This phrase presents something of a communication problem, especially with Kerry’s androgynous name. “My girlfriend” sounds relatively frivolous, failing to convey the fact of cohabitation and level of commitment. “My live-in lady,” as was suggested to me by one DC-area native, is inconsistent with other evident markers of socio-economic status, and therefore conveys irony and/or a lack of respect. I happen to like “my partner” because Kerry and I are… partners. We are a team. Our lives are a life together — a joint endeavor. It’s aggravating that the language has yet to offer terms that communicate this status other than spouse/husband/wife. So far, it’s hard to beat POSSLQ. Here is Wikipedia:
POSSLQ (pronounced /ˈpɒsəlkjuː/) is 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.
- There’s nothing that I wouldn’t do
- If you would be my POSSLQ
- You live with me and I with you,
- And you will be my POSSLQ.
- I’ll be your friend and so much more;
That’s what a POSSLQ is for.
Sadly, if you insist on talking about “my POSSLQ” it will sounds like you’re talking about a passel of possums and a pool cue, or something.