I’m nearly 20 years removed from the dating scene, so it goes without saying that I do not have my finger on the pulse of the dating world these days. I don’t understand how dating/flirting works now that we have Facebook and texting and instant messaging and FaceTime (and a bunch of other things of which I’m blissfully unaware). When I was a teenager, I passed real live notes to boys that I liked and talked to them on the phone until one of my parents forced me to hang up. I wish I had some wisdom to pass down to my teenage and soon-to-be-teenage daughters, but it’s all quite perplexing, to tell you the truth.
Since so many other things have changed, I’m curious as to whether the expectation that the male pays has changed. That was the norm when I was in high school, but I didn’t like the way it made me feel beholden to the boy—like I owed him something—so I often didn’t go along with it. I had an after-school job beginning at age 15, so I preferred to pay my own way—not all the time, but at least some of the time.
I’ve asked a few friends who all say that the boy still typically pays. Granted, I live in a smallish (pop. 30,000) east Texas town, so maybe the tide has turned elsewhere, but not in our town?
This expectation strikes me as surprisingly old fashioned and unfair. Now that I have a 15 year old daughter, I don’t like the idea of her going out with boys and expecting them to pay. And when Stuart gets to be that age, I don’t think I’ll love the idea that going out on a date means he pays for everything.
So what do y’all think? If you’re female, were you okay with the boy always paying? If you’re male, did you feel like you’d gotten the short end of the stick?
And for those of you who are parents of teenagers, how do you handle this? Do you let boys pay your daughter’s way, or do you encourage her to pay her own way?
Someone bring me up to speed!