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-   -   What words do you use - lover, partner, girlfriend, boyfriend, something else? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=311)

Alhena 05-27-2009 03:38 AM

What words do you use - lover, partner, girlfriend, boyfriend, something else?
I'm curious what people call their lovers -to others i mean. how do you introduce your primary or secondaries? what title do they have when you mention them casually to coworkers and acquaintances.

Is it lover? or boy/girlfriend? or husband/wife/spouse? partner? Is it a differant introduction when more than one of your partners is present? how do you respond to questions from people if more than one of your partners is present or they know your married but you introduce another partner?

what are your thoughts?

Alhena 05-27-2009 03:40 AM

When my bf asked me to be his gf he gave me the sweetest speech ever about how he wanted me to have a title, he didnt want to introduce me as a lover, just a friend or just "Alhena" he wanted to be able to see his friends and say this is my girlfriend. It was really cute so yesterday when we were at Disneyland he introduced me to a girl we ran into, that he trained with at work awhile back and i wondered what other people say.

He introcuded me as his gf and but when she started telling me about what a hard time he would give her she said your husband, i corrected her and said oh hes my bf. She seemed really confused and just laughed it off. Another time both he and his wife were with him and he introduced us as wife and gf, again people didnt ask anything just kinda smiled and looked confused. this is around friends, co workers and aquiantaces. Ive yet to meet any of their family so i wonder how I would be introduced in that setting since their family doesnt know they are poly.

Quath 05-27-2009 01:54 PM

When I was in a triad, none of us were married, so it was simple bf/gf type introductions. It didn't happen too often.

I don't quite like the "primary" / "secondary" titles since it shows the order you met people sometimes but not the intensity of the relationship. But it does seem to be pretty common and useful at times.

Introductions to family are fun. I am out to my family, but thay may have thought it was some fad I was going through.

Danny40179 05-27-2009 04:16 PM

It's always been the wife and gf when I introduce people. But we're moving into "these are my wives." It's amusing to watch people's faces as they realize I'm not joking. LOL

nethergirl 05-27-2009 04:46 PM

I call my husband my husband, my boyfriend my boyfriend, and can explain the the relationship to anyone just as it is , open and equal on all sides :)

any lovers I usually just tell people 'i have a connection with this person' or 'i am dating ____' or if i am talking to friends when x lover isnt present i do refer to that person as my lover or friend with benefits

i dont like to use the primary/secondary language because i dislike the idea of someone meaning more or less.

MonoVCPHG 05-27-2009 08:18 PM


Originally Posted by nethergirl (Post 1414)
i dont like to use the primary/secondary language because i dislike the idea of someone meaning more or less.

Redpepper and her husband also don't like these terms. I am more than comfortable with being referred to as a secondary and often tease them with the reference LOL! In all honesty I hope I do mean less to her. Her primary relationship is sacred to me and will always take priority over my own needs. I must admit being called a Friend with Benefits would not sit well with me. The term disturbs me on some levels. Usually she refers to me as her boyfriend which is cool.

Interesting thread, as we are going to a poly meeting soon and another lover of hers is coming for the first time. She asked him what he'd like to be referred to as. She talks about him as a Friend with Benefits and will refer to him as a Lover. He is pretty happy however she describes their relationship.

vampiresscammy 05-28-2009 02:37 PM

generally speaking I call them all simply "my loves", when speaking specifically about one or the other I say hubby, hubby of heart and wifey, or call them by the nicknames we use for each other i.e. hubby of heart I refer to as Darque Prince or DP, hubby I refer to as Bubba most often, and wifey I would refer to as sweetling, Ash, Shadoe or her given name, depends on whom I'm talking to really, but for most regular conversations with anyone its simply "my loves"

I don't care for the primary/secondary terms and none of these people are simply my bf/gf so I don't call them that, while I do like the terms hubby of heart and wifey, I can obviously only be married to one so its not technically accurate either, not to mention before my ladylove passed it wasnt legal in either of our states to marry same sex

until some better word/phrase/description comes about, for me "my loves" is the best, most accurate, least offensive to anyone involved statement I can make and I really like how it sounds :)

TankDiveGirl 05-29-2009 07:11 PM

Well, I've only been in a poly triad for 3 months and a bit, but when I introduce people to my partner(s) it's always been "this is my wife" for L, and "this is my boyfriend" for S. We've not yet been in a social situation where i've had to introduce both of them to someone, because the great majority of my friends have at least been briefed on what's going on and are cool with it, and S and I work in the same place, so we have the same colleagues and whatnot.

I do have to say that i really dislike the "primary" and "secondary" labels. I know that at the moment L needs them so that she can feel validated and like she's the only "life partner," but really, i don't like the labels. If it were up to me, we'd all be equal, because i feel like we are -- i don't like the implication that S is "less" or "not as important" because he's a "secondary partner".

alphafour 05-30-2009 06:50 PM

So far, I call them:

Missing in Action.

Not many women want to be polyamorous. I suppose I need to find a bi girl, but so many of them are just lying lesbians who fake like they have alternate sexualities. I have recieved so many antagonistic responses from so-called bi women, I just can't believe that they ever intend to be with a man.

Mark1npt 05-30-2009 07:57 PM

I've had the same thoughts...hate the secondary label. We are not out to anybody yet, but have discussed in house how we would handle it. No decisions made yet. We are also in the process of discussing some sort of ring ceremony between the 3 of us. I guess I could use the "loves" label or introduce people to my "wives" but that wouldn't sound right legally. Are they "co-wives"?.....lovers? (yes)....best friends? (yes).....what to do? Since my wife isn't bi and it's me with two women, I need to find the right designation. I guess we could all just walk in and hold up our matching rings when someone asked, huh?

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