May 29, 2015
My brand new boyfriend (less than a month) just told me he needs a break because he is confused about his feelings and that he’s supposed to feel something for me at this point. Which is weird because at the beginning he was going too fast, talking about when we live together and that kind of stuff. So now my heart is broken. He hasn't called me in a week.
Yeah, your relationship is over, not that it ever really started. At any point a guy tells you he “needs a break,” it’s over. Even in cases when I’ve seen couples reconcile, it’s never because the guy came back after a couple of weeks and said “my hunch was right! I do like being with you!” It’s not weird that he’s not feeling it after a few weeks - what’s weird is that he started off talking about living together and shit. I don’t know why guys go for the “let’s take a break” thing instead of just breaking it off cleanly. We’re dumb sometimes. It’s the male version of “I don’t like you in that way anymore, but let’s still be friends!” Bla, no thanks.
I think your heart will be ok after less than a month,
Dear Head Pro,
As usual, you are the best thing about this site. Like my favorite manicurist or hairstylist, if you ever went rogue from the Betches, my loyalty would follow you. Now that that's all said...
I have been dating my boyfriend for a little over two years, and we both see our future going far beyond that. I love him so much and our relationship has always been happy and healthy. However, while it never really bothered me before, lately I've been annoyed by how much more I've contributed to the relationship financially than he has.
I have more money than he does, so I honestly don't mind paying for more things than he does. We usually take turns paying when we go out on dates, but I tend to be the one who pays when it's somewhere more expensive. I don't feel like he is intentionally taking advantage of me because I know he is not asking for me to pay and doesn't always expect me to. But when he tells me his savings are low, I feel bad making him spend too much. Maybe it's my fault for doing it when he doesn't ask, but in my defense, when I ask if I should bring my wallet or if he wants me to pay, he never flat out says no, usually "if you want to," which makes me feel like I need to because he's tight on cash.
I have a "what's mine is yours, what's yours is mine" kind of mentality, so it really didn't bother me to pick up the slack if he couldn't and I was able to. However, what annoyed me is that he spent a substantial amount of money recently on things for himself, and it made me feel kind of WTF. I confronted him about it, but couldn't quite explain why it upset me. I don't believe this is all just about money. I want to say it's more like, I feel like in our mutually loving relationship, we should take care of each other, and I've always been giving, but that he hasn't been there for me quite as much. He's heard me complain about how outrageously expensive my birth control pills are, but has never offered to help cover the cost. If he doesn't have the means, then that's fine, but when I see him spending money on other things it hurts a little.
What do I do here? I don't know if I should push him to get a job when he's focused on his Master's program. He is still mostly dependent on his parents, and said they are the ones who paid for some of his purchases recently. Am I overreacting, or is there something that needs to be done? Please shed some wisdom, Head Pro.
Sugar Mamas Aren't All Old Cougars
Dear Not a Sugar Mama,
I’ll tell you what, flattery will get you awfully far with me, but apparently not as far as the entirety of your email. I was on board with your plight, wondering what kind of dirtbag this guy is, until I got almost all the way through. In the span of one paragraph, however, I identified several things that I think will help clear things up for you.
- In 2015, I think it’s safe to say we’re at the point where couples pay for things proportionally based on their income. This is pretty normal.
- It’s probably not a good idea to ask your financially strapped boyfriend if you should bring your wallet, putting him in an impossible position. Who the fuck doesn’t bring their wallet somewhere, anyway?
- Don’t play the “what’s yours is mine” shit, especially if you’re not actually ok with it. You’re not married, and you don’t actually share finances.
- I have never heard someone complain that their birth control pills being outrageously expensive. What do you use for birth control, Xanax? Weapons-grade plutonium?
- What he does with his money is his business. If he can’t make his portion of the rent next month, then you have a legitimate grievance. An occasional self-purchase does not an imbalance make.
Of course, none of this matters because HE IS IN GRAD SCHOOL AND DEPENDENT ON HIS PARENTS. I could not believe it when I got to that part. You’re pretty lucky to be in that situation - most people are on their own for grad school. Instead, you’re able to have some semblance of a normal adult relationship, because I assume his parents make sure he’s covered for things like food and shelter.
It sounds like you’re outgrowing this relationship, or at least have run out of patience for the current state of things. That’s understandable, but plenty of couples have outlasted far less favorable circumstances (imagine getting by if the only money he had was from a part-time job). If you think he has the free time, you’re welcome to bring up the idea of him getting a job in order to improve your standard of living, but that’s going to be hard to do without basically saying “I want you to pay for more stuff.” Bottom line, if you demand a boyfriend who pays for more things, it’s up to you to find one who can.