What are the Main Misconceptions About the Sugar Baby Lifestyle?

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Retro candies that bear the name “Sugar Daddy” and “Sugar Babies” can still be found on many store shelves, much to the delight of those who have a real sweet tooth. But in the modern age, these terms have taken on a much different meaning.

In the 1920’s, the term “sugar daddy” came about to describe a man who financially spoils a younger woman. The idea of becoming a sugar baby is still considered to be somewhat taboo. But in reality, most people barter for what they want and benefit in some way from their romantic relationships. Many people feel that those engaging in a sugar baby/sugar daddy relationship are merely more upfront about these kinds of understandings than a traditional couple might be.

In recent years, it has become slightly more accepted and more understood as a way for individuals to take both economic and romantic control of their own lives. Still, there are a number of misguided notions that the general public assumes to be true about sugar babies. This can cause someone who engages in this type of lifestyle to feel ashamed about their choices, despite the fact that there’s nothing illegal or unseemly about this type of arrangement at all. Here is a closer look at a few of the main misconceptions about the sugar baby lifestyle and why you may want to throw everything you thought you knew about “sugaring” out the window.

Misconception: Sugar babies engage in prostitution.

In the United States, anyone who engages in sex work of any kind no doubt deals with shame and stigma on a daily basis. Sex workers are even revealing that they’re being left out of the #MeToo movement, showing just how behind the times our culture still is. While all sex workers are worthy of respect and protection, it’s important to note that those who identify as sugar babies are not prostitutes.

Being a sugar baby is completely legal, as those who participate in these arrangements are compensated for the time they spend with the sugar daddy — not for any sexual acts that may or may not take place. In fact, there are arrangements that involve no sexual activity whatsoever. Some may blossom into long-term relationships, while others will remain totally platonic and are used merely for companionship. Those who seek out these kinds of memberships are typically looking for more lasting connections. While most sugar baby/sugar daddy arrangements are romantic in nature, there are no illegal acts involved and the lifestyle is not considered to fall under the category of sex work.

Misconception: Sugar daddies are always older men.

Most people would picture a typical sugar daddy to be a lonely man in his twilight years, but statistics show that this image may not be completely accurate. While older men may be more likely to be financially established and therefore in a position to shower a sugar baby with expensive gifts, a recent report from one popular website revealed that their average sugar daddy is actually 38 years old. What’s more, sugar daddies are not always men. Many sugar daddy websites provide opportunities for sugar mamas and for benefactors who don’t identify with one specific gender.

Sugar babies may not conform to stereotypes, either. There are plenty of sugar babies who may be male, gay, genderfluid, or transgender. There are also sugar babies who may be a bit older than one might assume from their title. Despite the fact that approximately 44 percent of registered sugar babies on one website were college students as of 2013, there are sugar babies who may find mutually fulfilling partnerships in their 20s, 30s, and beyond. Essentially, there are all kinds of arrangements for all kinds of people, and no two relationships are alike.

Misconception: A sugar baby is always the “other woman.”

If you judge by the headlines, you might be convinced that all of the individuals who enter into relationships with sugar daddies are on board with helping their older counterparts commit infidelity. But statistics show that that’s not always the case. The number of married sugar daddies on at least one website declined from 46 percent to 33 percent from 2007 to 2013, a fact which many take to mean that this lifestyle is now being more readily embraced by single men.

Instead of using these forums as a way for men to cheat on their wives, a substantial proportion of members will utilize them as a welcome alternative to a traditional dating website. When a sugar daddy has no bandwidth for a full-blown relationship due to the demands of his job, a sugar baby can provide a level of companionship that he might not otherwise enjoy at all. The idea that all sugar daddies must be living a secret double life or is turning to these websites to engage in something seedy is an outdated one that really doesn’t apply to a lot of members.

Misconception: Sugar babies are looking for ways to avoid real work.

There’s a pervasive idea that sugar babies want nothing more than to be “kept” men or women and that making an arrangement with a sugar daddy can allow them to live on Easy Street for the foreseeable future. It certainly is true that some sugar babies embrace this lifestyle in order to gain access to a life of luxury, but many have something a bit more practical than diamond jewelry and shopping sprees in mind.

For some, becoming a sugar baby provides them with an opportunity to pay off crippling student loan debts. One 2017 survey found that 57 percent of Americans have less than $1,000 in their savings account. That’s a real problem when you consider the fact that US student loan debts averaged $28,400 per person in 2015. Because it takes nearly 14 years to pay off this debt, on average, it’s no wonder that many students or recent graduates want to take advantage of this type of opportunity. In fact, some websites provide an incentive for sugar babies who sign up with a “.edu” email address.

But the climbing cost of a college education isn’t the only reason a sugar baby might be drawn to this type of lifestyle. Many sugar babies still work conventional jobs during the time they date their sugar daddies. They may want a more substantial financial cushion or may simply be intrigued by the idea of meeting someone who is more established, cultured, and sophisticated with whom they can share their lives. Still, others may be captivated by the idea of traveling around the world, an endeavor which may come with the sugar baby lifestyle. Since 11 percent of Americans have never even traveled outside their home state, establishing an arrangement with a well-off sugar daddy may be a viable way for them to explore their wanderlust.

Although some may dismiss a sugar baby as being lazy, entitled, or greedy, the majority of those who find this type of relationship to be fulfilling aren’t any of those things. Instead, they’re likely looking to gain new experiences, meet new people, and even improve their finances for the future.

It’s true that the sugar baby lifestyle might not be the right fit for everyone. But it can be a phenomenal way for men and women to meet other people to whom they’re attracted, gain new life experiences, and create unforgettable memories. Now that you know a bit more about the truths behind this type of lifestyle, you might be more inclined to consider it yourself (or to judge others a bit less when they opt to pursue it).


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