I am not very familiar with Nigerian men (having never dated one, and I don’t think my brothers count as typical Nigerian men since they are for all intents and purposes Canadian), and perhaps I’m very cruel to pin the following on Nigerian men because other men do this, I’m sure, but I wanted to ask about the use of terms of endearment by Nigerian men towards women they don’t know well. I’m not talking about catcalls and such by a stranger, but about the scenario where a man meets woman that he’s interested in and within minutes he’s calling her babe, baby, dear, darling and angel. Am I the only one who finds this hard to get used to?
For me, terms of endearment (from one sex to another) should only be used with those you know well enough to call dear or sweetie, not with someone that you’re just getting to know. If someone calls me dear, I take it to mean that I’m special to them, not like every other female they come across. But how can I be special to a guy who didn’t know me 25 minutes ago??? When a guy I barely know uses those words with me, I either think he’s trying to move too fast, or I think he calls every girl that, which means if I were to date him, I’d possibly hear him calling his female friends dear or angel (which I would not be cool with because of the way I look at terms of endearment). I asked one guy why he was calling me this or that, and he said it was a sign of respect, that he uses the same particular endearment with his sisters. That was probably my chance to say that I’d feel plenty respected if he called me Good Naija Girl, but I didn’t.
I’m a huge fan of nicknames, but when terms of endearment are tossed around too casually, I don’t feel quite comfortable with it. I mentioned this to a couple of friends and one said that if a guy uses those words with women he’s not dating or married to, what does or will he use with his own significant other to set her apart? That’s a question I wonder about too. Another friend said that using terms like that is practically a guarantee that she won’t ever date the guy, I think because it says things about his personality that she’s not interested in. I’m still on the fence on the matter (it’s not like I have a guy calling me dear and sweetie who wants to date me anyhow).
But I am curious:
- What do you think of a guy who uses those endearments from the beginning?
- If you are a guy who does this, why do you do it? Should women like me just accept it and stop overthinking the issue?