I'm a girl. Sometimes I pay for dates. Shocking, I know.
But when you're a college student or a millennial struggling to get by, dropping $100 on a fancy dinner or $30 for a date to the movies can sometimes be too much.
Which is why, when I go on dates, I at least offer to split the bill. Whether I've been on one date or dozens with this person, I never go with the expectation that someone is going to buy me a meal.
Rather, I plan on splitting the bill, each of us putting down a credit card and signing our respective receipts when they arrive. We tend to either do that or work out a sort of "I'll pay for lunch, you pay for the movie" sort of system.
While no one ends up counting pennies and squabbling over who ultimately ended up paying more and both people get to go away happy with their wallets (at least mostly) intact.
It helps on a number of levels. It helps us balance our finances with having fun, making sure we only end up ordering something we're comfortable paying for. It also helps us save money for things that are more important, like buying a car or getting to go on a weekend trip with friends.
While some would argue that it's the man's role to pay for the meal and that even suggesting that a woman pitches in is anti-chivalry and feminist garbage, the reality is actually the opposite.
Now that men and women tend to both be working and bringing home money, a woman doesn't have to rely on a man to buy everything for her anymore. In the same way, a man no longer has to feel obligated to work himself to death to provide his wife/girlfriend/string of casual flings with whatever they want.
Now, are there exceptions to this? Of course. I've been on dates with men that insist on paying for dinner, which I let them do but then I buy the ice cream.
Other times, it's just easier for one person to pay for both. Whether someone has to run before the bill gets paid, one person is driving in the drive-through, or the restaurant won't split the check, splitting the bill doesn't have to be a perfect science.
At the end of the day, it's the intention that matters. To even offer to share the financial burden is a great way to show consideration for the person you're dating.
Besides, it's 2018 and common sense means more to me than antiquated gender norms. Dating is about mutual giving and receiving and the relationship has been unbalanced for far too long.