I once went on a date with a man who made me split the bill.
Not only that, but he wanted to put his half on a credit card, which was declined. For a good 10 minutes while he awkwardly dealt with the matter, I sat nervously thinking that the entire check was mine to pick up — while simultaneously outraged that this person, who is around a decade older than me, talked about himself for three hours and now had the nerve to force me to go Dutch (TLDR: Why the hell doesn’t this grown man have his shit together?).
I used to think that it was perfectly fair for men and women to split the bill on first dates, but as I grow older, that’s no longer the case.
Dates are now happening with the swipe of a finger, and singletons are spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing a partner. With all of this happening, it’s getting harder and harder to weed out the bad apples, of which I’m sure there are thousands, if not millions, in a place like Hong Kong.
How am I supposed to figure out who’s the real deal — a guy who’s looking for something deeper, instead of just a three-month fling before ghosting — if the first way for him to indicate interest has been taken off the table?
Yes, if a guy splits the bill with me, it makes me think he’s simply not interested. If he were interested, and if I was feeling the same way, then I’d offer to take him to drinks afterwards.
I also don’t feel I’m at an age where, stepping out with a man, we should be calculating who owes what at the end of dinner. Should they choose to go out on dates, grown-ups who have their shit together should have going-out money and a functioning credit card (and I might add, one that is not funded by the bank of mom and dad). What’s wrong with each person taking turns to pick up the bill?
When I was in London a couple of months ago, I caught up with a great friend of mine who happens to be a sexy, smart, charming guy. Yet somehow, he’s having a hard time in the dating scene. He told me that women in London find it offensive when he picks up the check on dates instead of splitting it. This must be where my fellow single ladies over there are getting it all wrong. A great guy like him is losing the opportunity to express interest on dates — women are diminishing their chances to figure that out by jumping on their half of the check.
Is this perpetuating a sexist status quo, bringing down the great work feminists have been doing over the years? I don’t think so. What is wrong with some good old-fashioned courting, in a world overrun with dating apps and “trends” like benching, zombieing and breadcrumbing?
Call me a Kong Girl all you want, but I am simply a woman with standards.
All Tea No Shade with Andrea Lo.
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