She Likes Money But It Don't Make Her A Golddigger

Love, Self

This just in: Most women seeking financially stable men aren’t gold diggers.

This just in: Most women seeking financially stable men aren't gold diggers. While most women dating do want a successful partner—and for a growing number, this is a requirement—they certainly don't conform to the gold digger archetype. Nor does that caricature come close to capturing their true motivations. Fundamentally, what we're looking for in a partner is a good match—in fact that's what both men and women are looking for, according to an eloquent article in The Atlantic, "The Myth of Wealthy Men and Beautiful Women."

And there are well-understood reasons why we as a society tend to look at any well-matched couple and see only his wealth and her beauty. To quote researcher Elizabeth Aura McClintock, "controlling for matching eliminates nearly all evidence of beauty-status exchange." The fact is, success is both an attractive quality in itself and one of the natural consequences of attractiveness. But even a successful woman will be seen and described in terms of her appearance while her husband with good looks and other desirable qualities will be measured according to his wealth.

So when a woman says she wants to date a guy with money, regardless of what society thinks of her, she knows that's a pretty accurate signifier for a whole constellation of qualities that make a man attractive in general. The guy who has nothing but wealth—no looks, personality, charm, skill with a woman or nothing to offer even as a mentor; nothing—is (a) a rarity, and (b) definitely not what she's looking for.  In short, today's Sugar Baby is not a gold digger.

So what's a woman to do? Dating sites provide few good options. Conventional dating sites tend to be a hostile environment for the woman who is willing to be upfront about seeking a financially successful man. And most "Sugar Daddy" sites are a turn-off. They tend to thwart their own efforts to appeal to the mainstream woman with their own brand of over-the-top misogyny and generally draw more business than they'd like to admit from the pay-to-play crowd.

This leaves a big gap.

A gap that includes the woman running her own business who has grown tired of "downwardly mobile" dating experiences. It includes the woman studying to get her degree and more than ready for a relationship that's beyond what her male classmates are currently capable of. And, yes, it includes the woman who wants a partner with the resources to make the relationship more fun and exciting.

Even a dating site specifically meant for her—one where the "money conversation" can freely take place without stigma—will inevitably be labelled a "Sugar Daddy" site in the public’s eye. So we are left with four categories. 

  • 1. Conventional dating sites, where the money conversation is awkward at best.
  • 2. The new generation of Sugar Daddy site (such as On Mutual Terms) where money is discussed realistically.
  • 3. The more typical Sugar Daddy site, where the money conversation is misogynistic at best.
  • 4. The out-and-out transactional conversation (money for sex), either underground or surreptitiously on the average Sugar Daddy site.

Let’s hope for the sake of all mainstream women that the second category fares better than its predecessors.

Part of a series on money and relationships by On Mutual Terms.