Marija Kovačević

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Who pays on a first date?

I've come across a youtube video, with extracts from Hanna Rosin's TEDtalk, trying to "reveal" the true face of feminism.
As they said, women have double standards! On one hand fighting for equality, and on the other, expecting some gender roles to be respected.
The main argument was paying on a first date. Comparing his paying for a cup of coffee with paying for sexual services.
In my culture it is considered impolite to go Dutch, no matter number, or gender of people involved. Also, it is considered good manners for a man to pay, no matter if he's on a date, or with a friend, or a relative.

What do you think, is going Dutch a way to express woman's independence?
Is paying for a meal such a strong statement of emancipation?

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      Aug 1 2011: i find it very unfortunate that this is the only comment that does not pretend to know what is right and what is wrong, but acknowledges and embraces cultural diversity and flexibility.
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      Aug 2 2011: Agreed with Birdia.
      Well sometimes economic power balance between gender can also be determinant factor.

      Say in my culture , in any situation obviously MEN should pay thats the norm and everyone is fine. Here I feel the economy plays the role in my culture , as most girls / women are homemakers though it's changing slowly. May be that shape up my culture again in this perspective.
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    Aug 3 2011: Anyone who invites for the date has to pay the price.
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    Aug 2 2011: As a married man I have to confess that my wife's move to split the bill in our first date made me a pretty into her but even then I paid.



    By the way this whole rich man- beautiful women thing is killing the essence of love. As a specific answer to the question who ever invites the other to first date ( that's usually man in Turkey where I live) should pay the bill. And for the rest they should split untill they get married or move in together when common expenses turn into daily expenses.
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    Aug 2 2011: I like to do what makes sense to me rather than what is the accepted social norm (I'm not big on social norms, there's often no good reason for them apart from historicity). My significant other and I are both students so we go Dutch. This appalls some of my friends who are suckers for tradition. They're entitled to do what they feel is right, but I seriously don't understand their outrage (or actually I do, but I don't see it as motivated by reasonable precepts). If I get a job or a doctorate, I'll have money to spare so it'll make sense then for me to pick up the tab. On special occasions I obviously also pick up the tab.
  • Aug 7 2011: I always end up screwing it up when I try to pay she gets offended, if I don't try to pay then another gets offended, I always get if wrong, I don't even know what to do know.

    That happens to me all the time, paying, opening doors.. you get the idea, it seems as if women don't have a common ground on what to allow a man do or don't for them.

    Personally I like to pay when I'm one on one with a friend, girlfriend, first date, cousin, sister, etc. if there's more than one then I only for myself, and/or my gf (if present) and only if she likes it.
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    Jul 31 2011: Hi Marija,
    I think going dutch is a good way if you don't intend to see each other again, otherwise agreeing that the other one pays the next time can be used as a sign of both equality and trust.
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      Aug 1 2011: I usually insist on paying when I don't want to see the guy anymore :D
      (unless he was so boring, so I make him pay for the time I had to suffer :P)
      But yes, I agree with you. If you intend to see the person again, it doesn't really matter who pays.
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    Aug 7 2011: The girl should at least offer. Worst case scenario if she offers: the guy will be offended. Worst case scenario if she doesn't: the guy can't afford the meal and you have a very awkward, possibly-ending-in-washing-dishes-to-pay-the-bill situation.
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    Aug 6 2011: Where I come from, guys pay. There is even a "guy" expression in Korea, which literally translates into "I can't date because I'm broke." (yes, It's tragic.)

    The double standards are very true. But I don't think only women have them. Men do, as well. I've seen many guys who accept and promote the notion gender equality, and yet feel obliged to "be a man" and follow the traditions like paying for the drink and meal. Some even feel ashamed when they've let women pay.

    I think going Dutch is always the least controversial in cases like this.
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    Aug 3 2011: That's your perogative, I'm will not put myself between you and your girlfriend Matthieu. The question is about first date!

    For me, a man should pay on the first date, and if all goes well and I become the girlfriend at this gentleman, this will stay the same.

    I'm not saying, that I will not suprise my "boyfriend" with gifts and taking the bills, to show him my appreciation, but, only in special occasion, not debating, if it is my time or his. I don't call that gentleman like or man like.

    I know that I would not want to have a man that would make me pay my lunch and/or supper if this person is my "boyfriend", that's me !!

    Your girlfriend is your girlfriend.....I hope you are enjoying it and appreciate it, has I'm sure she does, when you take the tabs, time to time.
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    Aug 2 2011: This is a situational question based on a number of factors. Where in the world you are? Who asked who out? Income levels? And personal preference. I have lived in the midwest, the west and now the southern part of the US and I would have been expected to pay in each region (which is fine by me).

    There is a lot of talk of feminism (which is good) but I think that male sexuality gets a bad reputation and often gets left to the side and isn't spoken of -except as a burden.
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    Aug 1 2011: I wish I would be given the choice... :D

    No seriously, I cannot recalling ever not paying. On the other hand I find that normal.
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    Aug 1 2011: I agree that it is very much tied to culture and situation. It may in some cultures be a hold over from earlier when women were not equal citizens and had little or no money to pay for dates. I guess I believe that there is not firm fast rule and maybe it is something to discuss before you go somewhere for the first time.
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    Aug 1 2011: For me is more about the man. A real man would not even ask or discuss this matter, because for him, it's a natural thing to invite a woman his going out or for a drink with.

    Ladies, get yourself some real men in your life, you should be treated as the beatiful, exquisite and unique woman that you are.

    Please do not manipulate men, to get yourself a drink or a supper, you're worth more than that! If you are really interest in a man, let him wine you and dine you, as it should be. If you are not interested in that man, please go out with your girlfriends and pay for your own bills.

    Cheers to real women and real men !

    Peace !
  • Aug 1 2011: Whoever asked to be joined should pay since they are the invitee. Otherwise you could always ask to split the check.
    • Aug 1 2011: Yes, absolutely if the person states I would like to take you to dinner- it implies responsibility. However, if the person invited chooses an overpriced restaurant they should be prepared to help pay for the check especially if it was obviously out of the others price range. In this case it is polite to be able to help pay but to allow, if the inviter so desires, to be treated.
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    Aug 1 2011: I let the girl choose to let me pay for the drink. Simply ask. Many times, they want to share.

    Who knows what the girl wants?
  • Jul 31 2011: The one who wants the date most, pays.