In this sense of its usage, "girlfriend" is used in terms of very close friends and has no sexual connotations, unless it is in the case of lesbian, bisexual women.
The term "girlfriend" is also used in LGBT communities and can refer to people of any sex or sexuality.
Shock split: Reba with ex-husband Narvel Blackstock at the Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas in 2009.
"Lady friend" may also be used to signify a romantic relationship with an older woman, when the term "girl" as in "girlfriend" may be deemed age-inappropriate.
The New York Times style guide discourages the use of the term "girlfriend" for an adult romantic partner, stating, "Companion is a suitable term for an unmarried partner of the same or the opposite sex." for referring to Shaha Riza as the "girlfriend" of World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz in one article about the controversy over their relationship.
It is essentially equivalent to the term "sweetheart", which has also been used as a term of endearment.
The word "dating" entered the American language during the Roaring Twenties.
Prior to that, courtship was a matter of family and community interest.
Starting around the time of the Civil War, courtship became a private matter for couples.
A similar, but not equivalent, concept is the more ambiguous "lady friend" – a companion of the female gender who is possibly less than a girlfriend but potentially more than a friend.
That is to say, the relationship is not necessarily platonic, nor is it necessarily an exclusive, serious, committed, or long-term relationship.
Narvel also has three children from his previous marriage - Brandon (who also a music manager and is wed to singer Kelly Clarkson), Shawna and Chassidy Blackstock.
This is normally a short-term committed relationship, where other titles (e.g.
For you, building a friendship may mean weekly coffee dates where you share your thoughts and feelings with your husband. Most likely, your husband isn't wired this way. Guys don't usually meet at Starbucks to share thoughts and feelings. While there may be times for a "talking date," make the effort to become your husband's friend by sharing in what he likes to do. As I was swimming my laps, I'd hear him yell across the pool, "I love you! " After our swim, we went out for coffee, which made my day. )Juli Slattery is a TCW regular contributor and blogger.