With one hand in their pocket

DOUBLE STANDARDS

OBLIGING: The boys end up footing the bill most of the time.  (for illustration purpose only)

Antiquated practices that oblige men to chivalrously pay the bill at most social outings still seem to be heavily in force, and strangely, these men don’t seem to have much a problem in doing so.

Metrolife speaks to a few Bangaloreans to find out what they think of this practice. Riya, a MCom student of Mount Carmel College, is contemptuous of girls who wait expectantly for their boyfriends to take out their wallets at the end of a meal. She says that when she goes out with her friends, it’s mostly in a mixed group of girls and boys and she always makes it a point to go dutch with the others. “There are a few girls who expect that guys should pay for them when they go out, but this definitely isn’t my preference. I like to pay for myself; I believe that I have that much capability at least,” she says, firmly.

However, Sandeep, an engineering student, doesn’t seem to think this is such a big deal. “Yes, when I go out with my friends, it’s generally us guys, who end up paying. If one of us is particularly short on money, the girls might chip in. But I don’t think that we’re forced to pay for meals and outings; generally, we offer to do it ourselves. As long as I’m not strapped for cash at the moment, I’m fine with it,” he says. He adds that it can sometimes be embarrassing for a guy to admit he can’t pay the bill on a particular occasion. “It can get really uncomfortable when I have to tell a girl I can’t pay for her. But if the girl happens to be a close friend and is understanding, it’s alright,” he explains.

Picking up a tab isn’t always a matter of inconvenience; sometimes, it may be perceived as a status symbol. Shreyas, a school student, says that most guys pay for their female friends at social outings because they are generally expected to.

“I go to an all boys’ school, so I don’t hang out with girls that much. But whenever I do, I obviously pay for them as well. This is the accepted norm,” he says.

His friend, Akarsh, adds that paying the bill is often a matter of pride for a boy. “It depends on the girl, really, but often, not letting a girl pick up the tab makes you a big shot. On the other hand, a guy who doesn’t pay for his girlfriend is seen as cheap,” he explains.

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