Thursday, October 6, 2011

Once a Mrs., Always a Mrs.

Perhaps I’m a little bit conservative, but in my opinion, Ms. is a confusing term. You never know where you stand with Ms. A Ms. could be married, divorced, or never married. It’s anyone’s guess.   Maybe that is the whole point of this Ms. business.  Women who don't want anyone to know what they are.

When I was younger, I used to love to receive mail addressed to Miss Bethany Brown. It felt so official; so special. I loved being a Miss and I loved being a Mrs.  Titles are important and distinguish us among a certain group, but I’ve decided that I don’t like Ms.

After my divorce, I wondered what I was. Don’t laugh, but I seriously spent some considerable time thinking about it. Who was I?  No longer Mrs. in the United States, hardly a Miss, but oh how I detest Ms.

Leave it to my beloved Mexico to set the record straight on this social and personal matter. In Mexico, once you’re a Señora, you’re always a Señora; no matter what. I like that. After a certain age in Mexico, Señorita starts to have a negative connotation, almost like the word spinster or the term Old Maid does in English. Señoras take care of things.  They organize schedules, raise children with poise and grace, are tough cookies who can handle anything. 

So here I am. The Señora.

Look at this beautifully hand addressed envelope that I just received for my friend’s upcoming wedding in Mexico. I’m a Señora Doña. That's even more formal and respectful. I love it.

In the past year, I've had the privilege of attending so many weddings in Mexico. Mexican weddings are so much fun.

What do you think about the term Ms.?



  1. A great post, Senora! Didn't Ms. come around during the feminist movement? I might be wrong. I love when Miller gets Christmas cards from his grandparents and he is "Master Miller Bogarde"! Isn't that great?

  2. For me, Ms. has always been a safety net when addressing invitations or messages to women I don't know very well. If she's older, but not married, "Miss" sounds a bit odd. I'm a Mrs. and that's fine by me. To each her own. :)

  3. Twist of Lime ~ I think you're right about the origin, but I'm not sure.

    In the UK a divorced woman remains a Mrs. (Remember Mrs. Wallis Simpson???) It only seems to be in the U.S. where women use Ms.

  4. It's not that women don't want anyone to know "what" they are, it's that they want to be defined as an adult. "Ms." means adult female. End of story.

  5. I have never really cared much either way since I'm not sure if I am technically a "Mrs.". I am married, but I kept my maiden name so I have always used "Ms." to be safe, plus it seems funny to stick "Mrs." in front of the same name I've had my whole life!

  6. Ahh, I feel like I have to dust off my Crane's Blue Book here. From being technology chair at the Junior League of Tampa, and making sure everyone could get the correct mailing lists and labels from when I took the JLT "online" I have it pretty engrained in me. Women are still a Mrs. after a divorce.

    Married is Mrs. Husbands Full Name, Divorcee is Mrs. Woman's Full Name. Under no circumstances should a married woman's correspondence be addressed with her first name on the outer envelope! Death threats may ensue.

    Although I think I may be the one of the few members of the DC League to get my hotline sent to me as Mrs Husband's Full Name each month. =)

  7. Once a Mrs., always a Mrs. :-) I only use Ms. when I am sure that's what is preferred or I am not sure if she is a Miss or a Mrs. . . . I'm with you on this though - I'm always "old school" on all things etiquette. :-) XOXO

  8. I love the idea for Señora. I too have never liked Ms. It was hard after my divorce not knowing exactly how to be addressed. I am like the earlier commenter, I love addressing children and young and youth as Miss and Master. Excellent and thought provoking post once again.

  9. I always loved getting mail addressed as Miss too i made me feel special. at this point I feel thAT I will always be a Ms. and never make it to a mrs.



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