I’m Way Too Old For A Boyfriend

And who is this handsome gentleman with whom you are now shacking up?

I need some help. Let me clarify that: I need help with a social etiquette issue.

Some brief background information may help.

  1. I’m single by virtue of a failed marriage.
  2. I’m 53.
  3. I’m living with a man who is single due to the same reason.
  4. He’s 53.
  5. We’re in love and plan on staying that way.
  6. We didn’t cause our mutual singlehoods (that’s not necessary “intel” for help with my social etiquette issue, but I have a compelling need to remind myself and anyone who might be wondering).

My problem: what do I call him? Another clarification is needed here. I know his name, so I know what to call him when speaking with him face-to-face or in other positions. And I can easily introduce him to others by name.

The problem arises during that awkward after-the-name time when people expect relationship information. What do I say at that point?

“Boyfriend?” I’m 53, not 13. I’m way too old to have a boyfriend. He’s not a boy. He’s a 6’3″, 230 pound former Marine.

“Partner” is an option. But that conjures up a business association. We are not co-managing a cremains disposal franchise. As far as I know, there are no plans to do so in the future.

“Friend” is another possibility. That, however, does a monumental disservice to the word “friend.” We are so much more than friends. Don’t get me wrong, we are friends, but…well, you know.

“Lover” is out of the question in America, which is where we live. Maybe if we moved to Italy…

Now that you understand my situation, can you help me out? After I introduce him, what do I say? Can I leave it at his name and let people wonder? Or how about if I say, “Oh hi, So-And-So, I’ve been wanting you introduce you to my [fill in his name].” I know that sounds very possessive and I would only suggest this because his name si NOT John.

Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated! We enjoy being seen in public on occasion.

~ by Lorna's Voice on June 26, 2011.

30 Responses to “I’m Way Too Old For A Boyfriend”

  1. “Companionate.” Love it! I know that lots of us are facing this issue and it is awkward. I’d rather have this problem than the opposite! 😉

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting. 🙂

  2. We ( my newish ‘good’ friend and I) were having the same issue.
    We are both in our 40’s (which totally rocks, btw) and not really concerned with where things may be going, just how things are as we spend time in one another’s company.
    We already do have lives, families and friends of our own which we continue to enjoy separately at times. We aren’t SO committed yet, are monogamous.
    I broached the subject a short while ago and he jokingly came up with the word ‘companionated’. Me being a word junkie, looked it up and lo and behold…
    It works for some 😉
    I call Ron, my man. He likes that. Jus’ sayin’

  3. I love it! Never underestimate the power of non-verbal communication!

  4. Yes, you’re right. I wonder why?

  5. I find it interesting that no one has mentioned the currently popular “significant other.”

  6. I hated the word “boyfriend” at the age of 14 — don’t ask me why. I think it was because it made him sound like something out of a sitcom. On the other hand, a friend’s suggestion a few years ago — “pelvic affiliate” — was a bit much. I’ve usually settled for saying, “this is so-and-so” while slipping a possessive arm through his or ruffling his hair. It always seemed to get the idea across. When it didn’t, i had a private word with the poacher in the ladies room.

  7. That sounds like an animal on the endangered species list! Neat suggestion. Thanks for researching this for me.

  8. Refer to each other as POSSLQ’s. At least it will open up an interesting conversation.

    POSSLQ ( /ˈpɒsəlkjuː/) is an abbreviation (or acronym) for “Persons of Opposite Sex Sharing Living Quarters,” a term coined in the late 1970s by the United States Census Bureau as part of an effort to more accurately gauge the prevalence of cohabitation in American households. (from Wikipedia).

  9. I’m working on a new word, but haven’t come up with one yet. If I do, I’ll keep you posted! Thanks for the feedback!

  10. This made me smile. You definitely raise some valid questions. Calling him your ‘Boyfriend’? I think that ship has sailed. Since you are both mature lovely people I think if you don’t want to be too bold, ‘Partner’ would be adequate. It’s simple but shows possessiveness. Good luck with whatever you choose 🙂

  11. Well, you can just say Mr ‘fill in with name’ my lovely beau!! I love this word, prefer more then a boyfriend one. Sometimes I like to say for my hubby that he is my biggest fan or admirer! 😀 The best is to say just how you see him and feel him to yourself, even if it’s simple and clear ‘boyfriend’! Never too old for this word!! xx

  12. oh thnx for that!
    u r really nice 🙂

  13. I agree–a name is all that’s necessary. It’s time to break with social convention. We have in just about every other dimension of social behavior. Plus, the air of mystery around the unanswered question in people’s eyes is just too delicious. 😉

  14. I’m not in your position as I have been marrieed for 45 ( 46 in August) years; however, I’ve always fancied the term “Special Beau”. He is special and he is your beau( boyfriend ) and so voila – a new term for you.

    Anyway, if not use nothing but the name. Isn’t it about time we were just so and so without an apendages.


  15. We talked about it and couldn’t come up with anything that made sense. Some people assume we’re married and we don’t correct them. I say we just introduce with names and leave the rest a mystery. It just seems like in a culture that makes up words left and right, we could come up with a socially-agreeable term for old single people who are dating!

  16. I like it! “My man.” I’ll have to say it with a wink because I’ve never been so bold! Thanks for lending your perspective on my conundrum.

  17. I like the way you think!

  18. I like that! Does that mean I have to put him on the payroll?

  19. “Manfriend,” huh? Well, he is my “Man, oh, man friend!” Seriously, I thought of that and all I could think of was the oldfashioned name Manfred (English, probably), and I thought people would be terribly confused!

  20. I love my movies…Sex in the City:The Movie…Mr. Big said he was too old to be her boyfriend so she called him her manfriend…lol. It is difficult to put labels on certain situations.

  21. How calling him your body guard. That usually follows by silence and a blank stare from people.

  22. I guess “friend” is fine…..but no problem in having a boy friend at 53 too!

  23. Coming from a man’s point of view, why don’t you just say this is my man John. I think that say’s it all.

  24. Maybe ask him what he would like to be called? You can have a boyfriend at 53! Why not?

  25. Not bad! He tells me that no one’s going to mess with me ever again. You can take the man out of the Marines, but you can’t take the Marines out of the man. And I’ll extend your gratitude to him, Al.

  26. Hey, I could say he’s my current man… Good idea! Thanks for the suggestion!

  27. Thanks. You’re right, people close to us know the deal, so relationship clarification is unnecessary. The awkward times come during the inevitable work or community functions. “Friends” seems like the best default term, but I just think that this culture seems so good at making up new words. Why can’t there be a new word for this all-too-common-these-days situation?

  28. How about “best friend” or simply “my friend”? Socially that is all the information that people need and your close friends already have the details.

  29. You know, I can’t really think of anything good. You’re right – lover is out, partner not good, room mate not even close.

    My sister introduces her live-in by saying “this is Evan, we’re together”. I asked her once why she introduced him that way and she said she simply could not think of a proper designation for him.

    I’m afraid I am not much help – I introduce my hubby as “my current husband”…

  30. How about ” this is John, my own personal Marine Corps.”

    (And by the way, thank him for me for his service to the country while your at it)

Silence can be just what the doctor ordered. You know I'm a doctor, right?

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