Saturday , June 12 2021

Christening vs. Equity in Dating: It's confused



I read some comments about an article dating back to last week and underlined a point I already knew: there are two opposing forces in this era – chivalry and equality. (Please note that in this column, I'm in breach of couples of the opposite sex, but similar concepts apply to same-sex couples.)

Rally: The guy pays.

Equality: Separate your account because no one is eligible.


Rival: The guy keeps the door open.

Equality: Anyone who comes to the door keeps it open.

Knight: The man asks the woman to go out.

Equality: Anyone who wants to ask the other person simply has to do it.

I have said this before and I will say it again: I am all about the independence of women and I believe that women should be paid as men at the workplace and have all the same privileges in life. This, however, does not mean that I believe that women and men must have the same place when it comes to dating. Equal cooperation? Yes. But women also have the need to feel pursued, special and safe. Does a person need to feel these things too? I believe that men need to feel grateful, and sometimes they need, but they do not exploit, especially economically.

Where does most of these people leave? Honestly, confused.

When my female clients tell me they want a kind of pumping, the kind that calls them with confidence and who pays for the bill, what they have to remember is that things are now blurred. A woman wants this treatment and another wants to cry "I'm a woman, I hear my roar" and not to face anything. A woman may want a man to push her to a wall and kiss her at a date because she is sexy. Another can see the same action as sexual harassment. None of these are wrong. But men, at least some of them with whom I work with, avoid taking risks at each end. Are they going for chivalry or equality?

For every advice I give, there is someone who, of course, believes exactly the opposite. Some women have no interest in treating things – financially or otherwise – in order not to feel cared for ("I can open it myself, thank you") and I do not think the guy should be responsible for any more or less than the woman. I see that younger generations, such as the millennia, are much more than the mentality of equality, while baby boomers prefer hatred. And those in the middle? A mixed bag. What causes confusion is that hatred and equality are now at the head.

I thought the last person I was dated did handle things well … he asked. Asked if I liked the door that was open to me (yes), if I liked to have dinner sometimes (yes) and if I liked when I moved to the outside of the pavement (again, yes). Asked why he did not know. Her last girlfriend did not want anything from this because she grew up in a home with such traditional roles of the sexes, trying to escape this mentality. The question is always a good place to get started.

Finally, if you want something (especially speaking to women here), tell your partner. No one is a mind reader, so if you want someone to do something, or you really like a gesture, report it. You can not be angry with someone who does not do something you want … if he just does not know it.


Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating.

Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating.


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