Tag Archives: couples and money

Dear Wendy: “My Boyfriend Abandoned Me. Should I Move On?

I’m 31 and had been in a very loving, fun, and supportive relationship with my guy for almost two years and living together for a little over a year. He started talking about marriage and getting engaged about a year into our relationship, and I was so excited at the prospect of being his partner for life. But months passed by, and it became clear that he was homesick for his family. Even though they’re only a two-hour plane ride away, he had been depressed for the last six months about being away from home, and told me that if we married, it would mean he was choosing to never live in the same town as his family again. I told him I’d be happy as long as we were together, but he kept saying “I don’t think you’ll be happy there.” About a week ago when I came home from work, I found that he had moved out of the apartment we shared and had driven back to his home town to be with his family, and merely left a note! What kind of person does that sort of thing? To make matters worse, he called me once he arrived at his hometown and said (while sobbing uncontrollably) he wasn’t ready to break up and wanted a month to think about things. Part of me loves him so much that I want to give him the time he asked for. The rational side of me says, “This jerk abandoned you. Even if he wanted to work things out, are you really going to let him do this to you again?” I’m so torn. Should I just end it now and move on? — Shocked and Awed

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Dear Wendy: “I’m Afraid To Date Because I’m $190,000 In Debt”

I’m a 31-year-old, single guy in Chicago. I’m at a point in my life where I’d like to find a great woman and think about settling down and perhaps start a family in the not too distant future. Unfortunately, I have a terrible secret that is making it difficult for me to get close to women: I have $190,000 in student loan debt (no, I am not a doctor). Aside from that scary number, I am financially responsible and have a promising career with a high income trajectory ahead of me. How I arrived at that $190,000 is moot, but what isn’t is the psychological handicap I’ve developed. I am ashamed and embarrassed to be burdened by such student debt, and I can’t help but feel most women would be scared off by it. As a result, I’ve basically stopped dating or even trying to meet that special someone. I can’t bear the prospect of getting close to someone only to scare her off because of my debt. I feel like a leper. But, am I over-reacting? If so, what advice would you give about broaching the topic with a potential girlfriend (timing, method, etc)? — Debt Leper

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Cash & Coupling: How To Establish A Wedding Budget

If you have been engaged for more than five minutes, you’ve probably purchased every current bridal magazine and dog-eared the pages with ideas you swear someone thought up just for you. Before you look at pictures of another celebrity wedding and set your sights on a dress only Beyonce could afford, you need to have a serious talk with your fiancé. This, my friend, is the “How the hell are we going to pay for this?” talk. Maybe you’re assuming your parents are going to foot the entire bill. If they are, lucky you! But chances are, both sets of parents have some assumptions of their own, and you need to know who’s expecting to pay – or not pay – for what. For advice on how to determine this combined wedding budget, The Frisky talked to Aimee Manis, author of 52 Things Brides On A Budget Should Know. Keep reading »

Dear Wendy: “My Boyfriend Is Cheap!”

My boyfriend and I recently got engaged and moved across the country together for his job. We’ve been dating for about two years and known each other for about three and a half. I’ve always known him to be a very generous, giving person, but since our move, he’s been glib about expenses. For example, he’ll go shopping for clothes and then state that he can’t afford food for the upcoming week (leaving me to foot the grocery or restaurant bill). Or, we’ll go out with friends and he’ll make a show of paying for me at the table, but then ask me to pay him back later! Recently, he suggested that we get an animal together, but then stated, “but I don’t want to pay for any of it.”

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Cash & Coupling: How To Plan A Honeymoon On A Budget

Looking back on my wedding planning, I realize how many of my decisions were to make other people happy. My day was special and I felt like the star of the show, but I had to make sure that I stayed in budget so my dad wouldn’t have an aneurysm, that the menu wouldn’t trigger any allergic reactions from my guests, and that the band’s play list would make for a party to remember. But when it came to the honeymoon, there was nobody to think of except me and my new husband, and the closer we got to the wedding, the more I couldn’t wait to get out of town. Endless time for sex, zero calls about headcounts, and did I mention tons of sex? I totally began to understand why people elope. Keep reading »

Cash & Coupling: Agreeing On Household Utilities When You Want HBO And He Wants Netflix

There are necessities, like running water, and then there are “necessities,” like HBO and a weekly pedicure. When you’re single and supporting only yourself, you have every right to declare keeping your toes in the latest shade of blush a priority. But once you join budgets with your partner, it’s important that you both agree on which expenses qualify as non-negotiable.

When my husband and I recently re-evaluated our budget, I was ready to slash the cable bill – we have Netflix, and I tend to watch shows a season or two behind. He balked; he’s an avid Atlanta Braves fan and I didn’t realize that without extended cable he couldn’t catch the games during the (never-ending) baseball season. Similarly, he was willing to eliminate our home telephone, while I hesitated at not having a landline in case of emergencies. Having to make these kind of joint decisions just comes with the territory of a shared address, but compromising can be tricky. Toni Coleman, licensed psychotherapist, relationship coach, and founder of Consum-mate.com, offered this advice about creating a household budget you – and your partner – can live with. Keep reading »

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