Friday, December 15, 2006

Relationship descriptions

When I was on holiday with boyfriend number 2 last year, there was one evening when we had dinner with a couple of American women. On that occasion we decided to just describe ourselves as 'boyfriends', and avoid the more 'complicated' aspects of our relationship.

Naturally enough, a similar situation arises while on holiday this year. We get chatting to an English couple, and in advance of the dinner that we all agree to have together, myself and boyfriend number 2 have a brief discussion about what to say about ourselves if the subject comes up.

"I know it's a bit Politically Correct," I tell boyfriend number 2, "but I kind of like it."

"Can you explain it again?" he replies, "I don't think I understood what you meant."

"OK, imagine that we're a married straight couple. When we meet people for the first time, to describe our relationship I could say that 'you are my wife'. But saying it like that is kind of possessive, because I'm saying that you're 'my wife' and hence that you're somehow mine. So instead, I would say 'I am your husband' to avoid that implication."

"Oh I see, I guess that's quite neat if you like that kind of thing!" he says, "so how would you describe our situation?"

"I guess I'd say that I'm your London-based boyfriend," I say grinning. "Of course, the polite thing for you to do would be to describe yourself in return as my boyfriend too somehow :-)."

"But do we really want to get into a discussion about how many boyfriends we all have?" asks boyfriend number 2. "To be honest, I still think the plan that worked last year is best!"

In the end, the subject doesn't really come up, and they just assume that we're an ordinary gay couple that see each other rarely because we live in different countries.

I discovered quite a while ago that there's something in me that enjoys trying to shock conventional heterosexual couples. Originally, being gay used to be enough, but those days have long gone when talking to people who live in big cities anyway. The concept of polyamorous gay relationships, however, definitely has some potential :-). But for the full effect, I probably need to persuade the boyfriend that I'm with at the time to be open about the situation!


close encounters said...

another potential shock topic would be to discuss how many people you've had sex with that year / decade / lifetime ??

Samantha said...

There's nothing more fun than freaking people out!

GB said...

I don't like that idea close encounters. It's too crude, so people would just think I'm vulgar. I reckon multiple boyfriends implies high libido in a subtle way!

GB xxx

PS: do you have a blog samantha? Your profile is not viewable so it's not clear!

Unknown said...

Hey I thought that your drinks thing sounded a bit more swish than village drinks. Anyways am perfectly clear now! B x

JC said...

hey...I was just wondering, on your public view page, right underneath the e-mail me link, where you have a whole paragraph of:
Requests for advice welcome, but please be prepared for anonymous publication in the Dear DB category. Note that any e-mails which are accidently routed to the junk-mail folder will almost certainly get missed.

was the dear DB a typo that was suppose to be GB? :P

GB said...

Thanks for pointing out that typo JC, I've corrected it now!

GB xxx

Anonymous said...

Hmmm..with reference to JC'c comment, I'm now wondering if Deutsche Bank (DB) is the investment bank that you work for! :)