What’s In an Email Name?

A common outgoing email...

I had just finished sending my hubby an email at work, asking about something exciting, like open season on health insurance enrollment, and I realized I’d signed the email with my first name.

To some people this would not be startling. I would guess some people sign their emails to spouses (and boyfriend/girlfriends) with their regular, given name. But in our relationship, it sounded odd.

We rarely call each other by our first names at home, in person. And yes, we have forced ourselves not to slide into the pattern of calling each other “Mom” or “Dad.” Occasionally I’ll get a “Jude?…”, when he’s trying to get my attention. Even that’s rare enough that the kids will comment on it and sometimes break into a bad rendition of the Beatles song.

So, when it comes to electronic communications we’ve developed another system. It started when we lived in Utah. I felt bad not signing my emails at all. They just seemed to drop off after I’d said my piece.

But signing “Judy,” like I do for all other friends and family, seemed very formal and stiff, for this man I’ve shared half my life with. So I started signing them “YFW.” I let him guess at first.

I liked some of the suggestions. “Your Foxy Wife?…” was my favorite. But it was not correct.

Just to play with the stereo type of the Utah culture, I began signing his emails YFW to mean “Your Favorite Wife.” It made him smile every time he saw it.

Now it’s stuck. He recently signed an email to his mom with ‘YFS’, meaning “Your Favorite Son.” His mom got a kick out of it, especially since she has five sons who all claim to be her favorite.

The typo in my email this morning made me wonder how other people handle this situation. What name or nickname do you use, when you’re signing the internet communications with your significant other? I’m sure I’m not the only one who doesn’t feel comfortable using her formal name, when corresponding with her informal spouse.

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