Watch out for those gold-diggers

GOLD-DIGGER! Nothing frightens men more than those words.

Well, apart from "I missed my period" or "You infected me with an STD" or "When am I meeting your parents?" But for now let's focus on the gold-digger.

A successful Black Economic Empowerment businessman, who does not want to be named, says there are an increasing number of women who have found a way to make a quick buck by taking advantage of men like him.

He thinks women have become lazy and relish the thought of getting free lunches out of men.

He blames South Africa's obsession with celebrities for this phenomenon.

"Girls from as young as 14 are quite open about admiring wealth and idolising women who have married wealth like Khanyi Mbau."

He blames parents, and especially mothers, for not instilling good values in their daughters .

Ann Cartwright, a clinical psychologist, says most of these gold-diggers disguise their motives with very attractive, charming and sometimes good behaviour, creating the impression that they are harmless.

She says their easiest targets are bored rich men.

"They might come off as friendly, nice, diplomatic and witty people, but deep down they are no different from common criminals," Cartwright says.

Gold-diggers have the following characteristics:

l She only cares about the relationship between her and your money.

l She has a name like a stripper's - Candy, Khanyi, Bucie, Baby and so on.

l She has no job or she told you that she is in between jobs, like working at a call centre or she's a cosmetic sales assistant at a clothing store.

l Lazy and ambitious. Cartwright says most gold-diggers are among the laziest people you will ever meet.

"Most of them have big dreams and huge ambitions. They want quick results without making any honest commitments to achieving them."

l She has a very modest income, yet everything she owns is expensive.

l Her favourite word is "shopping".

l She only suggests high-profile restaurants, hotels and clubs, where she can meet rich people.

She would rather starve to death than order a burger, pie or boerewors roll when she is not the one who is paying .

The point is, she never selects a destination or a wine that will be kind to your wallet.

And don't be surprised if she flirts with another rich guy in your presence.

l She wears expensive brand-name clothes like Dolce and Gabbana but for the life of her she cannot tell you how to spell it - or pronounce it for that matter.

l She wants to marry. Now!

"Most gold-diggers like to put pressure on men to marry them so that she won't lose out," says the businessman.

l She gives love. Quickly.

"Miss Gold-digger will quickly dish out good old loving. She plays the role of a good wife. Too soon. She cooks, cleans and washes.

l She doesn't nag when you go out with the boys. Why? So she can show him exactly what a great partner she is.

How to protect yourself against a gold-digger?

Protecting yourself against a gold-digger requires prudence and integrity, according to Cartwright.

"Ensure that you know and understand why people like you by being kind to them, but not being a fool at the same time, and ensuring that whatever request is made of you can also be granted to you and others as well by the one requesting it," advises Cartwright.