How About Saying Former Spouse?

How do you refer to the spouse you’re divorced from?

I was talking with someone new the other day and he told me that he doesn’t use the word ‘ex’ when referring to his ex-wife.  He says, my former wife.  I admit that part of me was stunned because I’d never heard anyone else use that term.  Have you?

He explained it this way:  I don’t like ex because there’s a negative connotation to it.  Exes are never really talked about in a good light and we were together for a long time.  It’s not that I want to be with her.  We’ve been divorced for over 20 years and we don’t ever want to be back together.  We are only friends so I use the term former wife.

Do you find it an interesting term too?  Would you use former spouse when referring to your ex?  Do you see the negative in the term ex as opposed to former?  Have you ever heard that term before?  I haven’t.  It made me think he had a present wife as well, but when I asked, he said he didn’t.

I kinda like it to be honest.  Even though I never want to get back with mine, I like the good energetic feeling when I say former husband instead of ex husband.  I tried it out and said both words aloud.  Ex husband sounds crankier and although he can make me plenty cranky, why should I let him?  Why not be all zen about it and refer to him as former?

So I am contemplating going with this new flow and saying former husband instead of ex husband.  I just think there’s no gauntlet anymore so why not allow myself some peace and put him where he belongs…in my past.

What do you think of when you hear the term former spouse?

This entry was posted in divorce, finding happiness at 50, love, women 50 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to How About Saying Former Spouse?

  1. L. Rorschach says:

    I hear the term occasionally but, honestly, it means the same thing to me. I just say “ex-husband” – it’s what’s in my vocabulary. I acknowledge that “ex” doesn’t have great connotations but I have a great relationship with my ex!

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  2. Manuela says:

    I like it! Even for former boyfriend or former partner.

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  3. That someone is right about “ex” having a negative ring to it. I think “former” is and sounds better.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. bone&silver says:

    I think it’s great you’re concerned about the ‘negative’ connotations of ‘ex’, which I agree with. Former husband sounds very respectful and kind. I like the way the guy explained why he used it, good on him. Do whatever most soothes your heart I say, G

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  5. LA says:

    I like former. I try not to talk about my ex husband.

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  6. SDC says:

    When I say my daughters mother, it sounds like she’s just the Baby Mama or that we were never married. To say my ex wife sounds like we don’t speak anymore. I’ve settled on my Once Upon a Wife. 😲😲😲

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    • janieleeds says:

      Oh Sam, that’s so sweet! I like that too…
      I don’t like saying my kid’s father. It sounds too formal and ugly and I agree. It sounds like we weren’t married when we were married for over 2 decades and once upon a time, it was good. Excellent choice! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

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  7. I say my first husband because I’m on my third now 😬🤷🏼‍♀️😉

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  8. Sandy says:

    I don’t refer to him as my former spouse. I refer to him as my daughter’s father. I have no idea why that is. Strange I know.

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