Are you stingy in dating?

Stingy: unwilling to give or spend; ungenerous.

When most of us hear the word “stingy” we think of miserly, penny-pinching, Scroogelike, tightfisted, cheap and skinflint.

cheapYou could be one of these things in dating if you never offer to pick up a tab, buy tickets, or buy even a nominal gift for your guy. Male friends complain bitterly about women they’ve dated for months who never offer to buy an ice cream cone, cup of coffee, or movie popcorn. Even if he makes many times the money she does, guys still appreciate it if the woman makes some effort to share the economics of dating.

However, when I speak of “stingy” I’m thinking more along the lines of the second part of the definition — ungenerous. This includes withholding compliments or nice comments about things you admire or appreciate in your date. It can be as simple as “You look good,” “You smell nice,” or “I appreciate your taking me to dinner.” A man I dated for 2 months did not utter one compliment to me other than before we met — and that was in an email. While I feel I took every opportunity to compliment or acknowledge him, there was a dearth of this coming back to me.

No shareSome folks are stingy when it comes to sharing important thoughts or feelings about themselves, as they are then vulnerable. I once took a personal growth seminar that encouraged us to share with others what we’d learned about ourselves in the session. Through this sharing we provided an opportunity for the listener to relate to our epiphanies, get to know us at a deeper level, and perhaps see they could experience similar breakthroughs. We were told the more we shared with others, the more generous of spirit we were. And our insights might be the inspiration the other needed to do some work on their own lives.

In dating, at least at first, we don’t let our dates hear our innermost thoughts and fears. Generally, it is a good at first to keep the conversation at a more surface level, as we need to trust our date won’t think we’re wacky or needy, and we don’t want to hit him on the head with our overstuffed baggage. But if you don’t share yourselves as you get to know each other, the relationship is based on superficial conversation — the weather, sports, celebrities, food, etc. When you begin to share yourself — your goals, fears, dreams, hopes, hurts, feelings — is when you begin to be generous with your soul. That is when true connection happens.

Sometimes this generous sharing happens early on and emotional bonding takes place quickly. You may have had the experience I’ve had where because of the depth of our sharing, I felt I’d known the person a long time even though we are only first meeting. I love sharing at the soul level, but I’ve also then fallen too hard too fast with someone who wasn’t really a good match.

What do you think about stinginess in any of these three areas? Have you felt yourself being less generous than you know you could be?

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5 responses to “Are you stingy in dating?”

  1. Gatti Avatar

    DG, my guy is a sharer, a listener, very generous with his thoughts and feelings. It’s lovely, and I’m not used to it! My most recent experience has made me protective of myself and more prone to keeping my own counsel, but I’m learning to open up with a man who delights in my doing it.

    And, yes, we feel like we’ve known each other a very long time though it hasn’t been very long at all. But the more I find out the more I think that this is a very good match, indeed…

  2. Rhea Avatar

    If ‘generous sharing’ takes place too early (like on the first date), run for the hills! It’s not a good sign, usually.

  3. LuLu Avatar

    Well just as in everyting in life, you have your exceptions… There are times when I feel just that comfortable witha man that I can open up earlier in the relationship, and then there are times I know that this is not the person I want to know that much about me. For me I do feel a more of the emotianl bonding only because, he makes me feel as though he cares and is intrested and I am just as interested in his feelings.

  4. […] I tended to buy the movie if he bought dinner, or invited him to my house for dinner. In “Are you stingy in dating?” I shared that even well-off men like it when a woman offers to buy him coffee or an ice […]

  5. […] I tended to buy the movie if he bought dinner, or invited him to my house for dinner. In “Are you stingy in dating?” I shared that even well-off men like it when a woman offers to buy him coffee or an ice […]