DCU had the second highest number of students signing up to become “Sugar Babies” of all Irish universities in 2016, according to figures supplied by the dating website Seeking Arrangement.
The site saw 71 new DCU sign-ups last year, bringing the total number of registered users to 568. University College Dublin has the highest number of Sugar Babies on their books, with 601 registered students.
Seeking Arrangement claims to be the biggest website to facilitate finance focused relationships in the world. It states that “Sugar Babies enjoy a life of luxury by being pampered with fine dinners, exotic trips and allowances. In turn, Sugar Daddies or Mommas find beautiful members to accompany them at all times.”
Sugar Babies and their corresponding Sugar Daddies find common ground in their desire for a convenient relationship according to Brook Urick, the site’s spokesperson.
“(Sugar Daddies) are businessmen, they’re wealthy, they’re travelling. They’re not able to devote the time and energy to a relationship,” she said.
“On the converse, sugar babies are often times in university and they’re looking for the same thing. They don’t want to settle down but they need help with funds. They need help funding their lives. And sugar daddies like to do that. It’s a gift they’re offering because they’re not able to offer them a real relationship.”
According to data compiled by Seeking Arrangement, the average American sugar baby earns around $2,400 per month, with their Irish counterparts earning around €2,150. Urick says this often comes in the form of tuition, rent or bill payments.
DCU student Sophie said that financial benefit was her main reason for joining the site. “I heard about it online and thought it would be interesting. College has been making it harder to save and I thought that maybe I could use it to maybe make a little bit of money,” she said.
“I think most sugar babies are motivated by the money.”
When initially registering with the site, new Sugar Babies detail what they are looking for in a Sugar Daddy relationship, as well as how much they envisage earning.
The services they provide are then agreed upon between the two parties and can vary significantly from couple to couple, according to Urick.
“What’s expected of a sugar baby depend on who she is, what she’s willing to do, what kind of time she has,” she said.
“Often times it’s a lot of companionship. It’s dates, it’s someone to talk to, it’s a friend, it’s someone that’s interested in you. And for some, it’s a relationship.”
When asked whether she could envisage forming a genuine relationship with someone through the site, Sophie was sceptical.
“Meeting someone might be nice, but at the end of the day you have to think about why these people have to pay people for a connection,” she said.
*The name Sophie is a false name used to protect this student’s anonymity
Image Credit: Sugar Daddy Meet