Whilst browsing the BlogHer website looking for a prompt to inspire today’s post I came across inspiration from a slightly different source. I spotted the headline of this post and was intrigued. A read the post and then I knew what I was going to write today. So here goes.
I have a confession to make. My husband and I don’t use each-other’s names.
Is that crazy?
We’ve been married a little over a year, and were together four years prior to the wedding, and yet I could probably count the number of times we’ve used each-other’s names on one hand. Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration, but only very slight.
I’m not sure if our families have noticed. The only times I have called husband by his name, or vice versa, is when we’ve been with family members. Or sometimes we do it to annoy each-other. But the majority of the time we don’t address each-other (we’re the only people in our flat, who else would we be talking to?) or we use various pet names, both usual and unusual.
It probably stemmed from the way our relationship started. We met online in a well-known MMO. S found his way into the guild I lead, by way of a friend of a friend. Within a couple of months we became close, and when we realised how we felt about each-other we decided that S should come to visit me. So he did.
I had literally just started university a couple of weeks before. I took a coach across the country to meet S when he landed, much to the consternation of my family. I placated them by arranging to have a friend who was living in London join me at the airport, just in case S was some sort of raving lunatic.
I remember there was a bit of a mix-up with the flight times, and the time he had told me he would be landing was wrong because of time zones. Luckily he had a stopover and was able to text me to let me know he’d be later. With a little help from the friend accompanying me and from my brother (by phone) I was able to work out changing our bus tickets back to my flat, so no harm done there.
When he eventually arrived it was late and everyone was tired. We had a long coach trip back to Bath and really spent the whole time in silence. It wasn’t an awkward silence, more of the “I’m exhausted” variety.
We’re both shy people. We didn’t speak much for probably the first week that he was in Bath with me. And when we did speak we whispered. I don’t know why. It was a new and strange situation for both of us, I guess. And we didn’t really use one another’s names. I think it may partly have been a slight uncertainty regarding pronunciation – neither of us wanted to look stupid by saying the other’s name completely wrong.
Obviously we do talk and communicate now. I doubt our relationship would have survived this long if we didn’t. But the names thing… It feels strange, wrong almost, to use S’s name, or for him to use mine. Neither of us like it. So we just keep using pet names, if we use names at all.
I’m sure a lot of people reading this will find the situation a strange one. But we’re happy and our relationship is a good one. And at the end of it all, that’s the most important thing. After all
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet.
What name do you call your partner? Do you use their real name, or a pet name?