FINANCE AND FIRST DATES
WRITTEN BY TAYO ADEBOYE & CHARLES ODUGBESAN
Ladies and gentlemen. Boys and girls. Esteemed readers. This blog marks the first historical conversion of two great minds, myself and my co-blogger Charles on a topic very dear to our hearts: The financial rules of first dates. It is my hope that no offence is taken from our views, and if you do feel some type of way. Who cares? It’s our blog!
Allow me to fill you in on what inspired this topic. Just the other day I made the pilgrimage to the hallowed grounds of men across the world; the barbershop. A young woman walked in, proceeded to greet everyone and then informed us about her upcoming date. This young woman then proceeded to rant about how it is this unfortunate fellow’s obligation to pay for everything, demanded that this man better not be cheap, and how she isn’t a “Nandos girl”. Personally I don’t even think she’s worth a Sainsbury’s meal deal, but that’s a blog for another day. So now, the question to tackle: First dates, who should pay for who? And why?
Thanks Tayo, very very intrepid! I guess I’ll have to come with a softer approach. Well let me get right to it! Being that I am a guy I’m sure that the women reading this may not trust how valid my take is on this matter. Well no matter! I made a point of speaking to a lot of girls to make sure I represented the female mind set as best as I could, and of course input my own point of view.
With the rise of social media in this day and age, we live in a generation riddled with increased sexualisation of the opposite sex. All at the touch of a button: each like; each double tap; each retweet champions and at the same time confuses ones perception of love and lust. For me this is just an example of why people call into question whether chivalry still exists or not. Whether that is due to there being less gentlemen in the world (cos let’s be real, this new digital world is turning us all into animals!) or the general lack of value placed on dates these days… who knows. What I do know is that chivalry will only die if you let it. So if it means that a man should fork out the cash on a first date, so be it.
Personally, I do not see much problem picking a bill up – I was raised solely by my Mother, A WOMAN, who taught me from a young age that to be taken seriously by a girl as a potential partner, you must learn to be a gentleman. This is the ideology for women. Many have a traditional stance on dating and paying for the date is one indicator that you are willing to step up and prove yourself as a man by investing in her time and company. We ask a girl on a date; we take them out and treat them; we keep them smiling… 10 POINTS TO GRYFFINDOR!!! It’s really not hard fellas.
Other women (in the name of equality) may offer to pay their own way so as not to feel indebted or disrespectful, but at the same time would be much obliged and impressed with a man insistently stepping up. It is respectful, courteous and shows the woman that you are willing and able to provide for her should your relationship develop. This does not necessarily mean that a girl is going to live off your finances… well, maybe a gold digger might, but a man that can at times demonstrate that he is financially stable in his own right is seen as more attractive. In essence, it’s more about the symbolism in courting a woman than paying for the salmon dish and a bottle of white wine. For both boys and girls, attracting someone is about ticking all the boxes. If that doesn’t happen the chemistry won’t exist.
All this combined with good manners, good conversation, proper conduct and refraining from trying to get some on the first night should definitely earn you a second date. I’m sure she’d be more than happy to go halves on a 12 inch ham and pineapple at the bowling alley next week. Start as you mean to go on gents. Cater to these fine young women and it will all come full circle if all goes well!
Thank you Charles. Now this would be the start of my argument against paying for first dates, however I do not necessarily believe that a man shouldn’t pay. Everybody is different in terms of their circumstances and beliefs. I personally have no issue paying for dates either; I’d pay for friends why not pay for someone I see potential in. What I have a problem with is that unfair social platitude that I am EXPECTED to pay which I believe is self-serving and pretentious. To those of you with this view that just because I am a man I should pay let me ask you some questions. Should I be entitled to a job just because I apply? Does my university degree automatically entitle me to a better paid job than those who took other routes? The point I am trying to make is just because you show up or take steps to the future does not give you any right to expect anything.
Carrying on with this ‘traditional’ theme my esteemed co-blogger touched on; many women who I had also spoken to claimed that it is traditional for a man pay. This is a point I cannot refute. To you women who feel that we must stick to tradition, fine. No problem. But if you’re going to sing that tune, then you’d better sing the whole damn song. That means yes the man should pay seeing as it’s his responsibility. That also means your only responsibilities in life should revolve around bearing my children, having dinner ready on time and worrying about the daily house chores and my laundry. That’s right ladies, let’s stick to tradition and make sure you are the best housewives you can be. Now I do not actually expect nor would I want any female of this era to live with those archaic expectations, but what I am saying though is that it is not okay to pick and choose the traditions that suit your ideologies. So to you women who talk about males paying as traditional, I like my dinner at 7:30 and my shirts had better be starched.
There is also a belief that by being taken on a date we (that is men) are paying for the female’s time, thus it is our social duty to pay the bill. Paying for your time? Am I your employer? Like I haven’t got better things to do than entertain your over-entitled self? Another view I seem to come across often is that paying for dates shows affection and respect. I wouldn’t necessarily want someone I care for to part ways with their cash when I could part ways with mine. Though here’s a crazy thought: Is it not possible to show respect and affection…by just showing respect and affection?! Believe it or not money is trivial to many on this planet, even if the man pays for the bill that may not necessarily mean he respects you at all. Instead of associating such things with some numbers how about you base that on how I treat you.
Now this one is really special to me. I hear there’s this view some of you women out in the world believe; that real men aren’t cheap, that real men don’t let women pay. Okay, let’s take a minute to examine this. Because I do something so unfathomable like pay only for what I have consumed I am not a ‘real man’. Fellas, please don’t let these opinions fool you. Like I said nothing wrong with paying the bill, I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again, but what I am not about to do is buy into this foolish belief that not picking up the tab makes me cheap or less of a man from anyone. The women I tend to date couldn’t care less about the bill, they don’t let some numbers dictate their interest in me, some have even offered to pay for me (I kindly declined), and it’s these women I would happily pay for a million times. I love how it’s these same women that want to spend all day talking about what a real man should be. How about you worry about being a real woman? That means independent without being expectant.
Moving on, when analysing the point of a first date, shouldn’t the goal of it be to explore the potential mutual interest in each other. If getting to know one another is the aim of date (or maybe that was just some crazy view only I hold) then should splitting the bill really matter? Earlier in this blog I explained what inspired this topic. Honestly if I had been the unfortunate fellow who had the displeasure of this woman’s company I would pay for my half and my half alone. My name is not Oxfam, if they are looking for charity I will happily use my google map app to direct them towards the nearest charity shop.
Please do not misunderstand; it’s not that I couldn’t afford the date or anything. However I was raised with the understanding that in this world nobody owes you a damn thing. Anything anyone does for you is a privilege, not a right, whether it be holding a door open for you to giving you a free ride. No one has the right to expect anything of me, let alone someone I barely know. Whatever happened to equal rights? Being independent? So how about we take our independent debit cards out and equally split this bill? This is not about the money, but the principle. Paying for dates is a pleasure to me, all I ask is you be the kind of person I WANT to pay for. Ladies, I am just speaking from experience, but when you are the kind of person I WANT to pay for rather than coming with the expectation that I SHOULD pay, it makes me want to do much more for you can than just settling a bill. Finally, if you are the type of person to let something as trivial as a bill ultimately decide your interest in me, then frankly its best, like the bill between the 2 of us, we split.
So there you have it folks. A very special thanks to those who contributed to our endeavours with this topic, in particular the ladies we called upon. Gathering as many female opinions as possible was beneficial to both our arguments, but all in all we are both men with our own heartfelt mind set. Tayo and I conclude that we are both more than happy to pay for a woman on the first date. There is no harm in the courtesy and value of it. But we believe there is something both genders can take from this. I call for men to uphold their chivalry and status as true gentleman, to show women that they can still be held in high regard and treated with respect and affection in this day and age. My friend Tayo urges women to realise that you give as good as you get. In a world where equality is more and more prominent his message is for ladies to feel less entitled and more humble. There should be more important aspects to a relationship like genuity and respect without money and other trivial obstacles causing friction. On both sides respect is earned, so both men and women should behave in a way truly warrants each other’s attention and care. In short we are calling for changes in attitude and a new approach: women please do not EXPECT and men please show RESPECT.
From us humble bloggers, peace out!