“Check Please”

This is a blog I recently wrote for my girls at Sex and The Suburb.  Check them out at www.sexandthesuburb.com

 

check

 

Ah yes. That moment on the date where the tension and awkwardness comes as unwanted guests to crash your party. Out of the corner of your eye you see the waiter approaching your table with that little white piece of paper. The bill.

Here is where the trouble begins. What is the right thing to do?

In today’s dating world, sometimes the traditional rules apply and sometimes they don’t. It’s all so confusing. In times like this, having an official First Date Rule book would be a handy thing to whip out of your purse and refer to Rule 10 Section 12 Subsection A – Paying for Dinners. But alas, life just isn’t that fair. Instead we are forced to sit there awkwardly and look desperately across the table for our date to save us by quickly scooping up the bill and allowing us to breath a long sigh of relief.

Now I am not against paying for my portion of a date but is this something that should be discussed and finalized prior to the commencement of the date? This minor detail can actually be quite stressful! If the guy asks me out for dinner I have to admit that I assume he is paying. Is that wrong?

Is there a clever “maneuver” we can do that can save us from the torture? I am not endorsing any of the following suggestions and I won’t admit to doing any of them but hey, you might find them useful:

1. Do the fake grab for the wallet to “pretend” to go for the cash and hope to god he stops you before it’s too late!

2. Having the bill trigger a much needed bathroom break. A quick escape for you to go and wash your hands, fix your make-up or stare at yourself in the mirror wasting just enough time so when you get back to the table the transaction has already been rectified and you can sit down and enjoy the rest of your evening.

3. The proactive approach. As soon as the bill comes rip off the band-aid and say something like “Thank you so much for dinner”! This is a gutsy move but could produce an immediate result.

The men that I have talked to about this say that they don’t mind paying for a first date but want the girl to at least offer. Why? If you ask the girl out for dinner, a movie or anything else that requires a monetary commitment, are you not also taking that monetary responsibility on? If I was to ask a guy out I would assume as much.

It’s those weird mutual “Hey let’s do something” moments where you both agree you want to get together and you both agree to a place and an event. Those are the times where the paying rules may get blurry. However, my rule for this one is I come fully prepared to pay my share and actually go all the way for the wallet for this date.

How do you handle the first date bill? Girls, do you have any tricks you use to get out of that awkward moment? Guys, do you actually want the girl to pay or at least offer?

Relationships after Divorce – To Jump or Not to Jump. Hmmmm

shoes

Went through all stages of grief….twice!    Check

Made sure kids were all good with mom moving on      Check

Finalized Divorce      Check

Emotionally prepared myself for dating     Check

Went on a few feeler dates to get back in the game    Check

So with the checklist all complete and really feeling like I am ready to move on and seek out a new love, why then do I look at the possibility and say….”Meh”

What does that mean?

I know I’m ready but maybe the problem is I’m not willing.  Willing to give up my new found independence and freedom.  Willing to compromise on doing what I want to do when I want to do it?

Advice comes from all angles. From my married friends, my single friends, my divorced friends and yes of course, from my mother.  Yeah Yeah mom I know!

“Stay single forever” some say.  “You would be happier in a relationship” others say.

Yes, there is definitely a part of me that misses having someone to share my experiences with and be there for me when I need support but come on ladies.  How many women out there in a relationship right now can check “Emotionally supportive” off as one of their partners list of qualities?  Very few I’m sure.  And isn’t that one of the biggest problems we all face once the relationship has settled in to being a habit?  “He never listens to me”.  “He’s not there for me emotionally”.

I think after being in a relationship that spanned almost 20 years, there is nothing new for me to experience.  I went through all the “firsts” with him. I feel like I already ran the marathon, got my participation ribbon and proved to myself I could do it.  I don’t feel like going back to the starting line and running the same race again.  My feet are TIRED!

So.  Where does that leave me?  Am I bitter?  No I’m not.  I love men.  I have some great men in my life who make me feel beautiful, strong and worthwhile.  I just don’t know if I want another ribbon.

Maybe if I find the right pair of shoes it won’t feel like a marathon.  Maybe it will be a nice comfortable jog  (Ok. Did I go too far with the whole “running” comparison?)

What do you think?  Have you been around the track more than once? (Seriously, I will stop now!)