SIGNIFICANT OTHER: Increasingly Significant Issue

Kathleen E. Miller millerk at NYTIMES.COM
Thu Apr 11 15:26:21 UTC 2002

Being single and in my early-30's, I and all of my "girlfriends" still
refer to our boyfriends as boyfriends. My gay friends call them partners.
Although someone in the group invariably gets too smoochy and starts saying
"my honey" or "my sweetie."

I always thought (at least the way I was taught and after making the
mistake "Er ist unserer Freund") that the Germans had a good idea in
differentiating "mein Freund" and "ein Freund von mir," but alas, my last
trip back introduced me to "mit meinem Boyfriend."

BTW, the 2000 census had "unmarried partner" listed as an option.


At 09:52 AM 4/11/02 -0400, you wrote:
> From the Department of Elegant Variation:  for relationships of long
>duration, gay or straight, there's the ever-popular "ball and chain."
>(But I don't think that tends to show up on insurance forms or in
>newspaper stories.)
>But seriously:  I believe "lover" is still used by GBTs, especially
>those in the above-40 age bracket, though less automatically than
>it used to be.  (I also once heard it applied by a heterosexual
>woman to her live-in boyfriend.)
>Joanne Despres

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