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Read this fascinating story about University of Minnesota 'sugar babies'

Dear University of Minnesota students: Got weekend plans? Got financial needs? This could be you!

Dear University of Minnesota students: Got weekend plans? Got financial needs? This could be you! Getty Images/iStockphoto

Sit down.

Are you sitting down? We have shocking news. 

Some older men like the company of attractive young women. It gets crazier: Some of the rich ones are willing to  pay for it.

We'll give you a moment to process all this, we know it's a lot.

Associated Press

Associated Press

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OK, now that you've had some time, let's dive into a Minnesota Daily story from inside the sugar baby/daddy culture at the University of Minnesota, where hundreds of students are registered on SeekingArrangements.com. More and more U students are exploring their financial/dating options through that site, per a report Seeking Arrangements put out last year; as many as 542 Gophers are accepting cash in exchange for company... if not more. (More on that later.)

The website has a specific option for older benefactors specifically looking for a college-age companion. Some rich women use the site, but -- hopefully you're still sitting down -- male customers outnumber women 10-to-1. 

One young woman told the Daily she found the "work" of dating dudes for money "exciting" and "kind of fun in a weird way." She charged around $100 for her dates, for which she prepared extensively. Evidently if they're paying, they expect you to look your best.

She says she never slept with any of her buyers, though she adds she was lucky to have enough money in her life that she could turn down offers of more money for... additional services.

"It was hard balancing that," said the student, who no longer offers herself through Seeking Arrangements. 

(That rent costs in Minneapolis drove a college student to date strangers for money is also pretty  interesting, though that's a story for another day.)

In theory, the youngsters are just meeting up with men for a good time and a pre-negotiated exchange of dollars. It doesn't always end that way: One U student told a court she'd been sexually assaulted by a Seeking Arrangements partner, one who she then saw occasionally over a period of months. 

When she ended their "arrangement," he stalked and harassed her. She's since changed her name, and obtained a restraining order against her stalker effective through June 2019.

And no, she didn't feel like like dredging all this up by talking to the Daily, on the record or off it. Other young women did, and their stories, judge them however you may, are worth reading and thinking about. Read the Daily's report here.