|Picture from here|
As with all things that start on facebook lately, I was reviewing someone's facebook profile page. It was his birthday and of course I saw the usual birthday greetings and joined the masses in wishing him a happy birthday. Reviewing other messages, I stumbled on one that caught my eye. A lady friend had written: Happy Birthday my love. May God bless you.
I thought this was weird. As all these people are in Nigeria, I thought there might be a cultural difference and so I decided to ask some friends that I had in Nigeria how/when terms of endearments are used. And for the most part people (females) said they would use words like darling, sweetheart and probably use it with someone of the same sex... Everyone was in agreement that 'my love' was not an appropriate term for a friend. 'Dear' seemed to be the most common and acceptable term used across sexes.
I remember in my freshman year of college, I used terms like 'babe' and 'sweetheart' when referring to people. The guy I was dating at the time mentioned it to me. He said he thought those type of names were reserved for him, so he felt special but he later found out otherwise. That cautioned me in my speech. I realized I had to watch the way I was talking to other people, especially of the opposite sex. I didn't want a situation where anyone would misread the intent of my conversations/attention.
So when I saw this message on this guy's facebook page, it took me back to my Freshman year and I wondered about that. Was there more to the relationship that wasn't being said? As a female, would you refer to a guy who was just a friend as 'my' love?... I tried to rationalize it but I just couldn't. It just seemed so weird to me. If someone had noted, 'Happy Birthday love...' I would understand that... but owning the love... by putting 'my', I think that puts a different spin on it. What if the guy had a wife? a significant other? a girlfriend? What would the girlfriend think by seeing that. If you were the girlfriend, and you didn't know who the girl was that wrote the message, would you brush it off as normal or would you scrounge your face and try to figure out what was going on? And if you knew a guy had a girlfriend... or maybe even a fiancee, would you still refer to him as 'my love'?
Personally, I think there is an issue when someone can refer to someone else as 'my' anything other than a friend if you are just a friend. Substituting the word Love with anything else other than 'dear', like honey, sugar, tender lover (LOL - that's a song if you didnt catch that)... I would find it highly inappropriate to refer to a friend who I am not in an intimate relationship with using such terms.
What do you think?
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Let me know your thoughts on the above topic and then
click HERE to check out the story/blog and be sure to have a great weekend!