DATING DIARY – DATING ETIQUETTE: Should a guy pay on the first date?

If her daddy’s rich, take her out for a meal
If her daddy’s poor, just do what you feel
Speed along the lane
Do a ton or a ton and twenty-five
When the sun goes down
You can make it, make it good in a lay-by

We’re not bad people, we’re not dirty, we’re not mean
We love everybody, but we do as we please
When the weather’s fine
We go fishing or go swimming in the sea
We’re always happy
Life’s for living, yeah, that’s our philosophy

When I was young I believed that a man and a woman should always pay half for everything including dinner on first dates. This was due to my own views as a young feminist… but mainly also down to fear. A fear of control and power. If the man paid was I indebted to him? I was uncomfortable with that position. And I always wanted to ensure that I could leave the night as independent and as guilt free as possible. Now, however I never feel guilty if a man pays on the first date. I see it as a sign – and I can choose whether to pick up on it or dismiss it. (And I’ve also learnt that if a guy makes you feel like you owe him after a date, well that’s certainly not a good sign either! And be wary… some guys may try that trick).

I guess it all depends on how much you’re going to get a man to work for a position in your life. I don’t necessarily think that a man paying/not paying for a date is a written in stone sign of his desires. But I think generally at the beginning… if a dinner date is suggested… he should pay.

Myself and a friend of mine were walking down the street a few weeks back debating this very topic. We stopped in front of two lads sitting next to their bikes in the street…

“Excuse me if you really like a girl and you asked her out to dinner… would you pay for them on the first date?” I questioned.

“Totally. Definitely!” they answered…

“What if you weren’t that into them would you pay?” I asked..

“Erm…maybe…maybe not” they answered. “But you’d definitely pay if you were into her?”

“Yes! Definitely!!!” they responded.

The unwritten constitution of dating: that guys should pay on the first date. And a girl should offer to pay half. If he’s into you… he’ll decline.

You have to distinguish – are you an option or are you the apple of his eye?

Let’s give an example…usually I always offer to pay dutch on a date. I was on a first date with a guy (this is like…ages ago). The bill had come – I’d offered to pay half. His response: “I know how you women feel about guys paying for bills…so let’s go halves and I’ll take you out for the next dinner”

“Ok…” I responded. Naively believing him. I liked this guy. But now looking back, had he used feminism against me?! I was after all, a proud, independent woman. Yes.. yes I was!

But this ‘overlooking’ led to a series of overlooking.

“Oh my god girl, that first date was such a red flag!” my friend screeched at me down the phone when I reflected on the short dating episode we’d had together. Hmm really!?!

Neither party wants to be taken advantage of in the dating game. But it happens. We live in a world where people are simultaneously dating several people at once through the power of the internet. And dating can get… expensive.

And you don’t want to be somebodys option. You want to be their number one. So all I can advise is.. that if he’s not putting the effort in at the beginning, then however much that might hurt to acknowledge the only thing I can say is that it happens to a lot of people. So don’t feel bad or dwell. Train yourself to spot the red flags. And do yourself a favour. (And I acknowledge that it happens both sides – men and women).

I’ve had a few guy friends I’ve tried to give advice to on dating girls. When I tell them they should offer to take a girl out if they like them.. occasionally their answer has been.. “I don’t want them to think they can take the mick blah blah blah”. The most important thing is to not let past woes of relationships get in the way of current dating opportunities. So he cheated… she took the mick, he did this, they did that.. so what! Don’t let that affect how you treat a current potential. I have three brothers who are all very much in love with their current partners… I’ve seen what’s worked, what hasn’t, and they’ve shared their dating secrets and thoughts with me about women.

We live in a rapidly changing world, where even the etiquette of dating is evolving. Who knows how far our society will advance and where dating will land in a couple of hundred years times. All I know is that.. you can pay half on the first date, you can take the man out, you can let him pay, you can not let him pay. But I’ve seen what’s worked and if he’s into you…believe me.. he’ll fluff his feathers. So let him? Believe me – you’re worth it girl!!

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou

So my ultimatum is yes. A man.. should certainly pay on the first date.



He pours the hot, frothy latte into the flimsy paper cup. He quickly glances up at me and smiles. He takes out a heart shaped sprinkler and winks cheekily at me. He then decorates my steaming hot drink with a delicate sprinkle of delicious chocolatey powder. He pops the plastic lid on the cup handing it delicately over. And just before I leave…we exchange a quick smile.

I sink back into my comfy leather seat watching the Coffee Bar Man serve customer after customer. My friend sits next to me…chewing my ear off about nothing in particular. I cradle the warm paper cup in my hands which have nearly frozen in the ice cold air conditioning.

“I’m going to give him my number” I declare to my friend cutting his diatribe about the talents of David Lynch off mid sentence. He looks at me slightly annoyed to be cut off “Er ok” he says.. following my gaze “anyway so yes if you haven’t seen it then you should…” he continues talking barely paying attention to the importance of what I’ve just declared.

“Do you think I should?” I look at Steven sitting next to me “Give him my number I mean?” I ask. He looks at me. We both turn to look at Barista Coffee Boy. We watch Coffee Boy walk to the table next to us and pick up the empty cups. He has a cute clean shaven look about him. And he’s also Italian. With a slight hint of a wiggle in his walk. I watch the wiggle. “Do you think he might be gay?” I peer back at my friend “Who knows” he replies “But, if you’re going to do it, do it don’t make a big deal out of it” he snaps back at me.

“Ok then! I’ll do it!” I proclaim. I start to giggle to myself as I take a pen and piece of paper out of my bag. “I can’t believe I’m doing this…” I say to my friend as I scribble my number down… signed…. Beckixxx. “Oh for god’s sake” my friend replies rolling his eyes.

I walk over to the counter. I push the note towards Barista Boy and walk calmly back to my seat smirking. My friend rolls his eyes in embarrassment. I sit down and start to pretend to listen again as my friend sounds intellectual about something. I forget what. A noise comes from the kitchen. The two baristas on duty are now whispering. “Oh god. I can’t believe I just gave him my number.” I say to my friend “Why did you let me do that!”.

Barista Boy leaves the kitchen. We look at him. He slips, drops his tray and falls on his bum. I want to cover my eyes. But pretend I haven’t noticed and turn back to my friend “So Twin Peaks then why is it so good then?” I push. Barista Boy heads back to the kitchen. We hear a glass drop and smash on the floor. He leaves the kitchen again and gets busy cleaning tables. Everyone pretends that absolutely everything is normal. My friend gets up and leaves to use the powder room. Whilst he has gone I busy myself reading something awful. The Daily Mail that will do. A paper only to be read in coffee shops because it’s FREE and THERE when you need to distract yourself. The cute Coffee Barista Man heads over to me..

“Erm excuse me – did you write me this note…?” he asks.. I start to wish I hadn’t written the note. “Er yes.. I wrote the note.” I smile half confident. Shit. Wish I hadn’t signed it Becki then I could have blamed it on my mate. “Erm cos – thanks so much but actually I’m… gay” he smiles. FUCK. HE’S GAY. I KNEW IT! WHY DIDN’T MY MATE PICK UP ON THAT. Damn him!

“Oh er.. hahaa..ok thanks!” Shit shit shit. “But still let’s do coffee sometime!” he exclaims quickly. He doesn’t mean it. He smiles and walks away wiggling his bum.

My mate returns from his trip away. “So? How’d it go?” he asks.



“The very essence of romance is uncertainty.”
Oscar Wilde

I exit the bus and start walking up the road. A man is standing in the entrance of one of the more prestigious burger places.. we glance at each other. He looks slightly angry I think to myself. I look away and continue my slow walk up the busy high street. BEEP BEEP. A text. I stop to check my phone. I experience a tap on the shoulder.. I look round. It’s the angry looking man from the burger joint. “Er hi..” he starts nervously.. “I saw you looking at me.. soooo…”.

I have a flashback to my 14 year old self. I once got punched in the face for glancing at a group of boys outside my high school which was placed next to a pretty rough estate (that I actually ended up living on for a while). It was a place where I learnt pretty quickly that one look wrong could easily result (and did) in a “what the f*ck do you think your looking at.. blah blah blah”. That punch had taken me and everyone around me all completely off guard. The group of boys who were probably around 17 had crossed the street walked swiftly towards me, showed me who’s boss and walked off with no sense of compassion or guilt. I don’t think I even cried. I was just mortally embarrassed as everyone around me just stood in silent embarrassment. Oh god! I still am! I shouldn’t have written about this!

“Was I looking at you? OMG er sorry..”. He is a pretty solid looking guy. “Yeah and I thought well you know..” he grins “ Look I don’t usually do this but er let’s go for a drink?” he suggests.

Hmmm. Really? I think. It is daylight.. hot and the cafes and pubs around me are bustling. What harm can it do. “Do you do this a lot? Approach women on the street?” I ask out of interest.

“Erm no.. I am just in the area visiting my mother.. she’s in a care home” he replies.

Awwww. How sweet is my initial thought. Visiting his mother in a care home. My second thought comes up pretty swiftly behind the first… YEAAAAAAH RIGHTTTTT this guy is good! Visiting his mother in a care home my….

“Sure you can buy me a coke” I shrug. Inquisitive to see what else he has up his sleeve.

So five minutes later we are standing drinking a nice cold drink. And he hits me with the line “You’re a gorgeous girl.. why are you single?”

Why am I single. Hmmm. What kind of answer does he want. My cynical side steps in and I initially feel like messing with him. Tell him you are asexual my mind tells me, that your libido lives in a cardboard box in the corner of the room. And that its name is Harry and once a year Harry comes out of its box and I plug it in and that to be honest men find all that ‘plug your libido into the wall’ stuff kinda weird and off-putting. Pfffft.

Obviously I decide to keep it all breezy. “Why am I single.. gosh! Erm – I just don’t get approached!” I smile at him. He retaliates with the “But your so gorgeous I can’t believe that..”.

“Have you read The Game?” I make my eyes like slits and purposefully peer at him cautiously. He doesn’t falter and changes the subject continuing to quiz me about my life. I start rambling on about something I consider to be quite an interesting topic thank you.

He cuts me off mid sentence. “Wow”. He stares at me. “Just wow.. I can’t believe your single. Are those your real eyelashes?”.

I look at him. “Ok you’re laying it on a bit thick now” I reply.

A few weeks earlier I’d witnessed a talk by the Matthew Hussey team… ‘Be the easiest/most approachable in the first 30 seconds…’ they’d said.

Well. Personally I thought that went quite well.



Happy Man in Pretty Woman: Welcome to Hollywood! What’s your dream? Everybody comes here; this is Hollywood, land of dreams. Some dreams come true, some don’t; but keep on dreamin’ – this is Hollywood. Always time to dream, so keep on dreamin’


Ok so I feel a bit guilty about depressing you so much with my last blog. So I thought I’d cheer it up a bit. This is one of my favourite dating diary memories…

I’d only met this guy about twice. He lived about an hours drive from my house. One night he sent me a text “can I come over just for a kiss?”. It was half ten at night. And I didn’t want him thinking he could stay. “It’s late, it’s dark, its….” I came up with all the excuses as to why it was not a sensible idea. “No. No. No” was my answer “Just a kiss” he pushed. Just a kiss. He promised. I gave in. “Ok” I replied. It was far for him to come so late. And also I was living on a really dodgy estate in Peckham and I was unsure I wanted him to see where I lived (I know! I know terrible materialistic thinking – it shouldn’t matter an all that..). An hour later I pulled my slippers on and walked out my front door.


I was a little shocked. I don’t know exactly what type of car it was but it looked out of place in front of my house. Oh my GOD!!! I cringed to myself (oh my god the state of me not the state of the car). He pulled up slowly to my humble abode.


He got out the car. “Hello” he smiled. He leaned in and kissed me. At this point a drunk man happened to be walking past.“Ahhhh BEAUTIFUL!!!” he shouted… “nice to see a bit of romance around here!!”. There was a pause in the air. Then.. we all burst out laughing. And with that he got back in his car as promised and drove away. Away…  into the night.

It’s hard to pinpoint why it didn’t really work out with this guy. I think perhaps because we were just too different. But. It was a really nice way to be treated and will always make me smile. Never give up on romantic gestures.

“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does” William James

This is a cool little video Jamie Jones presents Paradise part of the Ibiza party season – tickets available from July 3rd featuring some of the world’s top DJ’s


Have a good day! And don’t forget! To buy your girlfriend/wife/partner some flowers. You should always buy her flowers on a Wednesday… because it’s Wednesday…


Becki Bx



Well. The title of this blog could be misleading. This incident couldn’t really constitute an actual date. But I thought I’d give it some blog space. I was in my late twenties when I had a short fling with this guy. It didn’t work out. We remained friends but didn’t hang out much. Luckily we just both figured very early on that we didn’t suit. Then shortly after he went on to a new relationship and seemed pretty happy. Several years later….

At first I thought the texts were just friendly, we’d linked back up on facebook. It began with “so hows life going… long time no see” one might deem these as ‘normal’ messages. I did. I had been living in a shared house in London for perhaps six months by this point and to be honest it was NOT giving me the sense of ease and wellbeing it was meant to be giving me. I was actually feeling pretty depressed in the urban jungle. So when I got a few texts from an old ‘friend’ who turned out to live round the corner (we were friends after that dating episode) I thought GREAT!

Him: “So you live in the area now then?” ME: “Yes! Im in the hood!” Him: “remember that time we spent together?” ME: “er.. kind of…” Him: “Oh.. really? So when shall I pop over to see you? Now?”. I looked at the clock. It was midnight. Was he having a laugh? ME: “It’s pretty late now”.  Him: “You’ve lost loads of weight btw – looking great!”. ME: “Er. Thanks! Yeah I’ve been blah blah blah.. running and…blah blah…. jogging…”. Him: “Tomorrow then?”. ME: “Sure! Come over for a coffee!” Absolutely no sexual tendency meant with the coffee reference.

So tomorrow came. And as I peered out the window I saw a sweaty Steve ride up on an old beaten up bicycle.

I opened the door. Finding myself actually quite pleased to see him.. “Alright me ole chum!” He grinned at me. I smiled back. He walked into the kitchen and removed two cans of special brew. (I used to drink alcohol but I NEVER drank special brew thank you). I was also… living in a teetotal house “Oh my god! put them back in your bag now! If someone sees I’ll be kicked out straight away!”.

We went to my room where I sat at my desk and he sat on my bed. I always thought this was quite normal behaviour when you lived in a shared house. To go to your room with your friend. But now on reflection perhaps the living room would have been a better idea. My bad.

In the seclusion of my small bedroom – Steve crashed himself down almost breaking the slats of my bed with his fall. He removed a bag of cocaine from his pocket and put it on my desk. “Want some?” he grinned innocently at me. He looked up at me and his eyebrows hovered patiently about five centimetres above his eyes. He poured it out in front of me on the desk… and I watched him as he sat snorting white powder through a dirty five pound note. Sweaty and sniffing he sat back on the bed.

“So what have you been up to etc etc etc?” he asked uninterestedly. I started rambling on about quitting drinking and all that therapy stuff. He cut me off.. “So you do remember that time we spent together?” he queried. I looked back at him. “Not really. It was a long time ago… Aren’t you settled down now?” I pushed taking the guilt slant. I was starting to feel…a bit…uncomfortable.

“Well. Actually. Yes – but you know she doesn’t want to have sex with me. I really love her – we’re really happy. But. I just want sex man!”. This would have been an ample position to follow in Nora Batty’s footsteps and chase him off the premises with a broom. Or something. (Actually should have done that at the sight of the Special Brew).

“Look I’m really not into having an affair with you”. I replied. “Affair?!’ he smirked. “Who’s talking about an afffair! I’m just talking about a one off – you and me”. I couldn’t believe the lowness of the situation. I looked at him sitting on my bed with his sweaty bicycle suit on. And tried to envisage what he thought I would be gaining from that proposition.

And for the next two hours I sat and offered up my own marriage counselling session. “Well I don’t think you should have sex with someone else”. I replied. “Have you thought about buying some sexy underwear for her…” I came up with every reason under the sun as to why he shouldn’t sleep with someone other than his partner. And two hours later looking totally bored – he left my house.

And so. That was the day my libido died.

“People are like dirt. They can either nourish you and help you grow as a person or they can stunt your growth and make you wilt and die.” Plato

But there’s still hope yet. This is sweet Letter to a Little Girl from her Daddy



Surround yourself with good people.

Stay blessed 🙂

Becki Bx

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