Women Are Expected to Buy Men Drinks Now? I Quit

My Thing Is: I guess the rules of courtship are changing too fast for me. Being single is already tough, but this new development makes it feels like the Hunger Games ... make that the Thirsty Games.

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An online guide to “How to Convince a Girl to Buy You a Drink” suggests he’s not alone. And apparently, two full years ago, people were wondering whether this practice represented “the new normal.

So women have been out here setting precedents? Help me understand the reasoning behind this newfangled practice. What happened to wanting to be wooed? Courted? Treated like a lady? Or, if you prefer, an adult who values her money and doesn’t have to compensate men for their attention?

Is this because some urban legend statistics say there’s one single, available, sometimes-working-a-job, not-even-that-fine-but-at-least-he’s-breathing black man for every 50 single, lonely, desperate black women? Is it because of articles asking, “Why Is It So Hard for Black Women to Find the Love They Deserve?” Do women feel like they have to fight, claw and do whatever they need to do to hook a man, as if we’re fighting in the Hunger Games? Oh, no, I’m sorry, the Thirsty Games?

I’ll be the first to admit: Old school, traditional gender roles are probably playing a role in my reaction. But it’s more than that. I have fundamental problems with any grown person asking another grown person, who is technically still a stranger, to buy him or her something. I don’t ask men to buy me drinks. They just do. I mean, I accept because I am not Beyoncé, and receiving a drink is appealing. Quite appealing. But I would never ask. I know better.

I’m still trying to get my head around what’s happened and to figure out if I’m somehow out of touch for being appalled. (Also, please tell me I’m not the only woman this has happened to.) But right now, if purchasing alcohol for men is the new game, I don’t want to play. So no, I can’t, won’t, don’t want to buy you a drink, sir. Thanks so much for the offer, though.

Diana Veiga is a Spelman woman, a writer and a D.C. resident. She loves Paris, cute shoes and sparkly things. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter.

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