“Have a great day. I hope that meeting doesn’t drag on too long this afternoon, but if it does don’t sweat it. Just let me know and I’ll delay putting dinner into the oven. Oh, and where’s your laundry slip? I’ll pick it up for you on my way home from work.”

The front door is being held open for you. With key fob in hand and both arms embracing the paperwork that kept you up until two this morning, you step out into the cool pre-dawn air. It’s barely six thirty. Most of the houses on the street are still in darkness, as usual.

As you press the unlock button on the fob you suddenly remember that thing you’d stored in the back of your mind. You’ve been trying to recall it since you dragged yourself out of bed. Even as you gulped down the coffee and devoured the bacon and eggs that had been cooked for you it was lurking out of reach . . .

“Oh damn! I’m out of gas!”

It’s okay, I filled up last night,” says the voice at the door. “Love you!”

How could a small business owner possibly hope for better understanding and support? You’re free to tackle the day without worrying about how irregular hours and other typical small business issues are affecting the home front.

This person at the door is your significant other – a significant other not engaged in your business.

In the previous chapter we discussed family members engaged in your small business, including significant others. But an unengaged significant other is quite different from an engaged significant other – the former’s impact isn’t really obvious. This person is a presence beyond the spotlight, rather like a ghost hovering in the shadows. Unfortunately, this ghost is not always a supportive one. In some cases it may even be a poltergeist, but more on this shortly.