Now, I am not married. I am however, lucky enough to have been in a loving, stable relationship for nearly 10 years and we have a beautiful baby girl. That’s commitment enough for me, thank you very much. Marriage to me has always been something that has religious ideals at its heart. I was raised a Catholic, but these days, I am very much a lapsed one. Maybe it has something to do with the Vatican’s attitude towards women, maybe it’s their continued persecution of gay people, maybe it’s their unwillingness to properly address the horrendous abuse carried out at the hands of its servants for decades in this country. I suspect it’s a little of all three and more besides, but that’s another day’s blogging!
Then there’s what I consider to be the male dominated aspect to the act of marriage itself-the bride’s father giving his prize possession, his daughter, away to another man. The bride herself dressed in white- a pure,virginal offering who in theory has been untainted by any other lover. No such requirement for the groom to display his supposed celibacy up until this point.
So, as you can see, I’m not a fan of marriage and as I try to live my life in the least hypocritically way possible, you won’t be seeing me walking up the aisle anytime soon.
Now, I did attend a wedding of a dear friend and his husband in Brussels a few years back, which obviously had no religious aspect to the ceremony and was an absolutely magical day. This made me realise that you can do a wedding without religion and have it be full of love and joy in your own unique way, but I’m still not convinced it’s the path for me. Ultimately, I’m very much in love with Mini’s Papa and the old adage of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is never far from my mind when friends and family ask us about our future plans(and boy, do they love to ask!)
Which leads me to a modern day conundrum, one I imagine other anti-marriage gals like me are at pains to solve. How does one refer to ones chosen one if one is not married? My default setting when I’m introducing us, is ‘partner’ but I have trouble keeping a straight face when using this term, as to me it indicates that we’re off working the beat solving crimes together. Here are some other options which don’t really work for me either.
-Boyfriend-I’m in my 30s now so I feel a tad too old to use this word and I definitely cannot envisage using it for decades to come-“Yes, this is… my 70 year old boyfriend” It’s just not right is it?
-Other Half-or OH as it is frequently used in social media speak, (only recently figured this out, before I thought it stood for Oh Hubby-duh!!!) Don’t like this either, as it seems to imply a certain aura of smugness. So the people who are haven’t found Mr or Mrs Right are only 1/2 a person then?Feck off!
-My man-this just sounds wrong to my ears. I’m not American nor am I a Country & Western style singer so why would I be using this?
-Himself-seems to have negative connotations and to me indicates a level of almost disenchantment with the person in question as in “Oh, himself? Sure he never does anything around the house!”
-Companion-this has similar negative connotations for me, namely it’s a term where I envisage all the romance to have been sucked out of the relationship so you are just left with someone to accompany you through life but without the sex. Not a very appealing thought!
-Life partner- this just sounds a bit too new age, hippy dippy to me and I could never use it.
So, there you go, I’m out of ideas and will now open it up to the floor. Suggestions, dear folk?What do you use when introducing your lady or gent?Should I just stop over analysing and get used to the standard refrain of partner? If nothing else comes from it, it could be a sneaky way to get more coffee and doughnuts into the house!Um, maybe!