‘Sugar Baby’ Dating Is on the Rise, But How Exactly Does It Work?

Sugar Baby

In its next column for TheLatch, BARE Therapy dives deep into Sugar Baby dating. From what exactly a Sugar Baby is and how being one works, to how to stay safe while dating this way, here’s everything you need to know about Sugar Babies.

As Australia’s housing prices go up, and the stigma around sex positivity declines, you’d be forgiven for considering becoming a Sugar Baby for some extra income. If the idea is becoming more and more appealing, here’s what you need to know.

What is a Sugar Baby?

A Sugar Baby is somebody who provides a relationship or companionship to someone else in exchange for an allowance. Often the person receiving companionship — the Sugar Daddy — has life experience and money to spend on gifts for a companion, but has no one special in their life. That’s where a Sugar Baby comes in, providing friendship, romantic companionship and, yes, sometimes sex, in exchange for an agreed monthly allowance and gifts on top.

Sugar Babies can earn an allowance of between $1000-$5000 per month, per partnership in Australia, depending on the level of time investment required.

Note: Below we use the term ‘Sugar Daddy’ for the ‘giver’ in the relationship, as this is most used. However, a Sugar Daddy can be any gender.

Is It Legal to Be a Sugar Baby in Australia?

A Sugar Baby-Sugar Daddy arrangement is often considered sex work, as you’re being paid for a service that can, more often than not, become sexual in nature. The legislation toward sex work differs depending on which state you live in here in Australia. However, a mutual relationship based on companionship can be navigated if you set boundaries with your Daddy and review the local laws in your state.

How to Find a Sugar Daddy

Because of how their arrangements are labelled in Australia, Sugar Babies are unable to promote their services and fees (allowance) on meet-up or dating sites. However, if you’re looking for companionship you can use such sites as Feeld, Seeking Arrangement or Sugar Daddy Meet to find someone you feel comfortable partnering with.

When looking for a Sugar Daddy, you should partner with somebody who:

  • You respect and who respects you
  • Shares your values, personally, ethically and spiritually
  • Has the same understanding of what the arrangement will entail – i.e. sex or no sexual activity, in-person or virtual meetups
  • Is willing and able to regularly provide your set expectation for allowance

How to Be Safe as a Sugar Baby

When you find a few Sugar Daddy profiles you think you could enter long-term partnerships with, it’s important to set boundaries to ensure you remain safe. We recommend:

  • Talking to your Sugar Daddy on the phone for several days first before meeting in person
  • Drafting a simple contract detailing what you expect and what they expect (note: this may not hold up legally, it is more to ensure everyone is clear on expectations before entering the agreement)
  • Finding other friends who are Sugar Babies who you can share your experiences with and seek advice
  • Always keeping your guard up and remembering this is a transaction, not a relationship
  • Ensuring any late allowance payments or gifts are met with the cancellation of services from your side
  • Telling someone you trust where you are going and to meet with who, if meeting your Sugar Daddy in person
  • Never sharing your outgoing financial details with your Sugar Daddy — they should pay you by cheque or cash if in person
  • Report any assault or unwanted sexual advancements to the source you met your Sugar Daddy on and also to the police
  • Using a fake name as a Sugar Baby, to mentally separate your ‘work’ life from your personal life
  • If you are engaging in a sexual partnership, asking for an STI-screen first and always using a condom

How to Be a Good Sugar Baby

Once you’ve established the ground rules of your Sugar Baby partnership, there’s a true opportunity to have some fun! To ensure you — and they — have a great time, here are some tips:

  • Be discreet: the partnership is often a secret to others in your Sugar Daddy’s life, and they usually like to keep it this way.
  • Have low — but not no — expectations: don’t put too much pressure on your Sugar Daddy to gift you a certain allowance but do expect an equal trade of services.
  • Keep records: note who you’re meeting with, where you’re meeting them, how much / what they give you as an allowance or gift, and what service is provided in return. Not only does this protect you, but it will also help you notice what provides the best return-on-investment for you so you can future-proof your Sugar Baby career.
  • Be appreciative: a large part of the mystique of being a Sugar Baby comes from being grateful. By constantly saying please and thank you, you show your Sugar Daddy how much they are appreciated, which can often lead to an even better exchange of services.
  • Check-in: as with the above gratitude, saying hello and sending a pleasant message to your Sugar Daddy to note you’re thinking of them can also be a great way to strengthen the partnership.

If you think being a Sugar Baby may be right for you, do some further research and outreach to some people who are already in the scene for real-life advice. Then – stay safe, sexy and get that allowance.

BARE Therapy specialises in helping clients with all relationships – self, intimate, work, family. Follow for tips and advice: @bare__therapy

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