Wednesday, 7 October 2009

What does a boyfriend turn into?

I have a great friend who has just had an article printed on her. In said article, her other half, who is close to 70, was described as her 'boyfriend'. This is blatantly not suitable. You can't call a 70 year old man a boyfriend. But what choice did she have?

She couldn't call him her lover. Possibly if she were French this would have worked, but not for a Brit. We just don't do that. Neither can she bring herself to call him her 'partner' as it sounds too pc for words and also, faintly businesslike. But what is she left with?

There are moments when the English language is horribly deficient, and this is one of them. So what do you call your lover when you start rolling down the hill of life? What alternatives are there? If I ever find a man, and it might take years, then this is a dilemma I may face.

Suggestions please.....

22 comments:

Mud in the City said...

Gimp?

dragondays said...

When I told my children I was marrying the New Husband, my son of 18 going on 40 said 'Thank God, I am so fed up of describing him as your boyfriend/partner - stepfather is great'!
I hate the word partner, boyfriend is for the under 30s, lover sounds gorgeous but perhaps unsuitable at 70 (why not, but it is a 'young' word), semi-attached is totally awful ...
Before we married, I called the New Husband 'mon Homme' or 'Mon mari' as we live in Belgium - my man is alright!

liZZie said...

Last chance?

CoatMan said...

There is a terrible deficiency of words to describe non-marital quasi-spouses. "Boyfriend" sounds as if the utterer is fourteen. "Partner" makes it seem as if the couple are in business together. "Lover" makes it sound as if they're having an affair. "Significant other" makes them sound as if they have had too much therapy. Somebody needs to coin a new word!

Hodmandod said...

I love 'boyfriend' and think it should be used for everyone, all the time. It puts a relationship onto such a light-hearted level, even if you are 70. Especially if you are 70. I would love to be a boyfriend at 70.

Hodmandod said...

And the only correct response to 'partner' is, O, what business are they in?

Welsh Girl said...

Mud - very helpful. Thanks for that!
Dragondays - so I have to move to Belgium if I find a man? Oh dear, it gets more complicated by the minute.
LiZZie - Ha Ha !
CoatMan - I agree entirely - couldn't you come up with something???
Hodmadod - Better to be a toyboy at 70, don't you think?
Come on people - give me some new vocab here....

bevchen said...

I got a Christmas card last year with "to my Grandaughter and her partner at Christmas" on the front. Very odd.

I call Jan my boyfriend, but then you know that because you read my blog. I'm only 26 but he'll be 30 in March...

The Singlutionary said...

"my chap"

to me that seems kinda british and that makes me thing "old" which is quite appropriate in this case.

katyboo1 said...

I think I would call him the 'Sex Fox' and make small paw like movements with my hands whilst going 'grrrr' just to embarrass everyone!

onely said...

Waaaaahahahahah I love Katyboo's suggestion! I was laughing so hard! That almost makes me want a boyfriend-manfriend-sigother-partner just so I can try out her suggestion!

Christina

CoatMan said...

"Other half" is not too bad...

Mr Farty said...

Fancy man.

I'd like to be described as someone's fancy man. It sounds just daring enough, but still genteel.

Vijay Eswaran said...

Nice post..:)

family affairs said...

"F*ck buddy?".

Sorry probably not at all appropriate....just popped in to say hi as saw your name on list of top 100 and I'm a single parent myself Lx

bonnie-ann black said...

my aunt (who is 82) was ... involved?... keeping company?... with a man for 21 years. he just passed away (age 78) and his children and her children could be damned if they could come up with a suitable title for her. the couple didn't live together... so even "partners" didn't work out well (and, here in the states, if that's not a business relationship, it usually refers to a same-sex couple). as you say, boyfriend was right out, lover too embarrassing. they settled on "companion" but even that sounded weird. almost like a nurse/assistant, instead of... whatever. as the population ages, i think we need to find some other terms.

sarah said...

lack of words to describe it, is there not?

Hot Cross Mum said...

It's a tough one. How about 'Grey-Mate' instead of play mate?

Welsh Girl said...

Bevchen - seriously? There is a card that says that? Jan definitely still counts as a boyfriend I think....
Singlutionary - nicely Jeeves and Wooster
Katyboo - OK, snorted my coffee through my nose when I read that. Love it.
Onely - Me too!
CoatMan - it's ok, though doesn't work for 'official use' and it sort of implies that you are only half a person.
Mr Farty - Mmm, Fancy Man. If he was french then he could be a
French Fancy. Better and Better (well, not going out with a french man though.)
Vijay - thanks! Not getting me anywhere with improving the 'manfriend' situation though!
Family Affairs - Well, it had to be said! Thanks for coming by. Can't believe I am on a 'Top 100' of anything. Must go and lie down and recover from the shock.
Bonnie-Ann: Partner definitely has same sex connotations and Companion is so Dickensian isn't it. Darn it. Has nobody got a good word???
Sarah - It's driving me crackers. How can there not be a word for it? Why has nobody invented one? Why can't I think of one to invent?
Hot Cross Mum - 'Grey-Mate' has a nicely native american sound (how pc I am!). Grey Mate, father of purple rain and husband of Silver Hair....

Anonymous said...

I think beloved is a great word. This is my beloved, it is slightly Hardyesque - the well beloved- and slightly dog food - James wellbeloved. If I was nearly 70 and somebody was jumping my bones or probably not let's face it - I would like to think, naievly (sp) that it would not be the heaving sinews of my thighs or the grip of my youthful muscles but my mind, or what was left of it, that was the object of desire - hence the passive - beloved, I'm probably wrong and the grey nation are humping each other like crazy - be careful old ones those membranes may tear. May be it should be my KY Guy.

plentymorefishoutofwater said...

F**k buddy? Hmm, maybe not.
Nice blogging. Check out my dating disasters if you get a minute:
plentymorefishoutofwater.blogspot.com/

Welsh Girl said...

Anon - I do like beloved, but it isn't really suitable for publication somehow.
Plenty - I do love a good dating disaster so I'll be over soon.

internet stats
Rent DVD Movies