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Mrs vs Ms...how to address somebody in professional correspondence.

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Squatch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:16 AM
Original message
Mrs vs Ms...how to address somebody in professional correspondence.
Warrant officers in the Army are either referred to as "chief" (for Warrant grades 2-thru-5), or Mr/Ms (for all Warrant grades)

I just received correspondence from a WO1 (Warrant Officer 1), and in her signature block was this:

Firstname Lastname
WO1 (Mrs), USA

I always try to be very exact in my official correspondence, so this raises a bit of a conundrum for me. She obviously wants to be called Mrs, but I don't think that is kosher in official correspondence.

On a similar note, and my wife and I have had many conversations about this, I think that the whole Mrs/Ms thing is an outdated relic from wayback when women only identified themselves as the spouse of somebody else.

Case in point: I once saw a personalized license plate that read: MAJWIFE. I thought to myself, "that's great, but who are YOU?"
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bananas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:17 AM
Response to Original message
1. "Dear Sir"
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beyurslf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:19 AM
Response to Original message
2. I use Ms. at my work unless I know they want something else. My supervisor
signs everything Mrs. so I would use Mrs. for her.
I think it is crazy to use Mrs. but whatever I guess.
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MissB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:22 AM
Response to Original message
3. She has indicated her preference.
I'd follow that, only falling back on Ms. if a preference isn't indicated.

In the end, a lack of an "r" probably won't matter.
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rocktivity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:33 AM
Response to Reply #3
10. I agree--Mrs. or Miss is a preference is shown, Ms. otherwise
They can always correct you later.

I use "Miss" myself. I get more convinced every day that being single isn't the end of the world.

:headbang:
rocknation
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:41 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. In the military it is not really appropriate to have those personal preferences.
Addressing people should be consistent and not based on personal preferences.

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eyesroll Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:23 AM
Response to Original message
4. I use "Ms." in all professional correspondence.
Hell, I use it in 95% of personal correspondence as well, unless I'm addressing an envelope to my grandparents or something.

I'm 31 and unmarried. I'm a "Ms." (too old for Miss, I think, although I know that varies by geography -- I don't like "Miss" anyway).

I won't be changing my name when I marry. I'd still be a "Ms." "Mrs. Mylast" is my mother. "Mrs. Hislast" will only exist in the way that "Mrs." means "wife of." (I won't fight it when strangers call me Mrs. Hislast, as some of them already do.)

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in_cog_ni_to Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:29 AM
Response to Original message
5. I use Ms. n/t
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
6. I also would use 'Ms' and this is why...
It avoids treating different women differently.

Now, if you were to call her up, I'd address her as 'Mrs' just as 'Mr' Roberts was 'Mr' Roberts.

In some ways, she's asking to be treated differently from those who are not married or who do not want their marital status to be an issue. That's not really appropriate. WO's are all 'Mr' or 'Ms', no judgment calls or preferences.

The military is no place for personal preferences such as this.

Carry on...

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Squatch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:32 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. Yep, I agree with you.
Good points.
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Lex Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:39 AM
Response to Reply #6
11. Exactly.
I agree completely.

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Raine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
7. Ms. nt
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mondo joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
8. I use Ms. as the default - if someone expresses a preference for Mrs. I do my best
to accomodate.
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lazer47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:42 AM
Response to Original message
13. Maybe she is refering to the fact that she is the wife of a
Wobbly 1
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:49 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. That's not appropriate anywhere other than on the base sticker of your car. nt
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Marrah_G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:50 AM
Response to Original message
15. In my professional life I use Ms. unless the person requests Mrs.
If she requests Mrs. then just use Mrs.
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lapislzi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 11:52 AM
Response to Original message
16. I always, always use Ms
Unless I know the person and she has expressed a preference.

The fun part for me at my job sometimes is figuring out the gender of the person I'm writing to! I do a lot of correspondence with Asia, and the gender of the addressee is not always clear. Heck, sometimes I can't even tell which is the first name.
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Zywiec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 12:05 PM
Response to Original message
17. I always use Ms., and AR 600-20 says
Grade of rank: Warrant Officer, One
Pay grade: W-1
Title of address: Mister (Mrs./Miss/Ms.)
Abbreviation: WO1

Whatever you prefer.
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. The military is kind of screwed up on how it refers to women. Usually as 'females', which...
borders on offensive as the term is not exclusive to humans.
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HockeyMom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 12:13 PM
Response to Original message
18. Ms. should be used for all women
It is nobody's business if you are married or not. Are there different salutations for unmarried or married MEN? NO.

Personally, I either use just my given and married surname or Ms. if they absoultely must have something.
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Raine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 06:36 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. I agree
just as Mister is used for all men, Ms. should be used for all women. Using Mrs or Miss creates a sort of class system among women implying that one is superior to the other. I ALWAYS use Ms. it's no one's business whether I'm married or single.
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Breeze54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:38 PM
Response to Reply #18
24. It's up to the woman. Not for others to decide.
;)
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JohnLocke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:24 PM
Response to Original message
21. Ms., Madam, or Warrant Officer
Edited on Mon Jul-23-07 08:30 PM by JohnLocke
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Le Taz Hot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:27 PM
Response to Original message
22. Always Always Always
"Ms." unless otherwise instructed. Final answer. Not debatable.
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Breeze54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:33 PM
Response to Original message
23. Use HER preference!! It isn't your decision!
Edited on Mon Jul-23-07 08:35 PM by Breeze54
I prefer Ms. as I paid a lot for my divorce!! I am NOT married.

I am divorced and I resent, for instance, my son's school addressing

me as 'Mrs. So & So', as I never changed my name when I got married.

If I was 'Mrs. So & SO', that would make me my father's wife!! :rofl:

The proper thing to do, in your correspondence, IMHO, is to follow the person's cue.

Your example shows clearly that she prefers WO1 (Mrs), USA.

So? :shrug: Use it!!

I prefer Ms. and expect people I deal with to also use it!

It's really very simple and isn't rocket science. ;)

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pink-o Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:46 PM
Response to Original message
25. I was a child in the 60s
...when the newpaper's "help wanted" advertisments were segregated like black/white drinking fountains in the south (seriously, Young Things: one column for men where you could apply as an engineer, architect, executive manager, lawyer, doctor, etc. The other column for women: Secretary, Teacher, Nurse, Domestic.) Anyway, in those bad ole days, they also addressed envelopes to married couples as such: Mr and Mrs John Smith. IOW, Mary Smith not only had her husband's last name, she had his first as well. Every social nicety reinforced our status as second-class citizens.

So consequently, I will always be Ms. Anja R------. That is MY name, unconnoting of my marital status. And believe me, Gloria, Geraldine and Betty FOUGHT for us women to have that Ms. title. May we use it with the respect and deference to honour that fight!
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NancyG Donating Member (483 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-23-07 08:50 PM
Response to Original message
26. My generation fought hard for Ms.
Formerly, we were Miss or Mrs., and Ms. was developed to be equivalent to Mr., where it is unknown and irrelevent if the woman is married or not.

In the 70s when I went to sign the documents for my first mortgage, the papers referred to me as a "spinster" while my boyfriend was an "unmarried man". I wouldn't sign until they changed the documents to "unmarried woman".

Safeway employees see my name on the receipt and automatically say, "Thank you, Mrs. xxx." Fries me. I respond as in my title, "My generation fought hard for Ms." or "Mrs. xxx is my mother-in-law. Call me Nancy."
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