A matter of degree? Sex for tuition?

Readers, some while back, I wrote a story for a family values site, which rejected it, and the rejection was the final straw that caused my departure from a position at that site. I couldn’t help noting the reader interest in an incidental post I had put here at BCF on the same subject, sex for tuition. So I have decided to publish the canned story here.

I do not believe that family values are best assisted by refusing to face realities. – Denyse O’Leary, Ottawa

A matter of degree: Sex for tuition?

The online world of sugar babies financing college as paid girlfriends

A matter of degree: Sex for tuition?

Recently Canadian commuter daily Metro asked, “Is the sugar daddy, baby phenomenon—at the intersection between social media and student debt—prostitution?”

Sounds that way. As Metro tells it,

Aaron is one of growing number of singles and marrieds alike who have adopted the rules of sugar-dating engagement: generally older, financially secure men pay monthly allowances ($4,800 is the average paid by Toronto sugar daddies, according to seekingarrangment.com) or provide other perks to generally younger, attractive women who agree to date them.

Some call it a friends-with-benefits arrangement but “dating” usually means, in practice, sex with someone the woman doesn’t care about and won’t be with for long:

“There’s no way I’d date most of the men on these sites if I’d met them in a bar or in the grocery store,” says Maggie, a 26-year-old Natalie Portman doppelganger from Toronto whose social calendar is dominated by two sugar daddies currently in rotation.

The key advantage offered by sugar daddy dating sites is that they substitute background checks and income statements for the traditional madam or pimp. But what drives the trend? What should we know about it? Is there anything we can do?

From Metro:

The financial realities for young people—from spiking tuition rates to skyrocketing youth unemployment and unpaid internships—have given birth to the sugar baby bulge, says Emily van der Meulen, an associate professor in the department of criminology at Ryerson University who specializes in sex industry labour organizing.

There are some guys seeking a sugar mama and gay sugar sites, but needy young women seem to be driving the trend.

Indeed, disquieting numbers of such young women are not gold diggers but debt-laden students with uncertain job prospects, or even sole support moms. It must be heartbreaking if they meet a guy they like and wish it were a real relationship. But the relationships probably last about 3 to 6 months. The woman is typically counselled by veterans against getting too involved, which suggests a good deal of heartbreak.

Especially when we consider that, but traditionally, a woman in her age group would be looking for a stable long term partner.

Do any babies marry their sugar daddies? One industry source argues it’s common but one somehow doubts the claim. For one thing, many sugar daddies are married and many of the rest sound like lifelong bachelors.

It is hard to know what to believe about other industry claims as well. Metro also informs us that one site

claims to have four million members — three million of them “sugar babies” — including nearly 250,000 in Canada. About 50,000 of those are in Toronto, of which all but 7,000 are women.

But wait! What about the findings from last year’s Ashley Madison hack? Few of the women listed ever used the cheatin’ hearts site (assuming they even existed). The men were mostly paying to cheat themselves. If we know someone who is involved with any of these types of sites, we might discreetly warn them that, apart from anything else, industry statistics are probably romance fiction.

Do these pay-per-view relationships reflect the age of new social media? Yes they do. But then so do new media resources for keeping families together. Grim as the scene looks, whenever we try to blame new media for failing morality, we end up finding that our choices are a mirror to our souls.

In terms of practical responses, we need to address the fact that so many students are going into crushing debt for degrees for which few jobs exist.

See also: Why the explosion of internet dating? Huge increase in singles living online.


Social media can strengthen families They can help people stay in touch better than any other device invented by human ingenuity. For better or worse.

Denyse O’Leary is a Canadian journalist, author, and blogger.

  • G

    This article is nothing more than the usual journalistic drivel we have been hearing for years from mainstream journalists. The entire article is completely sympathetic towards the prostitutes.
    ANd YES! They ARE prostitutes! Not sugar babies – prostitutes. If you have sex for money, you are a prostitute. – period.

    Why do we not EVER see a story about prostitution by a mainstream journalist that asks the obvious and legitimate question? There are countless single mothers, starving students and cash strapped graduates out there who ARE NOT prostitutes, so why did YOU become one?

    In the first paragraph O’Leary whines about a publication rejecting his article. Then says it’s “the final straw” that caused his departure.
    Umm… noooo YOUR DECISION TO LEAVE caused your departure. The publisher is free to publish or reject whatever writing he wants. You are merely an employee. Try to remember that.

    Then we get this gem: do not believe that family values are best assisted by refusing to face realities. – Denyse O’Leary, Ottawa.

    So HE is the fearless truth teller and anyone who doesn’t feel like publishing heis “genius” articles is self deluded. —- Right —— Wow, glad to see you don’t suffer from low self esteem there buddy.

    Apparently O’leary (who imagines himself a fearless truth teller) is so uncomfortable with calling these women having sex for money, prostitutes that he even denies they are gold diggers.
    Then he blubbers about how heartbreaking it must be for these women. Oh really? They dated for the purpose of gaining money. Once they have that money, then they break up with the guy. I don’t see much heartbreak there. Nice of him to invent emotion just to gain sympathy.

    What about the feelings of the man who has to pay some girl just be with him? No mention of his loneliness. ( of course not).

    Just more garbage for an MSM journalist.
    We’ve heard this song and dance before. — Shove it.

    • Daviddowntown

      I stand to be corrected but I believe he is a she.

      • G

        Thanks for the correction. I didn’t know

    • G: Yes, they are prostitutes. But if prostitution is widespread among middle class college babes, what do you think things will be like when, like the precious little asshats of Asscrat U, they have real power in society?

      I prefer to analyze trends rather than denounce them. It’s more informative.

      I was not an employee and I never questioned the site’s right to reject my work. Incidentally, my previous work had been criticized for being “too religious.”

      Surest recipe for failure: Try pleasing everyone.

      I am certainly not short of work.

      I am a 66-year-old woman who lives in Ottawa,

      • LauraS

        I’ll bet the “sugar babies” would be shocked and offended to be called “prostitutes.” I’m sure they’ve rationalized and justified their decision to the point where it’s “no biggie.”

        But, in an era when prostitutes are called “sex workers,” the misuse of language to erode family values isn’t surprising.

        Your point about what will happen when these university kids are in positions of power is a good one.

    • Norman_In_New_York

      The legal definition of prostitution, at least in New York, is the engagement between two or more persons in sexual conduct in exchange for a fee. This can get sticky because if the fee at issue does not pay for sexual conduct, the activity cannot be prostitution. That is the rationale used by escorts and their agencies in openly promoting their services, whereas drug traffickers cannot advertise in the open under any rationales.

  • BillyHW

    Deep in the heart of every woman is a filthy disgusting whore who should never, ever be voting.

    You can also catch these sugar babies on the Christian websites later, where they call themselves “born again virgins” who are obsessed with biblical characters like Mary Magdalene and the story of the Prodigal Son, and use biblical passages like Matthew 7:1 like a weapon to bash over people’s heads.

    Lol skankerous fumigation-ready vaginas.

    • Every woman Billy?

      • BillyHW

        Nightmouse seems okay.

    • Kaye92

      We get it: you hate women. Fine, but are you a Christian, by any chance? Or claim to be one? What did Jesus say to the woman caught in adultery? I seem to remember it was something like “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” (John, 8:3-11). I take it that you believe that you know better than Jesus in this regard, and think people (male or female) should not be given the benefit of the doubt when they try to improve themselves.

      • BillyHW

        You know they had to rip that passage out of all the early manuscripts because women, as is their nature, were using it to justify their whoredom. Check out the footnotes.

    • BillyHW, have a nap, will you? THis is becoming offensive.

      • BillyHW

        Should I report myself to the human rights commission?

    • Clink9

      Don’t get many dates?

      • BillyHW

        Tired of paying money to feed the animals.

  • Spatchcocked

    I find the gentle sex to be delightful baubles….ever so entertaining amusing flibbertigibbits….but best employed in their spare time perusing nothing more complicated than a Betty Crocker cookbook.

  • moraywatson

    ‘Indeed, disquieting numbers of such young women are not gold diggers but debt-laden students with uncertain job prospects, or even sole support moms.’

    And which of these three groups of bad-choice makers am I supposed to feel sympathy for ? Feminism is what feminism does.

    • I’m not asking you to feel sympathy for them. I am not asking you to feel sympathy for Saigon bar girls either. But I find it helps to understand where people are coming from.

      Girls today are NOT taught that those are bad choices, in the way they were in the past. They are taught that they are entitled and are encouraged to be aggrieved.

      Indeed, not only is prostitution legal in Canada, I doubt that laws against sex with children or animals will survive the next decade of progressivism. I just hope the Catholic schools are not forced to explain and promote these practices.

      But if they are, please don’t respond by attacking the person who tells you about it.

      • moraywatson

        Huh? What is the use of “disquieting” supposed to elicit if not sympathy? Fear? Laughter?

        • More fear than laughter.

          • moraywatson

            Fear of what?

          • Rule by such persons.

          • moraywatson

            What are you talking about? Young women are making stupid life decisions and this leads to a fear of them being ruled by somebody ?

          • No, rule by THEM.

          • moraywatson

            Rule? We live in a parliamentary democracy.

      • Alain

        I agree as it is another indication of the rot that keeps spreading in Western culture. It does not promise survival of Western civilisation, as all the great civilisations ended up dying from internal rot. I am not suggesting any type of government involvement (heaven forbid) either, since no law can create moral principles when they no longer exist.

      • The Butterfly

        Your females need to be taught these are bad choices?

        • They are taught that all choices are good if they seem desirable.

          • Alain

            It applies to both sexes.

          • moraywatson

            They are taught this by whom? Feminists?

  • mauser 98

    bunch of movies about this.. or so i have been told

  • ontario john

    Sex for tuition. Sounds like something that would be taught in Ontario schools.

    • I suspect that’s coming. It would be a way of removing the stigma, right?

      • The Butterfly

        If it’s legal, why are women allowed to collect EI?

  • Hard Little Machine

    Who cares? by the time they’re elected to Congress it will no longer be stigma.

    • Precisely. And anyone who objects will be given a Dinesh d’Souza vacation.

  • Shebel

    Why is the fact that some college kids are ‘cashing in’ of concern to anyone ?
    You have some olde perverted coots that are willing to pay $10,000 / month to think that they are Cool. They look and act like fools ,but ,they are having fun.
    Kathleen Wynne is now up to 9 different sexual genders. I don’t even know what they are any more.
    ‘Our Babies are being taught that the rectum is for Fun.
    Trannies are running wild in the bathrooms of the Young.’

    I think we should leave the college students alone . They are old enough to make their own decisions.
    Perverted Politicians are the ones to watch.

    • Waffle

      That 9 gender b.s. has weasled its way into the Ontario health system. A few months back, I had to fill out a form to re-enter the cardiac rehab program at a Toronto hospital. I could choose to define myself from 9 options. Nothing as simple as “male” or “female”.

      • Shebel

        It is almost like they are paving the the way for ISLAM and the rule of Sharia – where Paedophilia and Bestiality are Normal.

        • Waffle

          Thank you for raising this subject. I have long hesitated to do so for fear of sounding too “biblical”. I think that Islam and the Sharia is punishment for our sins.

          • Shebel

            I really don’t feel all that ‘sinful ‘. I know that I have broken just about everyone of the 10 Commandments —
            But– the fact is – when I look at Islam —-
            then I am a bloody Saint.

        • Clausewitz

          You mean like lowering the age of pederstic consent to 16 and legalizing bestiality? Will never happen, after all this is Canada.

          • Shebel

            I fully believe that it will happen in my life.
            This is so fucking sick —
            What the Hell are we doing to ourselves?

          • Clausewitz

            The SCOC just legalized bestiality to keep one particular special interest group happy, and last week the Federal Liberals were trial ballooning the idea of gay consent to 16. What a wonderful country we live in.

      • Shebel

        That must have been conducive for your blood pressure .
        Did you stay calm?

      • Shebel

        Just out of curiosity— what was the 9 th ?

        • Waffle

          Haven’t a clue. My brain froze when I got to “two-spirited”which was about half way down.

          • Shebel

            I don’t even know what ‘2 spirited ‘means—-

            Join the the ignorant.

            Honestly—- this shit is INSANE.
            I am so sick and tired of listening to people Lament about what they would like to FUCK .
            I am so so sick and tired of listening to Politicians as they educate our Babies as to what and how and and why they would like to FUCK their best Friend—-
            and it is NORMAL.
            This is very SICK shit my friend.

  • tom_billesley

    I guess the sugar babe student debt reduction plan wouldn’t suit in this case:
    Student Loan Debt Stands In The Way Of Woman’s Dream To Become A Nun

  • Brenda

    Denyse, I think your comparison of seekingarrangement with Ashely Madison needs to be explored a lot more. Specifically, the often overlooked detail that most of the women on Ashley Madison were fake. I think the same is true of seekingarrangement. I mean, they claim to have 4 million members, of which 3 million are women? 3 million my ass. The Metro journalist should have verified those claims independently, and if seekingarrangement didn’t let him, that would have been a sure sign they were lying.

    So many of these articles on prostitution rely on self-reporting by sites and individuals with a vested interest in putting a certain image across. It’s time journalists were more skeptical and asked to see bank statements, tax returns, and other hard evidence. It’s also time to take note of certain rhetorical tricks: Aaaron is one of a ‘growing number’ of men… growing? Are there reliable stats on that? Probably not, but it helps to make this sound like a hot new trend we should all be worried about. Same goes for the ‘growing’ number of ‘college girls’ who are turning to prostitution to finance the ‘rising cost’ of tuition.

    The Metro article is so typical of a certain kind of lazy journalism: Essentially it quotes one guy who put an ad, a couple of prostitutes who obligingly provide lengthy rationalizations and a couple of attention starved ‘academics’ who provide even lengthier sociological blather (helps to make the article longer) But no proof on how much the hookers actually make of whether the website is inflating its statistics.

    I think sites like Ashley Madison and seekingarrangement are very good at manipulating the media to help them run their business. My view is that whenever seekingarrangement needs to replenish its stable of call girls, it gets one of its friends in the media to run an article like this.

    • You are probably right, but then it is part of the news stream. I suspect that U girls seeking arrangements will become more common because there are no explicit moral standards against it any more. But we shall see.

    • I agree. But they are very much part of the scene.

  • JoKeR

    But are they declaring the income for income tax purposes? Not to do so is a federal crime in Canada.

    The most basic rule of the Canada Revenue Agency, is that you must declare ALL income, both legal and illegal income. That is why there is the privacy of the data, to get people to declare the illegal income knowing the CRA won’t tell the police.

    You may call them wh***s, but I call them Income Tax Cheats!