wont stop an endless war over who waits for the cable repairman.
And who wants a fight over whose project is more urgent?
Freelancers may network to find more work, but the fact of the matter is freelancing is a constant competition. Its even worse if you both happen to be freelancers in the same field. Before you know it, you could find yourself competing for the same projects. This can easily lead to a lot of resentment.
Nobody wants to find themselves in a situation where theyre fighting with their partner over who should get a specific project. Professional success easily leads to jealousy and full-blown hatred.
The freelance lifestyle isnt for everybody, but freelancers benefit from having a partner who does work a stable job. If you have two chaotic human beings together in the same household, it will only lead to problems further down the line. Even if you think you can manage it now, the key is keeping it up for the next few decades.
So how do you feel about forming ties with a fellow freelancer now?