Are you a young woman who likes money or an old man with money who likes young women and would like to use aforementioned money to perhaps buy a young woman? If so, you may be profiled in a recently published piece that combines two of the least fun subjects in the world: the concept of sugar babies — young women who hook up with rich old dudes so the old dudes buy them crap, often at great risk to themselves and their own well-being— and Miami, Florida.
The Miami New Times' article exploring the apparently pervasive sugar daddy/baby (ew, ew, ew) culture in South Florida reads like the Marilyn plot line in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes minus all the humor and madcap cruise ship shenanigans. It's fucking grim. This isn't to say that the author, Michael E. Miller, did a bad job covering the subject he set out to cover; just that the subject matter is somehow both irritating and depressing, often at the same time.
What's depressing about it? Approximately everything, from the anecdote about "Rachel," the "sugar baby" who gets paid $200 to stiletto all over some dude's dick and once hung around with a cracked out businessman for 3 hours so he'd pay her $300. Or "Brittany," the super young-looking college student who has tricked herself into thinking that being paid to go out on dates with businessmen will somehow teach her the skills she needs to herself be a successful businesswoman someday, like success is sexually transmitted. Or the woman who blackmailed a man after he sent her dick pics because she claimed she needed money for dental school. Or the founder of the world's largest sugar daddy/baby (barf) site, SeekingArrangement defending his business venture as a product of his Chinese mother's nagging. Or the part about the Manhattan real estate mogul who is now on trial for raping a woman he met on the site.
But what was most demoralizing/surprising about Miller's piece (worth a read if you've got some whisky handy) wasn't that prostitute-y relationships between men and women are happening, because to be frank, adults can go ahead and adult around with each other all they want as long as both people are freely consenting to the relationship. What really sucks about sugar baby relationships is that most of the arrangements don't seem like they're entered into freely; they're a desperate response to a shitty set of circumstances — a lack of job opportunities, lack of job abilities, and last, but not least, the insanely high cost of college education. According to the New Times, 9 out of 10 users of SeekingArrangement are women, and many of them are in college. The site even targets advertising to women who search "help with college tuition." 1,000 barfing motions.
In short, young women in south Florida are turning to what basically amounts to internet prostitution with expensive cocktails for the same reason that Walter White started cooking meth on Breaking Bad: because America is untenably, depressingly fucked up.