Ok, I know this is going to be inflammatory to some, but it’s really bothering me.
I’ve seen my news feed on Facebook flood with links to this article, praising the Mom for having her six-year-old son take her out on dates.
He opens doors, pulls out her chair, pays from his allowance, and figures out the tip.
“Teaching him how to treat a lady.” is the idea.
Here’s the problems I have with this.
One, the child earns his allowance. Shouldn’t he get a say in how this is spent? Why is a six-year-old expected to pay for his Mom? Maybe we’re weird, but around here, Wolf and I out earn the kids by, oh, I don’t know, A LOT. The idea of paying them an allowance, then turning around, hand out, to take it back by having them pay for our dinner? I mean, I could see a kidlet saving up and doing it for a parent’s birthday. As a lovely gesture. But, on a monthly basis? Sorry, skeeves me out, completely.
Two, and this is the BIG one for me…Why are you teaching your son that he has to pay for the date?
Equality is a big thing in today’s society. Women are in the work force, earning their own income. Why are sons still being taught that they’re to pay for everything?
It made sense when women didn’t work, didn’t have money of their own. But in today’s world? Shouldn’t children of both sexes be taught that they’re to pay for their dates, or their own way, rather than, “The Penis pays.”? How is that equality?
Look, I’m all for well-mannered children. Wolf and I work darn hard to make the feral little beasts that are toddlers turn into well-mannered, polite people.
All of our children, regardless of penis ownership, hold doors. Carry things. Give up their seats on a bus for someone in need (ie, elderly, disabled, pregnant, carrying a little person, etc). My ten-year old spotted a neighbour, with her baby in a carrier strapped to her chest, struggling to shovel her driveway last year. He rushed out to help her, unasked, followed closely by his younger sister. Diva joined in when she saw what was going on.
Manners and courtesies aren’t a one way street.
Our daughters are being taught to pay their own way. AND, if they ask someone out, THEY pay.
Seriously, it’s 2016, folks.
Why are men still expected to cough up the money on a date?
“But Imp,” I can hear some of you protesting, “Men still out earn women in many professions!” and yes, that’s true. BUT. Isn’t it still a sexist assumption that particular guy does? Women can, and do out earn men. So, how is assuming that he makes more not still sexist?
And, in the particular case of the 6-year-old taking Mom out and paying, I’m damn sure she out earns him.
“But, if you invite someone out, they’re your guest! You pay for your guest!” Ok, I can see that. As I said, if my daughters invite someone out, they are taught to pay for their guest. But, I’ve also heard of guys being asked out, and still expected to pay. And what about in a relationship, past the initial ‘dating’ stage?
Look, I have no problem with the premise of one on one dinners with parents. We’ve done it with our Minions. I have no objection with teaching children to open doors, pull out chairs, be well-mannered and polite. Heck, we get our kids to figure out the tip percentage too.
We pay. We’re the adults, we have the earning capacity.
I think demanding a child to pay for an adult is just wrong. I think that teaching a boy that, because he’s the guy, he needs to pay is wrong.
We talk about feminism, we talk about independence, we talk about equality.
Why are certain things exempt from that?
Why not teach both our sons and daughters to pay for themselves? That everyone deserves to have a door held, manners used, regardless of gender?
How is it, in a society that is trending to ‘non gendered toys’ and ‘non gendered fashion’, we still have very gendered dating rules, and manners?