Wednesday, July 13, 2011

on relationship labels...

... or pet names, whatever you call them.

My boyfriend this, my husband that. So I was out with my lover. My fiancee and I. blah blah blah. People have names. Repeatedly referring to someone with something other than their legal name makes me think of dingoes. Yes dingoes.

14 comments:

Lina said...

It's not so much that that bothers me (though the clip you linked to is hilarious); it's the fact that English-speaking people older than 17 are still stuck with such pathetic terms as "boyfriend" and "girlfriend". "Lover" implies you're having sex, "partner" implies you're living together and sounds horribly cold to boot, "beloved" is just a bit to schmoopy, and fiance(e) only applies to the actually engaged. I felt so ridiculous, at 30, (chastely) dating a 40-year-old, having to refer to him as "my boyfriend". Please, somebody, invent a better term.

Piotrek said...

Inky and Spot freak out when my wife and I only take Scooter to the park.

Old Bob said...

My "harem" consists of five middle-aged ladies, all of whom but one have been married. The youngest is 56 and she and I met in 2007. All the rest are over 65; the oldest is 77 and we met in 1961. I call them friends, buddies, pals, chums, just as I would a man.
Back when I was young, terms like "steady," "main squeeze" and "OAO" were popular.
I notice you didn't add hiss spit growl.

Anthony S. Layne said...

I'll do that once — once — in a conversation to introduce the relationship; the rest of it I use her first name. Unfortunately, the relationship term is almost exclusively "ex-girlfriend".

Word verification: cringe. You got that right, sister!

M. Swaim said...

I can't sit idly by without asserting that "Dingoes Ate My Baby" was the best house band ever to grace the Buffyverse with its prolific late-90's indie grunge pop.

Daftpunkett said...

I don't mind the traditional terms for your other half but I can't stand the sassy nicknames like babe, hon, sweetie. It was a deal breaker with me when a guy would call me babe and I made it clear that besides private nicknames, I wouldn't respond to babe or hon. Strangely, I don't mind darling', I guess it appeals to my trashy side...

Dymphna said...

Well, it all beats, "this is my woman," said by a cousin of mine when introducing his live-in at the time.

Old Bob said...

I use terms of endearment only to the dear one, (lady friend, niece, granddaughter) and only in private.

Therese said...

Lina,

I just say "friend" and let them extrapolate. I've always found the terms "boyfriend" and "girlfriend" to be terribly trite and kind of degrading...

Sharon said...

My husband and I are middle aged. He is from Greece and for people of his generation it wasn't the custom to refer to one's husband or wife by name but as 'my wife' or 'my husband'. When introductions are performed names are used. Amongst the family names are used of course.

Denita said...

Don't get me started on the term "other half"

Anonymous said...

My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 1/2 years- living separately and not engaging in sex. We're also not engaged yet. My family jokes that he's a puppy dog and I'm a kitty cat- so somehow it evolved into the "puppies" and the "kitties" (yes, that's singular personage for a plural noun). Which is why I find the dingo clip especially funny!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Crescat said...

Looks like some one is too much of a coward to make biting comments without the veil of "anonymous".

You're comment was deleted because you have no manners and I wouldn't tolerate someone speaking to me like that in person so I certainly won;t let it pass here.