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Dating in New York City – Holding Hans with Brian Hansbury: Mo Money, Mo Problems

Posted Monday, June 2nd, 2008 at 2:16 pm by Brian in Social Bees. More in 10029

Dear Hans,

My girlfriend makes more money than I do, but I end up paying for everything. I’m at a point where I can’t even go out with my guy friends because I have no money left over from my relationship. How do I tell her I can’t afford our lifestyle?

News flash, New York City daters: the City is expensive and as such, chivalry is dead. The evolution of civilized society beyond medieval times is well documented and welcome. A centuries-old knightly code of conduct should have no bearing on the treacherous landscape of modern dating. You wouldn’t enter into modern warfare with only a crossbow, why would you build a moat around your financial and emotional freedom with obsolete dating mores?

Should you be nice to your girlfriend? Open doors? Make every day Valentine’s Day? Reciprocate orally? Sure. But I’m tired of men feeling like there is something wrong with them if they don’t pick up every check. Also, I am tired of picking up every check. Especially when the women I date make more money than I do. It’s good to do something nice for the people in our lives, like take them out to a great dinner. But, sickeningly and wrongly, men fall prey to a cultural climate where they act as surrogate parents to their girlfriends. Providing for every meal, paying for clothes and entertainment, and all the while, getting shit for it. Have a little pride in yourselves, you free-loading rug rats. I mean, ladies.

The reality of post-post modo-feminism is that many women these days want to pay. They are like Reconstruction-era African-Americans, or a newly empowered, 4H-sponsored farming co-operative…or tweens. Women are proud of their flush bank accounts, their ability to pay. But, because society is pre-conditioned to view the non-paying man as inadequate, your girlfriend might never pick up a check for fear she’ll injure your pride. It’s time you let your girlfriend know you have no pride.

If you need help mustering the courage to do so, here are some helpful aphorisms you can recite to yourself:

“Bros before hos”
“No time like the present”
“Post-modernism before Old-fashionedism”

And here’s a real-life dream scenario that might inspire you further. In college I dated a girl who spent upwards of $1500 a week. Considering my parents gave me a monthly $65 entertainment stipend, there was no way I could pay for her lifestyle. With zero shame and lots of charm, I told her if she wanted to be with me and live the way she was accustomed to, she’d have to pay for everything. And she did. The relationship ended just a few short months later, and though my heart was emptied, my wallet was full.

After you break up with your girlfriend over this and start dating again, try going Dutch from the start. The girl will think you are trying to respect her by allowing her to pay for some of the check. She won’t know that you are really just trying to have sex with her AND save money at the same time. If she thinks you’re cheap but likes you anyway, she will still pay the half check and tell herself she’ll change you once she’s moved in.

Happy Saving!


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