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AIBU?

Meeting daughter's boyfriend- what's the etiquette here?

454 replies

tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:36

Probably a daft question but this is new territory for me. My 17 year old DD has been dating a guy since just before Christmas, so only a couple months, and wants me to meet him. Apparently he's quite keen to meet me too. I've agreed to go for tea this evening with them both (with my DH, DD's stepdad, and her younger sister). What's the etiquette? Do we offer to pay for him? I think yes, DH thinks no because he's an adult man with a well paid job?) However since he's only 18 I'm still seeing him as a child and thinking we should pay?

We aren't rolling in cash this month so I see DH's point, but I'd feel a bit tight to not pay for him? But then if he's having a lot to drink then I don't want to end up with that bill 🤦🏼‍♀️

Thoughts? How would you play this?

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Bkjahshue · 23/02/2024 08:39

Who suggested the meal out over eating at your home?

When I was in this situation as a young person it was the boyfriends family who suggested a meal out and while I got out my purse they then said no it’s fine.

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Islandlifex · 23/02/2024 08:39

I would absolutely pay, it's just good etiquette. 18 is still a teenager! My fiance and I are both early 30's, both with good salaries and my parents always insist on paying the bill whenever we go out to eat.

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ReadingLight · 23/02/2024 08:40

Why not just have him call round for coffee? It sounds a bit full-dress and full on for him to be meeting two parents and a step-parent as well as a sibling for a meal out when the couple in question are teenagers who’ve been dating for two months, and ma well have broken up again by Easter.

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JustMeShoppingAgain · 23/02/2024 08:41

Why doesn't each of you just pay for your own food?

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tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:42

DD's suggestion re the meal out. DD also wanted him to meet "all the family" (her words), therefore requested we all go. She's pretty serious about him. Trust me I've put this off already to 2 months - she wanted me to meet him after 2 weeks and said no it's far too soon, but if you're still dating towards the end of February I'll meet him then. So I'm keeping my word.

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tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:43

JustMeShoppingAgain · 23/02/2024 08:41

Why doesn't each of you just pay for your own food?

Well yes that's the other option - just wanted to gauge opinion on here on the etiquette first. I'm happy to pay for us all including him, but DH thinks not. Maybe he's just being tight 😂

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TerrifiedOfWeather · 23/02/2024 08:43

It’s so awkward precisely because you don’t know him yet.

Just meet him at your house. There’s no need to be so formal to arrange for everyone to meet him over a dinner. A quick chat on first meeting and go from there.

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theduchessofspork · 23/02/2024 08:43

It’s nice to be able to pay but you aren’t obligated to, and you don’t have to scrap the meal and have him to your house if you can’t pay for him.

Just ask your daughter to give him a heads up that everyone will pay for themselves, which saves any awkwardness

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Fidgety31 · 23/02/2024 08:44

You pay for his meal too. Just like you would your own kids .
Id see it as rather rude not to.

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fluffiphlox · 23/02/2024 08:44

Do you mean a cup of tea? If so I’d let them pay for me, if you mean a pub tea or similar, I’d pay for them.

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MorrisZapp · 23/02/2024 08:44

Sorry, you can't possibly expect an 18 year old to pay for his dinner when out with his gfs family. If it's too much of a stretch financially to cover it, invite him for his tea at yours in the time honoured tradition.

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theduchessofspork · 23/02/2024 08:45

Islandlifex · 23/02/2024 08:39

I would absolutely pay, it's just good etiquette. 18 is still a teenager! My fiance and I are both early 30's, both with good salaries and my parents always insist on paying the bill whenever we go out to eat.

It’s a nice thing to be able to do, but if the OP can’t, she can’t, it doesn’t make her rude

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OhItsOnlyCynthia · 23/02/2024 08:45

I'd just pay for his, it's only one extra person and it seems like a nice gesture to make for someone who's important to your daughter.

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tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:45

@TerrifiedOfWeather

It's honestly nothing close to a "formal dinner" - it's literally a burger and chips at like a Beefeater type place where my youngest can play in the soft play 😂 honestly, nothing formal about it.

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tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:45

fluffiphlox · 23/02/2024 08:44

Do you mean a cup of tea? If so I’d let them pay for me, if you mean a pub tea or similar, I’d pay for them.

No I mean food, sorry - a pub / restaurant tea

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boomingaround · 23/02/2024 08:46

You definitely have to pay for him!! I would find it extremely odd to go out with a 17 year old family member and ask them to pay for their own meal. It would be equally odd to expect an 18 year old to pay for themselves whilst you're paying for everyone else. If you can't afford to go out for dinner then don't go or go somewhere cheap and cheerful where you can pay.

I can't believe MN sometimes!!!

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waterrat · 23/02/2024 08:46

I'm sorry but it would be extremely bad manners to sit there as a family and expect one 18 year old teenager to pay for his own burger. If you can't afford an extra burger and chips then invite him to your own place.

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Menomeno · 23/02/2024 08:46

Islandlifex · 23/02/2024 08:39

I would absolutely pay, it's just good etiquette. 18 is still a teenager! My fiance and I are both early 30's, both with good salaries and my parents always insist on paying the bill whenever we go out to eat.

That’s not etiquette, it’s sponging.

ETA: I’d pay for an 18 year old, but not older grown adults who expected it.

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SilverBranchGoldenPears · 23/02/2024 08:46

You should pay, absolutely. In the same way you would pay for your daughter.

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tiredmama23 · 23/02/2024 08:48

boomingaround · 23/02/2024 08:46

You definitely have to pay for him!! I would find it extremely odd to go out with a 17 year old family member and ask them to pay for their own meal. It would be equally odd to expect an 18 year old to pay for themselves whilst you're paying for everyone else. If you can't afford to go out for dinner then don't go or go somewhere cheap and cheerful where you can pay.

I can't believe MN sometimes!!!

Just a reminder - I'm happy to pay for him, as I said in my OP. It's DH who's being a bit odd about it for some reason because "he's a grown man with a job". Whereas I'm seeing the same as my daughter, late teens and still a child really.

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PiggieWig · 23/02/2024 08:48

He’s 18 - I’d have to pay for all of you or come up with a plan b, like he comes to yours for tea. My mum still always pays for me when we go out for lunch, and I’m probably older than you.

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Onelifeonly · 23/02/2024 08:48

Pay for him. We always pay for our daughters' friends / boyfriends if we eat out with them.

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Avopopcorn · 23/02/2024 08:48

If you as a family suggested a meal out, you pay. If you can't afford it that's fine, have him over for tea at home.

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ViaRia01 · 23/02/2024 08:48

are you planning to pay for your Dd17? If so, I think you should also pay for her boyfriend. If you would usually expect her to contribute, then it’s fine to expect the same of him but it would be best if your daughter lets him know in advance.

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FunLurker · 23/02/2024 08:48

I think youbpay for food and if he wants to drink he can pay, just say to dd, we're happy (ish) to pay for foor but dbf will need to pay for his own alcohol.

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