Great Expectations

19 Nov

At work, my supervisor likes to turn on the radio to Fox Fm which will usually play the top hits of the day which right now, contains Justin Bieber’s Beauty and a Beat. As I was listening to the lyrics, I couldn’t help but feel a bit irritated at the lines:

I wanna show you all the finer things in life
So just forget about the world, we’re young tonight

Now, these aren’t an unusual bunch of lines. Many singers will sing about being young and enjoying the finer things in life. There’s nothing wrong with that, except it creates false expectations or even unfair expectations for males with girlfriends who listens to this sort of music (I usually don’t, but when it’s blasting out of the radio at a high volume, one can’t help but listen). The expectation that men and boys are meant to spend vast amounts of money on their girlfriends to show them “the finer things in life”.

Now I’ve been in the dating game for a long time and I do remember a time when I too, expected boyfriends to shower me with gifts and pay for everything but that was when I was young and naive and quite stupid, which is the best way to put it I think. I soon grew out of those thoughts when I entered my long-term and serious relationship where I learnt a great deal about being in a real relationship which included equality – splitting the bill, giving equal amounts of gifts etc.

I know that even though I grew out of those thoughts, many girls still haven’t and everyday there are more and more girls that are affected by such songs and before they even begin to date, already have this mindset that they will be entering relationships and judging them about how much of the “finer things in life” their partners will show them. They aren’t judging the relationship by the quality of the chemistry or how well they get along, but what gifts the guy will give them after fights, or during anniversary or the material things they will receive during this time. This is very, very unfair.

It is very unfair to expect the boy to pay for everything, just because of his gender. It’s unfair that he will have to use his hard-earned money to entertain the girl and to keep her. Why can’t she spend her money on him? Is there a difference in value between the money from a female and money from a male? Why is it that we as women expect equality given to us yet we force inequality on males? Perhaps it can be forgiven that they are young and therefore stupid, but what about those 20 year old girls that still expect the same? Sure, in the dating world, the guy should pay on the first date and that’s it. After that, it’s fair for him to expect the girl to help with the bill. I don’t think that’s wrong at all, I would not go on a second date with a guy who doesn’t pay on the first date. It’s one thing to be unfair, but another to not be a gentleman.

It is the relationship after the first date that really matters isn’t it? We’ve judged each other after the first and if there’s a second, then we’ve decided we’ve liked them right? So why do girls expect the guy to give them things in order to keep the girl in their life? If someone expected me to pay for everything and give them gifts, I’d kick them out of my life, I don’t want them in it. What happened to the little things, the simpler things and the only things that mattered were the thoughts and feelings put in? Why is it that a poem that took days to write will be overshadowed by a designer bag? This isn’t how it’s meant to be but it seems that it’s what society demands – to be as materialistic as possible. They tell us that a good date is one where we’re taken out to a really nice but expensive restaurant, where he will order champagne and pay for it all. I’d much rather he would cook me a dinner from scratch and even if it doesn’t taste like a chef made it, just him trying his best to make something for me would be enough. Even better, we would make it together and both contribute something!

The materialistic-ness of the “pop” world is probably why I don’t bother with it. I don’t seek out pop music or even rap because there is a very high chance that they will be singing about buying things, spending money on their partners and that’s what love is. It isn’t, not at all but they are feeding many susceptible minds with that thought and that makes me feel sad that society is so materialistic and like a virus, it wants to spread it to as many people as possible. Perhaps in a thousand years, we’ll all be emotionless robots as we wouldn’t know the value of things such as effort, or care and we wouldn’t know what real love is any more. We’d consider the quality of the relationship by the amount of money spent, not the hours poured over making it, or the thoughts put in. It makes me sad that young teens are affected by this and so very often, I’d read about girls gushing over the latest present they’d gotten from their boyfriends instead of gushing over the time and effort the boy went through procuring this gift, or about how meaningful the gift is because to me, a designer bag doesn’t have much sentimental value at all. It’s a nice gift and I would appreciate it if my guy got me one, but it would be even nicer if he would write a song, record it and give it to me. That is a gift I would love even more and I hope that in the future, girls will stop taking materialistic thoughts to heart and learn to appreciate the real best things in life that happen to be free, only costing time and effort which should always be appreciated.


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