If a man took you out for a meal, but then asked you to split the bill, what would you say?
After asking various women this question, the general response was that they would willingly split the bill. Even though it is nice to be treated in such scenarios, the responses include opinions surrounding the fact that a man shouldn’t be expected to pay;
“It shouldn’t really matter who pays when going out, however the behaviour of either individual can tell you what kind of people they are. If you offer to pay, even if he invited you, maybe it shows your generosity. Never offering to pay might show lack of consideration for the other person. If neither offers to pay for the bill, maybe that’s a statement that the date is more platonic than romantic”
Even though we say this, do you think there is truth to the concept that a man is expected to provide financially for the woman he is with? This can often be a very controversial topic, especially when roles are considered. I believe that it is important for us to look more closely at such topics, in order to find out where we stand with our opinions. After all, the way you see things will heavily impact the person you are with.
For Richer or for Poorer
They say money makes the world go round… We are forced to think differently if we are to grow differently. Money can’t buy faith, or hope, nor can it buy real love, yet many of us have an unhealthy appetite for wealth.
15 And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.”
-Luke 12:15 NKJV
Being wealthy is far from a curse, but God expects us to be wise with our finances. When our main personal concern lies with accumulating earthly treasures, then we find ourselves on dangerous ground. In the context of relationships, you and your partner have the opportunity to develop a bond celebrated in heaven as a glorious treasure. Angels look on in excitement as you both make choices in favour of God.
Although challenging, it is vital that you find common ground and develop these healthy habits as a couple now, than face the trials completely unprepared. It’s like sitting down to write a book on a topic you know nothing about. Preparation makes all the difference to your life story!
Attitude & Communication
“Sometimes me and my boyfriend split the bill, I pay or he pays. I think it all boils down to the fact that money needs to be spoken about, because if the relationship/date turns into marriage, it’s never spoken about then it just causes problems, i.e. “when I work my money is mine and his is his” or “she makes more money than he does, then the man feels like he’s not providing for the family”. It’s all a partnership. Attitude should definitely be kept to a minimum and communication is key!!”
What was interesting, was that the approach and the attitude shown by the man was deemed to be important in determining the response from the woman. The answers that I received showed me that the issue isn’t the fact that women don’t want to have the financial responsibility, but rather they don’t want to feel disrespected in a relationship. Communication was also highlighted, and interestingly enough many of us struggle to be honest and open in relationships. This is the cause of most conflicts today.
The idea of gender roles within a relationship can make for very interesting dynamics, especially if both people have strong opinions. Some men hate the idea of their partner earning more than they do, which then makes you question how much it means to a man to be able to provide. Some women hate the idea of being a stay-at-home mum, and pride themselves in being very career-oriented. Then there are women who are perfectly content with running the home and leaving all financial responsibility to the man, and there are men who are content with the fact that the woman in their life is the highest earner.
It really does boil down to your opinions and attitudes as an individual, but communication is certainly key in being able to better understand the other person.
I have read that it is crucial to be able to practice empathy towards the person you are with, so let’s do that;
As a man, you are very focused on being able to reach a point of financial stability, and one day provide for your family’s needs. Now for whatever reason, you lose the job you are currently in, and as time passes you find that you are struggling to secure another.
You are becoming increasingly frustrated, and it worries you to see how quickly your money is running out despite cutting back. Your girlfriend knows that you are unemployed but you have assured her that you have adequate savings. Still, she doesn’t seem to understand how much being unemployed is affecting you mentally, and you know how much she loves to spend quality time and receive gifts/be treated.
Instead of opening up to her (which you consider too risky in terms of your dignity and the potential of an argument) you still try to take her out as normal. At a restaurant one evening, you reach boiling point and ask her to pay the bill, before asking why men are always expected to pay.
You know that your reaction is out of character, but you still struggle to tell her the truth…
Can you see how detrimental a breakdown in communication can be? Often, we don’t even know that we have an issue with communication in our relationship until there is a conflict. Conflicts happen as a result of differences in opinion, that tend to stem from a lack of communication.
We need to be able to talk about finances in our relationships, long before we even prepare for marriage. Many people leave this out until marriage, and once they experience conflict over this area, a huge strain is then placed on all other areas. As someone mentioned above, “it’s all a partnership”. Two people walking side by side in the sight of God, working to make a good relationship better.
Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?
-Amos 3:3 NKJV
What do you think about this topic?
Would you pay the bill?
Who do you think should be financially responsible?
Leave your comments below