Donna’s Dating Diary: Is it all about the Benjamins, baby?


What is it we are all looking for in a date? Well, thanks to all my witty followers on Twitter I’ve discovered the following: “Nice eyes, good manners, cooking skills, someone like yourself…”. Some guys seem less fussy – opting for “anything with a pulse”. Honestly! But overall the majority of you felt – and I use a quote from Mr Big himself –   “You just wanna be with the one that makes you laugh.” I must say this has always been what’s worked for me with my past dates. A date with Mr Funny is quite definitely more, um, fun!

Again, beware of pre-conceived ideas, as we’ve already established Mr/Mrs Quiet isn’t necessary boring and sometimes subtle humour can be funniest. An ‘over the top’ funny date may have developed such a hilarious façade as a way of masking their unease or a feeling of deep insecurity.  ‘Miss new boobs’ doesn’t have to be all fake, just as someone who lives 3000 miles away can be more available than someone who lives next door. I also discovered through the joy of Twitterdom that most of us do worry frequently about how money affects dating. Yes, that most vulgar of subjects…

Do our financial differences matter? I’ve personally always felt pretty at ease with or without money when dating.  I have never felt it defines who I am in any way or anyone else for that matter, nor how much fun you can have on a date. But how does your date feel? Hopefully the same, but if money does raise its ugly head early on then perhaps your date has some sort of hang up. I don’t think either person wants to hear about the other’s financial woes on the first, second or even third date for that matter. Trust me, I dated a guy once who went on so much about his lack of funds, I imagined a string quartet was going to appear from the kitchen to drown out his moaning.  I also wouldn’t have minded so much if he just wanted someone to talk to, but he actually went as far as to suggest ways in which I could help. A bit much for a first date methinks.

Let me be clear: it wasn’t his lack of cash that meant I didn’t see him again (the irony of the situation was he actually had job security and no dependents like most of us). It was his negative attitude, his chippy comments towards me and anyone else he thought was more able. I also dated someone some years ago whom, whilst he didn’t have equal earnings to me, always made everything fun and didn’t have any hang ups about my lifestyle or the choices I made. He was so generous and thoughtful in other ways that he was a pleasure to be around. Peoples’ views and attitudes are what need to be compatible, not their bank balances. It is also no secret that I have dated in a much higher financial bracket to myself and it honestly didn’t make any difference in the early days of dating.  Of course later down the line, if you are in a serious and committed relationship, then frank adult discussions probably need to be had, especially if children are concerned.

Or if one of you wants to go to Bognor and the other to St. Barts on a regular basis, and no middle ground can be found, then you probably shouldn’t be dating. If two people are willing and want to be together then you can overcome most things. But I totally understand why most single parents find this a little trickier; just managing to keep things afloat, they are not as willing to take on the added burden of supporting a new partner like they may have done pre-children. Out of the mouths of babes and all that. It’s about choices, and money is most certainly another on the long list of things that are sent to test us. However, I’ve seen people from completely different cultural and religious backgrounds have long, happy relationships overcoming much greater obstacles. I also think it is all so easy for people to use things like money, job differences etc. as an excuse, when quite often there can be something all together different at the root of the problem. Things in life only divide us if you let them. I honestly always have as much fun with friends who are skinted as with those who are minted. We just might have to drink slightly different wine!

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