Dating a man with financial issues

He refuses to consider the possibility that you might ever support him, as do you.

If you were married and he became too ill or injured to work, would you dump him? If you were both successful in your chosen careers but you happened to land the job of a lifetime and made 10x as much as he did, would you dump him? Would you go on fancy vacations alone or with you sitting in first class while he sits in coach? For clarification, when you that he doesn't let you pay for dates, do you mean ever, as in he always pays and will not 'let' you pay, or he won't let you pay more, in proportion to your income? Because the first option is dealkiller for me. Negotiations happen between equal parnters, and if who pays is entirely determined by him This feels a bit like a variation on the trailing-spouse situation: Do you get the sense that if you weren't in a relationship, your partner would be able to strike out and do more with his career?

If so, is that a problem for you?

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If not, is that a problem for you? Because if you are in a kind of trailing-spouse relationship but aren't fully aware of it, it's a problem, and your post reads a bit like that. I wouldn't be so quick to assume your successes in your first year of independence are indicative of the years to come.

You acknowledge that you were "living off you your parents" up until that point. That's great that your parents were able to do that for you, and that you were fortunate enough to secure employment after graduation, but life's a pretty long haul.


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Don't dismiss the fact that money begets money. If you didn't have those advantages, would you have been able to hit the ground running like you did? Treasure that job, and I hope it's the first of a string of great ones for you. I think this man sounds like a compassionate, considerate partner who strikes me as one who worked hard for everything he has. This question hits close to home because my brother is dating a woman who sounds a lot like you. With her college paid for and nothing to worry about but studying, she was able to graduate with honors and secure a job making six figures right out of college - bought a condo, a car, the works.

He on the other hand, like me and all of the other middle class folks I know, worked 2 jobs through college and took what we could get after we graduated because we had loans and bills to pay. Like your boyfriend, he is very careful to express his love and worth through non-monetary means. Unlike you, she appreciates him for it, and they are engaged to be in what I know will be a long, successful, loving marriage. Actually, I take it back. Before you break up with him, spend some time thinking about your assumptions and attitudes about money.

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Where did they come from, and are you comfortable with the implications if taken to the logical conclusions? Can you see another path for yourself, with less traditional roles but more personal happiness? Finding someone who loves you and treats you well, and who you can also love and treat well in return is a beautiful thing; do some soul-searching before throwing it away. There are a few concepts that were just part of the normal milieu when I was growing up that I've come to realize are not necessarily or even always healthily part of the actual milieu.

You can see loads of other MeFi and AskMe content about getting degrees, buying homes, having children, and responsibilities towards immediate and extended family for examples. People figure out new and beautiful and awful ways to do this stuff all the time, and rarely is it easy to pinpoint One Right Way.

It isn't easy to conceive of a world for most couples where one person brings home the bacon and the other one fries it up in a pan. Obviously, that can and does happen, with wonderful and not-so-great degrees of success, all over the world. I love that you guys are communicating, and I agree that bodes well. I can't tell if it's your boyfriend or you or both of you seem a little stuck on the idea of Him As Provider And Breadwinner, but honestly, that's just not really how it seems to work for most couples I know.


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You may always make more money than him, and that may be totally okay. Making that work involves honest discussion, clear expectations, and best intentions.

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How to Handle Financial Challenges in Relationships

It sounds like you guys have those in spades. And that makes it the Right Way for as long as it works for you. And then when it doesn't, you have the hard conversations and adjust. Which, again, you guys seem good at doing. This is only a deal-breaker if you or he decides it is. He sounds like he has it all in hand. He is young and working towards his dream career. He cooks for you when he can't afford to take you out which indicates that he lives within his means, which is a huge plus.

He lives with roommates instead of mooching off of you, which is also a good sign. He sounds like a keeper. But only if you are willing to adjust your expectations. He should not start a family until he is in his dream career. Without a super supportive wife and a ton of luck and talent, children are dream sappers. Your attitude about money and his lack of it indicate that you would not be the cheer-leader that he would need to make it to the next level.

If you want to be married to this man and have him make more money than you then you have to build him up, be patient, and build him up some more. Unless you are willing to do that, then, you will both be happier with other people. It's not about money but the value you are putting on the money. Having money means different things to the two of you and that is something that can ruin a relationship.

The short answer to your question is YES. However, if your partner had written an AskMe on the same issue, this is what it would look like. Hi all, I have a wonderful girlfriend who seems fixated on me making more money. I told her when we met that I was saddled with student loans and a bad credit, and that it would take years for me to get back on my feet. I see myself as hardworking and fairly responsible with money.

She makes more money than I do, but I make a point of not depending on her.

She has this vision where a man is supposed to be the breadwinner in the couple and I sometimes feel emasculated when around her. Don't move in just because it's "relationship progress. In romantic relationships I think that you only move in once you've decided to be permanent partners.

How to Handle Financial Challenges in Relationships

Either you're engaged with a set wedding date, or you've decided to be partners and you don't believe in marriage. To that end, you don't merge lives together willy-nilly. I suggest at this juncture, before you proceed, that you do some premarital counseling. Not because you're talking about marriage, but because you're contemplating partnership.

You may have a temporary finance problem, and time and experience will heal it. You may have a serious, deal-breaking approach to work and money. There are other issues as well. His refusal to let you pay for a nicer experience on a date seems kind of selfish to me.

Premarital counseling should be a down-to-earth approach to understanding where you are in the relationship and exactly how you tackle the big and important issues. If you're fundamentally not of the same mind on the really, really important issues, then as much as you love each other, moving forward just isn't the right answer. I have friends where the wife has always been the primary wage-earner and her husband has stayed at home with the children and done his DJ gigs on the side. The kids are in high school. The point is that they discussed everything in pre cana classe s through their church and sorted it all out BEFORE moving forward.