Imagine this scenario. You’re a woman, and you have a long-time crush on a man you work with. After some flirting, he finally asks you out on a date. You get all gussied up, putting on your best outfit and hope for the best. He picks you up, brings you to a fun restaurant, and you both seem to be having a great time.
Then the check comes.
What now? Do you make a lame attempt at reaching for it? And if you do, would it insult him? But if you don’t, will he think you’re a gold digger?
And now let’s add in another twist. Since you work together, you know that you are ranked higher than him, and thus, make more money.
Is it more appropriate for the person with more money to pay… regardless of gender?
Fifty years ago, no one would even be asking these questions. It was ALWAYS the man who pays. But this is 2018. And as a dating coach in Dayton, Ohio, I get this question a lot. So, I thought I would take the time to talk about it in order to clear the air.
Well, let me say, there is no easy answer. Sorry to burst your bubble!
It would be simple for me to say that the man should pay. That would make it nice and definitive, and it would end the debate right there.
And I will start off by saying, that in my opinion, I do think the man should pay at least for the first date – preferably for the first several dates.
Why? Well, let me tell you.
It’s because I believe chivalry is dying… if not already dead. Now don’t get me wrong. I label myself as a feminist. But most people have the wrong idea of a feminist. Not all of us are bra-burning, man-haters. I am a feminist because I believe that men and women are fundamentally equal and should be treated as such.
However, with that said, I don’t think that man is being degrading to a woman if he pays for a date. Or opens doors for her. Or pulls out her chair. I just think that’s plain old-fashioned respect. Heck, I open doors for strangers, so does that make me someone who thinks less of that person that I held the door for? Ummm… no.
And just to add a side note here: when I go out on a date, I always offer to pay my half. I don’t think I’ve ever had a man take me up on the offer, but at least he knows that I don’t expect him to pay.
Anyway, even though I think the man should pay for the first few dates, there are some other things to be discussed that could complicate the situation.
For example, what if the woman asked the man out? Is he still required to pay? In my opinion, no. If I asked a man out on a date, I would fully expect to pay. However, I would expect him to at least offer to pay - or at least split the check.
I know it’s not fair, and perhaps a bit of a double standard. But I think if a man doesn’t even TRY to pay, then maybe he’s not a quality man. In fact, it could be a huge red flag that he’s a taker and not a giver.
I think whoever asks whom out should at least be prepared to pay for both.
So, back to the question of who pays if the woman makes more money. I stand by what I just said. Because some men have fragile egos, and if you give the impression that you don’t think he can afford to take you on a date, then to him, it might be like you asking him to turn in his “man card.”
There you have it. There is no hard-and-fast rule for who should pay on a date, but I think this is a good guideline to follow. Because as a dating coach, I have see this advice work for most people.
If you need any guidance in your dating life, don’t hesitate to contact me!
Dr. Carol Morgan &
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