I keep paying for meals out with my friend

My new friend and I are from vastly different cultures, but we see eye to eye on most things. We are both students and when we go out, we are supposed to take turns to pay for meals. But I’ve noticed that I am always the one paying. Should I say something? It’s not that I don’t want to be generous. I just don’t want to be taken advantage of. Furthermore, he comes from a much wealthier family than I do.


At The Well

Ai Jin says

Dear creditcard,

If you have both agreed on taking turns, you can assume that this rule is in place and to be effected. How then did you end up paying for the meals again and again?

Let’s explore what could have happened, aside from cultural differences. Perhaps one’s upbringing and a lack of a gift in hospitality can make one oblivious. Or could it have slipped his mind? Or are you are faster offering to pay? Regardless of the many possible reasons, the fact of the matter is that the plan to take turns to pay can stand ground only if you abide by it as well.

Honour your own values: while you can be generous, you believe in respect and doing the right thing. Follow through what you believe in. The next time if it’s your friend’s turn to pay, practise taking the role of a receiver, wait and let your friend act first and thank him for the meal.