England, pet names, and you…
Posted on April 29, 2009 by yankeebean
We had a comment from ‘I Love This Blog’ (great name, by the way ) about the pet names that are used in England and what we think about ‘em…
“Is it quite common for British men to use pet names such as “honey,” “dear,” or even “sweetie?”
First off, I absolutely detest pet names, I find them really generic (if there is to be a pet name I like it to have some story behind it). Secondly, as someone who is barely into her twenties, those particular words make me feel like I’m already over the hill and married for decades. Third.. Maybe it’s an American machismo thing but I’ve never heard men in their twenties use it! (I’m incredibly relieved it’s not “babe” or “baby”)
So.. just wondering.. is this considered normal or is my British man just the ultra sensitive type? “
OOHHHHHHHHH, the times we’ve all had trying to interpret pet names and what they mean. I often wonder how I SHOULD feel and try to measure it up against how it ACTUALLY MAKES me feel. It’s very weird… like a brief out-of-body experience…
I oscillate back and forth about pet names… There seem to be two major deciding factors that determine my gut-reaction to pet names:
‘Love’, ‘Pet’, ‘Honey’, ‘Lover’, ‘Dear’, ‘Sweetie’… there’s not a doubt in my mind that you’ve heard them all. But the intonation that’s used says a lot – A guy can say ‘alright, love?’ and it can mean any number of things:
- “How are you?”
- “Are you alright?”
- “I think you’re hot”
- “I think you’re hot and I think you think I’m hot”
It’s a smorgasbord of underlying meaning! A man (or woman for that matter) could call me Love and it could almost go unnoticed… or (depending on the delivery) it could make me wanna go home a take a shower.
The second ‘major player’ in the do-pet-names-give-me-the-heebie-jeebies issue is a little easier to tie down.
The chosen pet name
There are certain pet names that just give me the creeps… One in particular is… drum roll, please:
GROSS!!!! Eeeeeeeeewwwww!!! Bleuggghhhhhh!!!
This is a rare one (thank God), but I’ve had English men (always men) say ‘Good Girl’ to me. I’m 27! I own and run two businesses! It makes me feel like I should be wearing a pinafore with my hair in pig tails… yuck…
With ‘Good Girl’ (shudder) out of the way, that leaves two camps for me and pet names – The ones I don’t really mind and ones that are more likely to irk me a little.
I don’t really mind:
- Honey (Hun)
- Anything ironic or comedic value like ‘crumpet’ or ‘doll face’ or something that’s obviously being said in jest
But I’m more likely to be irked by:
- Sweetie (feel a little patronised)
- Dear (ditto)
- Darling (little too intimate)
- Babe (greasy)
- Lover (creates unwanted mental image)
I could go either way with ‘Poppet’…
I’m sure I’ve forgotten some… if you can think of any more, bring it on!
When I think about it, none of these names REALLY bug me that much (except ‘Good Girl’). At the root of it all I know it’s just another thing that makes the English English… it does, however, remind me of one of my new mantras – ‘To each their own’.