Bougie Bachelorette Chronicles - Episode 14: "I am not eye candy!"

After a certain age, it just sounds weird to refer to someone as your Boyfriend or Girlfriend. I'm not sure why except maybe the fact we are no longer boys and girls? I don't know. It sounds silly. If you are not engaged or married but in a committed relationship, what do you call your s/o?

Partner sounds like more of a domestic or business relationship. Calling someone your lover is way too Parisian for me. Referring to them as a significant other is fine in print but sounds pretentious in person. I've never been one for the "this is my man" "this is my lady" flow... for some reason that sounds very 1970s boom-chica to me. Special friend sounds like either payment took place or one of you broke out of the psych ward. I tend to either say "friend" or just use the first name and let people draw their own damned conclusions.

At 3N's family reunion, the issue came up a lot. (More than was necessary)
"Uncle Joe, this is my... Michele."
"Your Michele?"
"You know what I mean"
"Nah son - you got say things plain."
"Hey cuz have you met my friend, Michele?"
"Sure nuff, heard ya'll was more than friends."
"Yeah, well..." 
"Hi, we haven't met. I'm Michele."
"Um-hmm. You ain't kin."
"No ma'am. I'm a friend of 3N's."
"Friend, huh? Is that what youngsters call it these days?"
And then the unfortunate incident at breakfast last week when we ran into a nosy interfering woman I used to work with.
"Hey girl, how have you been?"
"Hey Ann, I'm great. And you?"
She sits uninvited and begins to eye up 3N like he is a platter of bacon at the breakfast buffet. "Who's the eye candy?"
He shoots me a look. I jump in. "This is 3N. 3N, Ann."
"Hey 3N, do you date white girls?"
He points at me. "I date her."
"Really. Wow. You're not her usual type. She didn't give you a title so I just assumed."
Me irritated, "Good seeing you Ann.."
"I can sit for awhile and chat."
I feign regret, "We're expecting other people. Maybe some other time?"
"You two don't be strangers!"
Let the record reflect here that 3N rarely gets angry or loses his temper. He tends to get a moment of irritation and then he's over it. But when he does wind up to full angry - it's something to behold. First he goes silent and the face goes stony. A vein on his left temple visibly pulses. He'll try to talk, think about what he was going to say and then go silent. This goes on for a while with muttering under the breath, pacing and tapping whatever is in his hand against a solid surface repeatedly. Finally when he has his thoughts together he'll make a definitive opening salvo, "I am not eye candy, dammit!"

I beg to differ but I know arguing that point which is not his main point would just be irksome to him. "Of course not."
"I need a title!"
"I beg pardon?"
"I'm not your friend."
"Don't start. You know what I mean."
"Well what do you want your title to be?"
"Do you want to have that discussion right now?"
"Never mind. How about boo thang?"
"Sure if I can start referring to you as my baby boo."
"You could be Big Daddy."
"You could be Hot Mama."
"Okay, I'll work on it."
"Please do."
BougieLand... what do you call the person who is too old to be your boy/girl-friend but not your betrothed or your spouse? Who has suggestions? Anyone? Anyone?