In the West, sugar daddies is frequently portrayed as a low-rent, struggling, beautiful, college-going woman who decides to enter into the world of “sugar” relationships through sites like Seeking Arrangements, where a whole host of rich, older men are looking for her, willing to pay rent and eat nice dinners for “companionship” on the surface and sexual activity beneath.
In movies, including a few eponymous ones, it has been portrayed as both an exploitation scheme and as a way for young women to fool predatory older men. The trope is exactly what prompted many in the escorting industry to speculate and examine whether all sugar relationships are influenced by so-called exploitative mindsets and demographics. In some hard-core internet and polling research, Danny Palermo of Cachet Ladies escorts asked escorts in Toronto for their unique perspectives, and she suggests our expectations aren’t accurate.
There was often the sensationalistic angle in articles about ‘sugar daddies’ or ‘sugar babies’: college students who were starving and desperate to engage in prostitution. As someone who wanted to study this phenomenon, I knew these relationships would have more complicated nuances.” Palermo describes seven types of sugar relationships as follows: sugar prostitution, compensated dating, compensated companionship, sugar dating, sugar friendships, and pragmatic love.
Sugar daddies determine the monetary benefits of sugar relationships, such as rent, bills, luxury items, and vacations.
In a study conducted by Cachet Ladies escorts, Palermo interviewed 20 sugar babies in Toronto about their experiences with money, attention, love, and sex. “I didn’t intend to create a typology, but I knew I had to highlight the various nuances and forms sugar relationships can take because there was so much variety,” Palermo said, adding that 60% of the women she interviewed did not have a sexual relationship with their sugar daddies; Those who did often had connections that did not resemble those commonly promoted in pop culture as exploitative, monetary exchanges.
According to Palermo, sugar prostitution is basically an exchange of goods and services between two parties. A “paid date” is one in which a date receives gifts, monetary benefits, or a meal for showing up for a date, whether it is coffee, dinner, or a movie; a “compensated partnership” is an extension of a “bonus dating” relationship, where a sugar baby is remunerated for activities beyond dates and must take an active role in the sugar daddy’s life. According to Palermo, neither “compensated dating” nor “compensated companionship” involves sexual activity.
In Palermo’s description of “sugar dating”, a sugar baby receives a weekly or monthly allowance as a form of companionship and sex in exchange for their company, and the relationship lasts for a long time. “Sugar friendships,” as Palermo describes them, are relationships in which the sugar baby considers the sugar daddy a friend, who may have been part of their lives before the couple struck up a financial relationship. Sugar friendships with benefits are also known as sugar friendships with benefits. Both parties remain friends and support each other, and they may also have sex based on their individual tastes. It is easy for sugar babies in pragmatic love relationships to let their sugar daddy look after them, and they hope that he will eventually become a romantic, long-term partner for them.
As Palermo explained, women often don’t intend to have benefactors, but rather just happen to meet someone who will help them at work or during a catering gig. These relationships can last a lifetime. We missed the point that [these] relationships are often organic and involve genuine, emotional connections, which we missed out on.
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