About a third of women – who exhibit “dark” personality traits – have considered a date as a source of free meal, not because of romantic interest, research has found.
The research found that 23 to 33 per cent of women in an online study said they had engaged in a “foodie call” – going on a date essentially for food to be paid for by the men.
It further found that women who scored high on the “dark triad” of personality traits (i.e., psychopathy, Machiavellianism, narcissism), as well as expressed traditional gender role beliefs, are most likely to engage in a foodie call and find it acceptable.
The research, consisting of two studies by Brian Collisson, Jennifer Howell, and Trista Harig of Azusa Pacific University and UC Merced, was published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.
In the first study, 820 women were recruited, with 40 per cent reporting they were single, 33 per cent married, and 27 per cent saying they were in a committed relationship but not married. Out of them, 85 per cent said they were heterosexual.
The women answered a series of questions that measured their personality traits, beliefs about gender roles, and their foodie call history.
They were also asked if they thought a foodie call was socially acceptable.
About 23 per cent of women in this first group revealed they had engaged in a foodie call. Most did so occasionally or rarely. Although women who had engaged in a foodie call believed it was more acceptable, most women believed foodie calls were extremely to moderately unacceptable.
The second study analysed a similar set of questions of 357 heterosexual women and found 33 per cent had engaged in a foodie call.
However, the researcher said, “it is important to note that neither of these studies recruited (were) representative samples of women, so we cannot know if these percentages are accurate for women in general.”
For both groups, those that engaged in foodie calls scored higher in the “dark triad” personality traits.
“Several dark traits have been linked to deceptive and exploitative behaviour in romantic relationships, such as one-night stands, faking an orgasm, or sending unsolicited sexual pictures,” said Mr Collisson, one of the researchers.
The researchers also, however, note that foodie calls could occur in many types of relationships, and could be perpetrated by all genders.