Well, he’s my dad and doesn’t live here but you can speak with my wife. (Although, my guess is since she didn’t call you but I did, she doesn’t want to talk to you.)
We have a small chuckle once in a while when some unsuspecting person puts together that we’re married. It’s cute. It’s funny. It’s a changing, evolving world we live in and not everyone has fabulous married lesbian friends like us. Most people are super professional – you see the recognition on their face and then they quickly get back on track. Some people even get really excited which is extremely cute and gives everyone the giggles. I can’t even think of one negative reaction or I’d have written about it.
So this week I’ve been making calls to handle a little house maintenance issue. All three vendors I spoke to this week assumed I had a husband. Now I’m not saying they should assume I’m straight or gay…it’s a phone call. It wasn’t that they were just trying to get a sense of the homeowners though. Two of them actually wanted to speak with my husband. Their assumption that someone other than myself was more capable of making the decisions was off-putting. Off-putting enough that I barely enjoyed their blushed tones when I said I had a wife instead and then the inevitable fumbling over spelling her last name which is only
four five letters. It’s probably hard to think when you’ve just realized you were being sexist and made a huge assumption about someone.
While I am certainly not mad or offended about the assumption that I have a husband, it was a realization that some things haven’t changed. Some people still think men are the decision makers when it comes to home repair or in a relationship in general…Which means some people think there aren’t single women owning homes and kicking ass at it but there are (I even know some!). It means that some people don’t think about the wider definition of the word family. It means businesses aren’t having conversations about how to phrase things to be less patriarchal.
In some instances it may be necessary to know if more than one person owns a home or lives in a home so just tweaking the questions a bit would go a long way…
Will you be the only contact for this project?
Would you like to add another contact for this project?
Is there a spouse or partner I could list?
It’s really not that hard to keep your foot out of your mouth if you try just a little bit.
Anyone else out there experience this kind of thing? Tell me about it.