To me, relationships (if sincere) cannot be dictated by labels alone. Yes, a label on a relationship or even on the individuals in the relationship may create general boundaries based on western etiquette. For instance, if a guy is trying to pick you up and you happen to be in a monogamous relationship that you are highly invested in…most women won’t hesitate to state the ultimate Get The Fuck Outta Here phrase “I have a boyfriend”. Most fellas take that as if you’re not interested or an opportunity to retreat keeping their ego in check. So these labels of loved ones and the relationships we share with them create a safety net for some but for others it’s a false sense of reality. If you’re married to a man that innately cannot be faithful or doesn’t respect you…giving him the label of boyfriend vs husband wont limit whether he will tarnish the expectations that comes with the label itself. On the flip side, how do you introduce someone that is a significant part of your life? Without a label, to others it’s hard to identify their role and their value to you. Labels mean nothing and yet labels dictate everything.
I was accused of having commitment phobia the other day because I’m in a label-less relationship with someone. My sister-from another mister and I talked about it at length. Essentially, I realize that…I’m not afraid of commitment but in fact I take it far too seriously. Having had a really long toxic relationship that sucked away a good part of my 20’s…I’m just very mindful of labeling certain parts of my romantic life prematurely. He’s not my boyfriend, he’s not my husband, he’s not my fiancé but he’s not just some guy I’m fucking. So what is he? Who is he? Someone I profusely like on his good days someone I thoroughly enjoy slapping on his bad ones lol. I guess because there is a healthy tunnel of communication between him and I … the expectations have been set by our words and our day to day behaviors dictate the worth of those words. So there’s really no difference if I were to label him as my boyfriend… in fact, because I’m in a “grown up bitch” space I would feel weird referring to him as just that. There may be instances and milestones that may warrant me feeling he’s well beyond that label, so that’s why I opt for the label-less relationship.
For me, a label doesn’t mean much if the intentions aren’t in line with the label. Although, I’m not afraid to eventually put a label on it ;-)...I’ve been burned, scarred and taught enough lessons to warrant tippy toeing into the romantic pool of monogamy, commitment and maturity. For now I’ll enjoy kissing like a mistress, sharing laughter like were best friends and debating over social injustices like an old married couple…sans label, it works for now ;-).