What's in a Name?
When I first got married (almost 9 years ago!!), E. and I both found our new "titles" a little squirrely. Calling him "husband" felt sort of like calling him "Reverend" or "Lordship." The very word "wife" felt like it should be applied only to something that is possessed by another. It took us awhile to feel comfortable wearing these terms, and now that we've gotten comfortable in them, we often revert to other titles for fun and games.
No matter how much I may believe myself to be master of words because I write and therefore manipulate and shift and change meanings based on how I use them, I am aware of the deep, historical layers of meaning and power at work in a word.
Now we will be adopting yet new titles, and with them, new roles. Just like a husband and a wife have a different set of obligations than a boyfriend and a girlfriend (depending on your morality, I guess), "Mom" and "Dad" come fully loaded with a differnt set of instructions and meaning than say "aunt" or "friend" or "people who don't have kids."
And with these new titles/roles will come a whole new level of scrutiny from the world--people looking in who believe they know better or more correctly the way to be parents.
Hoo boy. Here it comes!