You don’t want to be used, but how can you tell if she (or he) is really into you or your wallet? Spotting a gold digger is not as easy as one might think. A real gold digger knows subtle and intricate little ways to get into your pocket book without you even knowing it. Be careful that you do not misconstrue innocent conversation for someone who is trying to get at your finances.
THE BIGGEST MISCONSTRUED QUESTION:
When your date asks what you do for a living, most people think “gold digger” automatically. This is completely untrue. Asking what a person does for a living is a completely normal part of conversation. Up until the recession, it was a regular part of small talk. Do not in any way be afraid to hear this question or ask it. There are many reasons that a person might ask this question:
a. We spend at least 50% of our waking hours at work. It’s a big part of our lives and sometimes it says a lot about us. A plumber, for example, has a mechanical mind where a secretary is probably very “word” oriented. This also tells us what kind of person that they are used to dealing with every day. An office worker is used to working around people in suits, while those in retail deal with people from all walks of life. If you’re a nurse, you might get questions like “do you work in pediatrics?” A mechanic might hear “on rigs or regular cars?” These are all perfectly normal questions that are not usually reasons to be concerned. The other person is just trying to learn more about you and showing genuine interest in how you spend your day.
b. Your date is wondering if you do something interesting that might lead to further conversation. Most of us have some pretty good “at work” stories or at the very least your date can further the conversation with more questions like “Do you like working third shift?” or statements like “My friend works at a factory too.”
c. Your date wants to make sure you are employed because they are just as worried as you are about gold diggers. They don’t want a dependant any more than you do.
d. A gold digger would probably not ask what you do for a living, they would already know. Most gold diggers do not make themselves obvious.
If you are still worried about this question, be prepared for it and decide how you are going to answer. There really is no reason to be uncomfortable with the question, but if you are concerned about it just guide the conversation the way that you want it to go. I used to tell people I managed a tea shop, which I did. This left the conversation open to talk about the people that came to the shop, the different products we carried, how long I had worked there, or the people that I worked with. I didn’t really feel the need to tell them that I owned it, because I also worried about gold diggers at that time. Also, I had found that people sometimes treated me differently when they knew I was a business owner and I didn’t like it. Some people were just flat out intimidated and others were suddenly trying to make a networking connection. I found it to be easiest to tell the truth, but to keep a few details (that involved money) to myself until I got to know the person better.
NEVER lie about what you do, because at that point you have dead-ended the relationship. However, there is no harm in saying “I sell cars” instead of “I own a 400 vehicle automobile dealership.” If the person flat out asks if you are the owner, then don’t lie about it. If you are afraid they might ask and don’t want to answer the question, steer the conversation away from the subject by asking them questions about their work or life. Most people are happy to latch onto the subject of themselves.
It should be common sense here to say that you shouldn’t keep secrets in a relationship. If the relationship progresses to a few more dates, you should probably be feeling comfortable that you aren’t with a user. It is important at this point to find a subtle way to bring up the subject again. For example, if you were the aforementioned owner of a car dealership, just have the date meet you at your job for lunch. If they don’t catch the hint right away, then just say “so what do you think of my dealership?”
WHEN TO BE CAUTIOUS:
We all blurt out dumb things. Therefore, if your date responds with “does it pay well”? it might just be the proverbial “foot in the mouth.” However, if your date starts digging around your finances too much right off the bat, proceed with caution.