Women or girls ?

  1. As a male going into a predominently female profession, it's important for me to use the right words.

    Is it okay for a guy to refer to women as girls? If you hear a male nurse saying "girls" when talking of nurses does that sound right? I ask because I know the female nurses call each other girls, but I don't know if they would like if I did. To introduce the topic in real life might be taken wrong so I'll use this message board to get a feel, if anyone wants to chime in.

    I remember when women didn't like to be called girls. Maybe I should just say "nurse" and keep it generic, but yet, i don't want to sound all stuffed either.
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  2. 48 Comments

  3. by   Cubby
    I haven't been a "girl" in a long time. Yes, I would be offended if anyone called me a girl. Thank you for checking. You must be one of those enlightened males I have heard so much about, but seldom get to meet.
  4. by   P_RN
    Women is better. Ladies after you get to know us.
    Girls? Nope.
  5. by   blondie
    When in doubt, play it safe and use the term "women." As someone old enough to have a daughter in college but still very young at heart, I like to be referred to as a "girl." However, this is a personal preference. I have the same problem as you when I refer to the aides. Though I don't mind the use of the term "girl" in reference to myself, I don't want my use of that term in reference to others to be seen as an attitude of superiority, or worse yet, as an issue of race. Play it safe.
  6. by   fergus51
    I use "guys" for girl and boy nurses so I am probably not the best to answer...
  7. by   mario_ragucci
    Yes - for me, a girl is a teenager. I detect women are somewhat concerned with how old others think they are, and thats why they use girl. For me, as a male, i will always render repect with the words I choose. It just sounds funny when I say "women", and the female nurses and students all say "girls." I hate to sound all stuck up, but respect is respect.

    To me, a woman is my peer, a gal is younger than me, or a peer too, but i want to say lady when refering to a woman who is senior to me. Not just refering to staff, but to clients/patients as well. Maybe I shouldn't make a deal of it.
  8. by   blondie
    I've been bit, scratched, thrown up on, told exactly where to shove my pills, etc. As long as you show up on time to relieve me, I'm not going to make a deal of it, either.
  9. by   RNforLongTime
    I get irritated when sales people, bank tellers, etc call me honey, dear sweetie, etc. I am pushing 30 years old and detest being called these names. I NEVER call my pt's sweetie, honey dear..etc. It is demeaning and condescending. And I am a woman now, I left girlhood behind many years ago.
  10. by   nurs4kids
    Originally posted by fergus51
    I use "guys" for girl and boy nurses so I am probably not the best to answer...
    lol, tracy, we must be related..
    I do the same thing.
  11. by   NicuGal
    I always say....Hey girlies...or what's up guys........I guess it really doesn't bug me or my co-workers! Better than hey Ma'am
  12. by   aimeee
    I agree with P_RN. Women while you're new. Ladies after we get more chummy.
  13. by   huckfinn
    I hear they really love to be called "chicks".

    Really, I think as long as you demonstrate the same respect that you might show your mother, wife or any other woman you care about, does it really matter? Just make sure they know you respect them!
  14. by   Jen911
    The "guys" we work with tend to call us the "gals"... pretty generic, and non-confrontational....seems to work and doesn't irritate anyone.

    Besides, we don't always ACT like "ladies" hehe
    Last edit by Jen911 on Jan 14, '02

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