Does anybody read these?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I got you, babe.

As I find myself newly single, yet again, I am wondering if I should just go all-out channeling my inner Carrie Bradshaw and make this blog about the trials and tribulations of a single girl trying to date in the big city.

But a) I am not completely sold on the idea of trying to date in the big city (keep reading) and b) that might be a little too much TMI even for me. (And yes, I know “TMI” actually covers the “too much.” I wanted to convey a lot of TMI there.)

However, this post will be about a serious dating issue: Why strangers think they can call you by pet names AND think that you’ll like it.

I don’t know if I’ve ever talked about my aversion to pet names before. But, I have one and it’s a serious issue.

Only a few select people can call me by pet names: My parents call me “Sis,” because I am, after all, my brothers’ only sister. My Aunt Foo (who obviously has her own pet name) and my Uncle Mike call me Daisy. I am not 100% my Uncle Mike knows my real name. This stems from the early-80s Dukes of Hazzard craze. My brother, Luke, became “Luke Duke,” and I, by association, became Daisy. Thirty-some years later, I’m still Daisy to them.

And my ex-boyfriend Chris still calls me “Dear” sometimes. I think he just does it because his parents call each other dear in a kind of tongue-in-cheek way. It’s not because he’s hot for me or anything. And it’s something he started after we’d been going out for several months. You know, when we actually knew each other and had a relationship.

That’s it. Not on that list, you should call me Laura. Or LJ, if you’re one of the friends who managed to survive that dreadful era of my life. (The friends – well, most of them – weren’t dreadful, just that time of my life.)

So, anyway. You will noticed that “sug,” “hon,” “baby,” “sweetie,” or –my personal favorite – “sexy,” were nowhere on that list.

It is not cool for a stranger to call me names that are terms of endearment. It’s not cool for the girl who checks me out at the grocery to call me “honey,” and it’s really, really, really not cool for a guy I have talked to for 30 whole seconds to call me “babe” or – worse yet – “sexy.”

Honestly, I’m pretty sure that if I were married for half my life and my husband called me “sexy,” it would probably set me off.

I find men who refer to women with those kinds of terms to be disrespectful, and seriously, it is the quickest way to get shut down if you are trying to date me.

It instantaneously makes me want to kick someone in the nuts.

Needing a little self-esteem boost after last week’s hullaballo, I decided to dust off my online dating profile. This was a move that lasted about two hours, mostly because of the pet names. We could get into the bigger issue of people seeing your photo online and developing an absurd “connection” and displaying a creepy overfamiliarity, but that’s not even necessary because I can’t get past the pet names.

So, Mr. “Hey, babe, maybe we can go out sometime” (only with more atrocious spelling)? Oops. You’ve been deleted.

Mr. “How’s your day going, sexy”? You need to go out to a field and try that on a sheep or something.

I was mentioning this hindrance (aside from the atrocious spelling) to a friend – who’s Southern, I might add, because this apparently seems more friendly to Southerners – and after he lambasted me for being a cold, insensitive Yankee, he told me that I should just tell guys that it makes me want to kick them in the nuts because they probably don’t realize and think that it’s endearing. (And then he said “I’ve never done that to you before, right?” To which I assured him he had not since I was still talking to him.)

And I’ve done that. I’ve asked guys to cut it out with the overly familiar pet names. To which they usually reply, “Anything u want, babe.”


If you do this, or you know someone (brother, friend, lady at the supermarket) who does, please tell them to tone it down. I just find it disrespectful and demeaning, and a brief Google search I believe I am not the only one who feels this way.

And in addition to insulting me and making me want to kick you in the nuts, whether you are or not, it makes me think you are a major player. When you call me babe, I assume that this isn’t your first rodeo and you think women are playthings whose names are not even worth remembering. I just assume that you are like this with every woman and you are looking for a quick score. And I think your parents never taught you manners, which is just something you do not want other people to think about you.

So, what does everyone else think? Am I just being a rude northerner and totally overreacting or do I have a valid complaint? I would love to hear other people’s feelings on this issue.

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1 comment(s):

I think you are perfectly normal in feeling the aversion to these "pet names". I can't say that I care for them myself. After 19 years of the same relationship we don't even use them. And believe me it is better now than it has been and we don't use them, lol.

By Blogger Rosalie, at 5/27/2012 12:03 PM  

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