Suzy's college friend Erica and < her / Erica's > husband, Lance

Stu Dente

New Member
USA/English
I've got a sentence that I'm considering phrasing one of two ways:

1. My wife, Suzy, and I lived around the corner from Suzy's college friend Erica and her husband, Lance, so we socialized with the couple frequently.

2. My wife, Suzy, and I lived around the corner from Suzy's college friend Erica and Erica's husband, Lance, so we socialized with the couple frequently.

Option 1 reads a little more smoothly, but I feel like it creates some ambiguity, because the word "her" could refer to "Suzy" or "Alice." Option 2 eliminates the ambiguity but maybe sounds a little more stilted.

Anyone have any thoughts/guidelines on which option is the better one here. Any advice would be massively appreciated.
 
  • I don't think you need to worry about ambiguity in option 1. First of all, you've already stated that Suzy is your wife, so Lance can't be her husband. Secondly, the "her" comes right after "Erika" and so most logically would refer to her. Option 1 does read more smoothly, and in my opinion it's the better choice.
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Use #1. Unless Suzy is a bigamist, you've already established that she's your wife, so there won't be any confusion. Also, I think you can drop some commas (for my tastes, at least :)):

    My wife Suzy and I lived around the corner from Suzy's college friend Erica and her husband Lance, so we socialized with the couple frequently.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top