I Had an Interview to Be a Sugar Daddy Last Week
As I drafted and crafted this article, I took care to ensure I chose my words carefully.
I actually wrote the introduction last. I want to make one thing clear at the outset.
We all judge. You can say you don’t, but you do. It’s an inherently human thing to do. The key is to not pass judgment.
To “criticize or condemn someone from a position of assumed moral superiority.”
And I truly don’t. All else equal, I don’t have a problem with the way people arrange themselves interpersonally and intimately, even if it’s not something I would do or suggest to a friend.
Judge: That’s not for me and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it to you.
Pass judgment: The above, plus you’re wrong for doing what you do.
Who am I to pass judgment on the choices people make, particularly if I haven’t or couldn’t possibly live their experience?
This said, I found myself in a situation last week that was surreal. It was one of those things that was happening, however I didn’t realize it happened until after it happened.
I matched with a girl on a dating app. We seemed to hit it off conversationally so she suggested a video chat. I dislike video chats, but — the pandemic. So we hopped on a call.
It got off to a quick start with an easy and relatively open discussion. Then I noticed she was reading from notes. And she moved into a systematic, if not methodical mode probing me about my financial situation and my willingness to support my partner during times of money-related uncertainty.
She expressed concern over losing work due to the pandemic and an unclear path for her profession post-pandemic. She queried my views on supporting one another when one half of the partnership is in a financial dry spell. She also indicated that she doesn’t subscribe to the belief that couples should split the bill or trade off on who buys. She labeled the practice millennial.
I didn’t think much of this in the moment. I went along with the conversation. We ended it, but on a weird note. She indicated she would get back to me to let me know if she wanted to continue things. It felt like the end of an interview. Like she had to review her notes against the other candidates. Now I had to sit around and wait patiently for a decision.
This is when it dawned on me. To some extent, she might have been seeking a sugar daddy. Or at least she wanted to know if I was in the financial position to be one. I feel confident in this assumption.
At one point in our talk, she asked if I was comfortable with what she was saying, if I felt that way about a relationship and would support her if she was unable to contribute. I told her it was probably way too soon to make concrete statements on something like this, given we hadn’t even met. However, in a partnership, I do believe in supporting the person I’m with, even if it’s financially. But this doesn’t happen instantly, automatically, and unconditionally. It happens in a committed relationship that ebbs and flows like all relationships do.
In other words, don’t put the cart before the horse.
Later it dawned on me as a bit off to even have this conversation in the first place. And, to some degree, there’s truth to this. However, it’s also something that has become personal finance 101 in these parts.
I had the money talk, after seeing each other for about six months. After a few dates, it just felt like a natural time to bring it up and start talking about money — specifically splitting the bill on dates, and saving money on future outings.
Eventually, our money conversations progressed. We started talking about our career goals, money hacks, different ways of investing and other nitty-gritty details that come with money and finance. Four years later, our relationship is stronger than ever.
This feels reasonable to me. A natural progression in the logical flow of a relationship that, obviously, had real prospects of becoming a partnership.
Katrina didn’t appear to have any motive other than ensuring that her and her boyfriend were on the same page about money. She wanted to confirm that he wasn’t going to function opposite to her penchant for frugality, saving, and investing.
Her motives were innocent and pure attempts to check financial compatibility. At the end of the day, the girl who “interviewed” me on the dating app isn’t all that different. She just had different reasons for asking the questions, thus she asked them — all else equal — way too soon.
But I’m glad she did. Had she messaged me and asked to pursue the relationship, I would have said no. And I would have said no, specifically because of the money talk — as seemingly unconventional as it was — we had. I’m happy she let me in on her motive right off the bat, rather than six weeks or six months further on up the road.
I’m sure she chatted with other guys. I’m equally as certain she came across one or more candidate with more money than me and a willingness — if not enthusiasm — to use it to support her whenever and however she needed.
Someone will accept her offer. It will fit into their budget, relationship goals, and view of the world. Not a scenario that works for me, but this doesn’t mean it can’t work for you.
Personal finance is personal, after all.