Ever hear people refer to their husbands or wives or boyfriends or girlfriends as “my other half“? What about “my better half“? And how about people who say that the person they are in a relationship with “completes them“?
I personally have an issue with all these phrases. Whether used by a man or a woman. I cringe every time I find it used.
To me, referring to someone as your ‘better half’ implies your own ‘half’ is not good enough and this person that you are in a relationship with is better…and is what makes you better. Referring to someone as your ‘other half’ implies that you were not ‘full’ until you found this person. Similarly, when people say that the other person ‘completes them’ implies that they were incomplete until they met this person.
Why do we use these phrases? Phrases that put us down?
Seriously, are you that bad that your husband is your better half? Are you that incomplete as a person that you needed your girlfriend to make you whole again? (I know Tom Cruise said “you complete me” in Jerry Maguire…and supposedly that makes girls swoon…NOT) Where do we get these phrases from? (I tried doing a google search for the origins but nothing worthwhile popped up…I guess it’s too broad a term) Do we even realise just how self-deprecating these phrases are? It makes me wonder, what if this relationship breaks up…do you break too? I mean, after all, your ‘better half’ is no longer there…does that mean you are no longer worth anything?
I prefer using the term ‘partner‘ to refer to someone I am in a relationship with. (Boyfriend sounds too teenagerish to me) I think partner implies two people, on par, who have to work to make the relationship work and of course, who share in the decision-making, chores etc (Mum…I know you read this: I’m still single…this is what I would do when in a relationship!)
So tell me, do you refer to your partner as your ‘better half’? Do you think they complete you? Do you think they are your ‘other half’? Or if not any of these, what term do you use?
And am I just thinking too much and being too pedantic or are there others with such a view?
Until next time,