Lament of the shallow...

  1. I've been venting here recently far too much, but I have just one more lament that's making me feel sort of superficial :crybaby: ...

    So my boyfriend and I have had a bit of a rough road so far, not emotionally really, but because we're both starting out in life and our respective careers have been a challenge for our relationship. I'm a grad student, and while I make enough to support myself and the occasional bag, I'm certainly not financially solvent. When I met my boyfriend last spring, he was in law school and didn't have a dime to his name. He didn't have a car and he lived in a dorm! He was lucky to have caught a foxy lady like me :graucho: . When we went out on dates I basically picked him up at the dorm and whatever we ended up doing I would usually pay. Once he graduated he started his job hunt and lived at home with his parents 3 hours away from me. He got to use his parent's Mobil credit card, so he could come visit me at will basically and did, but when he came down or I went up I paid for almost everything. Especially this fall, he was truly broke. He got a job in December (yay! he's an associate at a firm in town), moved back here, and is settling into his new place. I thought finally, finally things will go better for us, we can relax. Well, after student loan payments, credit card payments (he doesn't have much credit card debt thankfully, but some), paying back his moving stipend to his firm, rent, utilities, boyfriend has a spare $25 a month until June, at which point he'll have paid off his moving stipend and have an extra hundred bucks a month or so. You know, enough to feed himself. He just figured this out today and called me...

    So basically, until June, I have a boyfriend who can't afford to pay for anything, I mean, even food. And he needs stuff, he only has one shirt for work, for example, he wears the same shirt every day underneath the same suit EVERY DAY. He can't do that until June! But if I start paying for his food and his clothing and necessities, I'm going to go broke. I don't know what to do!

    Should I encourage him to get a high-interest store credit card just to put the necessities on for awhile, like a few new work shirts? I don't know how he'll ever be able to pay it off if he's got that little per month coming in. Should I just suck it up and buy him some clothes (and food), put it on my credit card? Asking his parents for money really isn't an option at this point...

    Do things ever get better?? :sad: When I get out of school I'll have student loans and credit card debt too, I'll be making next to nothing for awhile, if he's still making next to nothing we'll be the poorest two people with advanced degrees I know! And, the most shallow comment of all, when oh when will I get to stop paying for dates (I know, I know, just stay home, but sometimes a gal wants to get out of the house)!! Being a gal is expensive enough! I don't want to be supporting my boyfriend for years on end.

    Ugh, sorry for the rant, maybe some of you who've been through this stage in life can lend some advice. I'm already returning the spring clothing I bought because I'm realizing how expensive the next few months with boyfriend are going to be, and I'm definitely off purses for, like, ever. I know we make sacrifices for our significant others, maybe I'm just now realizing the shape that those sacrifices will take.
  2. I'm sorry things are so rough. All I can say is that slowly it will get better. One of my best friends is a lawyer and what you are describing sounds like her first year or so out of law school. Luckily, she is in a much better place now (6 years out of law school).
  3. First, let me say that it is my opinion that it is not shallow to not want to pay for everything. When I was in grad school I dated a guy who was in med school and he worked some wacky part time job to be able to go out and eat and such. In other words, other people are able to make ends meet. It sounds like your boyfriend may have had a bit too much of the helping hand from both you and his parents.
    That said, yes, things do get better. But it takes a while to get things paid off and start saving. I wonder if you have been able to discuss this with him at all, cause if it was me I would feel resentful.
  4. Wow, sounds really rough, but like the other two girls said, things will get better. You are a kickass girlfriend though! He is lucky to have you! He better know this!

    I don't think it is shallow at all to not want to pay for dates all the time. You deserved to be spoiled too. Keep your head up!
  5. I do feel resentful, that's it, but I feel bad for feeling resentful! I mean, he doesn't want to be in the position that he's in, he can't help it at the moment. He can't get a part time job because he already works seven days a week at the firm (seriously, he works all the time)...I do resent that he didn't look for some sort of part time work when he was unemployed though. He might be able to get out of his current lease in June and find a cheaper apartment, that will help, but he's not living exobidantly by any means. And it's not like he's suggesting we go out and then asking me to pay, I really think he'd be happy just staying at home for 5 months until things get easier, I'm the schmuck who doesn't want to eat ramen constantly and watch tv. And I resent that he can't take me out and do things with me, I resent that he's always staying at my place because he can't afford a bed at his place (he only has a futon, he stays there but I can't stay with him) and that I'm cleaning up after two people, even though he doesn't make a huge mess or anything. I resent that I'm always the one cooking dinner for the both of us. I guess I'm angry about a lot of things even though he's a really sweet boyfriend and can't help these things now. That's what makes me feel like a nasty person.

    I should talk to him, I'm guessing these things won't get any better without talking. Thanks for the advice, irishgal, you're like my PF mentor. Speaking of, I gotta get back to my diss!
  6. Hey vanojr! You know I've been in your corner this whole time! Irishgal's advice is great.

    Personally, I don't think you're responsible for him. It's awesome that you worry, but honestly... is it possible for him to get a weekend job?... if only to pay for another suit to wear to work? He can pick up yard work or bar-tending for one day/night of the week...
  7. I agree with IntlSet! This guy could get a part time job if he wanted to. I don't blame you for being upset that this guy never pays for anything. It's a difficult situation, but take a look at where his time is really being spent. Even if he worked 1 day a week part time, he wouldn't have to put so much pressure on you.
  8. Are you guys planning on getting married?

    If you are, then I say this is all part of the "for better or worse". You should support him anyway that you can. Immediatly after my husband and I got married, he opened up a deli/cafe with a partner. He put every dime we had into the business. I could not stand in his way though, I never wanted to be the reason he thought he didn't go for his dream. So, for FIVE LONG YEARS, I struggled with him making $300 dollars a week!! 300!! I didn't make that much then so I can't even tell you how I paid all the bills with that. But, it was all part of marriage. You support each other. We've come a long way in 10 years of marriage and now I am a stay at home mom and he is putting ME through college!

    If your not planning on getting married...then I don't know that I would give so much for someone who was not going to give back.

    Good luck!
  9. ^^We've only been dating about a year, I think it's too early to tell whether we'll get married or not. He's already talking about getting married to me, but I think we need a little bit more time to figure it out. Not that I'm having serious doubts, but I have a much less sunny view of marriage than he does b/c of my family (long story).

    I see your point Traci, I sort of feel that way too, but I sometimes worry that I'm setting up a bad relationship dynamic. I mean, sometimes I want to be taken care of too. If I don't make a fuss about things like this, I have this feeling that I'll end up mothering him for the rest of my life. Because trying to solve his financial problems etc is essentially that I guess, me trying to mother him. Anyway, I think what you did was support your husband rather than try to fix things for him, and that's what I need to do. And express some of my frustration about his situation. Get a little snotty maybe...hey, I deserve a boyfriend who can do nice things for me ;)

    Thanks for all of the part time job suggestions, they don't fall upon deaf ears, but I will repeat that he's already working a LOT. He works 12 hour days 5 days a week (8 AM to 8 PM, sometimes without a lunch break) and 8 hour days on Sat/Sun. That's over 70 hours a week already, another job would drive anyone crazy (I've done the whole 70 hour a week thing before, it's just miserable). Bartending would be a good option if he did have more time but he has no expertise in that area.
  10. ^^ Let me just give you some food for thought, because I can see that your really struggling with this.

    I know exactly what you mean as I came from a very broken home with a horrible childhood with parents fighting over us, etc.

    I did want all the same things that you do. However I have been with my husband for 20 years this year, and married for 10 years. I have been as close to a mother to him as his own mother. I have to baby him, sometimes I feel like I have 3 kids instead of 2. But you know what? He is a hard worker, he is a faithful man that loves me and his two kids more than anything. He is my best friend and I would die without him I think.

    It was a very very hard 20 years. But, now he is the one taking care of his whole family, all on his own, treating me like a princess and proud of himself for doing so. And I gotta tell you, I never thought my ship would come in, baby, but I am sailing!!!! However, remember, it took 20 years to get here.

    So, if you feel this is the man for you.....I think you should really be in there for the long haul, you know, with that kind of attitude. But--if you don't know in your heart if he's the man for you....then, that's a different story.
  11. Thanks again for the advice, Traci, I gotta say that I admire you. Can I ask you - were you happy even while you were struggling? I don't need to be living in luxury, and I'm a hard worker, I can put in the time. But I want to be happy.
  12. i don't think you're shallow for thinking this way. I suppose things will get better eventually...does he ever offer to pay for something, or act like he wants to at least?

    i just have an issue with a man being so reliant on his girl for stuff... it depends on what your priorities are...if he's showing sincerity and ambition...and you want to be with him then stick it out. don't be his sugar momma...but maybe you can help him out a bit. but if he's ok with you paying for stuff and seems to be using you then i think you shouldn't get manipulated that way...

  13. Are you kidding me? $300 bucks a week?? NO, I was not always happy. Many, many times I would say to myself...what the hell did I do?????? Then I had two kids....what the hell did I do NOW?????

    But the whole time it was always as it is today, my life without him would have been so much less than it was with him. Kwim? He was my best friend since the day we met. We compliment each other perfectly. Sometimes even now I get mad at him cause I have to take care of everything.

    But....he is a good man. That's the important thing. A good man is worth a little trouble, kwim? I lucked out cause I am no "well of sunshine" myself. I can be a bit of....dare I say it.....a ***** sometimes. But we love each other and made a commitment to each other and here we are 20 years later and still going strong.

    I'm just saying if you think you could have this with this man....he's worth helping out. That's all I mean.
  14. I'm sure you want to help, and may be feeling resentful, but I really want to say....don't do it. He needs to figure things out for himself or he'll never become a man. If you hand him everything, figure out his money etc. it won't help him in the long run. If you love him and he loves you then you can do things like go to the park, make a picnic, just be together. IMO you can support him by being there, not doing for him, and in turn your resentment will fade.:smile:
    Good luck!
  15. If you're not on the road towards marriage, I would as others have pointed out reconsider how much financial support you're giving him. He's an adult now and as hard as it is he has to figure out how to float himself especially with things like food, clothes. In terms of "going out" money for the next year, a lot of scrimping needs to be done. If he is it worth to you then try your best to deal with the situation until he gets more on his feet. You can always vent here of course!