To want to call the Man I married my Husband

(724 Posts)
Mrsdavidcaruso Sat 02-Nov-13 08:44:21

First I am not saying that Marriage is in any way superior and don't want to have a discussion about that, its more how someone wants the the special person in their life to be described or referred to.

The word Partner is exactly the correct term to use for the vast majority of people who are in a relationship but not married, but I do object when someone refers to my Husband, knowing he is my Husband as my Partner when I have made it clear I find it offensive.

If I am in mixed company where other halves are discussed like parent groups/childrens groups then the word Partner is the right word to use, forms with the word Partner on can (and are) changed by me to Husband.

But in a one to one situation I expect the person I am talking to refer to the man I married (not Mr Caruso alas) as My Husband.

I am going into Hospital soon and the Nurse was taking details, and asked me if my Partner would be picking me up after surgery, now just because I am Mrs C on paperwork does not of course mean that I am still married to Mr C so she was right to use the word in that context.

However when I said my Husband would be picking me up she continued to use the word Partner, when I gently and politely explained that I have a Husband not a Partner and I didn’t want her to keep referring to him as my Partner, I got a lecture from her saying ‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘.

As I say I can understand that term being used when addressing a group of people all with different situations and I would never in such circumstances demand the word Husband be used just for me in that situation.

But this was just her and myself and surely having established that I wanted to use the term Husband that she should have shown me courtesy and respect by using the same term herself and not giving me a lecture.

I am afraid in the end I got very annoyed and told her I found her attitude personally offensive and terminated the meeting, ( I will find out what I want to on the net).

I am sure there are plenty of people on here who would find it equally offensive to have their Partner referred to as their Husband or Wife when they have made it clear they prefer to use the word Partner.

So I don’t think I am being that unreasonable or am I?

MOIST Sat 02-Nov-13 08:45:56


Thesouthernwindisblowing Sat 02-Nov-13 08:46:10

Does it really matter?

Garcia10 Sat 02-Nov-13 08:47:59


It really isn't important. And you should like you were rude.

indecisiveandclueless Sat 02-Nov-13 08:48:14

You were rude, she was doing her job.

littlewhitebag Sat 02-Nov-13 08:49:49

Yes you are. I have been married for28 years and cannot think of a time I have ever got annoyed by him being referred to as my partner. That's because he is my partner first and my husband second.

Mrsdavidcaruso Sat 02-Nov-13 08:49:54

No I wasnt rude I was very polite until she gave me a lecture she was rude not me and her job is showing respect to her patients

MrsRajeshKoothrappali Sat 02-Nov-13 08:50:04

‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘

That sounds quite sensible.


FannyFifer Sat 02-Nov-13 08:50:13

It really doesn't matter.

2468Motorway Sat 02-Nov-13 08:50:48

Wow, what a big deal about nothing. YABU.

Boggler Sat 02-Nov-13 08:50:59

Yabu it's really such a non event to get get up about, save your energy for something important.

NotYoMomma Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:19

(having a husband myself)

you are overthinking it.

when you work ib a pkace when you speakto huge numbers of people with all sorts of situations you get into the habit of using the word that will cause least offence en masse anyway.

I have to ring people up for my job. I have some spiel I need to run through. its very tricky to adjust what I have to say because I am so used to it.

it doesnt matter a jot in the grand scheme of things

DropYourSword Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:34

Why on earth would you think it was rude?

Bowlersarm Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:35

I like to use the word husband too. And I like being a wife. But your situation wouldn't annoy me.

amistillsexy Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:45

I don't think so in this context. As you say, it was a private conversation, and you specifically asked her to use the term 'husband'. I'm pretty sure the NHS has guidance that tells workers to use the terms the patient prefers, as a lot of older people were offended by being called their first names rather than Mrs..... Or Mr.....
I think it would have been courteous to have used the term husband and she chose not to, so ywnbu, she was.

Auntidote Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:55

Well I don't really blame you for finding sanctimonious excessive-PCness irritating. But YABU to take personal offence and storm out of a meeting about your health.

Your health is more important than the term used to refer incidentally to the man you are married to.

Mrsdavidcaruso Sat 02-Nov-13 08:51:58

Mrs Raj yes in a group environment but not in a 1-2-1

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 08:52:01

Actually her job is helping to heal her patients. She was using a term as instructed by her employers. Your husband IS your partner. It's an accurate word and you are being a little precious, sorry!


It's not as though you're losing out by being referred to as unmarried. Are you expecting someone to treat you differently when they know you're married? Because they won't, not in this day and age. It makes absolutely no difference.

And, he IS your partner, isn't he? So they're not even using incorrect terminology. You just happen to be married.

FWIW my partner (unmarried) gets referred to as my husband and I don't bat an eyelid. It doesn't matter.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 02-Nov-13 08:52:32

"My wife/husband" sounds possessive to me, but DF never used it of DM and vice versa. They were "beloved" to each other, same as DW and I.

Although she occasionally refers to me as "that man" when I've been particularly idiotic.

Foxeym Sat 02-Nov-13 08:52:46


LilacBreastedRoller Sat 02-Nov-13 08:52:54

YAB ridiculous. Do you always insist on the capital letter you use for 'Husband' too?

FannyFifer Sat 02-Nov-13 08:53:00

The nurse has been told to use that terminology.
I wouldn't show someone respect if they were being rude to me.

msrisotto Sat 02-Nov-13 08:53:09

Get over it, it really isn't offensive, just another word.

I think the 'lecture' the nurse gave you just sounds like an explanation. It's not unreasonable to have a preference for husband over partner where the situation is unambiguous but it's not something that would bother me in the slightest.

To be honest, at the risk of sounding patronising, I would assume you found the situation stressful and have fixated on this niggle. I don't think that's unusual although it may come across as rude.

DropYourSword Sat 02-Nov-13 08:53:37

It dIdn't sound like she gave you a lecture at all! She explained why she used the word partner. It makes sense to do this so as not to make assumptions and offend anyone.

NotYoMomma Sat 02-Nov-13 08:54:08

her job is actually to look after you in a medical capacity and ensure you recieve good treatment, your medication, your food and drink, check are responding well etc. a nurse will have hundreds of people to look after.

partner is going to be a lot easier all round and you should get over yourself.

atomicyoghurt Sat 02-Nov-13 08:54:38

Can you please stop giving husband and partner capital letters. Also my.
Très annoying.

And yes YABU.

Why such a fuss?

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 08:54:45

Partner is a catch-all word that most reasonable people would not find offensive. Professionals therefore get into a habit of using the word partner so as not to inadvertently use the word "husband" and perhaps upset someone. This is perfectly sensible and reasonable since their situations are likely to be much more delicate than that of some precious flower determined to have her PARTNER referred to as her husband.

YABU and ridiculous and yes rude. You must have come across as a loon.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 08:54:57


What the nurse said was sensible i didn't realise they did that.

It is clear that you have a massive chip on your shoulder and should get a hobby or something

maras2 Sat 02-Nov-13 08:55:13

Are you insecure in your relationship/marriage,OP? Your post does sound very OTT for such a non subject.

Llanbobl Sat 02-Nov-13 08:55:32

You are not being unreasonable to want to call the man you married husband.
You are being unreasonable to expect society to pander to your "want"
Partner will he defined in legislation (it is in Social Security legislation) and means a person you are married to or in a CP with or a person you live with as though you were married or in a CP.

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 08:56:05

Does your partner think you are being ridiculous?

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 08:56:46

YABU. I prefer partner to husband but I don't get arsey if people say husband as he is my husband as well as being my partner. She has the same conversation with hundreds of people so you can see why she would say partner by default.

NonnoMum Sat 02-Nov-13 08:57:04


I hate the word Partner. Makes me think of country dancing.

perplexedpirate Sat 02-Nov-13 08:57:29

I find it offensive when people use 'myself' when they mean 'me'.
But, whatever.

D0G Sat 02-Nov-13 08:57:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Norfolknway Sat 02-Nov-13 08:57:42

Crikey. Get over yourself!!

Who cares? Partner/ husband/ Dave/ fella?!!

TBH, out of all of them I refer to mine by his name. Because, that's his name.

BroodyTroody Sat 02-Nov-13 08:57:45

Sorry OP, YABU. The poor girl must work in a minefield when discussing partners/other half etc and 'partner' is a catch all term that is indiscriminate!

Mrsdavidcaruso Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:07

Sarah My Husband gets more annoyed than me if someone calls me his Partner and not his Wife

SirChenjin Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:09

YANBU in my book.

You've acknowledged situations where it's appropriate to use the term partner, but here you have expressed your preference and the nurse has ignored it - very unprofessional and goes against any number of NHS policy documents.

dawntigga Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:25

Dear goddess woman! Have a grip }{


PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:30

Does your marriage define you?

atomicyoghurt Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:42

Haha nonno

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:46

Well at least you didn't spoil two families.

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 08:58:49

I find it offensive when people capitalise random words!

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 08:59:10

I admire your disclaimer at the beginning MrsCaruso, and totally agree with it, but I think your feeling offended would carry more weight and be more justified if you did actually think that marriage was a superior state.

As it is, you are getting wound up over precisely nothing imho, and as many others have said, professional staff are following protocol and really don't have the time to discuss your semantic preferences with you.

btw I ALWAYS refer to Mr Gain as my husband!

AuntyEntropy Sat 02-Nov-13 08:59:24

She was a bit silly (because continuing to use a non-specific term when you've made it clear which version applies to you is unnecessary - I'm sure she didn't continue to say "and he or she can visit from 8 until 8" once you'd said that your OH was a man). But you are overreacting unreasonably to her minor lapse. And it's quite possible that she finds "partner" a newfangled concept that she's finding it difficult to train herself to use, hence she doesn't want to use "husband" at all at work in case she lapses back in circumstances where it's inappropriate.

MOIST Sat 02-Nov-13 08:59:34

You really need to get out more. Find something real to get worked up about.

Did you spend lots on your wedding, by any chance?

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 09:01:18

I admire your disclaimer at the beginning MrsCaruso, and totally agree with it

apart of course from spelling marriage with a capital M grin

Euphemia Sat 02-Nov-13 09:01:22

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Yabu to find the term 'partner' offensive

It's standard now, get with the programme

SidandAndyssextoy Sat 02-Nov-13 09:01:31

Are you Hyacinth Bucket?

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:08

You should start an AIBU shopzilla Guess what my response would be? Although in my case they are specifically chosen words not random ones.

Auriga Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:32

YABU. She explained why she used the term, so you knew she had no intention of offending you.

It does sound as though you were rude and it does sound as though you think you are somehow better than other patients because you are married. But of course I wasn't there.

If you're going to hold others to such high standards, I hope your own manners are impeccable.

DropYourSword Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:41

but here you have expressed your preference and the nurse has ignored it - very unprofessional and goes against any number of NHS policy documents

I'm sorry but this is total bollocks!! There is no way the nurse in this scenario could be described as unprofessional and I'm extremely interested to find out what policy documents you are talking about!!

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:42

gah wink

SirChenjin Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:52

And if a nurse called an older person by their first name, that older person said, "actually, I prefer to be called Mrs Smith", and that nurse said "we just use first names because it discriminates against unmarried or same sex couples" you would tell them to get a grip?

The nurse was asked to use a specific word, she refused. She was the petty one.

Musicaltheatremum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:56

YANBU I dislike the word partner for me as I am self employed and have business partners which makes it confusing.
I am a GP if I find someone is married I use husband/wife. It's fine to use partner to start off but I think if you said he was your husband it wouldn't have taken half a brain cell to change to using that.

80sMum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:02:57

‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘

^^How ridiculous! Political correctness at its worst imo.

OP, I understand your irritation, but I suspect that the nurse had had it drummed into her that the term 'husband' is discriminatory and she would have been in breach of the hospital regulations if she'd used it.

jamdonut Sat 02-Nov-13 09:03:07

I think YABU. Its a catch-all term . I'm married,and I always call my husband "My Husband" and I am his "Wife" ,but I certainly wouldn't be offended by the use of "partner".

People can't do right for doing wrong,can they? I expect others have complained for the opposite reason,so they have been told to use that term for everyone.

I think you were wrong to insist,and feel very sorry for that Nurse.

The only thing that riles me in Hospitals and similar places is when they call me by my first name, and not "Mrs .......". I think it is rude.( Until I tell someone they can call me by my first name).I would even accept " Ms" if they didn't know. But I wouldn't make a fuss.

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:03:18

Oh good grief. YABU.

I actually hate being called "Mrs". The junior in the hairdresser has just called me "Mrs", I didn't feel the need to complain.

The NHS have to deal with millions of people, sometimes one size fits all is just easier.

Can someone tell me what the protocol in maternity wards is these days? In 1990 they called all the mums "Mrs", which as I say I really don't like and never use, but I could understand why.

Wow, I can worked up over non events quite easily but this? Errr no, just no.

80sMum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:03:47

Sorry, should have addd YANBU.

Neitheronethingortheother Sat 02-Nov-13 09:05:23

I am married I hate saying my husband as it sounds like I own him. I usually just refer to him by his name and people usually understand I mean my significant other.

MrsBungleScare Sat 02-Nov-13 09:05:38

I cannot imagine, for a minute, ever being offended by this.

Surely, it doesn't really matter confused

I call my husband my husband - if someone else called him my partner, well, so what?

I expect nurses and other such professionals are used to just saying 'partner', it will be habit and ingrained now, I'd imagine. It's just the terminology they use. I'd far rather concentrate on what she was talking about in terms of my medical treatment!

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:06:40

Oh and Mrsmusical, me and the other half both have business partners in separate businesses, doesn't bother either us that we're also partners in another sense.

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 09:07:17

Sarah I'm not starting that thread! I guess your reply would be Get A Grip Woman. [Grin]

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 09:07:39

And what you perceive as giving you a lecture may well have been her tactfully and dispassionately explaining why she was using the term partner.

You walked out? Seriously? Come now, Mrs C, you're an intelligent woman, you're not saying that this point of [non] principle matters more to you than your health care (yes, yes, you looked it up on the net...)

Tee2072 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:08:28


I had a psychiatrist once who called everyone Ms or Mr Surname. When I asked him, after many years of being his patient, if he would call me FirstName, he said no, as he had many patients who preferred Ms or Mr Surname and if he called everyone the same he'd never mess it up.

I imagine this HCP is the same.

He is your partner, unless you are not partners and one of you is Master and the other Submissive. Husband = Partner

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 09:09:55

In my politer moments Shop!

Unfortunately Caitlin I think they call you "Mum". When DD was in hospital in Italy they nurses all called me "mammy" which really had me gritting their teeth - would never have said a word though I was too busy being grateful that they had saved DD's life and were taking such good care of her.

DropYourSword Sat 02-Nov-13 09:10:22

SirChenjindo and OP The nurse had far more important things to concentrate on to her job correctly than get bogged down with this sort of shit. You sound like the sort of people who enjoy taking offensive to things for the very sake if it. What on earth is `offensive`about the word partner?

ApocalypseThen Sat 02-Nov-13 09:10:34

But can you explain the reason behind your system of capitalization, MrsC?

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 09:10:36

Gritting MY teeth (sorry Shop!) Gritting theirs would have been weird!

adiia Sat 02-Nov-13 09:10:51

YNBU me and my husband hate it when they keep referring to me/him as a partner.

Helltotheno Sat 02-Nov-13 09:11:27

Your disclaimer at the start? The lady doth protest too much imo....

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:02

I don't like being called 'mum' but I understand why it's easy for hcps to carry on using it.

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:13

When DD was in hospital in Italy they nurses all called me "mammy" which really had me gritting THEIR teeth

That's quite a trick Sarah grin

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:40

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

plinkyplonks Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:44


Husband/partner both are sufficient terms. Are you insecure?

Are there issues around how people have perceived your relationship with your husband? Or do you actually have a problem with the term partner and what it implies?

Either way it seems like an odd thing to get annoyed about and certainly not a good reason to be rude to someone (as if there are any good reasons to be rude to someone).

Looks like you may have placed too much importance of what you call your partner. Whatever the reason, I hope you manage to sort it out.

ZillionChocolate Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:50

YANBU to prefer husband to partner. I do too.

YABU to make a big deal out of it in an encounter with a nurse.

SWBU not to adjust to your preference. If she forgot, fair enough, but refusing on principle was silly. I wonder though why she was just explaining that partner is the default.

YWBVU to have a big strop at the end, especially over such a non issue.

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:57

Cross post Sarah cake

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 09:12:58

hmm I think that a vote of either YABU or YANBU does not count when the reason is "I am similarly precious"

SanityClause Sat 02-Nov-13 09:13:04

What about your mother, or your son/daughter, Neither. Would you refer to them as "my" in conversation, or by name?

I'm not saying there's anything wrong with the way you feel about saying "my husband", but perhaps it's really just an easier form of words than saying "the man I'm married to".

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 09:14:26

Sarah that just makes it sound as though it made you so cross you put tarmac in their mouths! Wow remind me not to upset you!

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 09:14:32

I think the nurse was a little unreasonable. I work in learning and development role for health and social care and we work a lot with respect and dignity. There is a great push in equality and diversity so generic terms such as partner etc will be used in a group setting. However we are all diverse and have certain things that are important. Some patients will want to be called by thier title, some by first name and some by a nickname. If someone does have a strong preference for certain terminology it is important to use it as it builds barriers. It might not be important to a younger person but older traditinal person it is very important to be referred to as a husband or wife. The professional could explain why she used partner but then go on to use husband. It is unprofessional of her not too and if I'd been assessing her practice I would have picked her up on it.

plinkyplonks Sat 02-Nov-13 09:15:29

SharpLily - I think people like that seriously mis use the word partner!!

On plus note, if this is the only thing in your life to spend your time and energy getting wound up by, then good for you! You have a nice life!

ZillionChocolate Sat 02-Nov-13 09:16:12

I hate "other half", as much as I love my husband I'm a whole person. I don't correct strangers on this though as it would make me sound like a dick.

lifesgreatquestions Sat 02-Nov-13 09:16:21

It's lovely that you to know what you want to be called but the world around you hasn't taken note of this. Partner is a safe fallback position from a hard fought battle over the assumption of marriage and the personal conversations that led from that.

VeryStressedMum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:16:25

After she was told you have a husband she could have used husband, but if it's not their policy then it's not their doesn't make you not married if someone refers to your husband as partner. But to walk out of the meeting us ridiculous, the nurse was trying to help you for your operation!!

newmum001 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:16:31

I've had a builder at my house all week. He's referred to my dp as my husband, partner, other half etc. I haven't taken offense at any of those terms. There really is no need to be rude to people about it. It'll just be habit to her to use the term partner for the reasons she explained to you.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 09:16:42

Of course YWNBU.

You wanted the person you were talking to to refer to your husband as your husband, & she refused!

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 09:17:34

Just for the record I am married and I do prefer husband (only Husband in certain circles wink ) and no way would I actually get upset about someone not using it.

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:17:39

OP, are you German? Otherwise, why are you capitalising nouns?
It makes your post look a bit bonkers.

FreakinRexManningDay Sat 02-Nov-13 09:18:09

Really? I'm sorry but you sound a bit obsessed about being married. Its important to you but to be frank no one else gives a shit.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 09:18:37

Shakwonda grin

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:19:18

On a scale if 1- 10 it is at number 1. Save getting worked up for things that matter.

BruthasTortoise Sat 02-Nov-13 09:19:21

I personally don't mind husband / partner but my Granny hated my Granda being referred to as her "Partner", she felt it showed a lack of respect to their marriage, and I have to say the nurses who looked after both Granny and Granda were very good at using the terms husband and wife when speaking to my Gran. I suppose it may be a generational thing.

paxtecum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:20:17

It is quite sad that people are so easy to take offence over something so trivial.

Maybe you should rethink your attitude before your stay in hospital.

You won't be in a position to flounce out immediately after an operation.

Maybe you should treat the staff who are working hard for your benefit, with more respect.

pictish Sat 02-Nov-13 09:21:06

God almighty!

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:21:48

Crikey, I gave up reading your post before the "walking out bit" .

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 09:21:53

I had a mechanic refer to my next door neighbour as my Dad even though I was calling him by his first name and my neighbour said we were 'no relation at all'
Good job he isn't my partner really

PansOnFire Sat 02-Nov-13 09:22:10

YANBU, political correctness gone mad. I think that thinking that it's discriminatory is more discriminatory than using the words husband/wife/spouse. It's indicating that it would offend unmarried or same sex partners when, actually, I'd imagine most people are happy with their decisions and wouldn't give a shit if someone else chose to be married and use the words husband/wife/spouse. In some way it's suggesting that they should be offended.

I think it's offensive to ignore a request to be addressed in a certain way. At work, one of the managers insists on referring to me as Ms - when I was Miss he'd use Ms and now I am Mrs he still uses Ms and it annoys me. Using Ms is a choice rather than an automatic name, I choose to use Mrs (although Miss is absolutely fine). I don't think that it's discriminatory to use the titles we prefer, I think it can be excused when someone doesn't know, but it's inexcusable when someone has expressed their chosen title or name as you did OP.

And I don't see what is wrong with enjoying using the word husband, I think it's nice. I'd imagine that those people who think it suggests possessiveness are people who wouldn't want to be married anyway.

frogspoon Sat 02-Nov-13 09:22:49


I think it is perfectly acceptable to call the other half a partner, when the full details of a relationship are unclear, in order to avoid offending anyone or discrimination. However, once a person has made it clear which term they prefer, it should be used by the hospital staff (unless it is offensive)

The same thing goes for names, the nurse would normally ask "is it Mrs Caruso or David, or Dave etc" and would be expected to use the preferred term afterwards. Even if it is completely different e.g. middle name is used as a first name, or a nickname is used e.g. name is Margaret but every calls them Daisy. Only if it was very offensive e.g. nickname of Hitler or something, would it be acceptable to refuse to cal the patient by their preferred name.

I am unmarried and go by Miss. I don't particularly like being called Ms. I understand that most people will address me as Ms until corrected, but following the correction I would expect them to use it. I would be quite put out if a hospital worker told me ‘we don’t use the title Mrs or Miss as it discriminates against unmarried and married women ‘.

Weeantwee Sat 02-Nov-13 09:23:59

I don't think it really matters. Partner, husband, they are still acknowledging that he is an important person in your life. The only time I get a bit annoyed is when people refer to us as girlfriend and boyfriend. We look young yes, but we are also wearing wedding rings and boyfriend/girlfriend makes it sound like our relationship is meaningless.

pictish Sat 02-Nov-13 09:24:24

You would have been the entertainment of the staff room that day OP - and quite rightly so.
How utterly trivial, yet self important you were. Hilarious! grin

StainlessSteelBegonia Sat 02-Nov-13 09:25:07

I really think you could only get wound up about this if on some level you feel that being married confers some sort of additional status or respect to you that unmarried people don't have.

Thirty or forty years ago, you would have been right. Now, you just sound a little precious. Some of us are married. That doesn't mean my husband is not my partner, or lessened in some way by being referred to as my partner.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 09:25:17

Yes her marriage is important to her. What's wrong with that? I wonder if this nurse would have changed her terminology it it was a gay couple expressing this wish. Some cultures put a high value on marriage should their wishes be ignored? It's this not listening to people's preferences, not understanding them as a person that leads to systematic neglect in hospitals.

DowntonTrout Sat 02-Nov-13 09:27:18

I think the term My Husband is a bit Hyacinth Bucket.

However I would never call him My Partner myself, it's not something I say, although I don't mind or notice if others do.

Personally I call him Dave, it's very easy for people to grasp and saves a lot of confusion. wink

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 09:27:40

"We look young yes, but we are also wearing wedding rings and boyfriend/girlfriend makes it sound like our relationship is meaningless."

But does it really matter what opinion random strangers have of your relationship?

StainlessSteelBegonia Sat 02-Nov-13 09:28:13

Oh dear. Yes, our society is totally oriented towards supporting gay couples at the expense of heterosexual married ones. hmm

Chippednailvarnish Sat 02-Nov-13 09:28:18

Hyacinth Bucket is that you?

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 09:29:52

Of course her marriage (or Marriage) is important to her. Mine is to me but I don't expect to be so to anyone else. If someone calls my husband my partner and that's how they have been told to refer to him I don't think I'd have a paddy and leave a meeting about my health! Much less assume I could google everything I needed to know. If it's that important make a complaint after? I'm not sure what would happen though.

Junebugjr Sat 02-Nov-13 09:30:30

I think the NHS have better things to do than pander to the Professionally Offended. If you like being pissed off, there are loads of things out there worthy of your anger, like homophobia or racism etc. direct your tantrums to issues worthy of them.

NoComet Sat 02-Nov-13 09:31:10

I'm an old traditional is who's been married for almost 25 years (with boringly traditional married DFs and parents) if someone referred to my 'partner' I'd wonder when I'd started a business.

FreakinRexManningDay Sat 02-Nov-13 09:32:35

Downtown I call dh Dave too wink
Or Fucker when the occasion calls for it.

AlexaChelsea Sat 02-Nov-13 09:34:33

I've never heard anyone say the word 'partner' is offensive.

So you are offended if someone (who doesn't know) suggests you might not be married? Or you might be in a same sex relationship? This is offensive to you?

Seriously, get a fucking grip.


PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 09:34:56

Nurses have loads of patients to look after. Expecting them to remember each individual patients personal request on how their partner husband be addressed is unrealistic and a waste of their time. They wouldn't be able to remember them all so would need to make a note of it to refer to everytime she or he approached you. They are overstretched already to the point of it being dangerous. You really are want to add to their workload at all? Really?

Get a grip.

CailinDana Sat 02-Nov-13 09:35:22

Now that I have two children it seems my brain has reached its limit and has decided to dump all names in a big heap from which I pull one at random. As a consequence when I am referring to DH in formal situations he is known as "the tall one with the beard." Otherwise he is known as "you there, the one who isn't a child or a cat." Perhaps I should ask officials to refer to him as the beard-wearing non-cat."

<wanders off>

plinkyplonks Sat 02-Nov-13 09:36:11

BTW this AIBU would make a perfect DM article.. complete with women with scrouched face and crossed arms!

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 09:36:29

you there, the one who isn't a child or a cat

grin that's genius!

ToffeePenny Sat 02-Nov-13 09:36:38

What Slutbucket said. Both times.

Call people what they want to be called.

It is rude when someone has been asked not to refer to someone in a particular way. Then continues to do it. So on that grounds, YANBU.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 09:40:05

But it is fundamental to good quality care that the person feels listened too and the power shift changes. It is important that patients feel empowered to express our preferences. It becomes a slippery slope if this basic rule of thumb is not adhered to. When you look at CQC reports when there has been reported safeguarding issues one of the main things that comes up is the lack of communication. I assess people's competence and communication is a key thing that is assessed. Sometimes it can be frustrating watching professionals not listening.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 09:40:15

"Nurses have loads of patients to look after."

OP isn't a patient.

She was talking to a nurse about going into hospital.

They were the only two people in the discussion!

And the nurse still kept saying partner after the OP asked her not to.

How is that OK?

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:40:34

CailinDana, your post made me laugh.

Shonajoy Sat 02-Nov-13 09:40:47

Why does it matter to you? Obviously on some level being married is in your mind, better than not being, I'm married but couldn't care less what I'm called.

bridgetsmum Sat 02-Nov-13 09:42:18

I hate hate hate it when my husband is referred to as my partner. He is my husband and I am his wife.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:43:45

Is it insecurity? I can't see that it matters.

redshifter Sat 02-Nov-13 09:44:52

You told the nurse what term of reference you preferred. I think it was a bit rude of her to ignore your wishes.
Why couldn't she use the word 'husband' when she knew your preference, it would have been the polite respectful thing to do.
Other posters think you are being trivial but if it matters to you, then that is what counts.

KatyaRachmanova Sat 02-Nov-13 09:48:43


Honestly, you are over thinking it. I don't use the term partner for my husband but I couldn't give a shit if others do. If has NO bearing or effect on my relationship.

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 09:48:49

I like threads like this.
Most amusing.
To get so het up by someone using a word which you dislike is absurd. Really.
To be honest it sounds like you have a fundamental lack of respect for the nurse who has better things to do than worry about using "husband" instead of "partner"
Do you also think public sector workers should do as you say because you pay their wages?

noddyholder Sat 02-Nov-13 09:49:09

OTT nonsense be thankful for the nhs and any one to one you get and stop splitting hairs

Rufus44 Sat 02-Nov-13 09:50:21


The term partner is not offensive to me, though I prefer husband/wife if appropriate

The nurse was rude to keep saying partner when you had expressed a preference

You were being a bit silly walking out of what I assume was an important health meeting, waste of an appointment and probably meant that someone else missed out on an appointment

So you would feel fine with someone persistently calling you the wrong name, despite being asked not to and reminding them of your actual name?

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:51:17

I would prefer the nurse concentrated on the job and didn't have to remember that some people like partner and some like husband and some don't care either way.

If it helps think of it this way. Every husband/wife is ALSO a partner. You are partners who got married.

plinkyplonks Sat 02-Nov-13 09:52:16


OP wanted nurse to call her other half/partner/husband her husband

Nurse explained why she couldn't do this

OP was unhappy, wasted an appointment that our lovely tax payers are probably paying for and left.

For those saying she was not being unreasonable:

Was it respectful of the OP to carry on getting angry at nurse for doing her damn job?

Was the OP being respectful when she left the appointment because the nurse was following the set procedure?

Was the OP being respectful in wasting a nurse's appointment when other people who may have needed it more used it.

Finally, how respectful are you being in demeaning people's relationships by saying oh, boyfriend and girlfriend status are lesser than x, or y? Does it really matter? Do other people's relationships whether they are same sex or otherwise impact you negatively? It's a word! Seriously! You are assigning it the meaning and depth and choosing to be offended by it. I love my husband, partner whatever.. no matter what I call him, nothing takes away the depth of feeling and love i have for him.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:53:20

It wasn't their name, KatieS it was a descriptive word for the father if your child. It used to automatically be husband and now it isn't. Partner is safer and covers all. Your husband is your partner but your partner is not necessarily your husband.

baskingseals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:53:22

Agree with Katie and redshifter.

Though it may not be important to others, it is to the op, and it is okay to want your husband to be called your husband.


Howsuper Sat 02-Nov-13 09:53:46

Think OP could use a leeeeetle therapy...

Satin, the principle is the same and is I expect, exactly the reason the OP is annoyed.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 09:56:11

The principle is not the same. My name is SatinSandals, anything else is wrong BUT my husband is my partner FACT.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 09:57:02

OP didn't demean others relationships just merely stated how she wanted hers to be described. I'm sick of the phrase health professionals have better things to do than..... Treat you with respect, see you as a person etc. if more health professionals took the time and did these little niceties then better care would be given. The people I have assessed who do this as a matter of course are the best nurses and carers and fundamentally give the best cost effective care.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 09:57:24

"Nurse explained why she couldn't do this"hmm

Yup, of course she couldn't!!!

What bollocks!

Dawndonnaagain Sat 02-Nov-13 09:57:53

I hate people who use myself, instead of me.

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 09:59:47

Yes it's important to the op, for whatever reason she tells herself.
It isn't important to others though and you can't force people to do what you want.

Canthaveitall Sat 02-Nov-13 10:01:16

Do people really get this het up about stuff like this? Really?

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 10:02:18

How can you prove this point about certain healthcare professionals doing a better job?
That's just your own value-judgement.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 10:02:30

Obviously they do! I put it down to insecurity.

frogspoon Sat 02-Nov-13 10:03:10

But Satin, do you have a preference over Satin, Miss Sandals, Mrs Sandals, Dr Sandals etc

If you were married and said you preferred Mrs Sandals, and the nurse kept calling you Ms Sandals (both are correct) and refused to call you Mrs Sandals because it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples, would you not be at all annoyed? (ok maybe not annoyed enough to storm out, but still a little annoyed that your personal preferences were being ignored)

In my front facing workplace we are told to always refer to people the way they wish to be referred to.
Including "Jesus", "Lord Jones" and Mr Darth Vader smile

nobalance Sat 02-Nov-13 10:04:41


I find the word partner really annoying. Just makes me think of business partner etc...definitely prefer my husband to be called my husband.

It is however handy to have a word that can be used whether married or not, where you don't necessarily know the situation. I just wish there was a nicer word for it!

baskingseals Sat 02-Nov-13 10:04:45

No but you can hope that other people will respect how you feel, especially when you have told them you are uncomfortable you are.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 10:05:31

It is based on 15 years of working on healthcare standards and assessing people's practice to set standards so I think I'm quite qualified to give an opinion on this just as others are.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 10:06:15

Katiescarlett & diddl

However when I said my Husband would be picking me up she continued to use the word Partner, when I gently and politely explained that I have a Husband not a Partner and I didn’t want her to keep referring to him as my Partner, I got a lecture from her saying ‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘.

Op didn't ask the nurse to call him husband. She said he WAS her husband, the nurse then at some point said partner again, and THEN op asked for him to be called husband. The nurse then explained (not lectured) why she used the term partner. Op walked out.

Pointing out that someone is your husband isn't the same as asking for them to be called husband. Op did her utmost to be offended.

songlark Sat 02-Nov-13 10:07:35

No yanbu, the nurse is. She is the one who made such a big deal out of it. I would have been just the same as you. She didn't like you using the word husband using the pathetic but much loved excuse of " it could be offensive to people who don't have a husband". I wish more people would stand up against these overbearing PC jobsworths. Where do you draw the line with all this "offensive to others" garbage. By that token shall we not call her a nurse in case it offends those of us who'd love to be a nurse but couldn't. Shall we ban the word "Doctor" in case it offends the nurses. You could go on forever, thats how pathetic it is.There won't be a shred of evidence to say that people are offended by the word "husband", just the same as all the people who are apparently offended by the word "Christmas". The only ones causing any offence are the sad idiots who dream up all this "offensive" shite. You used the word Husband...but by her objecting and saying it might cause offence to others she actually caused offence to you. To use the word "partner" when you have a husband is ridiculous and also rather implies there's some shame attached to having one. She made the fuss and caused offence to you, so YADNBU!

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 10:07:37

Give as many opinions as you like.
It doesn't mean you're right.

Well what else did she want the nurse to refer to him as?
Seems pretty explicit to me.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 10:07:47

No. I am Mrs but if people want to use Ms, Miss etc I let them get on with it. My son's school used to phone me up and use the wrong surname but I knew it was me so it was simpler to say 'yes'.
I can't get het up about trivialities.
I find it odd that so many people get upset about names on envelopes that will be thrown away.
I know I am Mrs, I know I have a husband- that is all that matters.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 10:07:58

TBH, if I said "husband", I would expect the nurse to follow my example & say the same.

The nurse sounds a bit dim tbh.

Not quite the same, but my mum (in her late 70's) gets really upset when people use her first name, instead of Mrs X eg at a call centre. She is quite traditional and doesn't like it. We all have minor issues that bother us. I had an estate agent call the other day and left a message for mr and mrs Y. Now I saw the house on my own as Ms and am going through a hostile divorce, so i didnt like that very much. Thought it was sexist that a woman couldn't buy a house on her own. But I am not sure OP you will change the system and that perhaps is why you have to let it go!

AGnu Sat 02-Nov-13 10:10:07

I've heard people get very upset about being called Miss instead of Ms & vice versa. I suppose this is similar.

Thinking about it, I prefer 'husband' when referring to my DH, although not to the extent of getting cross if someone persistently used 'partner'. I seem to remember being amused by the number of times a midwife said "your husband" in one meeting while I was using his name so she'd obviously adjusted how she referred to him. But couldn't remember his name! grin

I might start calling him "Husband" instead of his name today, just to see how he reacts!

pigletmania Sat 02-Nov-13 10:10:10

Yanbu at all, you have the right to be known as anyway you want, as the nurse is in charge of your care she should be respectful to your wishes, and refer to your husband as that to you.

Alexandrite Sat 02-Nov-13 10:10:17


PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 10:10:22

If you were married and said you preferred Mrs Sandals, and the nurse kept calling you Ms Sandals (both are correct) and refused to call you Mrs Sandals because it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples, would you not be at all annoyed? (ok maybe not annoyed enough to storm out, but still a little annoyed that your personal preferences were being ignored)

See above. Op didn't ask for him to be called husband. She just pointed out that he WAS her husband and expected the nurse to change the term she used automatically. There is a massive differences. When nurse didn't do this, op then requested the different term and the nurse explained why they use the term partner. There is nothing in what op has written to say it was a lecture. Op didn't like this explanation and so walked out. This is because op has a MASSIVE chip on her shoulder.

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 10:11:13

What the fuck is wrong with the term partner?

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 10:11:44

Rowlers are you homesy saying all nurses shouldn't listen to peopls preferences honestly. I don't think I'm right just arguing a point as eloquently as I can. Sorry if that offends you maybe aibu is right for you?

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 10:11:51

No yanbu, the nurse is. She is the one who made such a big deal out of it.

She didn't make a big deal out of it, she just explained.


SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 10:12:28

And OP thinks she can control others rather than just herself, she will no doubt expect to order her child's whole environment!

Rowlers Sat 02-Nov-13 10:13:54

Dear god.
I'm off.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 10:13:58

diddlSat 02-Nov-13 10:07:58 TBH, if I said "husband", I would expect the nurse to follow my example & say the same. The nurse sounds a bit dim tbh.

Wow! Nice! I would imagine that actually like all nurses she has a thousand and one things on her mind and is doing the job of 3 people.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 10:14:21

Argh doesn't make sende that last post so obviously not that eloquant! However I have a wealth of experience in this and know I'm right! (Although I wouldn't have stormed out!)

sonu678 Sat 02-Nov-13 10:14:23

the term partner is inappropriate and offensive. If you went to the trouble to get married, then Husband or wife is correct. Partner is just lazy.

However, I dont think I would get offended. Far too many other things in life to be stressed about than other peoples issues with language

scaevola Sat 02-Nov-13 10:14:46


As OP says, no problem with 'partner' being used as the default term, but if there is a request in a one-to-one situation to use a different term, then that should be complied with. I think that is especially important if you are told a preference in terminology from a same sex couple.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 10:15:06

She will be 'my child, my rules' not understanding only in your own home , in my house her child follows my rules or she removes her.
If the nurse wants to use partner she will.

fifi669 Sat 02-Nov-13 10:17:03

Like someone calling you Elizabeth when you say you're Liz or (generally) an old person wanting to be called mrs x, you just have to respect what the person is telling you and go by the name they tell you.

Personally I don't see why the nurse couldn't change the vocab for this 1 to 1, though I do understand it'd be easier to say partner across the board. UANBU IMO, though I wouldn't have walked out, that's also rude.

frogspoon Sat 02-Nov-13 10:17:09

But I am not sure OP you will change the system and that perhaps is why you have to let it go!

I disagree, I think this probably has happened before.

Some time ago, a nurse referred to an unmarried or homosexual woman's partner as her husband. She got very upset about it, complained, said it was discrimination. As a result of this a new policy was made saying all staff should refer to other halves as partners to avoid discrimination.

A nurse was carrying out her job and carried out the policy a bit literally. She is probably fairly new, not very experienced, and was just doing her job by following policies to the letter.

There is probably an issue with the policy wording. It should say that other halves should be referred to as partners, unless patient expresses a preference.

Kewcumber Sat 02-Nov-13 10:17:29

If I were married to David Caruso I would get irritated by everything too.

SpottyDottie Sat 02-Nov-13 10:19:25

I think you are over thinking it. WhenI read your op and you mentioned what the nurse said, I immediately thought well she doesn't know you and you might be in a civil partnership or even single. When you corrected her perhaps she should have taken that on board. But to be offended, is a bit strong I'd say.

Kewcumber Sat 02-Nov-13 10:20:24

Oh and:

Partners = every partner possible that you can imagine
Husband = one specific subset of partner

"Partner" leaves nursing staff more time to to carry out their actual job. She might have been more flexible but then so might you have been. But David Caruso as I said would irritate the shit out of me so I don;t blame you for being scratchy.

sunbathe Sat 02-Nov-13 10:21:47

Agree with slutbucket and diddl.

Partner is fine in groups, but patient's personal preference should be used in a one to one situation, imo.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Sat 02-Nov-13 10:23:29

I think the point is that "partner" includes "husband" but "husband" excludes people who are not married. It does make sense to use "partner" in general terms. Given you feel strongly about it and expressed this view the HCP should have referred to your DH as your husband, but I can understand why they generally steer clear of this minefield. You were, however, being OTT about something which is minor in the scheme of things and certainly shouldn't have walked out of your appointment over something like this.

QuintesKabooom Sat 02-Nov-13 10:25:32


But I would not say you are overthinking it, you have not thought it through properly.

‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘

This is very sensible.

You need to distinguish this further.

1-2-1 In a professional capacity as above Partner is acceptable.

1-2-1 in a personal ie, with friends, school mums, colleagues, people that you know, you can expect husband/wife/girlfriend/boyfriend to be used, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

But in a professional setting where you dont know eachother the use of Partner is the right choice, for the same reason as the nurse gave.

No reason to feel offended. Nurse had to follow her guidelines, she was doing her job and as such meeting you in a professional as opposed to friendly capacity.

OhMerGerd Sat 02-Nov-13 10:28:01

We're not married but we use/ answer to everything including husband & wife, partners, bloke and the missus, the old boiler and the old fart, Other half, girlfriend and boyfriend(lol) Etc etc ...Mind you we have been at this game for thirty years together (childhood sweethearts) so totally over worrying about that kind of stuff. We even have people double barrelling our surnames or calling us Mr or Mrs each others surnames and we really don't get excercised by it. It only matters in reality in a relationship context for tax purposes or medical issues in case we got given the wrong drugs or the wrThe rest is kind of conceptual...

Jux Sat 02-Nov-13 10:30:37

I get offended when people use 'myself' when they should use 'me'.

CuntWagon Sat 02-Nov-13 10:34:49

I'm a nurse. I don't believe for one minute that the nurse needed to refer to your partner more than once and think its even less likely she "lectured" you about it. Not that you've been back to the thread anyway...

ArgyMargy Sat 02-Nov-13 10:39:01

YANBU. The titles are irrelevant, it's the rudeness of refusing to acknowledge your preference and thereby making you feel ignored and "processed" rather than having an adult-to-adult conversation. Typical of public service attitudes. Remember when they decided they could call everyone by their first name? Thank God that's dying out now.

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sat 02-Nov-13 10:41:04

I'm married, I refer to him as my partner in most situations when not referring to him by name, and I prefer to be referred to as his partner. I just prefer it - to me it feels more equal, it represents us well, and I don't see what our legal genders have to do with most conversations. I don't have any issue with people referring to him as my husband though, it's legally accurate.

I do think it's odd that the nurse didn't follow your request for the duration of that conversation. I understand not remembering the preference for later conversations (for me, most can't remember how to say my name - to the point that my kids hear the missaid version so often that they say it that way, I still have to regularly remind my own kids how to say my name) but for that conversation it was off for her to continue to do so. I do find it annoying, but it's still a bit overreacting to walk out over it.

I don't get the emotional overload connection to the gendered term your describing, it seems to be a defensive kneejerk reaction to your perception of how others view other relationships (as does your disclaimer).

noddyholder Sat 02-Nov-13 10:46:51

Pay for your treatment and you can be Duchess if you want

LordPalmerston Sat 02-Nov-13 10:47:21

god i would NEVER say partner

Like scottish bloody country dancing

curlew Sat 02-Nov-13 10:48:04

All husbands or wives are partners. Not all partners are husbands or wives.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 10:48:08

I prefer husband if he is behaving or the knobhead I am married too if he's being himself! Wonder how that would fit into the policy? smile

Grumblelion Sat 02-Nov-13 10:48:13

I work in healthcare and I always use partner in the first instance as I wouldn't know an individual's circumstances and potentially using husband/wife inappropriately could be quite offensive to same-sex or unmarried couples. As far as I'm aware, the organisation I work for doesn't have a policy regarding this, just seems like common sense. However I would take the patient's lead in how they refer to their significant other - they say husband, so do I after that. And if someone had come out & told me they disliked me using partner, I certainly wouldn't persist. Anti-discrimination policies are important but so is courtesy & common sense!
I couldn't care less if people call my OH husband or partner but if someone else expressed a strong preference I would respect it.

Doinmummy Sat 02-Nov-13 10:48:59

I work for the NHS and sometimes you can tell that a patient is going to be difficult even before they've opened their mouth. You inwardly sigh and just know that what whatever you do/ say will be wrong.

curlew Sat 02-Nov-13 10:49:11

All you anti partner people

What do you suggest I call the man I have lived with for 25 years?

Bawjaws ?

Euphemia Sat 02-Nov-13 10:50:48

Bawjaws! grin


fiftyandfab Sat 02-Nov-13 10:51:41

get over it, it's not important, you were BU

Rufus44 Sat 02-Nov-13 10:55:15

curlew try love bunny !

alemci Sat 02-Nov-13 10:56:35

I would always refer to my OH as my DH as that is what he is. I wouldn't be offended if someone in a professional capacity referred to him as my partner as that is what they are probably meant to say.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 10:56:58

I'm not anti partner just pro personal preference! Some sections find partner offensive a good example being a homosexual couple fighting for the right to be married. It is very important to be called husband, spouse for SOME. That's why we need to adapt our language to the person.

sunbathe Sat 02-Nov-13 10:58:23

What are you comfortable with, curlew?

That's the important thing, just like the op.

noddyholder Sat 02-Nov-13 10:58:39

I refer to my dp as partner Sometimes people refer to us as husband/wife but I am not bothered about what someone who has no bearing or influence on my life calls me as part of their day. If I am talking to someone I know I use his name.

I'm more interested in the fact you're going to get your post-op information from the internet. Good luck with that one!

Pre-op rather blush

redshifter Sat 02-Nov-13 11:10:32

I recently started working alongside a gay man. When I referred to his OH as his partner, he said to me "Oh, he's my husband darling, we did the civil partnership thing last year". He seemed very proud of this. Although I guess technically they are not married, they refer to each other as husband. I started refering to his OH as his husband. He didn't need to ask me to do this, I didn't need to think about it. He used the term husband, so it is only natural, friendly and polite for me to do the same. It does upset him a bit when some colleagues seem to insist on saying partner or boyfriend.
I have asked him about this thread, he told me that in the OPs situation he would have felt upset, offended and a bit annoyed at the nurse and would have wondered if it was a bit discriminatory especially in a professional 1 to 1 setting.
I asked if it really matters. He said "It does to me"

I can understand why my colleague would feel this way.
He is proud to have a "husband" and it is important to him for other people to recognise his relationship status this way.
I don't think he feels a non married couple's relationship status is inferior to his civil partnership but he is proud of his CP.
I can't see anything wrong with his point of view, or am I missing something?

whatever5 Sat 02-Nov-13 11:11:28

YABU to ask her not to use the term partner as it's hardly disrespectful. I also don't blame her for telling you why she refers to him as your partner rather than husband. I think that she should have switched to husband once you asked her but it's hardly important in the grand scheme of things is it? You sound very childish.

DameFanny Sat 02-Nov-13 11:14:34

Well I'm with the OP. I've had the most appalling time of it with HCPs who won't recognise my preference of referring to DH as my personal saviour and master.

It's very important to me that even remote acquaintances recognise the importance to me of the vows I have made, and reflect on the deeply traditional way I wish to conduct my personal relationships.

AIBU as well

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 11:15:23

No there's nothing wrong with that. However op says the nurse explained the reasoning behind the use of the term and op got upset and left. We don't know that the nurse refused to say husband, just that she explained it and op didn't like it. Would you really walk out of a pre op meeting over that? For all we know the nurse never had another opportunity to say either word. Imo op over reacted although if course she is free to refer to her husband any way she wants.

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 11:17:11

DameFanny, you are being sarcastic?

harticus Sat 02-Nov-13 11:20:59

Some people just love the whole marriage thing don't they?
The name change and all the Mr and Mrs stuff.
It is all a bit too matching anoraks for my tastes.

In Pride and Prejudice (written around 1812) Mr Bennet talks of 'being unable to respect your partner in life.' So calling a spouse partner is clearly nothing new, and the terms are interchangeable.

noddyholder Sat 02-Nov-13 11:23:27

I want a personal saviour and master now

Stropzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 11:24:44

OP if you're still there can you clarify for me? You said please use husband, nurse said we use partner because... and you then left? Or did the nurse keep using partner AFTER you had been explicit? I don't expect her to have switched the words unless you had said. If you had left before the chance had been given definitely bu. If she had kept saying partner annoying Yes and only slightly less u but still wouldn't have left!

Noddy, why don't you ask one of those nice MRA posters if they can fix you up? smile

noddyholder Sat 02-Nov-13 11:28:54


redshifter Sat 02-Nov-13 11:31:55

I wish OP would come back and dripfeed give more detail.

Weeantwee Sat 02-Nov-13 11:35:14

But does it really matter what opinion random strangers have of your relationship?

When it's a member of staff at a bank opening a joint account for us, who says 'Mrs T, would you and your boyfriend like to follow me please.' yes it does matter. If they can't grasp what 'Mrs' means then I'm not sure I trust them with my finances.

Floggingmolly Sat 02-Nov-13 11:35:29

You can call the man you married your husband. Other people can call him whatever the hell they like.

ginslinger Sat 02-Nov-13 11:37:41

I think we're being very unfair about the reverancy of holy matrimony and I am now off to reflect on the vows I once made to the man who is my husband, who I obey at all times.

azzbiscuit Sat 02-Nov-13 11:40:12

First world problems.

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 02-Nov-13 11:48:53

I dislike "partner" and loathe "Ms". I do make a point of being called "Mrs" eg at work and I'd have been really cross at being told that someone couldn't use my preferred terminology in case it offended someone. I do think it shows a lack of respect and inability to personalise a procedure. Of course the nurse will have seen gazillions of patients over the years, but the OP is (presumably / hopefully) only doing this once, and some indication that she is being treated as an individual is not too much to ask.

I wouldn't have stormed out of the appointment over this, though. Surely it's a grit teeth and complain later situation?

Hope the op goes OK OP.

NancyShrew Sat 02-Nov-13 11:49:51

Mountain. Molehill.

Floggingmolly Sat 02-Nov-13 11:53:09

You terminated the meeting, preferring to use Dr. Google instead, rather than listen to your darling dh from being disrespected. Bloody hell. hmm

DameFanny Sat 02-Nov-13 11:53:50

Heh heh heh

Floggingmolly Sat 02-Nov-13 11:53:54

Redundant from...

80sMum Sat 02-Nov-13 11:55:45

Lots of people have been saying that husband/wife is a sub-set of partner. Since when has this ever been the case? Who decreed it?

My husband has never been my partner, nor ever will be. I have never referred to him as my partner and have no intention of starting to do so now.

What grates is ridiculous PC policies such as this, supposedly intended not to cause offence. Offence to whom?

digerd Sat 02-Nov-13 11:57:02

I want a knight in shining armour saving me - the damsel in distress.< although I'm more of an over-ripe damson nowgrin.

I like the german term of a Mann and a Frau. < man and woman>
There is no Mr and Mrs.
There is no difference between married and unmarried . It is either my Mann or my Frau. Also adult females whether married or not are called Frau.
Legally the married spouse has a previx of Ehe, but not used in conversation.

harticus Sat 02-Nov-13 12:02:51

digerd - I'm more prune than overripe damson

The definition for women by marital status really gets up my nose.

phantomnamechanger Sat 02-Nov-13 12:03:03

Have not read the entire thread but what I did see seemed to be coming down on the side of YABU, get over it. It is sensible for these sort of staff to get into the habit of using the same generic term for all, so they do not offend/make assumptions about marital status.

Same as years of working in schools and kids groups has led me always to use the words "your grown ups" (not mums/dads/parents) when referring to making a gift for/waiting for at home time/who is picking the child up/or who they need to give a letter to - because some don't have 2 parents, some have 2 mums, some are in foster care, some have complications of 2 step families & shared residency, some are collected by grandparents or childminders etc etc

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 12:03:58

In France we use 'conjoint', which loosely means 'the person with whom you are joined'. It works for me - but then I'm unaware of any associated Jeremy Kyle-isms. wink

WilsonFrickett Sat 02-Nov-13 12:05:03

redshifter but how would your friend feel if the nurse said 'and will your wife be picking you up?' which is to my mind what this policy has been designed to prevent happening. So much of our language is hetero-normative - and that is why partner was used in this instance. It's not just about classifying levels of partnerships IYSWIM

Tbh, I think the nurse should have changed after being asked to change, it's not a big deal. But I suspect after she explained why she'd used partner the op went all capital letter on her ass and she just CBA.

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 12:07:32

80sMum it just is. The way a lion is also a big cat or a chandelier is also a light or a watch is also a timepiece. It's language and doesn't need a decree.

The 'offence' aspect is simply an attempt to further 'other' already marginalised groups.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 12:08:04

There is a thread at the moment asking why the elderly get het up about trivial things and I pointed out it is nothing to do with age!
My eldest child is 32 yrs and medical staff said 'husband'. Ten years later I had another and it had changed to partner. Times change, move on with them.

phantomnamechanger Sat 02-Nov-13 12:08:44

What grates is ridiculous PC policies such as this, supposedly intended not to cause offence. Offence to whom?

take an example of a lesbian couple , one of whom is pg by donor insemination/IVF. She goes to the midwife , who (quite rightly) cannot make any assumptions abut the father being on the scene, or the mother being in a hetero relationship, so they have to ask in bland generic terms Qs like "who is your next of kin" or "will your partner be attending the birth" etc etc, rather than make assumptions and start referring to "baby's dad" or "your husband". Many people WOULD be offended by these assumptions so using "partner" is an easy catch-all.

harticus Sat 02-Nov-13 12:08:52

I heart Stravy for being able to say very sensibly what I couldn't.

Famzilla Sat 02-Nov-13 12:10:12

I can't believe you flounced out of a meeting about your own health because a nurse said partner instead of husband. You really put your want for the world to know you have a husband above your own health? Really?

You might be very proud and being married might mean a lot to you, but it means nothing to the rest of the world. I know you've put that disclaimer at the beginning but frankly I don't believe it.

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 12:11:08

And some people just can't wait to be offended.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 12:16:06

Back to the OP.

"However when I said my Husband would be picking me up she continued to use the word Partner"

Why would the nurse do that?

She initially used partner so as not to assume anything, but then didn't take her lead from the OP.

That's really odd to me.

Actually, why would the nurse ask if OPs partner would be picking her up-why not just ask who?

Wossname Sat 02-Nov-13 12:16:28

Do you actually change the word 'partner' to 'husband' on forms? There are some real sad sacks about.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 12:18:54

A lot of YABU'S here, and general rudeness just for the sake of it. Why should she 'get over herself?'
Don't be so bloody rude. I can understand the nurses using the word partner as a catch all, as I suppose that sounds sensible.
If your patient has TOLD you, repeatedly, that she wants him to be referred to as husband, then why keep pointedly carrying on with the word partner and blatantly ignoring their wishes?
Would it be acceptable if a young mum came in with her boyfriend and the nurse insisted on calling her boyfriend her husband when she knew full well he wasn't?
Of course it wouldn't. So why are married women fair game to piss off?
Treat all with respect.

Mia4 Sat 02-Nov-13 12:20:53

YABU to be overthinking this so much and justifying it so much. I'm sure it did irk you but you should have just accepted the explanation as it was. Shouldn't your priority be the medical care you need rather then a word that the nurse will likely have to use according to her workplace?

Is this a wind up? It sounds like another precious and flowery post and has odd language such as 'terminating a meeting' in reference to a consultation.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 12:22:06

Did you spend lots on your wedding, by any chance?

I'm not the OP, but what the fuck's that got to do with anything? confused
Or are you implying that if you prefer the term husband then you must be a Bridezilla who insisted on releasing white doves and having harpists flown in to perform at dawn or something? hmm

AnandaTimeIn Sat 02-Nov-13 12:24:19

You need to get a life.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 12:24:42

"I'm sure it did irk you but you should have just accepted the explanation as it was."


Because the explanation doesn't really apply when it is known that OP has a husband, does it?

Maybe it's an age thing. I've been married 20 years and have never once referred to DH as my partner. Or had him referred to me as my partner IYSWIM.
I don't think of DH as my partner. He is my husband.
I do call him bawjaws though smile

Mia4 Sat 02-Nov-13 12:30:42

Because the nurse explained why she has to use those terms. OPs husband is her legal partner. While the whole idea of having to use those terms after being corrected are annoying and pretty petty the nurse will have to use them according to her workplace, if there's an overly precious patient the nurse could get complained about or if another member of staff overhears her not following procedure then the same couple apply. And it's more petty to get so worked up about it to the person who is there to give you medical care, they don't make the rules- if you are that worked up them complain to the jobsworths who aren't actually healthcare professionals but just employed to piss us all off like this and would give someone warnings for not following procedures even in situations like this.

OP could have just said 'well that's ridiculous but i appreciate that you have to use them.'

harticus Sat 02-Nov-13 12:31:49

I have a niece in my care who is often mistaken for my daughter.
In a hospital context I would say "No this is my niece not my daughter." Because it is a factual inaccuracy that has implications.

But husband and partner are synonymous.
I really fail to see what appalling damage is done other than the OP getting the hump over chuff all.

I think the umbrage that has been taken is much more to do with the nurse not acquiescing to the OP's request.

Alexandrite Sat 02-Nov-13 12:32:27

I'm sure the nurse wasn't saying partner to annoy the op. She was probably concentrating more on giving the correct medical advice. If it were me I would have been concentrating on that and not even noticing whether my husband was accidentally referred to as my partner.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 12:33:15

So she has to use the term even if someone REPEATEDLY tells you it's causing offence? That is absolutely ridiculous.
So why is it OK to cause offence to some beliefs, but not others?

TidyDancer Sat 02-Nov-13 12:33:23

The OP's first sentence is quite likely bullcrap. She is a wife. A WIFE. And she has a husband. He must be acknowledged as this, lest people not understand that she is a wife.

It was soooo important to her that she missed out on hearing medical information and preferred the skills of Dr Google.

Poor OP. Her exhalted status has not been recognised with each address. No wonder she is distressed.

TooMuchRain Sat 02-Nov-13 12:33:26

YABVU. The nurse has far more important things to do than care about which term you prefer - partner is a broader term, husband is more specific - neither is considered offensive in society as a whole. And her job is rather more than just 'paying respect' to you.

Alexandrite Sat 02-Nov-13 12:35:48

What on earth is offensive about a husband being referred to as a partner. Ridiculous thing to be offended about.

LondonJax Sat 02-Nov-13 12:40:37

To be honest I think both you and the nurse were being unreasonable. If you prefer to have the word husband used the nurse should have respected that. My aunt prefers to be called Mrs X rather than by her first name so she tells nurses, dentist, insurance tel sales people that she prefers Mrs X, not Doris please. That's her right and they get told they are rude if they disrespect her wishes. In fact, nurses tend to great with her - they usually ask if she prefers to be called Doris or Mrs X.

The nurse should have respected your preference in a one to one meeting and could, I'm guessing, easily marked up the interview notes with the fact that you dislike the term partner. They can put comments on about most things.

However, I certainly wouldn't have walked out on a medical meeting because if it.

In my aunt's case I'm guessing she'd have a polite word with the next person up the chain if she didn't get called what she prefers. She certainly wouldn't lose her temper with a person who believes, rightly or wrongly, that they can't use common sense and change 'rules' about titles if someone is telling them they have a preference that is not on the list. She'd tell someone who can actually change the rules that she wasn't happy...That's probably how the word partner ended up on a list of correct terms in the first place - people calmly stated that they weren't happy with assumptions being made, but they aimed their complaint at the right people.

I'd have asked her one last time to respect my wishes, carried on until the end of the meeting then written a polite email to the head of clinic or practice manager pointing out that, whilst I appreciated the need to have a generic term I preferred husband to be used and couldn't understand why the nurse was being so pedantic. You'd either get a 'silly woman get a grip' email or one saying that they would look at the policy, if they had any sense. I've managed to get a procedure changed at a clinic (totally different issue) by contacting the right person, being reasonable and keeping it professional.

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 12:43:44

"when I gently and politely explained that I have a Husband not a Partner"

She probably just felt sorry for you. I'd hate to have a husband who is not a partner.

fanjofarrow Sat 02-Nov-13 12:44:47

I don't get the big deal about it. At all.

Hate the word "partner." Makes it sound as though he plays badminton with me.

ouryve Sat 02-Nov-13 12:48:37

You're being a bit precious, to be honest. People are erring on the side of getting it right. As a husband, he is still your partner. If you weren't married, he wouldn't be your husband, though.

Correct, gently, where it matters and try not to get into such a pickle about something that is actually quite trivial.

SchnitzelVonKrumm Sat 02-Nov-13 13:04:09

I am married but use my maiden name. People insist on calling me Mrs, it drives me fucking mad. But I wouldn't miss out on important medical information over it.

SoonToBeSix Sat 02-Nov-13 13:06:54

Yanbu would they not use the word mum in case it offended orphans. It is pc gone mad.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 13:13:43

"Because the nurse explained why she has to use those terms."

So, despite the OP saying that she has a husband & would like him to be referred to as such, the nurse has to keep saying partner?

What rubbish!

Shallishanti Sat 02-Nov-13 13:16:20

wow, 11 pages!
OP, I think you were NOT BU. The nurse was right to use the generic 'partner' (which, IMO, covers spouses, civil partners, boy/girlfriends etc) but when it was clear you were married and preferred the term 'husband' she should have changed straight away, and it IS her job to treat your preference with respect, shown by the fact that her failure to do this resulted in you terminating the meeting- thus she was not able to give the care she planned. However, maybe you should have coped better with your irritation, then you would have benefitted from whatever you didn't get.
I am so old that I can remember when all male partners were referred to as 'husbands' as it was considered polite, and all women on gynae wards were 'Mrs', now that was very annoying. I think the nurse really hadn't thought through what the intention of the protocol was- to treat all people regardless of marital/civil partner status/sexuality with equal respect.

kungfupannda Sat 02-Nov-13 13:20:42

What on earth is "offensive" about the word partner?

It's just a general term for a whole lot of ways in which people are together, and saves an awful lot of time that would otherwise be spent faffing about, establishing the exact legal framework of the relationship.

It's quite clear that the OP does think that marriage is at the top of the relationship hierarchy, or there wouldn't be anything to get offended about. "Offensive" suggests something that you have negative feelings about, not just something that's technically incorrect.

I work in a profession where women are formally addressed (in court) as "Miss" as a matter of course. I have, in my entire career, come across two women who insisted on being referred to as "Mrs" and it was quite odd and jarring, as though they were dragging something quite personal into a very formal setting.

It simply doesn't matter to most people who you deal with in day-to-day life, what your marital status is. The specifics of your relationship just aren't important in most settings.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 13:29:03

What on earth is "offensive" about the word partner?

There's nothing offensive about the word partner, but the OP has every right to use whichever terminology she wants.
To her, partner is offensive when she has repeatedly told the nurse not to call her husband that and got ignored.
THAT is offensive and bloody rude. Bet the nurse wouldn't have continued ignoring if it was the other way round and she'd said she took offence at the word husband and could she please stop.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 13:31:04

Yanbu would they not use the word mum in case it offended orphans. It is pc gone mad.

Jeez, don't go giving them ideas! grin
Although I can well imagine that actually happening already in some places after this thread depressingly!

DumSpiroSpero Sat 02-Nov-13 13:33:56

I can see where you're coming from OP although I don't think I'd get quite so worked up about it.

I can see no reason why, in a 1-2-1, the nurse couldn't have referred to your husband.

Also (not sure about this) is there potential for there to be an issue with partner vs husband re next of kin issues in a medical context? If so then the use of husband does make it clear that he is OP's default NOK.

but the OP has every right to use whichever terminology she wants.

No one demanded that the OP use a different term.

To her, partner is offensive

Really? I don't think the OP said that. You may be putting words in her mouth, but if she had it would have been much more unreasonable.

Bet the nurse wouldn't have continued ignoring if it was the other way round and she'd said she took offence at the word husband and could she please stop.

The whole of that sentence is fantasy since there's no suggestion that the nurse disapproved of the word 'husband'. The nurse had been instructed to always say partner since it was safer in case. (A) the woman was not married or (b) the woman's partner was also a woman.

Clearly a good policy since now see that people do come in and get worked up over what they consider the wrong term.

YouAreMyRain Sat 02-Nov-13 13:45:26

YABVVU and a bit precious too.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 13:46:30

"The nurse had been instructed to always say partner since it was safer in case. (A) the woman was not married or (b) the woman's partner was also a woman."

Which one assumes is why the protocol is in place.

But once established that the OP was married & had a husband, why not use that term?

Why were OPs wishes ignored?

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 13:46:57

The nurse had been instructed to always say partner since it was safer in case

Even if she had been told repeatedly not to call him partner? To still do it when it's obvious it's causing offence?
I couldn't get myself to be worked up over whether a nurse called my husband a partner.
I would think they were bloody rude to keep ON doing it when told it was causing offence.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 13:47:37

But once established that the OP was married & had a husband, why not use that term?

Why were OPs wishes ignored?


QuintesKabooom Sat 02-Nov-13 13:54:10

"But once established that the OP was married & had a husband, why not use that term?

Why were OPs wishes ignored?"

Maybe because the nurse did not want to get in trouble if somebody else heard her call the ops partner "husband"?

Also, what if the OP had wanted the nurse to call her husband "arsewipe", "because that is what he is", if indeed he was a arsewipe? Should the nurse have had to comply?

<tongue in cheek>

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 13:56:24

Even if she had been told repeatedly not to call him partner? To still do it when it's obvious it's causing offence?

Yet again, THAT NEVER HAPPENED! Why can't anyone read properly instead of making stuff up just because it suits their argument!

Nurse said partner. Op called him husband. She never expressed a wish at this point for him to be called husband. Not even once. Nurse said partner again. Op now said she wanted him to be called husband. Nurse explained why they are instructed to use partner. That is it.

I said all this pages back. Go away and people are still making up the same shit pages later!

BillyBanter Sat 02-Nov-13 13:56:36

It's perfectly sensible to use the word partner. Husband is a type of partner but partner is not a type of husband. Like border collie is a type of dog but dog is not a type of border collie. She is not incorrect to call him partner. She will meet with lots of people every day/week and by saying partner she can't be wrong, by saying husband she can be.

Same with Ms. Some people may not like it but it's not wrong. Mrs can be wrong, Miss can be but Ms covers all women not just some of them.

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 13:59:51

"Maybe because the nurse did not want to get in trouble if somebody else heard her call the ops partner "husband"?"

Why would she?

Unless the hospital's line is protocol at all cost & ignore the patient's wishes?

"Op now said she wanted him to be called husband. Nurse explained why they are instructed to use partner. That is it."

But it doesn't explain why she ignored OPs wish.

OMFGShockHorror Sat 02-Nov-13 14:00:06

I can't believe you find it 'offensive'. You must live a sheltered life. Get over it.


PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 14:03:14


It doesn't say anywhere that she DID ignore the ops wishes. She explained why they automatically use partner after the op complained about the use of the word partner. The op then walked out.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 14:04:59

However when I said my Husband would be picking me up she continued to use the word Partner, when I gently and politely explained that I have a Husband not a Partner and I didn’t want her to keep referring to him as my Partner,

Pukingcat - what is that sentence then if not expressly saying you do NOT want him to be referred to as that? She HAS been saying not to call him that. Then got ignored and told "no, we'll call him partner".
Expressly going against her wishes and causing offence.
Why on earth would an overhearing Ms/Miss whatever Bloggs get offended and upset at hearing the word husband used for somebody else's situation?
To her own situation, fair enough, but to take offence to someone else entirely unrelated to them having a husband is just plain bonkers.

anonacfr Sat 02-Nov-13 14:06:23

Interesting that the OP then mentioned her husband finds it more annoying than her. Proprietary much?

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 14:08:06

"But this was just her and myself and surely having established that I wanted to use the term Husband that she should have shown me courtesy and respect by using the same term herself and not giving me a lecture.

I am sure there are plenty of people on here who would find it equally offensive to have their Partner referred to as their Husband or Wife when they have made it clear they prefer to use the word Partner."

That's what made me think it was carrried on after OP asked for her husband to be referred to as her husband.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 14:09:03

To want to call the Man I married my Husband

The title of this thread isn't really accurate is it op? Because no one is stopping you calling your dh husband. The nurse didn't object to your use of the word did she? Why did you call the thread that?

It sounds like its more that you want to fact that you are married to be admired acknowledged. I can't help but think you must be very insecure to take your identity from that, as otherwise i can't see why on earth it would bother you.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 14:16:35

For gods sake jelly! Read it properly. Don't just edit off the bit that doesn't fit your argument.

However when I said my Husband would be picking me up she continued to use the word Partner, when I gently and politely explained that I have a Husband not a Partner and I didn’t want her to keep referring to him as my Partner, I got a lecture from her saying ‘we don’t use the words Husband or Wife or Spouse as it discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples ‘.

AGAIN! After op asked the nurse to use husband the nurse didn't refuse, she just explained why they are told to use partner. Then op walked out. Its right there ^ The op said it was a lecture but it sure doesn't sound like one.

Halloweenjunkie Sat 02-Nov-13 14:17:21

YANBU. You asked politely for her to call him your husband and she should have respected that. It may not be important to a lot of couples, but it is clearly important to you and therefore your wishes should have been respected. Unfortunately we now live in a society where people are too scared to go against the 'rules' in case they offend someone.

I'm laughing at the PC attitude of the hospital. "It discriminates against unmarried and same sex couples." How on earth is referring to someone's husband as their husband possibly discriminating against other people who are not even in the room (I take it)?! I can understand it if the room was filled with different people and home circumstances - fine, use the generic term "partner" as a catch-all. But I think refusing to even use the word "husband" once the nurse has established that the term is used by choice by her patient is pretty daft.

Part from anything it's just good manners socially to use the term that the person you are talking to uses themselves. Sounds like she was sticking rigidly to the rules without thinking about each patient as an individual.

That said, I would have just laughed it off and said "Well, you can call him my partner if you like, but he is my husband so I'll be calling him that." No need to get your knickers in such a twist about it, I don't think.

outragedofsuburbia Sat 02-Nov-13 14:27:09

When you work with mixed groups or even with individuals who may or may not be married you have to use partner precisely for the reasons the nurse gave. It takes a while to stop using the word husband and always using partner but eventually partner becomes second nature. This is good because there is less chance of a stray husband popping out and causing offence.

If you then switch between partner and husband as you request it then makes it harder for the next person the nurse sees as it is more likely to pop out again so she really does not to switch from one to another.

QueenMedb Sat 02-Nov-13 14:28:30

OP, go immediately to the Daily Mail and get this story into their regular 'PC Gone Mad' slot, accompanied by a large colour photo of you with a big, offended face outside the door to the unfortunate nurse's office, pointing sadly to your wedding ring.

Inset could be a small wedding photo of you and your Husband, aka the Man you married.

And maybe a copy of your marriage certificate. Just in case anyone doesn't believe you are Married. To a Man.

(Lovely that Winterval is coming up soon, isn't it? What a pity those unreasonable Muslims aren't letting us put up Christmas lights on the Hugh street any more, eh...)

BritInTDot Sat 02-Nov-13 14:36:11

grin at QueenMedb

Op, you are being VU. And you are being VVVVVU for being so annoyed that you had to post about it. It's not a big deal, get over yourself

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 14:37:29

Fussy fussy fussy fusspotness at play.
Correcting her in that way was silly and immature and...... Fussy.
I hope your hospital stay is brief and uncomplicated of course.

phantomnamechanger Sat 02-Nov-13 14:38:32

I wish the nurse in question was a MNer!

Maybe she is not ALLOWED to use the terms husband/wife etc, they will have had discrimination training etc
Maybe she was just irked by a silly patient getting their knickers in a twist instead of listening to the information they needed to hear?
Maybe the OP came over as quite rude and stroppy? who knows!

But the only reason for being "OFFENDED" is that she feels somehow superior, that it is beneath her to have her marriage classed as a mere relationship with a current partner.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 14:43:12

Of course the nurse is allowed to use the term husband.
Either the op is inaccurate hmm
Or b. or c.

Slutbucket Sat 02-Nov-13 14:44:14

It is important to have a bank of inclusive words that do not offend such as partner, first name rather than Christian name etc as a starting point. A truly reflective Professional will be able to adapt to a situation. Sometimes mistakes can be made but with good grace on both sides they can be smoothed over. Any good diversity policy will encourage the worker to treat their patient as an individual not just encourage them to use a word because it's more than my jobs worth not to! Also as a person who works with standards I like the professionally offended as it gets debates going and people having very important discussions! I've had a very similar debate about the use of the word "love"'used by professionals! That was interesting!

Ministrone Sat 02-Nov-13 14:48:22

I suppose it's possible that the nurse wasn't sure of your gender so was trying to be tactful?

motherinferior Sat 02-Nov-13 14:48:29

I get deeply pissed off when people refer to my husband - or even my Husband. The idea of being someone's Wife makes me feel really quite ill. I still wouldn't have flounced out of a medical appointment though.

YWBVU and sound quite unhinged, I hope you're not coming to my hospital.

The nurse was probably filling in a trillion forms, none of which will give the option of using the word husband, on our paperwork, the term partner is used throughout, for the reason explained by the nurse in question.

I do hope you apologise for your rudeness.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 14:51:25

Fwiw. I do think, in ths situation the nurse should have used the word husband because that is what you had asked.and i agree with slutbucket about hcp being adaptable. but your description of events leads me to believe this was an odd exchange all round tbh.

motherinferior Sat 02-Nov-13 14:51:31

And you really are being a spectacular prat for deciding just to use the Internet. How are you going to find out the hospital's own procedures?

But on the bright side you probably gave her a bit of a laugh and speeded up the wait in the queue.

jellyboatsandpirates Sat 02-Nov-13 14:55:31

The idea of being someone's Wife makes me feel really quite ill.


Morgause Sat 02-Nov-13 14:58:20

I hate the term partner because it's too ambiguous - there are business partners, tennis partners etc.

It doesn't make a relationship any clearer when a person says, "This is my partner." Last time it was said to me the person mean business partner.

We need a new word. Until we have one I'll call my husband my husband. Then there can't be any confusion.

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 14:58:21

Where is Mrsdavidcaruso now? It's gone very quiet at her end...

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 15:08:34

My husband is my husband, he's not my partner and I would not appreciate him being described as such once my marital status was known. To refuse to use a factually correct title is discriminating against those who are married.

TidyDancer Sat 02-Nov-13 15:13:47

How sad for you Andro. sad I would hate to be married to someone who wasn't my partner.

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 15:14:03

No it is not discriminating. What nonsense.
I seem to recall the phrase "marriage is a partnership" featuring regularly in church wedding services.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 15:14:20

I have just re read the op.
Really, she didn't insist on or persist with calling your DH "DP" did she? Not after you had explained that you didn't want her to. She just explained why she used the term partner.
Are you very anxious about this hospital admission?

Ministrone Sat 02-Nov-13 15:14:57

The idea of being someone's wife doesn't make me feel ill as I chose to get married to my husband.

PukingCat Sat 02-Nov-13 15:15:55

Discriminating against those that are married! grin

(And the nurse didn't refuse to use the title. She explained to the op why the are told to use partner.
Read. The. Fucking. OP)

Ministrone Sat 02-Nov-13 15:22:55

Curiously enough Ruth Rendell, who is an highly intelligent woman and a Labour peer makes quite a thing of this in her books, for example Chief Inspector Wexford gets quite antsy with one of his colleagues when she refers to his wife as his partner.

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 15:26:30

Well everyone has their quirks Marshmallo - even intelligent women.

And Wexford is a character and quite curmudgeonly at that - would be boring if all RR's characters were the same with the same view points.

Did grin at the gender suggestion btw

ouryve Sat 02-Nov-13 15:30:45

She's probably busy namechanging, SharpLily.

It's a pity you don't see your marriage as a partnership, Andro. If DH and I weren't partners and friends, first and foremost, there no way our marriage would have survived bringing up two disabled boys. It's quite bizarre to think that someone describing us as partners would be discriminating against us as a married couple.

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 15:32:36

TidyDancer - We are a partnership, but we are married and as such we are husband and wife not 'partners' (which can mean anything from a business relationship to a civil partnership). I would expect a person who had been informed of my marital status to use the correct title for my husband, just I expect to be addressed/introduced as Dr during formal introductions (at a conference or business function for example) or on official correspondence. Given that there are people who find the effective dismissal of their marital status insulting and offensive, surely it is just basic good manners to use the correct terms when a preference has been indicated (and OP's correction of partner to husband is a clear indication of preference)?

diddl Sat 02-Nov-13 15:33:48

"If you then switch between partner and husband as you request it then makes it harder for the next person the nurse sees as it is more likely to pop out again so she really does not to switch from one to another."

Bloody hell.

If she's so easily confused, should she be a nurse?

Caitlin17 Sat 02-Nov-13 15:36:44

Andro why is it such a big deal your marital status is recognised?

SharpLily Sat 02-Nov-13 15:39:52

Oh dear, Andro is Sir Ben Kingsley!

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 15:41:14

Caitlin17 - because I've grown up in an environment where the dismissal of, or refusal to acknowledge a persons marital status, is used as a direct insult.

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 15:48:03

I've just remembered that bit from father ted

"We're partners"

"Oh, you run the production company together"

"No, we're lovers"

TidyDancer Sat 02-Nov-13 15:51:13

So your DH is your partner? I therefore fail to see how you could find any offence in him being described as such. And for you to describe it as discrimination....seriously?! That is utter utter nonsense.

I'm sorry if you've been offended previously by people in your life, but this is still not discrimination.

DoctorRobert Sat 02-Nov-13 16:00:22

Deary me. Yes, YABU.

The poor nurse. She wasn't being offensive and she didn't lecture you. No doubt she went home that night and told her Partner about the loon she had to deal with at work.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 16:03:28

Sometimes you think nurses must want to throw in the towel and go, just like OP, when they have to put up with such trivia!

marriedinwhiteisback Sat 02-Nov-13 16:06:05

I think the OP has taken some unpleasant stick on this thread. Whilst I wouldn't have flounced out of the meeting I don't like my husband being referred to as my partner by medics (only happened when I was pg years ago) and at that time when they referred to my partner I used to correct them and say, actually I have a husband.

I also shall never forget the day a midwife "booked" me in my home, surrounded by our dating wedding photos, knew I had an almost two year old, knew I had a husband and then said "and does this baby have the same father as your son". All I said at the time was "what do you think, I'm called Mrs x now and I was called Mrs x then and I think it would take more than two years to get divorced and remarried again". I know they have to ask that question but I also think there is a polite way of asking it and a sensible way of assessing a person's circumstances especially when a guest in their home.

Since then I have been a bit of a stickler about being called Mrs by HCPs and never taken any PC nonsense from them. I wholeheartedly wish I'd thrown that midwife out of my home on that occasion; not least because that little baby died at 27 weeks and as far as I am concerned that midwife belittled his very longed and planned for existence.

Patients deserve both empathy and a little courtesy and good manners in my opinion. And if a patient wants to refer to their husband as their husband they should be allowed to do so because they are an individual and are entitled to have their individual needs and sensitivities met. That is what caring is all about and what is too readily forgotten nowadays.

I am a happily married lady and my husband and I chose to get married and to plan our family and would not have contemplated doing so without being married. That philosophy deserves as much respect as any other.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sat 02-Nov-13 16:17:22

Here's a thought, maybe she didn't give a toss about whether you were married, single, straight, gay or living in a polyamorous commune with a team of rugby players.

Maybe in the midst of managing a load of important detail and process around YOUR HEALTHCARE forgot that you had referred to your 'husband' as partner is her default term and one that she has been trained to use.


SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 16:21:26

I have always been Mrs, I have wedding photos on display, my children were wanted and planned but they have different fathers, medically you shouldn't just assume.
OP must be at least 20 yrs younger than me, even I, from the time it was automatically husband, realise times move on.

Sorry to be flippant but is anyone else reminded of that scene in Airplane?

"I'm as scared as I've ever been, but at least I have a husband"

Everyone is entitled to their own views, but there is never an excuse to behave like a brat to a HCP who is only trying to do their job and furthermore to waste their time by storming out of an appointment in a spoor of indignation over something so entirely trivial hmm

Xmasbaby11 Sat 02-Nov-13 16:24:19

YANBU. He's your husband. I can't see why they wouldn't refer to him as that - who would it offend?

marriedinwhiteisback Sat 02-Nov-13 16:25:27

But why couldn't the HCP have had a little more empathy and have understood that the patient would be more comfortable and at ease if her husband was referred to as her husband. If the couple are married it is after all no more than a statement of fact.

greenfolder Sat 02-Nov-13 16:30:09

I always refer to my husband as my husband. Really couldn't care less if someone else called him my partner. Sounds like you were rude than

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 16:30:18

Some posters are being obtuse.
The nurse didn't refuse to use the term husband. She used the term partner, then used it after the op had used the word husband. She didn't then persist with issuing the term partner. Then when the op flounced about the issue, explained why she used the term partner.

Yy to * Tondelayo* and grin yes to Littlegreyauditor

PeriodFeatures Sat 02-Nov-13 16:31:18

For once i agree with married I found the fumbling health professional referring to DH as either 'partner' or birth 'partner' really frustrating. It was also gently explained to me that our baby would, for hospital purposes, have to have my surname on his wristband but this was not a requirement when registering him!!

We are married!

bellablot Sat 02-Nov-13 16:32:44

Erm why ever would this matter??? Baffled!

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sat 02-Nov-13 16:33:01

Maybe the OP should start a Change.Org petition lobbying Jeremy Hunt to ensure all NHS use the words 'husband' and 'wife' in a factually accurate manner.

I'm pretty sure that's something he'd support - as well as firing miscreants who use the word 'partner'.

I have been married for 11 years and I am struggling to imagine a situation where it would be important to me that a stranger knows I have a husband.

The HCP, when asked to call him "husband" merely explained why she had previously used the term partner. She did not repeatedly use the term partner after OP had her whinge, she just explained why the term was used. After which, according to the description, OP stormed out.

OP is also at great pains to explain that there are several circumstances in which she finds "partner" totally acceptable, so there was really no need for her to have spat the dummy and gone off in a hissy huff.

It was a ridiculous over reaction, possibly due to the stress of having to discuss medical details, but it was an over reaction and unreasonable.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 16:34:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ok I just reread the OP. I thought she said the nurse continued to use the word partner, but that's not what it says is it. It says the nurse explained why she said partner and the OP was annoyed by the explanation.

Even if the nurse had I would defend it on the grounds that the nurse has been instructed to do it that way and in any case it would not be a habit and because as someone else pointed out she was likely looking/writing forms which had 'partner' all over them.

RafflesWay Sat 02-Nov-13 16:41:27

Sorry but I totally agree with*op*, andro, married and the few others who have stated mrsdavid WNBU. Oh and just for the record this is my DH's pet hate and he gets really shirty if anyone refers to me as his partner. If people don't agree with marriage then that is their business but don't then get arsey because married couples want to be referred to differently. Same rule applies to same sex married couples too IMO. Again their oh should be referred to as your H or your W! I don't get het up like DH does over it - when I told him about mrsdavid's post he said he would have done the same - I just find it really sad.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 16:48:39

I fear to my DH as my husband in RL. And he refers to me as his wife.
He corrects ppl.
I prefer "husband/wife" to "partner" for us. But I think to consider it offensive or to strop out of a health interview over such a non issue is a bit ridiculous.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 16:50:51

For some years I have made a policy of ignoring sarcasm. To marriedinwhite's 'what do you think' , I would have politely said 'I think it is the same father, but I don't write medical history with what I think.

Stravy Sat 02-Nov-13 16:51:38

It's got nothing to do with agreeing or disagreeing with marriage, it's about acknowledging that not everyone who uses the NHS is heteronormative. If you have to say something than 'partner' is a catch all, husband is not. It shouldn't really have to be explained but as the OP forced an explanation the HCP gave one. After the OP got arsey with her it doesn't appear she said partner again. How many times would one usually say partner/husband during a pre-op meeting. I bet it was less than 4.

No matter how 'gently' you explain that you have a husband, not a partner, it comes across as really snooty, which is a bit of a kick in the teeth for people who aren't allowed the luxury of marrying their partner.

Crowler Sat 02-Nov-13 16:51:54

I think this is more a symptom of the fact that we're living in a country where people increasingly are not married when they have babies.

Do you really want NHS staff discussing your marital status or worse yet, searching for/interpreting clues (can't the health visitor just take the time to view the wedding pictures that rest upon the mantle? good grief) so they can tailor their words accordingly, only to inevitably flub it up?

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 16:53:29

High five Satin

marriedinwhiteisback Sat 02-Nov-13 17:01:37

But satin why can't a midwife say "I'll apologise in advance for asking this but it's very important because of the potential risk of rhesus and I have to demonstrate I have asked it in case something goes wrong and I have drawn the wrong assumption". The problem is that all too often the questions come across as "right on" and actually a little insubordinate and I don't think that helps to develop a mutually respectful relationship. I think the matter is also complicated because of making booking appointments in people's homes - there's one things saying something insubordinate to me in a clinical setting - quite another saying it in my home where the hcp happens to be my guest and where I expect my guests to behave respectfully and in accordance with my rules rather than theirs.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 17:04:32

Well that would make me feel really bad when I have 2 different fathers!

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 17:05:21

It makes it sound as if I ought to have one father.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 17:06:37

She was asking medical questions, much better to stick to professional and ask them.

Floggingmolly Sat 02-Nov-13 17:06:46

Op, do you seriously imagine she gave a shiny shite what your marital status is? You seem to have taken the whole exchange as some sort of deliberate belittlement and disrespect. Why?

Exactly Satin.

As a HCP myself we don't ask questions for our own entertainment, we ask them because the answers are necessary to ensure you get the best outcome.

Sarcasm, flouncing, refusal to reveal meds, second guessing, picking fault with the wording, blatant lies, playing the "you tell me" game - completely bloody unnecessary. Answer the questions you are asked, truthfully. It's really not that difficult.

Anything else just makes our job harder, and our ability to deal with your problem lessens.

You might attend your appointment with all your baggage trailing behind you, but we just want to do our job.

Also "insubordinate"?! Really?! How charming. If only the staff knew there place hmm

Their place. Sorry.

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 17:10:31

Erm why ever would this matter??? Baffled!

On a practical level:

My husband is my next of kin, with the legal right to make medial decisions on my behalf if I'm not a position to do so - he didn't have that right when he was my partner or even when he was my fiancé.

If my DH answered a phone call and heard something along the line of 'hello Mr Andro, I'm calling with regard to your partner', he would assume the had the wrong person and politely inform them as such. He would then terminate the call...and miss whatever important information the person on the other end of line needed to tell him.

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 17:11:44

*medical decisions

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 17:12:32

Insubordinate? INSUBORDINATE???????????????????

Yes indeedy, it's about time these HCPs knew their place.

To have used the word once may be considered unfortunate Married to have used it twice looks like snobbery of the first order.

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 17:13:18

Sorry Littlegrey you got there first!

TidyDancer Sat 02-Nov-13 17:14:30

That would be a bit silly of him then, wouldn't it Andro? And I doubt anyone would seriously think the caller had the wrong number just because they'd said partner and the recipient of the call was picky about titles. That would be daft to say the least.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 17:15:21

I want them to be professional and ask the necessary questions, I do not want them to apologise for asking as if my situation is somehow inferior to someone with a 2 yr old and the same husband. There is no need to apologise and all it needed was 'yes' and on to the next question.

No bother becca it bears saying twice.

Respect goes both ways.

Insubordinate my ass.

Salmotrutta Sat 02-Nov-13 17:16:35

The phrase "I gently and politely explained" is soooo patronising.

Why do people "gently" explain anything - unless imparting bad news? confused

To "gently" explain a mundane fact sounds like you enjoy looking down on people. Or treating them like children.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 17:16:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SatinSandals Sat 02-Nov-13 17:16:38

If he is that silly Andro he deserves to miss important information!

Crowler Sat 02-Nov-13 17:19:42

Andro, if the hospital was trying to get a hold of your husband to make a decision as your next of kin, you honestly think the use of the word partner would lead to the level of confusion where your husband would hang up and some critical decision would be left unmade?

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 17:19:47

SatinSandals - He's far from silly, but it just wouldn't occur to him that I might be referred to as his partner when all my emergency contact information lists him as my husband.

Salmotrutta Sat 02-Nov-13 17:20:27

And terminating a phone call because you (deliberately) "misunderstand" the term partner is quite frankly one of daftest things I've ever heard!

Anyone doing that is one of those people who enjoys being obnoxiously pedantic.

NotYoMomma Sat 02-Nov-13 17:20:32

fucking hell I despair at your dh!

Andro Sat 02-Nov-13 17:21:56

Crowler - he has terminated a call from the hospital in the past when I' been rushed into resus, the hospital called my other emergency contact who then called him.

Crowler Sat 02-Nov-13 17:22:00

I despair at this thread.

RafflesWay Sat 02-Nov-13 17:22:13

andro your DH sounds just like mine! To those who are saying what does it matter? I will freely admit yes it is very important to me not to be thought of as co habiting as I was an illegitimate child of the 50's and was treated as second best all through my childhood/teenage years which left me with terribly low self esteem. Having been very happily married for 35 years I feel same has been somewhat restored but by being referred to as merely "partner" seems to chip away at that again. Just me I know but as someone said earlier, we all have our little foibles and that is one of mine.

TidyDancer Sat 02-Nov-13 17:22:44

That's just it Crowler. It wouldn't. Not a single vaguely intelligent person would make that mistake. So it leads that Andro's DH must be either really silly or so stupidly pedantic that titles bother more than actually getting potentially vital information. Or Andro is doing her DH is a disservice and he would be able to figure it out.

Some things just are not worth being that picky about.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 17:24:47

Ok. Phone call to me "amandaclarke. Your partner has been injured and we need you to make a life and death decision for him"
Me: "sorry. I don't have a pertner, on.y a husband. You must have the wrong number"
Yes. I can see that happening.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sat 02-Nov-13 17:25:37

pertner grin
Now that isinsubordinate.

Beccagain Sat 02-Nov-13 17:25:52

The phrase "I gently and politely explained" is soooo patronising

Agreed. And it's kind of relevant to a point I made on another thread to an OP who claimed to have politely explained something, and it's that I would have a bit more patience with either OP if they'd said 'So I told them to fuck off!'

Obviously that's partly in jest, but in this case if the OP had said to the nurse 'Look I'm sorry, but would you mind referring to him as my husband, the term partner makes my teeth itch' I am sure the nurse would have put aside her insubordination (jayzis!) and obeyed (give me strength!),- pace Marriedinwhite-which would have saved a lot of flouncing on the OP's part.

Could I just say MrsC that I hope your operation goes well and that I think your ridiculous overreaction is understandable if you are stressed about it

Floggingmolly Sat 02-Nov-13 17:26:00

He terminated a call from the hospital in the past when I'd been rushed into resus. He's a nit picking moron then, andro. Lucky you.

PasswordProtected Sat 02-Nov-13 17:26:08

I had a husband, I cannot stand all this PC correctness & partner could mean anything from a business relationship to a sport or dancing companion.
In fact, now I come to think of it, the word partner usually seems to require a "qualifier". Husband or wife do not unless it is an endearment or a number ;-)
Perhaps we should resort to the term "spouse" to avoid any confusion?

ljny Sat 02-Nov-13 17:28:56

What Slutbucket said (at 9:14:32)

Start with 'partner' it's the most diverse, inclusive term. But surely, after a patient expresses a preference, the nurse could respect that preference for the rest of that meeting.

In an ideal world, your preference would be mentioned in your notes - but that's unlikely as NHS workers are so overworked these days.

To quote Slutbucket again:

It's this not listening to people's preferences, not understanding them as a person that leads to systematic neglect in hospitals.

DoctorRobert Sat 02-Nov-13 17:29:03

glad I'm not married to Mr Andro! Jesus

SarahBumBarer Sat 02-Nov-13 17:30:14

Raffles a lot of us on here saying YABU are actually married you know. It's not a bunch of unmarried people refusing to acknowledge the exalted status of the smug marrieds on here! And NOT all married couple want to be referred to differently. Don't presume to speak for us all. Some of us think it is such a non-issue that HCP's should be allowed to get on with what really matters.

Married - also disagree on the idea of how guests in your home should be treated. Surely since you have home-court advantage you can be a bit polite and respectful of the fact that they have a job to do asking difficult questions and cut them a bit of slack. In the small percentage of cases where it is genuinely sensitive then they can focus on dealing with that rather than ridiculous preciousness.

Andro - your husband would be a rude arse to just terminate the conversation without giving the other party any chance to respond. You both sound like uptight charmers. People do have next of kin rights without being married. NoK is not legally defined and most NHS trusts have a policy of asking you to nominate your NoK and there is a NoK card that you can carry similar to a donor card. My aunt was recently treated as NoK in relation to her partner despite him still being married (separated). Only potential issue was pension (but thankfully he pulled through).

Satin - you have two fathers!!! How does that work biologically? Is it like a Mamma Mia situation? grin Sorry - hope you can take that in the spirit intended - I think I know what you mean.

BramblyHedge Sat 02-Nov-13 17:30:45

Andro - anyone can be your next of kin. Marriage does not confer this as a legal right. When my
husband was my partner he was my nok.

I am a trained nurse, and when I trained (30 years ago - gulp), we were taught to ask each individual patient how they wished to be addressed, and that was recorded on their admissions forms, and we respected their choice!!. In exactly the same way, the nurse should have respected the OP's choice to have her partner referred to as her husband.

The nurse was being a bit ridiculous - she was talking to the OP, who was not unmarried or part of a same-sex couple, and who expressed a clear desire to have her partner referred to as her husband, and there were no other patients present who might have felt discriminated against.

IMO, nursing is not about rigid rules, because to me, individual patient care requires flexibility, so that the care can fit the patient's needs. In this case, the nurse's rigid adherence to the rules drove away her patient, meaning she might not get the best information to prepare herself for her hospital stay - and nursing research has shown that the better informed a patient is! the less stressed they will be! the less pain relief they will need! and the quicker their recovery will be (the research related specifically to information given to patients pre-operatively, and their post op recovery, but I believe it is more widely applicable).

BrianTheMole Sat 02-Nov-13 17:31:20

If you told her you wanted your husband refered to as your husband, then its rude of her not to do that. Its basic manners to ask someone what they want to be called and then use that. Although I don't think she carried on using partner after you pointed it out anyway did she op? She just explained why she had used the word partner in the first place. If you had stayed in the room and she had continued to address you dh as partner, then that would have been rude of her. But I guess you didn't wait to see.