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Who Pays For Dates?

September 6, 2013

The age-old question has reared its ugly head again, this time by way of a thorough survey.

Now instead of simply dumping the numbers on here, let’s take them piece by piece to uncover the relevant implications:

  • 44% of men said they would stop dating a woman who never pays: And for good reason. Simply put, you should not incur a substantial debt towards a potential partner if they are not willing to show any reciprocal investment. I read “never pays” to encompass more than money. The true meaning boils down to the man’s expectations being left unfulfilled. Perhaps you should be more firm in what you want, and invest less. Your time and attention is more valuable than your actual currency.
  • 64% of men believed women should contribute to dating expenses: Yes, things have changed, as the study discusses. However, biological gender roles remain the same. I advocate paying for an outing, albeit from a position of strength. Afterall, the boss pays. Then again, the “dates” that I advocate are generally free and allow you to do what you should be doing: spending time with and evaluating her.
  • 57% of women said they offer to pay but 39% admitted they hoped the man wouldn’t accept: Despite true intentions, offering is a classy move. At best, it shows that she’s willing to bring her share to the proverbial table. At the median, it shows that she cares enough about what you think. At worst, she’s not into you and doesn’t want you to leave the restaurant expecting something for your payment.
  • In any case, 76% of men said they felt guilty about accepting women’s money: The guilt, as the study mentions, comes from the social pressure every man faces, whether it means paying for dinner or drinks. But that guilt simply doesn’t match up well with the reality that women are now making just as much, if not more, than the men they are seeing.

The reason men feel guilty about letting women chip in for the date is because they’ve been taught they should pay. However men have also been taught that men and women should have egalitarian partnerships, so costs should be shared.

Don’t be a sucker. This means don’t accept someone else’s rules about paying for dates if you’re not comfortable with it. Also don’t accept any notion of an egalitarian relationship if it doesn’t sit well with you. If you feel like you should lead your relationship, be upfront and unashamed about it. If she doesn’t agree with you, find someone who does. Let go of your desperation; they’re out there, trust me.


From → Practical Steps

  1. During the early years of the Women’s Movements (Liberation, Feminism, Radical Feminism, etc) when many people looked at the world in exclusively economic terms, a teenager was quoted as saying, “I always pay half. Otherwise the guy thinks he’s renting you for the evening.”

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  1. Who Pays For Dates? | PUA Central

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