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Modern Love Glossary

From 'ILY' to 'starter marriage,' we give you a fun guide to the latest phrases about love.
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WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Stumped by all the relationship slang and instant and text messaging shorthand flying around these days? Confused by terms such as BF, GF, ILY, man crushes, and starter marriages?

Don't be. Here's a quick guide to give you the 411:

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All about, into, all over: Very interested in (I'm all about him, he's all over her, she's into him, etc).

BF or GF: Boyfriend or girlfriend.

Cougar: An older woman looking for love with a younger man (aka Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher).

DH: Dear husband.

Domestic partnership: Gay or straight couples that live together but are not married. The partnerships may or may not be legal.

Double exposure: An Internet dating term to describe meeting someone for the first time and discovering that they're wearing the same outfit pictured on their dating profile.

Fembot: A female robot; unemotional woman.

Friendship divorce: A breakup between platonic friends, akin to a divorce or separation. Sometimes, friends just drift apart and lead separate lives, leading to the friendship divorce. While partings can be permanent, some friends reunite and return to a 'pre-divorce' state. 

ILY: "I love you"

LMIRL: "Let's meet in real life"

LTR: Long-term relationship.

Man crush: One dude's nonsexual admiration of another dude's personal awesomeness, as in, "My BF has a Man Crush on Eli Manning."

Missed connection: A popular section on Craigslist where people try to connect with people they've seen somewhere but don't know. 

Sext messaging: Sending a naughty message via text messaging.

Shoulder surfing: Chatting it up with someone, but always glancing over his or her shoulder for a more attractive prospect.

SO: Significant other. A way of identifying your relationship without getting mired in the sticky discussion of whether someone you're dating really qualifies as a boyfriend/girlfriend.

Starter marriage: A first marriage that lasts less than five years and produces no children. A play on the phrase "starter home."

Ubersexual: A metrosexual who also has manly qualities.

Reviewed on February 04, 2009

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