Question about addressing a woman - page 2
I am writing a thank you note to an asst director of a department at the hospital where I will hopefully find employment when I graduate. She helped me gather information for a community project... Read More
Jan 31, '03Originally posted by Stargazer
I'm sorry, I don't agree with this at all. "Ms." is always correct for a woman of ANY marital status and ANY age, which is why it is so particularly useful in business settings. Making assumptions about women's marital status (which is not relevant in a business setting, anyway) based on her age, is a sure way to eventually (or immediately) offend someone you'd rather not offend.
If she then indicates a preference of "Miss" or "Mrs.", by all means follow her lead.
And I would never, ever, allow myself to be addressed as Mrs. Husband's first name, last name. I AM a real person, completely separate from a husband.
Jan 31, '03When I took shorthand and typing classes (in 1992!), we were taught that "Mrs." is only PROPERLY used in front of the husband's name, as in "Mr. and Mrs. John Doe" or "Mrs. John Doe." However, "Mrs." is now used colloquially in front of a woman's name if she is married, as in "Mrs. Jane Doe".
We were taught to use the salutation "Madam" or "Mesdames" (as in, "Dear Sir or Madam" or "Dear Sirs and Mesdames") if we were addressing an unknown recipient(s). When addressing a named female recipient, we were instructed to use the salutation "Ms." unless we had seen correspondence from the recipient or other identifier (like a business card) that used another salutation (like if we had received a letter signed "Miss Jane Doe, RN").
As a general rule, especially when sending a letter or report to a referring practitioner, I will call the office staff and ask for the degree status of the practitioner--ARNP, MD, whatever--so I know whether to head the report "Dear Ms." or "Dear Dr.". However, I absolutely NEVER would ask office staff (or anyone else) for the referring practitioner's marital status.
If in doubt, use "Ms."
Jan 31, '03WOWZERS....who would have ever thought such a simple question would stir up such "controversey" ???
tee hee hee
(just to throw in my two cents) I always use Ms if I'm not sure...