I've been buying gifts and vacations for women I pay to date for 10 years - here's what everyone gets wrong about 'sugar dating'
- In response to a story Business Insider published about "sugar babies," one reader wrote to us to share his "sugar dating" experience.
- He's been a "sugar daddy" for over 10 years and has been seeing one sugar baby for three years.
- He said the women he dates are not prostitutes, but "everyday people" with "jobs and an otherwise regular life."
After Business Insider published a story about how some college students are becoming "sugar babies" to help pay for college, we heard from several "sugar daddies" who said there was more to it. One reader wrote to us about his "sugar dating" experience.
This reader works in tech in Silicon Valley, and has an income "well over $250,000" and a net worth "well over $1.5 million." He is in his mid-60s.
His account, edited for clarity, is below, and he remains anonymous for privacy purposes.
Outsiders tend to equate being a sugar baby with prostitution, but that's not how I see it.
To me, sugar dating is more like an arranged temporary marriage where you do your own arranging.
A prostitute not only offers sex acts for money and sees multiple men a day, but that's how she makes her living. A sugar baby wants an ongoing relationship. She wants a guy who she can get along with. She wants what a girlfriend or wife might get if they found a well-off man. She has a job that mostly pays her bills, but she is looking to improve her lifestyle. And she does not talk about sex for money.
But most of them know if the arrangement is going to continue past the first date they have to make like a girlfriend and become intimate.
I've been a sugar daddy for more than a decade
I've had an account on SeekingArrangement.com since 2006, but I also tried Sugardaddyforme.com and was on Craigslist Erotic Services for years before that section was closed down.
I have met countless women from these sites. I talk with them and hear their stories. I've seen some of the women for years and others were just one time and some in-between.
The picture the advertisements paint of a hot, young college girl meeting a rich guy who pays them to look pretty while eating dinner and traveling places is mostly fake. Women read the stories and try to get that easy gig, but it's not really there.
The women I meet are everyday people. They have jobs and an otherwise regular life. You'd never know they are a sugar baby. In fact, most women keep the whole thing quiet and, at most, discuss it with one girlfriend who is doing the same thing and maybe taught them the gig.
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Most women only last a couple of weeks as a sugar baby, often because they get tired of getting weird propositions from creepy men who don't actually have the money to help them out. I treat sugar babies like regular people and figure out what they are up for and go with that.
The typical sugar baby has a goal, like saving up for a car, taking a trip, or getting a new apartment. She is likely in-between boyfriends, or just broke up with a boyfriend, or she's divorced and doesn't want dating drama. Some of them like that an older guy with money fancies them. Older women who have been married expect things, while sugar babies are grateful to get them.
It's like having a girlfriend - but I'll never get married
For three years now, I have been seeing one sugar baby. She's half my age but our relationship is like boyfriend and girlfriend.
As a sugar daddy, you are in the honeymoon stage most of the time - you get treated well, you get lots of romantic evenings and you are seen as a savior of the women in distress and the facilitator of her better lifestyle.
I have gone on vacations with some women and given some women extra money, but that's after I get to know them well. I've had women ask for money just for dinner, but I don't go for that. Why would I? I've had women ask for money up front or for a large allowance, but no thanks to that either. There are nice girls on sugar baby dating sites who are just looking for some help with their bills, but there are a lot of scammers, too.
Student loans are a problem for many younger sugar babies though, and there's no doubt many come to the site for cash to make their monthly payment. I've met two active college girls over the years, one who went to Berkeley and one who went to UC Davis.
Like all of the sugar babies I've interacted with, I gave them a per-visit donation of $200 to $300, plus dinner, gifts, and outings. But I know that very good looking college girls ask for $500 to $600, and some of them get it.
A guy has to be careful of who he is dealing with - many will tell you that they are a college girl when they obviously are not. The first thing I do when contacting someone is get their email and phone number and Google it. They often show up on Facebook, but sometimes on escort sites.
Once I get to know a woman, I might spend $1,000 to $2,000 a month, with dinners, vacations, and shopping on top of that. Some women ask for $5,000 to $10,000 a month, but I'd be surprised if they get that - unless they got lucky and met a millionaire from Manhattan.
My current sugar baby has a good job where she makes about $45,000 a year, but she couldn't afford an apartment without a roommate. Thanks to me she now lives in a one bedroom condo on her own and is happy. I have also taken her to Europe three times and she was thrilled.
I would never get married given the no-contest divorce laws in California and the courts that favor the woman. I have friends who lost their retirement savings late in life due to a wife who got tired of the marriage and took the house and bank account and then found a boyfriend who did her bidding.
My own brother has had a long divorce and custody battle. In fact, he's spent much more on divorce lawyers over the years than I have on sugar babies.
I'm having fun and I can still afford to retire.
If you are a sugar daddy or sugar baby and would like to share your story, please email email@example.com.