the old ball and chain


Also found in: Acronyms.

the old ball and chain

A jocular but disparaging term for a person's spouse or significant other who is thought to stifle the person in some way. Typically said of a wife or girlfriend. We could tell Jimmy was joking when he called his wife the old ball and chain, but I think he does feel a bit like he doesn't get out enough. I'd love to come, but the old ball and chain is insisting we spend Saturday shopping for new furniture.
See also: and, ball, chain, old