I’m a Feminist. Pay For My Meal.

Lydia Caradonna
6 min readJul 29, 2020

Ah, yes. Date etiquette. The debate that launched 1000 tweets.

Cards on the table: I have split the bill on dates before while in a long term relationship. I have paid for dates before while dating women. I have also had my meals paid for by men. I don’t do the bashful ‘oh no, let me. Are you sure?’ dance. I don’t even enter discussion. If a man has asked me on a date, he is paying. Not despite my feminism, but because of it.

I see you, Chad. You’re sat at your desktop computer, slightly foaming at the mouth. You’re going to send this to your bros, Brad and Tad, with some variation of the line ‘These bitches ask for equality and still expect me to buy them dinner’. This is not a new topic for you. You, Brad and Tad have spent many an afternoon in the house that your mother maintains, eating the pizza pockets your mother provides, passing the hours with deep philosophical discussions like ‘If bitches want equality, can I punch women now?’. You think you’re Ben Shapiro. You truly think you have pulled out a ‘gotcha’ of massive proportions. Truly, feminists everywhere are putting on our aprons to return to the kitchen, which is a short walk because we were there already, cleaning up after you. You, Brad and Tad don’t realise how deeply screwed up it is that you are trying to use equality as an excuse to be violent to women, and that actually men hit women so often already that you hardly needed permission anyway. Chad, if you can find it in yourself to stop being an edge-lord for five minutes, stick around, you might learn something about feminism.

Let’s look a little deeper into why it is that men have been paying for dinner in the first place. You see, there was a time when men weren’t buying us dinner at all. Instead, men were asking the people they had enslaved to prepare a fancy banquet for our κύριος (kyrios, or appointed male authority figure), usually a father but sometimes an uncle or brother, and then those men were saying, ‘listen, bro - have some more wine - so I was wondering if I could purchase that woman… well, girl, that you have lying around?’. They would discuss a price and then our κύριος would come home and say ‘get dressed, y/n, I just sold you’ like a slightly more misogynistic One Direction fanfic. We’d be engaged without ever meeting our future husbands.

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Lydia Caradonna

Sex worker, “””journalist””” and activist from the UK! // Tweets at: @LydiaCaradonna // works with: @ukdecrimnow // argues with: the government