There comes a time in every relationship when it becomes advisable—even necessary—to commence the use of terms of endearment. I’ve answered to everything from “darling” to “my little bhabaganoush” over the years (mainly because my boyfriend at the time enjoyed teasing me about my hatred of eggplant), and I’ve doled out several ingenious creations of my own (most of which, embarrassingly enough, have been based on whichever Bath and Body Works scent I’m currently sporting). But there’s a time and a place for such flirtatious familiarities, and a few days in to an eHarmony relationship seems just wrong.
Date #4 used to call me “honey” and “sister” and a variety of things in French which I never understood but in which I nonetheless took great delight. (Google led me to believe that they were mostly fruit-related.) He once left me a voicemail that began, “Kat, hey honey, its So-and-so” and because he spoke with the conviction that only a sizeable collection of cufflinks can provide, I allowed him to wax poetic. (And listened to said voicemail approximately 67 times before I finally managed to get a grip.)
But I’ve grown cynical. As previously stated, I don’t trust men who toss terms of endearment into their everyday lingo. I blame my apprehensions on a certain young man I met in Oxford nearly five years ago; we used to call each other “dear” and “darling” and a host of other things not fit for public consumption (they were mainly Dostoyevsky-related, hence the longevity of my ill-advised infatuation) but they never rang true.
As such, a little red flag went off when, just hours after our first date last Sunday, PSM#2 texted me to ask, “Did you get home safely darling?”
I do realize I’ve just given the impression that I’m impossible to please. Earlier this week I complained about PSM#2 not texting me to see if I’d made it home alive; now I’m complaining about his word choice when he did manage to send the requisite follow up text. But I’m not impossible, I’m just skeptical of men who invoke terms of endearment without any actual feelings of affection.
I know that PS M#2 enjoys spending time with me because he’s told me as much, and I know that he thinks I’m “awesome” (his word, not mine) because he’s told me this much too, on more than one occasion. But is it possible for a young man to conjure up the necessary affection to justify the use of the term “darling” after a mere first date?
I wasn’t even wearing heels…