Oh Dana!: To pay, or not to pay?

Dana Buckmir
Dana Buckmir
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Oh, Dana!
I went on a first date the other night. When the check came the guy not only hesitated but flat out asked me to pay. I was turned off by his lack of etiquette. Even though we had a great time up until the end, I’ve made up my mind that there won’t be a second date. My friends disagree and suggest that my thinking is antiquated. Am I wrong to expect that if a man asks me out then he’s footing the bill? Should the man or woman pay for the date? 
Sincerely,
Flabbergasted Female


Dear Flabbergasted Female,
If a man asks you out on a date, he is expected to pay. This is nonnegotiable. If a man expects you to pay, then it’s not considered a date. 
No, your thinking is not outdated. Your attitude shows that you have certain standards for how you want to be treated. Maybe your friends don’t share that same attitude, but they’re not the ones in your situation. To put it bluntly, that guy was tacky for asking you to pay. I don’t blame you for being turned off. A gentleman knows how to treat a lady.
In his book, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Steve Harvey discusses the 3P’s: Profess, Protect and Provide. In your case, we’re addressing the topic of providing which comes down to the man investing in the relationship. In doing so, he must recognize the value of the woman he’s courting. “If a man asks you out and he’s not willing to buy you a plate of food, how can you possibly think that this guy can take care of a family?” Harvey’s question implies that the man’s behavior during the dating stages indicates what type of provider he’ll be down the road. A man knows that he’s expected to pay. By trying to shirk the responsibility he’s showing you that he doesn’t view you as a potential partner that is worth the investment.
The way I view dating is the same way that I view tipping. Don’t go out if you can’t afford to tip your server. Don’t ask a woman out if you can’t afford to pay for the date. You’ve got to pay to play. 

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Dana Buckmir aka “Oh, Dana!” Dana is the author of the memoir “Plenty of Laughs: One Woman’s Journey Navigating the Online Dating Waters. The book is a comical account on dating in the age of technology, including the compelling story of finding love online. You can find a sample of her book at https://danabuckmir.com/Dana wants to help people with their lives, love, and everything in-between! She is taking your questions at Contact@danabuckmir.com All submissions are anonymous.