Cambridge students seeking sugar daddies
Are you a pretty young thing and strapped for cash? Now you can grab yourself an older lover.
With a recent survey revealing that in 2014, Cambridge was the university with the third most new recruits on sugar daddy website Seeking Arrangements.
While some may doubt the ethics of it, when you consider that Cambridge is one of the most expensive cities to live in in the UK and the fact that the maintenance grants were cut this year, it is not surprising that so many students are looking for some extra cash.
Seeking Arrangement pairs older, sucessful people, generally men, with younger people who are often students in order to form a mutually beneficial financial relationship. According to their statistics, the average allowances for a sugar baby is £2000, for which the majority is spent on tuition fees or rent, with books not too far behind. The website has a strict no prostitution policy and there is no pressure upon anyone to have sex with the person they meet.
Since we can’t work in term time at Cambridge and all the activities on offer tend to be pricey, it makes practical sense to have a sugar daddy. Some say they find it empowering, but a large part of me feels overwhelmingly that women (as the sugar babies generally are female) becoming a commodity for men is detrimental in the fight for gender equality in the long term.
So I decided to make my own account and have a look around. From the offset I was a little uncomfortable as I scrolled through and noticed the men are advertised with their net worth and income alongside their photos, with one guy apparently being worth £6 million. It felt very much like I was a Modigliani at auction, with the ‘daddies’ as the rich potential buyers.
A few days letter and I start getting notifications about how my page has been favourited, and later about messages I have been sent. So, I log on to view them. The first is tolerable. It just reads ‘Hey, r u on whatsapp?’ The rest get stranger.
Firstly, he is definitely spamming me a little too much with messages. He’s revealing a bit too much, I don’t really care about his history with dating sites. Most importantly, there is no excuse for his errors. Who accidentally uses the word ‘conference’ instead of ‘confidence’? What is ‘radom’ and why did he capitalise it? The mistakes make me so angry, never mind the website.
So I decide to have some fun and cruelly taunt him.
I start to imagine what this man would be like were he a sugar daddy, given that the only cheese he knows about is cheddar. Aren’t sugar daddies meant to wine and dine you in the finest restaurants serving the best brie, rather than feeding you pasta with tomato sauce and haphazardly grating value range mature cheddar cheese over the top? He didn’t need to know Greek mythology, but he could at least understand my sarcasm?
Going back to my message list, angrier about the misuse of the english language than at misogyny, I find something even more disturbing:
‘Only human and quite a tactile person’. I think I threw up in my mouth a little. I can hear Mary Wollstonecraft screaming in her grave but I continue to ask him questions, and he reveals this:
After reading the messages, I realise my future career as a daring investigative journalist is in ruins. The prospect of ‘intimate cuddles’ sounds like being slam-dunked by a giant , fluffy teddy bear. What’s more is that he is really insistent on these cuddles, mentioning them later in the list of his favourite activities. Maybe I’m being presumptuous, but it seems to be thinly veiled that he’s after a whole lot more than cuddles and he will pay for it.
I could go no further.
Honestly, I really wanted to see whether I could be comfortable with using this website as I can understand the motivations for doing so if you need the money, especially to fund your studies. But the whole concept made me feel like vulnerable prey for these rich predators.
There have been times when I’ve been shopping and had my card declined at the till. At that moment I’ve often casually exclaimed that “I need to find myself a sugar daddy!” Yet, if I am truthful, many of our ‘financial struggles’ nowadays could be reduced easily if we were less materialistic, through eliminating the unecessary luxuries we have in excess.
Most importantly, I would rather live off the Sainsbury’s basic food range for the forseeable future than be financially reliant on a richer man. It is completely regressive for women, to STILL rely on the economic success of a man to sustain them instead of being independent and to be judged on their physical appearance.
Everyone has the freedom to choose, but I’d rather push things forward by refusing to be an object to be desired and bought. Account deleted.