An article ran in the Huffington Post about the phenomena of college women engaging in paid arrangements with older men. Around the world, there are countless websites which facilitate these “friendships” for a fee.
An expensive fee was not all one client experienced as a ‘Sugar Daddy.’ I recently consulted on a case involving a successful Information Technology (IT) Executive in Scottsdale, Arizona. He was recently single following a divorce, but still wealthy, even after sharing some of his fortune with his ex-wife. Being burnt out on relationships, he proclaimed he was ‘too busy’ building his business to meaningfully date. So his friend sent him a link to one of these ‘Sugar Daddy’ sites and even pre-paid for the month’s membership as a “divorce gift.” Within days he had a date. She was from Tempe, Arizona and at least 15 years his junior.
The arrangement was simple, a fee ($3,000) was paid to the agency for the date. The fee was apparently divided with the ‘date’ and the agreement provided for 4 dates to occur one time a week for a month. Sex was not contracted for, as that is illegal in Arizona. If the arrangement was working out after the month, the fee would be recharged again for subsequent months.
He met the woman and, not surprisingly, they had intercourse. They met 3 more times to finish out the month’s agreement. My client decided this sort of arrangement was not for him (after the 4th date) and he declined paying for another month of dating. She called and texted him persistently asking that he pay the $3,000 for another month of friendship. He told her he was not interested and then ignored her relentless calls.
A few weeks later he received an envelope in the mail. Inside was a handwritten note and an ultrasound picture. He contacted me in a panic and told me that he had engaged in sex with her 4 times and wore protection each time. She texted him to see if he received the picture and said she wanted to keep the baby. He was petrified and we needed a game plan.
I printed all of the texts and emails she had sent him since she announced the pregnancy. Something was odd about the writing style. After staring at them for a while, it was obvious that there were different writing styles in the emails. Was this a scam? Had she done this before? Should we call the police department?
My client did not want to contact the police, as he did not want to be further embarrassed by the situation. A call to my close friend who is an OBGYN at Banner Hospital taught me that we could obtain an in-utero DNA test. We decided to call the bluff. We offered to pay for the test immediately and schedule an appointment at the doctor’s office for the procedure. When she received the email and appointment information she stopped calling and disappeared. She was not pregnant, just running a con game. We shared the ultrasound photos with gynecologist who informed us that the pictures were not only old, but of a baby that would have been conceived 2 months prior to the “Sugar Daddy” contract.
Is there a lesson to be learned? There are probably many. Did my client learn it….I hope so.
This story had a few key facts changed to preserve the privacy of those involved.