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Using 'Mrs'

(182 Posts)
Booboobedoo Sat 14-Jan-17 09:02:58

This is something I've been pondering for a while, and now I'm posting on here to garner opinion.

I'm sure I can't be the first to suggest this, but would it not be a logical step to start addressing women as 'Mrs' as soon as they are adults, in the same way that men become 'Mr'?

It would render 'Ms' unnecessary.

Ultimately I suppose I'd prefer all titles to be done away with altogether, but I'm not sure the world is ready 😁.

Any thoughts? Any obvious reason why not?


BertrandRussell Sat 14-Jan-17 09:04:09

Why? Why not Ms?

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Sat 14-Jan-17 09:05:13

The most obvious reason why not is that you would be taking away a woman's right to choose.

I'm sure any woman who wanted to use Mrs is already at liberty to do so?

Hulababy Sat 14-Jan-17 09:07:00

I think this often happened in the past although not immediately on being an adult. But certainly many unmarried older woman took the title of Mrs.

Or why not just stick with Miss and not change at all?
Do people ever use Master these days for males under 18?

I personally don't like Ms as it isn't an actual word, just a blend of two sounds.

Lessthanaballpark Sat 14-Jan-17 09:07:26

Men don't become Mr when they get older. They are born that way. DS has had the title of mr ever since childhood.

We on the other hand have to search through Miss, Mrs and Ms and decide wtf we are (not always an easy task wink).

It should be Mr and Ms. No messing, thinking or unnecessary complication. IMO.

msrisotto Sat 14-Jan-17 09:09:01

Hmm, didn't boys used to be Master, before Mr?

pullingmyhairout1 Sat 14-Jan-17 09:11:57

I'm not married though, so therefore am not 'Mrs' anything, and my Mum is 'Mrs F-W'

BertrandRussell Sat 14-Jan-17 09:14:53

It's taken aeons to reach the point where Ms has the pretty limited acceptability and understanding it has now-how long do you think it would take to change the meaning of Mrs?

Booboobedoo Sat 14-Jan-17 09:21:35

I suppose Mrs because it's easier to say than Ms!

Arbitrary, I'll give you that, but as good a reason as any.

Boys are 'master', aren't they, until they 'fledge'.

Agreed, probably best to drop that too. <remembers DS' unholy glee when MIL told him that was his title>

Choice, yes, but what I'm talking about here is the broad go-to title for, for example, teachers. Or companies writing to you using your surname and a title.

I called a student 'Missus' the other day (when she was being cheeky), and she indignantly exclaimed "I'm not married!".

This is something I've found myself feeling more and more strongly about. I know Ms was coined to get around the Miss/Mrs/defined by marital status problem, but I feel that reclaiming 'Mrs' - and our adulthood not being achieved only by being deflowered after a wedding ceremony - would be really empowering, and a logical, clean step.

Booboobedoo Sat 14-Jan-17 09:26:27

A woman I used to work for had her request for a CRB request sent back to her because she hadn't supplied the divorce papers to prove that she was a Ms.

That is the way that organisation viewed 'Ms'.

Bloody infuriating, I know, but 'Mr' means adult male to everyone.

'Mrs' should just mean adult female.

Clear, simple, unambiguous.

I suppose if all women had adopted 'Ms' then I wouldn't see the need for this.

But they haven't.

BertrandRussell Sat 14-Jan-17 09:30:58

"I suppose Mrs because it's easier to say than Ms!"

This is a thing I really, really don't get. It's perfectly easy to say Ms. Unless you put virtual air quotes round it like lots of arseholes do. That makes it tricky.

And to be a tedious pedant, Ms has actually been around as long as Mrs has- it just lost out to Mrs and Miss until the beginning of the 20th century, when it started to come into use again.

Lessthanaballpark Sat 14-Jan-17 09:32:14

Oh yeah risotto you're right. Boys go from master to mister

But when? Do they automatically switch at 18? If so then an automatic Miss to Mrs is the logical fair step.

Plus yes it would be a good to have a firmer marker of adulthood for women seeing as we tend to stay "girls" forever.

Lessthanaballpark Sat 14-Jan-17 09:33:23

Really Bertrand? So it's not recently made up? Tell us more!

BertrandRussell Sat 14-Jan-17 09:35:16

When did anyone last use Master? Seriously? I am very old, and I think I might have used it a couple of times in an old fogeyish jocular way on birthday cards to nephews........

PacificDogwod Sat 14-Jan-17 09:36:02

I agree with you - Mr and Mrs for adults it should be - but am happy for individual women to choose Ms if they wish.

I now regularly use Ms in formal letters in my job when I am replying to somebody who only gave they name (not title) in the request sent to me.

Booboobedoo Sat 14-Jan-17 09:36:03

Bertrand, I didn't know that, thank you! I'm a bit of a word history geek, and will file that one away to bore someone with later.

However, being pragmatic, Mrs is much more widely used, and so it seems to me that aiming to enlarge its meaning to encompass all women would be a simpler - and probably more effective - campaign.

PacificDogwod Sat 14-Jan-17 09:36:44

What does Ms. stand for?
You know, like Mr is for Mister and Mrs is for Missus?

PacificDogwod Sat 14-Jan-17 09:37:13

And why is there an r is Mrs?? confused

I am now officially over invested grin

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Sat 14-Jan-17 09:38:01

Bertrand - my mum used to for DS, up until a couple of years ago when he hit double figures. She's in her 70s. It's never been on any of his official documents though - and it's never available in any drop down menu anywhere.

BertrandRussell Sat 14-Jan-17 09:38:25

But Mrs has such an entrenched and unambiguous meaning. How on earth are you going to change it?

Pragmatically, the only possible option is a proper push for Ms. It's worked in the public sphere in the States.

Sprink Sat 14-Jan-17 09:39:07

Medical letters and bank account correspondence for my young so safe always addressed Master.

Sprink Sat 14-Jan-17 09:39:54

*for my young sons are always addressed

Fuck's sake, Sprink.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Sat 14-Jan-17 09:41:27

I had my DBS done few weeks back, ai definitely put in 'Ms' and it was no problem. When did that happen to your colleague, OP?

DrinkFeckArseGirls Sat 14-Jan-17 09:42:18

My GO surgery addresses my DD's letters 'Ms'. She's 6.grin I like that.

Sprink Sat 14-Jan-17 09:43:07

PacificDogwood, I believe the 'r' in Mrs comes from the 'r' in Mistress, as in Mistress of the house (aka wife).

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