I read this article today about how a particular woman writer felt that men should pay for the first couple of dates…period. No discussion. No reaching for the purse ladies. He should pay. Her reasoning is a man who is generous with his cash will be generous with his love, affection and trust.
Seems like a big jump to me.
Mostly I thought her argument was interesting because she specifically called herself a feminist. The word feminist has been misunderstood, misinterpreted and misrepresented almost from the start. And it has muddied the waters when it comes to roles for men and women. What was once a fight for women to get better jobs, be taken seriously and be productive parts of society outside of the home has become a fight for men to feel like men, women to feel taken care of and yet not babied, and relationships between the sexes to suffer.
I believe women are capable. I don’t want anyone telling me that I can’t do something just because I am a woman. BUT…and it is kind of a big one…I miss the days of chivalry. Chivalry really is dead as far as I can see. In fact, it is so dead that when it does happen, well, it takes me aback. I almost don’t know how to react.
Take door opening for an example. The only times a man will open a door for me is:
- He is opening the door for his wife/girlfriend/mother and I just happen to be caught in that moment.
- He is trying to impress me with his charming ways … and quite honestly as a fat single girl this does not happen often.
- He was raised Southern. There is something about a boy from the south who was raised by a Southern mom that they can’t quite shake the urge to do it.
- My hands are full and they catch my eye and feel guilted into helping me out.
Or maybe for you the mark of chivalry is when a man offers to help you carry something. That has never happened to me unless I was dating someone. Or it was my dad.
And yet I can’t really blame them. How many times have I said “I’m fine” or “I got it” when someone offered to do something nice? How many times have I joked with my male friends about how sexist they are being at a particular moment? How many times have I avoided eye contact with someone who might have been willing to be chivalrous – and my lack of eye contact or a smile made them decide I was ok?
It is all about contradiction. I know I want to get married. Sooner rather than later really. (Just putting that out there people) I know that I do not need to be somebody’s princess…but I would love to find someone who thought I was. I know I need to be self-sufficient … but I would love to be taken care of a little. I know I can come off as strong…but I am not. That I do know.
So back to the beginning. Should a man pay for the first few dates. Well, I don’t think it is wrong for me to offer. But I guess I do expect it. I still get my wallet out, but I don’t expect to use it.
What do you think? Is chivalry dead?