“I’ve gotta go. The wife and I are on a walk.”
Grr! Instantly I can feel myself getting upset.
It’s an innocent statement, but my husband says things like this frequently. He’ll answer the phone and tell people what we’re up to or tell people similar phrases while out in public. So why does it bother me so much?
I’ve asked him to stop, but in the year+ we’ve been married he just keeps it up.
Maybe I should take it as a compliment. However, it drives me crazy! Did becoming a married woman mean I’ve lost my identity? Am I forever destined to be “Andrew’s wife” and “little man’s mom”? What happened to being Heather? He didn’t call me “the girlfriend” when we were dating or “the fiance” when we were engaged.
Back in high school I attended a week long business camp. Our counselor talked about how he always uses his family’s members first names. He’ll introduce someone in this manner – “This is Jane, my wife.” He said he never wanted to take someone’s identity away from them by putting a label in front of their personal identity. At the time, I thought it was neat – but it didn’t impact me too much. Now – over a decade later – I totally understand what he meant!
I am so much more than “the wife”. I am a Christian, mother, daughter, sister, teacher, blogger, and much, much more!
When my husband refers to me as “the wife”, is he showing love or disrespect? Does he love being married so much that he wants everyone to know I’m his wife? Or have I become property to him?
It’s a conversation we obviously need to have again because if it bothers me enough to write a blog post about, it’s worthy of a discussion.
What are your thoughts? Am I overreacting? How do you address people in your life when you’re talking about them?