Sylvia and I have been together for sixteen months now. We considered ourselves married, even though we can’t legally marry. I have found that I am sharing that I have her in my life with more and more people. Even at Ethan’s school the other day, when he had had a bad day and I had to talk to the principal, I mentioned that my partner and I work very hard to make sure he has a good morning before school. Once I said it, I realized I had outed myself, but I also realized how the principal just didn’t even react. It was no big deal for her.

How do you describe that special person in your life? I usually call Sylvia my partner. She is just not a girlfriend, because to me that implies we are not committed to each other. I think some people may not like me calling her my wife, but I do consider her that. In fact, Sylvia got me a very nice Valentine’s Day Card and the message on the inside used the word wife. I was very excited. We both have danced around that word before, but never really used it to describe each other. I had thought of getting her a card with “wife” on it, but decided not to. I wasn’t sure if she would like it or not. Now I know!!

So tell me, what word do you use and does it really matter. Maybe not!

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4 thoughts on “How do your describe your significant other?

  1. Well, since we have run off to another state and gotten legally married, I do refer to her as my wife. I’ve always kind of disliked the word partner, as it sounds like a business deal, but I do find that I use it on occasion with those that don’t know. She just made a comment about us & referred to herself as my girlfriend, then stopped and contemplated what she’d said and then clarified that she wasn’t my girlfriend anymore. I told her she’ll always be my girlfriend, my wife, my best friend and my lover.

  2. Yes, I agree, the word partner does sound like a business deal. However, most people seem to understand it as being my girlfriend. I think each person has to find what they are comfortable with! Thanks for the input!

  3. We are much younger and even if we could we probably would not be married… however, we have been together for almost 6 years and struggle with finding the right word to describe each others function in our lives to strangers or acquaintances. Normally, I use the term partner because most people understand that we are in a long-term, homosexual relationship. However, when talking to people who know me better I use girlfriend and would use wife when that time comes. This is such a hard thing that I have spent so much time worrying about…. however, I have found the same thing you did, when I out myself by using partner (or any other term) most people don’t even think twice. I am lucky that I have had very few negative responses. Good luck finding what words use feel the most comfortable with.

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