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Should women offer to pay?

I received an email from a guy who is dating someone older than he is. He pursued her in the beginning and didn’t take issue with paying. Now that they are in an exclusive relationship, he expected her to offer to reciprocate more.

Since she supposedly makes more money then he does (he doesn’t know for sure), he wonders if not offering to pay is a sign of selfishness. He is apprehensive about bringing the topic up because he doesn’t want to come across as cheap. How should he handle it?

Do you think that women should offer to pay more often? Is it something men are expecting us to do in the early stages of dating?

When there is a difference in income, how do you navigate dating so that it is balanced and fair?

By Wise Diva, Misadventures in Atlanta Dating Blog

419 comments Add your comment

David Ayegba

August 9th, 2011
7:27 am

I really don’t see the two elements of love from the above write up. Which are trust and communication. They are the component of being open to each other in a relationship. Age is no factor where there is understanding between both parties. The party that makes more should be fair in picking up extra bills and the other party should be appreciative of the other party’s contribution.

Breezy

August 9th, 2011
8:04 am

I think in a relationship both parties are supposed to give without the intention of receiving. You do things for the other because you want to and there are not expectations. I agree that communication and trust are definitely lacking in this situation.

nokiddingsherlock

August 9th, 2011
8:21 am

dump her! she obviously isn’t into you. any woman who finds you attractive and wants to be with you will think and care about you. She doesn’t. Stop being a Puss and Dump HER sorry arse. or keep her and you can be the `sorry arse`

Jeff

August 9th, 2011
8:28 am

Ahhhh, then hypocritical claim of equality. Gotta love it.

Leggs

August 9th, 2011
8:30 am

Good morning!

Do you think that women should offer to pay more often? YES

Is it something men are expecting us to do in the early stages of dating? Who knows what men expect.

Reciprocity shouldn’t kick in at a particular stage in the relationship. It’s up to both parties to propel the relationship along. The key word here is they’ve become “exclusive.” I sense she’s being somewhat selfish in thinking the man should pay for everything. Not a good look!

Miss A

August 9th, 2011
8:37 am

This question will be forever discussed and never truly receive a right or wrong answer. I have girlfriends who feel a man should always pay and state they will NEVER pay the check for dinner, outings, etc. I, on the other hand, don’t see a problem with it if we are now in a relationship and seeing each other. In the initial stages, I would like to be romanced a little, but the man should be creative and think of “frugal” ways to be a romantic. You don’t have to impress a woman by taking her to an expensive restaurant. Take her to the park, musuem, free concerts,etc.

If he has a woman that is not offering to pay, then there’s a strong chance she is selfish.

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
8:39 am

“Reciprocity shouldn’t kick in at a particular stage in the relationship. It’s up to both parties to propel the relationship along”.

Good call Leggs. It is not necessarily an issue of money as much as an issue of equality in a relationship. With the “rights’ come part of the “responsibilities”.

Dave

August 9th, 2011
8:41 am

In today’s world where it’s all about equality, I’m sure men would LIKE to have a woman offer to pay, but that’s when the relationship is eclusive and on into it. By Ms. Manner’s guide, whomever does the asking out should be responsible for paying, but we all know how that’s going to work out. I did have a lady ask me out one evening and took me to a VERY nice restaurant. The bill was $140 and when it was brought to the table, she just sat there…..and sat there….and sat there. I finally picked it up and paid for it. THEN she suggested we go catch a movie. I paid for the tickets and snacks….again. Not for one second did she even approach offering to pay. Chivalry dictates that I pay, so I did. But that was an expensive evening….and we didn’t even ride together nor did I get a kiss goodnight afterwards. No more dates for you…..

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
8:44 am

The key word here is a “relationship” which by definition implies a partnership of sorts. Both should contribute after dating crosses over into a relationship. Also, this is a key turning point where a woman’s heart is somewhat defined. If she is just in it for the fun and getting money spent on her, then off she goes to the “high maintenance” heap with the others. If a woman has a heart, she will see this as what she can contribute as well as what she can receive.

Dave

August 9th, 2011
8:46 am

The very lowest of the low treat the man as an “I’m hungry and don’t have anyone to pay for my dinner” date. Learn your lesson early on with these selfish, self centered creatures. They are a boil on the a$$ of the world and create the fore-mentioned “bitterness” about women we so often discuss on this blog.

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
8:46 am

@ Dave

Excellent example of the type of woman I don’t call back. If it is all about her then she should have as much “her” time as possible ;-)

Uncle Ed

August 9th, 2011
8:51 am

No one likes a beautiful woman more than I do, but thay are so much dad gum trouble to deal with and date.

SlimNu

August 9th, 2011
8:56 am

Good morning,

It’s a give and take, no one person should foot the bill for the entire relationship. I make waaaaay less than the beau but I still contribute on things that fall in line with what I am able to pay. I’m the type of person that loves to give, surprise, take the initiative to treat and it does bother me that I’m not in a position to do more. He has often told me that money isn’t everything but i’m thinking, it sure does help a whole lot and give you options that a ‘financially challenged’ person doesn’t have.

Fred G. Sanford, Jr.

August 9th, 2011
9:03 am

I have NEVER met a man who was happily committed or married to a woman who was stingy, cheap, or financially selfish.

What?!?!?

August 9th, 2011
9:08 am

Why are you WISE if you never offer any advice?

CoolShadow

August 9th, 2011
9:17 am

Do you think that women should offer to pay more often? Is it something men are expecting us to do in the early stages of dating?

It would be a nice gesture but I always assume it won’t happen in the early stages (if at all). It use to amaze me how some women would claim how “independent” they are but when it comes to financial participation in the dating arena, rigor mortis in the purse sets in really fast.

When there is a difference in income, how do you navigate dating so that it is balanced and fair?

You treat the person within their means. For example, if you have two people dating and the man makes $100K+ and the woman makes $10/hr, the man can drop $100 for dinner but it seems unfair to expect the woman to drop the equivalent for him because of the disruption that $100 dinner may cause her. However, that doesn’t mean she should develop rigor mortis of the pockets either. She should contribute to the dating within her means and she may have to be more creative because of her financial limitations. Same thing if the roles are reversed.

@Dave – the scenario you described in your 8:41 post, when that happens rarely does a second date occur. That was a flat out case of experiencing higher end entertainment using sponsorship.

CoolShadow

August 9th, 2011
9:19 am

meant to write, “treat the person within your means.”

SlimNu

August 9th, 2011
9:23 am

Dinner & a movie

Whoever makes more could pay for dinner….the one making less could vouch for the movie tickets..

That dude from the "A"

August 9th, 2011
9:24 am

Women should pay more..period!!
It does not matter if we are dating or in an exclusive relationship “We both benefit by doing ish together” (i.e. getting dinner, lunch, movies, etc.) therefore, why should dudes have to front the bill every time the check shows up? Let’s face it; AA women make more than AA dudes not only in the “A” but in every major and small city in America!
Women in general save more, travel more and invest more, but every time you turn around you hear ‘ladies free until midnight”, “ladies bring juice, dudes bring liquor to the party”, “ladies drink free”

If I added up how much I have spent on dating in the last 20 years, it would prolly amount to the cost of a car! Now if I added up how many women spent on me the ratio to my spending would be 70/30.

In closing, I have definitely changed my approach to dating and how much I spend initially!

Call me cheap, but at the end of the day its how much you can keep vs. how much you can spend!

IAmWoman

August 9th, 2011
9:25 am

As a woman I tend to agree with Randy:

The key word here is a “relationship” …a key turning point where a woman’s heart is somewhat defined … is just in it for the fun and getting money spent on her….she will see [the relationship] as what she can contribute as well as what she can receive.”

Fellas, it’s up to “you to observe and decide” what type of woman you want to pursue. Dont’ ignore the warning signs (that goes for women also)!

MsMarriedUp

August 9th, 2011
9:28 am

So agree CoolShadow…and probably others as well.

During the initial courting the man pays…no ifs and or buts.

During the relationship I like buying gifts and things…though I (while I won’t call it rigor mortis*LOL*Cool), I will say that I prefer to be with a man who’s really the one w/the purse strings, and don’t want that nit-picky I’m spending more than you.

I’m old school. Real old school. I am your woman. I look up to my man and expect to be taken care of. Period. …In the same way he knows I do and let him do (*mostly*) as he pleases;-)

I know I need to stop…though this is about the size of things in my spot.

IAmWoman

August 9th, 2011
9:30 am

@CoolShadow – “rigor mortis in the purse” LOL

ATL Guy

August 9th, 2011
9:31 am

Went on a First Date with a girl and we are having a great time. Bill comes and she says “do you want to split the bill?” It kind of threw me off. I said, no worries, I got this, but thanks for the offer. At that moment it felt like we were just friends. Nice Gesture, but on a first date let the guy step up or you’ll be sending mixed signals

SlimNu

August 9th, 2011
9:32 am

One day the beau and I were in Publix playing debating on who was going to cook dinner. He tells me, “I make the bread…you bake the bread”. So guess who ended up cooking dinner that night? lol

Leggs

August 9th, 2011
9:36 am

@Dave ~ that woman was tacky. The nerve to call and ask a man out, pick out an expensive restaurant and then act like you’re Ray Charles when the check comes! Tack head!

MsMarriedUp

August 9th, 2011
9:40 am

It’s just kinda sad seeing women who end up being expected to spit out the dollars…then gotta make the baby, have the baby…and since the man can’t nurse the baby…ooops, she gotta do that too, and take of the child & children… and all be damn it if she ain’t running back and forth to work, and daycare…when all be damn it happens again… oh *he’s bored* gotta go; tired of the old.

Seen it happen so many times, and now we have this big gap in finding a man. I’m married and stayed married for a reason!

Leggs

August 9th, 2011
9:45 am

Dang, we’re talking about paying for a date (lol).

I hear ya, MsMarriedUp.

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
9:45 am

One thing that is at play here is a “token gesture”. I will still pick up the tab nine times out of ten, maybe more, but it is refreshing when the lady genuinely offers. Again, it is a heart issue.

With my new lady, I have cooked for her several times (the chicken marsala last week was impressive). Happens I actually enjoy cooking and eat at restaurants about five nights a week as it is. The lady is comfortable chilling at my place, or going out.

It is not about what we do, but who we do it with. In every relationship, sooner or later that WILL be important.

CoolShadow

August 9th, 2011
9:46 am

@ATL Guy – in your case she may have been testing you. Had you accepted her offer, there probably wasn’t going to be a second date. I’d be flattered if a woman offered to pay or split the bill on the first date, but I’ve never NOT paid on the first date and it could be an undercover test of your stinginess from her perception.

@MsMarriedUp – I really meant that phrase for the later stages of dating. How would you handle dating if you made more money that the man?

Leggs

August 9th, 2011
9:48 am

Exactly, RandyT. It’s a move of respect and appreciation. That’s how I look at it.

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
9:54 am

Dating finance is an investment like any other investment…or paying for a diagnostic on a car. Either way, it is money spent with a hope of a return.

We all have an idea of what we are looking for out of a date. If one is looking to hook up, then consider the cost of the fancy dinner and drinks as an investment for a future return. If a person is looking for someone to stay with for awhile, then more emphasis should be spent on creating an environment where you two can communicate freely. If a guy is wanting to spend some quality time by himself, then ask her to pay.

Like Wall Street, some investments pay off, some don’t. You have to hope that you beat the “Lipper” dating average ;-)

Celisea

August 9th, 2011
9:56 am

Morning,

What MsMarriedUp said at 9:40….I’m totally cosigning. The subject in Diva’s post should ask or try and understand if it’s a matter of upbrining given the fact that she’s older than him.

Really men, really…a woman NOT paying has nothing to do with trying to take take and take. I frankly don’t want to hear a man whining about money. If paying for dinner or entertaining is going to break you so much so that you’re whining or doing tally strokes or just THAT aware then you don’t need to be dating. A woman that’s REAALLY into will pay….not all the time….but because she’s into you like that. Just like women shouldn’t assume all men aren’t out just to get in her pants, men shouldn’t assume a dime spent on a women is her quest to get in your pockets.

Back to the dang grind. They got a sister on the plantation these days.

Celisea

August 9th, 2011
9:58 am

And in case you men didn’t know….we LOVE doing nice things and springing nice surprises. Really we do.

ATL Guy

August 9th, 2011
10:03 am

@ CoolShadow – I did thnk it may have been a test at first, but it really wasn’t. I paid then she invited me back to her place and we kicked it for a bit. Still, after that felt like friends. So much of dating is whether there’s genuine chemistry or sparks. On the other side, went out with another girl as a friend, went to a fun restaurant, met people at the bar and they invited us to their table. Out of nowhere we ended up holding hands under the table. Felt this real connection and it was electric. People we met asked how long we’ve been an item. We laughed and said, we’re not I don’t think! She’s my g/f of 2.5 years to this day

ATLER

August 9th, 2011
10:03 am

I think a man and woman should go in half when they first start dating. Only reason I say that is because if you two don’t get along, you both can go your own way and keep dating. I told a female friend of mine that it was expensive being a gentlemen in Atlanta. She tried to argue with me about it, but came back later and told me I was absolutely right. Real men have it bad because women expect us to be gentlemenly especially when it comes to paying. A real woman though would reconize a gentleman and make the proper adjustments.

MCH

August 9th, 2011
10:03 am

Dave you must have met that woman at Bonefish :shock:

Sassy Me ;-)

August 9th, 2011
10:05 am

When there is a difference in income, how do you navigate dating so that it is balanced and fair?

I wish I knew…in my past relationships I’ve been the one making more and this put a weird damper on dating situations. I don’t have a problem paying and make it a point to actually….my problem comes when we as a couple can’t do anything b/c the guy is almost always broke or got some baby mama drama going on. Why should I suffer because of that? Then I get called selfish when I decide to bounce…that’s not fair.

abc

August 9th, 2011
10:15 am

Sure, she can offer, but he should always pay anyway. If you’re not paying your own way, what kind of man are you? If you can’t afford to go on dates, then don’t.

kimmie

August 9th, 2011
10:18 am

Morning All!

When hubby and I were dating he picked up the tab on the first few dates. I treated on about the 4th date. It was clear we were both in it for the long haul and building a relationship. A relationship means sharing. I knew he had 2 young kids he was raising on his own and a home to maintain, even though he made more than me. Yes, if a woman really cares for a guy, she will find a way to reciprocate within her means. I hate debating about money – I think it’s tacky. I only do dutch with friends. On a date, I believe you should take care of the entire bill at whatever venue, not split it. For example, one person should pay for the entire meal or both the movie tickets, etc. It’s so tacky to be sitting there tallying things.

I have not had a guy to complain about me not ever reciprocating, because I was raised better than that. Even the few cheap guys I’ve dealt with really couldn’t complain.

One of my best friends said she never pays when on a date, period. Guess it worked for her, because she’s married. Wouldn’t be me though.

ATL Guy

August 9th, 2011
10:20 am

Lets be Honest … this market people are having some tough times. Nothing to say you have to go out to a 5-Star restaurant on a date. Go to Piedmont Park, Tubing the River, or Cook something. Make it unique and fun. I disagree with *ABC* because you should still be able to go on dates if you having a tough time financially because not everything is superficial (although society makes it that way)

abc

August 9th, 2011
10:24 am

I’m not talking about 5 star restaurants, I’m talking about paying the bills. If you’re going tubing or whatever, you still pay the bill. If you can’t afford a woman, you’re unlikely to have one — it ain’t exactly rocket science.

You could drink ice water and play a game of chess, but I doubt you’re going to find a lot of takers. Actually, a date like that would be about my speed.

cba

August 9th, 2011
10:30 am

@Kimmie, I’ve read alot of your posts over the months. The first paragraph in your 10:18, I’ll put a frame around it…..very well stated.

TenderRoni

August 9th, 2011
10:31 am

Hi All,
I’m with the earlier posts, I think there is a lack of communication in the relationship of WD”s friend. If you are in exclusive relationship there should be a level of comfort to be able to talk about money.
Also wouldn’t you want to talk about your relationship, isn’t that how you stay on the same page with a person.
Maybe their views on relationships are just different. We is understandable, we all want what we want. But it seems his expectations is different from hers, and it should be addressed now before bitterness sets in.

kimmie

August 9th, 2011
10:32 am

Thanks cba!!

Randyt (aka, BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, HAVE A CLOSET FULL OF T-SHIRTS)

August 9th, 2011
10:33 am

I tend to agree with abc on the “if you can’t pay, don’t play”. That said, I was broke and up to my azz in debt, an apt with no furniture or even a bed for a year (slept on a couch) and support payments when I started dating my “transition lover” after my divorce. There were times she carried my sorry azz, when I was out of work. Strangely enough, it was when I started climbing back onto my feet that she kicked me out of the nest. After a year or two of soul searching, I realized that there was a part of her that was the kind that took in stray dogs and children, nursed them back to health, and sent them back to the real world. Wonderful lady and still unattached 9 years later. Broke my heart, but she still had more of a heart than 90% of the ladies I have dated.

So I guess there are ladies out there that will take you in if you are struggling…but they have to see something in you besides a deadbeat.

ATL Guy

August 9th, 2011
10:37 am

LoL! Ice water and Chess!? Options – Go running through the City or borrow a friend’s bikes and take them out or hang at the pool and grill out or the Art Museum (which is free on certain days). I’m saying you can do interesting things without being a baller. Point is to get to know the other person on a date and see if there are common interests or chemistry. Money helps, don’t get me wrong, but there’s something far more genuine with those kinds of dates

Same thing

August 9th, 2011
10:37 am

Women, if you want men to consider paying for dates to be investing in their future possibilities (ie, rack time), what are you selling? I dated forever. My test for moving forward was to simply see if my date ever even offered after a couple of months, especially if we were seeing each other 2-3 times a week. If nothing happened, I would broom her quick right after I cashed in my investment. It doesn’t have to be expensive or ostentatious, just genuine. If you are selling it, someone will buy. The market value does drop after multiple uses though. Both side need to invest something (other than a little sweating) if they are truly interested in developing a relationship.

SexyCool

August 9th, 2011
10:45 am

Three Words Daily – Define *your* success.

How have you defined success for yourself and by yourself? Or do you hold to society’s measure for what is considered successful? Are you measuring your progress in life against the progress of others? Do you tally the trappings of material excess as the only evidence of you having “made it”?
{more}

abc

August 9th, 2011
10:45 am

I never considered paying for dates to be an investment in anything. It’s recreational expenditure. If you’re married, don’t you take your wife on dates? Do you consider paying for the movie and popcorn an investment in anything? That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. As in, I paid $80 for dinner, you owe me sex sooner or later? Pretty crass, in my opinion.

Yeah, ATL Guy, I like museums, touring really old houses, going to art fairs and car shows, all that. Certainly, there are plenty of cheap and free things to do that are fun.

SexyCool

August 9th, 2011
10:47 am

Run Report – Me, the man, the dog – regular morning route – 34minutes.

When I first start my runs, the back of my calves scream out in protest. I probably could do a little more stretching.