Dating After 50: Financial Responsibility

If you're over 50 and interested in someone enough that you want to address how the two of you will handle finances or pay for your dates, you can begin by picking up on clues as you get to know each other, leading by example, and having a direct conversation.

During your first meetings, you can learn a lot about their work, values, and experience. Those insights can give you an idea of their position on sharing financial responsibility while dating. Here are some clues to watch for:

  • Clues that a woman is willing or able to split the bill: Feminist ideology, liberal politics, a period of independent living, or pride in her professional (as opposed to family) accomplishments.

  • Clues that a woman isn't able or willing to split the bill: A more conservative set of values about male and female roles and a desire for men to display conventional manners (hold the door open, guide the woman to her seat and push in her chair, clearly ask for the bill).

    She may also never have worked outside the home, or even if she did, she may drop hints about how she likes to be treated by a man when she's out of the professional environment.

  • Clues about a man's desire to split the bill: Liberal politics, feminist ideology, was married to a professional woman or a woman who worked full time, or drops hints about wanting a woman who has her own hobbies, passions, and independent means.

  • Clues that the man wants to handle all the bills himself: Traditional politics and values about male and female roles, traditional manners, and a previous marriage to a woman who didn't work outside the home or who stopped professional work to raise children and didn't resume it until after the children were out of school.

Though these aren't absolute giveaways of how people want to operate financially today, they're pretty reliable clues as to what you can expect. If you don't want to have a talk about finances right away, you can use these profiles to guess about how the economics of dating may proceed with this person.

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