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So when in doubt smile and use whatever word you want.You will be thought of as an enigma or idiot, but it doesn't really matter. There's an angle here that has not really been discussed.
In this modern society it seems all things change faster than the words to express them!One caller suggested paramour, but that's old-fashioned. Boyfriend and girlfriend seem inappropriate unless you're a teenager. In addition to his regular "Word Routes" column here, he contributes to the group weblog Language Log.There are a ton of different options and none of them seems to work." Jesse Sheidlower, editor at large of the Oxford English Dictionary, agrees. POSSLQ sounds too stupid or bureaucratic." (POSSLQ, if you didn't know, is an acronymic census designation from the late '70s, standing for "Persons of Opposite Sex Sharing Living Quarters.") What do you think? He is also the chair of the New Words Committee of the American Dialect Society. Excuse me if I'm off-base or archaic here, but as soon as I saw the lead graf referring to "inti-mate," I had to stop and check my brain.You might find the Australian Social Security Act definition interesting.A member of a couple is called a partner (whether married or not) and a person is regarded as a member of a couple, generally, if their relationship is "marriage-like" see Section 4 of the Social Security Act 1991: ( link) and the Guide to Social Security Law: ( link)."Partner" is used in the UK with no assumption of business-like-ness.This time around, Robert from Coloma expressed dissatisfaction with the words boyfriend and girlfriend, suggesting a new word to cover both: inti-mate.
Robert's idea is to take the adjective intimate and pronounce the final syllable as mate.
PLEASE, don't think that I'm lacking in humor or appreciation of the subject.
I just read this at a late hour, and started grinding grammatical gears involuntarily!
Partner is just fine so far as I'm concerned as I don't just see it as a business arrangment.
The word "partner" when applied to a relationship means, to me, a relationship where both parties have equal responsibilities and rights, are working together towards mutual goals, who support each other in times of trouble and in achieving mutual and individual goals and who are there to recognise and congratulate personal and shared achievements, among other things.
By the way, opposition to "boyfriend" and "girlfriend" isn't confined to middle-aged partners.