A good friend of mine, Grace, was recently accused of not being a feminist because she believes that men should pay on the first date. This attack shook Grace to her very core and so she did what any young person in her situation would do. She posted this information on her Facebook page, looking for confirmation that just because she wants a guy to pay for her on the first date, she does not need to relinquish her copy of the Feminine Mystique.
I immediately took offense to this because I too like it when a man pays for me on the first date. But to say I am not a feminist is like suggesting a frog’s ass isn’t water tight.
The feminist movement’s goal is to make women equal to men. And so far they have done a pretty okay job, though the work is certainly not finished yet. Still, more now than ever before women do not need to derive their identity from men. We are no longer social pariahs if we don’t get married immediately after college; if we don’t get married ever. When we do get married, we are no longer expected to take our husband’s name. When Peyton and I finally do tie the knot, formal invitations will not be addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Peyton Manning, but instead Mr. Manning and Tatiana (I am sort of like Madonna that way).
This is huge considering the whole notion of a man paying for a woman’s meal was that women simply couldn’t. Now we can, but we shouldn’t have to.
Operating from my previous assumption that men need women and not vice versa, it has become incumbent upon you men to impress us.
What? You gasp. No, seriously, you have to impress us. We have options and choices and at the end of the day, everything I read tells me my quality of life will actually dimimish when I get married to you, while yours will increase. So if you want me to make this leap, you had better bring something to the table (pun intended).
Now, if I was a client whose business you were trying to win over, you would put on a sharp suit, pick a really nice restaurant and at the end of the evening, pull out your AmEx card and say, “this one is on me.” Not because that client can’t pay for his/her meal, he’d better be able to if you expect him to pay your bills later, but because you want that client to like you and pick you and be impressed by you.
So, why shouldn’t the same apply when you take me out for dinner?
Understand, we women do our parts too. We get dressed up, we put on uncomfortable shoes and wear make-up, laugh at your corny jokes and pretend to be interested in college basketball. We play our parts because, like you men, we also have the biological urge to couple-off.
It's just thanks to Gloria’s pioneering ways, we can now wait until we are 60 if that is what it takes to find the one that’s right.