SHOULD WOMEN PICK UP THE DINNER BILL?
It is 2017, after all.
Yesterday was Mother's day and we all celebrated our mothers, their achievements and the role of women in raising all of humanity (dads too). So we all agree that women in this millennium subscribe to a few different rules than our grandmothers did.
Some may be for the waves of feminism and others, well are "traditional". Whatever your beliefs are, we can all agree that women have been pegged as nurturers and do command a lot of authority in society (still shortchanged but another topic for another day).
My question here is this: In light of our modern day fight for equality and sameness, SHOULD WOMEN PAY THE DINNER TAB?
Let's role play.
So a man and woman go to dinner. Could be a romantic, family or work setting. The one rule of eating out with company is: Whoever asks the other out, pays. Do millennials know of this rule?
So they order food, drinks, apps, deserts, extra sauce and paper towels. Smartly dressed waiter comes around and puts the bill on the table.
Why do waiters/waitresses feel inclined to either put the check close to the man's side of the table or just hand it to him? Is that part of the eating out culture?
Back to story. So, awkward silence and then man usually digs through the back of his pocket to draw out a wallet. My question is:
SHOULD WOMEN ALSO DIG THROUGH THEIR PURSES WITH THE SAME HURRIEDNESS THAT MEN DO WHEN A TAB IS HANDED OVER?
Women account for over 40% of the workforce, worldwide. In Africa, 60% of entrepreneurs are women and primary earners in the household. A lot of our mothers are breadwinners and heads of households(even though many will not readily admit it) so why shouldn't women pay for food they ate? Why does it make men uncomfortable when evidently, women are making just as much money or more in some cases than they are?
Back when "going steady" was a thing, I get why men would automatically pay for dinner because women were far more marginalized that we are today. A lot of women in my world did petty trading and teaching, both of which did not provide much of an income. The men in my world however, held clerical, higher education and medical jobs which paid a lot more. So yes, it made sense that since they were making more, they pay more.
BUT IT IS 2017.
This conversation comes on the heels of two big social media stories this year: #RECEIPTBAE& #KEEPTHECHANGEBAE (find on Twitter).
SEE ALSO: #STRANDEDBAE (but for the purposes of this topic, let's keep it to the above mentioned)
#RECEIPTBAE (SYNOPSIS): Guy asks girl out. Girl says cool. Girl picks guy up in her car. Both go to dinner, eat, drink, laugh. Bill paid. Guy turns around and posts on Facebook about girls ordering too much food when out on dates even though, it is not a special occasion nor can they afford to pay for their order on their own. Girl gets wind of said post and proceeds to post a photo of her receipt from the restaurant they both went to. Apparently, she asked for a separate bill for her food because she wanted to avoid this situation. Guy is utterly embarrassed. Post reaches millions of people. BOOM! #RECEIPTBAE. (Because the word BAE is appropriate in all instances). Date location: UNITED STATES.
#KEEPTHECHANGEBAE (SYNOPSIS): Guy asks girl out. Guy foots bill for said date. Dinner, movies, the whole nine. Guy may have tried to lay it on thick. Girl definitely was not interested in anything further (I know this. I am a girl, duh). Guy hops on to twitter to complain about amount of money spent. Girl gets wind of post. Breaks down cost of date in a post and wires said total amount + some to his bank account and tells guy to KEEP THE CHANGE. Post goes viral. Girl gets praise and free gifts from several companies. Date location: NIGERIA.
Note the similarities: GUY FEELS INCLINED TO PAY, COMPLAINS LATER, PUBLIC BASHING.
HERE IS MY TAKE:
If you can eat, you can cook. If you can order, you can pay. Man or woman, always offer to pay at least for your part. But if the other party insists on paying, don't be the one to play the "oh let me, oh let me" game. Thou shalt save thy coins.
I am all about context, perspective and opinions. I may not necessarily understand or agree but I listen. So I had a chat with someone who is best known for his generosity. I was quite sure he has paid for more than a few dates in his lifetime so here is how that chat went(click to scroll):
GOT ANY OPINIONS TO ADD? SURE! ADD 'EM IN THE COMMENTS SECTION.