I went on a first date the other night. I thought he was very attractive, and our conversation went pretty well. I was interested enough that I had agreed to go out with him again.
Until... I excused myself to go to the bathroom. When I got back the bill was sitting on the table. Just to set the stage, we met for happy hour, where everything was $4. The bill was $20. So I saw the bill on the table and thought it had been paid. I said, with a smile, "Thanks so much! Are we ready?" "No. Not quite," he said. "I think it's only fair if you pay the tip. It's $4."
Whoa. I have never been asked this before. To split, yes. But to pay a $4 tip? I was thrown for quite a loop. "Um, ok, but I only have a $20, so I'll have to get change." "No," he said, "I'll just give you my $20 and you can put it all on your credit card with the tip." Really? Really?! What?
Yeah... um, no thanks. I left the date feeling icky and weird. And I really thought about why.
To me, there was an element of calculation in it. It was a red flag. If money were the problem, he could have asked me to split it. But he didn't. He asked me for $4. Like he had to have control over the situation somehow. To me, as a woman, it felt like a jab. It didn't feel good.
Through studying teachers such as David Deida (my favorite book of his is Intimate Communion), Alison Armstrong, Dr. Pat Allen, and from reading Yehuda Berg's book The Spiritual Rules of Engagement, along with my own experiences and experiences of my friends (both male and female), I have come to really get that there is a dance, or a flow, of masculine and feminine energy that goes on between men and women. The masculine energy does the hunting, or the earning, so to speak, and the feminine does the receiving and the nurturing. When my date asked me to pay, it cut me off from the feminine receiving energy; he wasn't trying to hunt me anymore, and it separated me from my natural state of feminine being. It totally broke the polarity between us, which resulted in me losing all attraction towards him, making him undesirable to me. The energy between us, the natural flow of masculine and feminine, had died.
Attraction builds between men and women when there is polarity. A woman is attracted to a man when he is trying to please her or "hunt" her. And it attracts a man to a woman when she appreciates him and all the things he does for her. Personally, and according also to all my girlfriends, a man who opens doors for us,compliments us, makes an effort to see us, and takes us out (even if it's for coffee or ice cream) really attracts us to him. And it's not because we are high maintenance. It's just because it's inherently in our nature! (disclaimer- ok, yes, some women are high maintenance, but that's not what I'm addressing here). And note: men, doing these things really are in your own best interest... It makes women WANT you!
I'm not making a sweeping statement saying that women shouldn't pay, as that's not the core issue here. Every situation and relationship is different. But this particular situation was so profound for me because I literally felt the break in the energy of the masculine and feminine dance. It's an interesting thing to be aware of as you move forward in your dating. Notice when you start feeling disconnected from your date or partner, and see if there was a shift in the masculine/feminine polarity. If you detect there was, see how you can come back to your own natural state of being by connecting in to your true feminine or masculine nature.