Gone are the days when asking someone out on a date was a unilateral effort made by the male gender. Today’s world is filled with absolute game changers like Tinder, online dating sites, a healthy mix of sexualities and a recent effort to attain equality of the sexes. So the question must arise, when the little white slip arrives, who pays? As if dating wasn’t awkward enough in this day and age with the ‘We’re not in a relationship, but I really like you’ and the ‘Are we exclusive?’ conundrums, the ‘who should reaches for their wallet first’ situation has become a slightly touchy one.

Back in the day, it wasn’t much of an issue since men were expected to go provide the bread and butter in a relationship and a woman’s role was a more of that of a caretaker. In the modern world, the millennial face a completely different dynamic. Women are breaking institutional norms and providing for themselves and establishing themselves as equal contributors to society and the economy as men. Yet, a recent study done by Rosanna Hertz, David Frederick, and Janet Lever of more than 17,000 unmarried heterosexual men and women concluded that 84% of men and 58% of women reported that men still foot the bill well beyond the first date. Around 57% of women pull out their wallets and 39% of them want to be told to put it away. A whopping 44% of women are actually ‘bothered’ that they are expected to pay at all.

romantic date
image source: theinfong.com

It’s surprising how most norms surrounding the equality of sexes are being altered to present a more even platform for women to rise up to, expect when it comes to this tiny detail! Catherine Pearson at the Huffington Post says “As social roles start to change, people often embrace the changes that make their lives easier, but resist the changes that make their lives more difficult.

But we must give the ladies some leeway since studies show that the contestable talk about the overall wage-gap between the sexes is very real. So although both sexes might be having money in their wallets, it’s more likely that the men have a little, it not a lot more. This doesn’t excuse the ladies from ever covering the bill, but come on guys, CHIVALRY ISN’T DEAD! I’d say that if you’ve asked a girl “Would you like to go out to dinner with me next Saturday?”, it get loosely translated into you willingly offering to pay for her dinner in exchange for her delightful company, so don’t bitch out and PAY, at least for the first date! Now if you’ve agreed before hand and had said something along the lines of “Do you want to meet me for dinner sometime?” which means you would be interested in spending some time with this person, but not committing to pay for the bill, you can expect to go Dutch.

romantic date
image source: theholidayspot.com

We can all set up rules, and try and decipher each other like the Da Vinci Code, but at the end of the day, you’ll need to find someone who understand your situation and you should do your best to understand theirs, if you know for a fact they don’t make as much as you, offer to pay for often then not. If she insists on paying after a few chivalrous evenings, show your appreciation and let her take the hit!

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1 October 2016
Zainab Wani

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