Chapter 3 Tight With a Buck? He’s Out of Luck
You’re not a gold-digger, are you? Gold-diggers aren’t nice and they usually end up leading shallow, meaningless, unfulfilled lives. On the other hand, you don’t want a man so tight with a buck that he won’t ever treat you to dinner, or one who uses a calculator to divide every bill 50/50. Worse yet, is the man who asks you for money.
There was a time when men had tremendous pride in providing for their wives or girlfriends, but many women earn as much as men or more, and those times seem long gone, at least in the world of dating. Nevertheless, men should offer to pick up the check on the first few dates. It is courteous for the person who issues the invitation to foot the bill, and if you made the first move, you, too, should offer to pick up the check. But if a man is interested in you, he will pay (even if a man isn’t that interested, it’s generally accepted good manners for him to pay on the first date).
In fact, doesn’t it make you feel special when a man makes an extra nice first-date effort? If he springs for something imaginative or romantic like a carriage ride, or something that proves that he listened to your likes and dislikes, such as taking you to hear your favorite local musician, doesn’t that impress you? It doesn’t even have to be expensive to demonstrate effort: he could take you on a picnic in a place he wants to share with you. Thoughtfulness and effort count. They show he holds you in high regard, that he wants to do something to charm you.
His wallet shouldn’t snap shut after the first few dates, but you need to reciprocate. Buy the movie tickets, cook him dinner, or pick up the check. But here’s a warning: DO NOT under any circumstances buy him a gift at the beginning of a relationship or you might scare him off.
Balance is what’s important, not a 50/50 split, but fair balance. So here are some warning signs that your man is tight with a buck, and will only get tighter as he gets comfortable in your relationship.
1) He never suggests going out.
2) If you do go out, he meticulously scrutinizes a bill, then tells you what you owe.
3) He gets into a lot of arguments with vendors about charges, portion sizes, or value for what he’s spending.
4) He accuses people or vendors of cheating him.
5) When he drives, he asks you to chip in for gas.
6) When paying a bill, he says he’s a little short and asks you for cash — but, afterward, doesn’t head straight for an ATM to pay you back.
7) He always buys generic.
8) He only buys sale items, including groceries.
But, you say, what if he’s just poor and I like him anyway? That’s fine if that’s how you want to co-exist with your man, as long as you’re aware that this will be your future once the two of you become accustomed to this behavior. In any event, if he’s saving pennies because he’s putting himself through medical school, he may do items #7 and #8 listed above, like buying only sale items, but if he’s a tightwad, you’ll see the behaviors listed in items #1 through #6.
Remember, there’s a difference between tightwad and a poor guy cutting costs to reach a greater goal. You can choose to stick with the latter till times get better, but dump the tightwad because times with him just aren’t getting any better.
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