isabelle huppert in madame bovary with a lover

If you love the term lover, did you just step out an 18th century novel?

We’re wondering because we’ve been discussing whether or not using the term “lover” for someone you are dating is ever appropriate. I personally can’t describe anyone that way because it seems comically graphic, which is why I refer to all the people I date as “some dude I shake hands with.” To keep the mystery in our relationship!

Also I don’t think I’m sophisticated enough to take a lover.

But the idea of being someone who could refer to someone as a lover seems pretty fun, carrying with it, as it does, the connotations that you might be Catherine Deneuve. Or Isabelle Huppert. Or some other kind of woman who presumably lives in a chateau and has taken a lover with either the aristocrat next door or her gardener. And can wear fancy lingerie and not look ridiculous or as though you’re trying too hard. It’s really desirable to get to that point – it just seems like calling the dude who smoke pot and plays video games your “lover” is ridiculous (because he is your boyfriend, or some dude you shake hands with). Unless it isn’t! When is the term lover appropriate? Discuss!

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