In today’s edition of “Ask Simply” I’m tackling one of the most basic dating questions: Who should pay for dates when you are dating?” As a disclaimer, I haven’t been in the dating game for years and like the world of video games, dating has completely evolved. I’m pretty much a registered dinosaur because I still remember talking to my husband on the telephone (& playing Super Mario) For shame, I know.
Even though it’s been years, there are some dating rules that are still fickle and “Who should pay for dates when you start dating?” is one that people are still trying to figure out. I’m ready to break it all down for you.
Who should pay for the date when you are dating?
The person who plans the date. Period.
Who should plan the date?
This one is easy! You should alternate planning dates. That way you both are responsible for making plans, you get to enjoy each other’s interests, and learn more about what types of things you can enjoy together.
But, my partner sucks at planning and I enjoy it! Shouldn’t I just plan things?
No. you shouldn’t. Date nights can seem like fun to plan and you will have your chance (every other time) but empower and encourage your date to take responsibility for the “what are we going to do”. Scour the web, read blogs, follow city guides, and let them put in the work to impress you — and you do the same! You and I both know that a good date night is less about what you actually do and more so how you both connected. If you end up at a terrible improv show- so be it! It’ll be a cute story you can laugh about later.
But, I make more than my partner- should they still pay?
Yes. No one likes to be a burden on their partner (and certainly not in the early stages) you should be open to doing low key things with your partner and NEVER make them feel bad about the financial burden. By being the sole financier of your relationship the powder dynamics will change in a way that just isn’t healthy for a new relationship that’s trying to find it’s bearings. There are so many inexpensive date ideas, you just have to be creative.
42 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR PARTNER
Are there any exceptions?
Of course, there always are! Ultimately this relationship is yours and you should do whatever you and your partner are equally comfortable with. If you want to sugar mama the person you are dating for years, do you boo boo!
A common exception is if you want to take a trip together but aren’t able to pay your own way, it’s totally fine for your partner to foot the bill if they are willing are and able. Help out in the planning process and always show gratitude. Tell your partner you can’t wait to bring them back to XYZ and go to the restaurant you guys couldn’t make it to when the time is right!
Look, if you are in this for the long run, there will be times where money seems abundant and times where it is scarce. You have to be able to enjoy the company of your partner (for lack of a better term) in richer and poorer. Get creative and know that an expensive meal can be just as tasty as dim sum at a hole in the wall restaurant. After all, it’s not about the place or the pageantry, it’s about the company.