A Near Miss (or is it Mrs.?)

Painterly Paisley

While filling out the final paperwork for my membership into the Junior League, I became quite flummoxed. You see, I was not sure if I should call myself a "Mrs." or "Ms." Up until this point, I have been signing everything Ms. due to the sheer fact that I don't feel like a Mrs. I am neither a mother nor a teacher, and it just seems that Mrs. sounds much older than my ripe young age. I am a wife, and the Ms. before my name just looks quite nice.

As much as I want to keep on being a Ms., I also know that a Junior League application is that last place I want to make an etiquette faux pas. Luckily for me, my ever thoughtful mother and sister gave me the 17th edition of Emily Post's Etiquette, so I was able to get my title correct.

  • Miss is reserved for unmarried females under the age of 18.
  • Ms. can be used by both married and unmarried women! In fact, it is the preferred default title in business, unless the woman explicity lets you know that she prefers to be a Mrs.
  • Mrs. is used by separated and divorced women. It is also used socially by married women when using both your and your husband's name; for example, when signing the register at a wedding or a wake (Mr. and Mrs. John Married).

Although nowdays one is probably not looked upon unfavorably by using any title she wishes, I do still prefer to go the traditional route on some things.


Ms. Happily Married