Who Pays When You Go Out to Dinner with Your Parents?
Every few weeks or so my husband and I meet my parents for dinner at a restaurant half-way between their house and ours. We typically eat at low-to-mid range restaurants, like Red Robin or Macaroni Grill and the typical meal ranges in the $10 – $15 range. Most of the time we split the bill in half. While my parents don’t always allow us to pay, we do offer money every time we go out.
While we pay our fair share when my husband and I are out together, it’s a totally different story when I go out with my parents alone. If my parents take me out to lunch or dinner without my husband I almost never pay. This is in part because I don’t always offer and also because when I do offer I’m usually refused.
My dad is retired and my mom works a part-time, relatively low paying job, so I’d definitely like to contribute more when we go out together. After all my husband and I are actively employed and combined we make more than a decent living.
So every time I go out with my parents I’m torn. On one hand I know that they love to take care of me and provide for me. On the other hand I know that I can afford the meal much better than they can.
So what do you think? Do you think I should take control of the bill and pay more often or continue to allow my parents to pay for me? It’s not a lot of money and we don’t go out together often, but I don’t want to impose on my parents and at the same time I don’t want to pay if that makes them feel uncomfortable.
Every time I offer they say, “we’re so happy to be with you. we love you. we want to pay for you.” I guess the question is whether or not I should let them.
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