A Retraction

As you live and learn, you inevitably realize that sometimes you hold ideas that, once tested by actual experience, don’t work out. I’ve had my share of those moments, and I need to set the record straight about one of my ideas.

Some of you may remember my Valentines Day tirade against the words girlfriend and boyfriend. Well, something happened in my life that made it necessary to rethink my conclusions: I actually began a relationship.

When I wrote the post, it was all conjecture. I had no relationship to base my conclusions on, only my imaginings about how I thought such a relationship would be. Now, however, I have real experiences to help me draw conclusions. And as I’ve been walking the path of this exciting adventure with my lady fair, I’ve realized that calling her my girlfriend is unfortunately somewhat necessary.

Although I still dislike the word, I’ve realized that when I introduce her to my family and friends, I need to explain who she is in terms everyone will understand. I can’t think of a better word that will be understood, so that’s the one I need to use to be clear.

I comfort myself with the knowledge that she and I know what I mean. As long as we’re clear on my meaning, I’ve come to have less of an issue with using a term that’s not completely perfect.

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2 thoughts on “A Retraction

  1. Such is life. I’ve been searching for a shorter way to say “person I am courting,” and I don’t even need it for practical reasons–I need it for books! (I’m pretty sure the word “girlfriend” wasn’t in use in the 1780s, so I had to search for other terminology to use in Peter’s Angel.) But, with our modern-day vocabulary, “girlfriend” is about the only universally understood term, it seems. But such concessions must happen in the name of clarity.

    Irregardless, this is a very happy reason for you to be forced to recant your statements. 😉

  2. That was actually something I’d been thinking about quite a bit, and it’s good to have it corroborated by someone with experience. Too bad there isn’t a better word! Thank you for writing this. 🙂

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