It’s a funny old thing. On a television show recently, I heard a man of advancing years refer to his lady friend as his “girlfriend”, they seemed to be around the mid sixties mark in age. I’m no ageist, but it felt a little odd to hear him refer to her as such, the word girlfriend (or boyfriend) has more youthful connotations for me, personally. It brought to mind the question, what do we call the person who occupies the romantic interest position in our lives?
Partner, life partner, girl/boyfriend, other/better half, husband/wife, significant other, lover – to name but a few choices for the moniker we have for that important one in our life.
Personally, I refer to mine as my boyfriend, I’m 28 and feel that this is a suitable term to use when referring to him and/or our relationship to others (he’s 36) at this current time. However, I feel that as we grow older and our relationship deepens, it may be necessary to adopt a term which we feel reflects the level of commitment in our relationship.
Who knows though, maybe the old term “boy/girlfriend” will stick and work just as well for us through the years? After all, no-one in any relationship should ever have to prove their commitment to others, and it may be just another word, another definition which society, by default, feels the need to categorise people into.
How do you refer to that important person in your life? Or are you not bound by terms and simply just choose to be?