How to have a money conversation

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So things are going well with my bf and we had a great time in CA together and we split the trip 50/50 which I was a little hesitant on as my finances are a bit tighter, but quickly wanted to go to be with him for a week. I know this may sound high-end/odd, but in my past five relationships, I have never paid for the trip and wasnt expecting at the last minute for him to say well I paid air so you can pay hotel?How does that sound to you when you hear me say this?He is six levels higher than me in the company and probably makes five times what I make. I do come from a comfortable family, however, I am on my own which I have told him, yet he has made a couple remarks well you come from money to me; which are a bit annoyinghe has only said it twice, but it annoys me as I have worked hard through school to be on my own. He wants to go on another trip in a couple weeks, well him to stay longer from a business trip and me to fly in to Arizona, which I have already been to and dont really have a desire to go, but of course stupidly I immediately said yes, and now thinking that with my finances tight. How do I have this conversation with him?..

Comments (13)

Your question was: How to have a money conversation.

How do you have ANY conversation with him? You just DO it. I personally don't understand being in a relationship (thru where you can't talk about difficult things, but maybe that's just me. Just be honest and straightforwardlet him know that you don't have a lot of money for extras and while you enjoy traveling with him, you can't afford to go if the two of you are splitting the costs 50/50 (or whatever is the case).As for his asking you to pay the hotel, that doesn't necesarily sound unfair to me if the costs were roughly comparable, but I would have had that conversation when (or before) you decided to go on the trip with him rather than assuming he would pay for you. The fact that he makes more than you isn't really relevantit's what the two of you decide as a couple that's important. If you want things to be a certain way, or if you can only afford to go if he's going to treat you, then you need to SPEAK UP!Sheri..

Comment #1

Depending upon how long you two have been dating, if this guy actually invited you to go with him on a trip...then I would have thought that he would have paid for the airfare and the hotel. I also would have thought that you would pick up the incidentals and some of the meals. If the relationship (thru has been going on for at least 3 months then I would assume some trip planning would be in order including who pays for what.The Arizona trip doesn't sound so great and you could back out simply by stating that you double checked your finances and you can't swing it this time and if he wants you to go, he would have to cough it up.As far as his comments about you coming from a wealthy family you might want to state what you posted here: "I have worked hard through school to be on my own."Even though he is 6 levels higher than you in your organization it doesn't mean that he doesn't want a free ride himself or want to use company money for his trip but he can't use it to pay for youcheaping out...

Comment #2

I understand it is wrong for me to assume, but in the past when he included me on trips he picked up most of the trip and I paid for incidentals and some meals. Since getting back together it seems that he kinda urges/expects me to pay for more things and outing than before; which I have mentioned cheaper alternatives and he always prefers the more expensive especially when he leaves his credit cards at home a little too often recently. I realize I was raised in a very chivalorous environment and my step-brothers/guy friends would never have the girl pick up tabs ever as they immediately grab the check, is this wrong of me to be a little ouchy with it?Thank you for your help...

Comment #3

"especially when he leaves his credit cards at home a little too often recently."> that's an "uh oh" that you need to address with him."but in the past when he included me on trips he picked up most of the trip and I paid for incidentals and some meals."> a couple of thoughts here...1) as time goes on I would assume that I would start to pitch in more with trip costs...assuming that our incomes were comparable. If he made a lot more money than me, than things would need to be fair in terms of percentage, like $100 to you may be like $1 to him so, 2)you can address this with him as stating that he used to do things in a certain way and you liked it that way...why the change? "I realize I was raised in a very chivalorous environment and my step-brothers/guy friends would never have the girl pick up tabs ever as they immediately grab the check, is this wrong of me to be a little ouchy with it?"> no, especially if you have had these role models in your life. If this subject is a potential "deal breaker" then you need to reassess this guy's desirability...

Comment #4

I agree with Snafu...ok so the womens lib movement has made us financially independant but so what...In my view - note I live in europe the savoire vivre pay for you when you go out but women reciprocate in their own way ususally with gifts...(I don't agree with this all the way) I expect that the guy will pay on the first few dates at least...and if they ask you to go away it's their pocket not yours!!!! This is a deal breaker in my it bugs me that he refers to your background...why is this relevant? I would be concerned that he may be a bit of a 'gold digger' - I would push the envelope here....dont fork out money say you are tight until pay day and hint that there is no spoort now or in the future from your parents - lets see how he reacts!!!Stingy men really annoy me...its a sign that they are stingy with their emotions..

Comment #5

Just be honest and straight forward.  Money is a ticklish issue - laden with hidden meanings for people.  Who usually pays on dates? Is he emotionally generous - truly important here..

As relationships move forward this is a very important hot button issue so good to air things out, expecations, etc.

If you really will have trouble money-wise AZ trip tell him before you commit to it need to discuss how things would be if you did go and mention you said yes really quickly because you enjoy being with him but AZ not somewhere that exciites, he would be the draw .


Good luck.


Comment #6

So I kind of chickened out with having this conversation and when we were together over the weekend, I quickly went to another subject the couple times that he brought up the AZ trip. He asked me to go to his 90th Grandmas birthday party in CA along with his birthday that weekend too (which I guess I feel obligated as I am his gf and should do what he wants on his birthday-or what are your thoughts on that?) as well as another trip with him in SeptemberI guess I get confused when somebody in the past has asked me to go with them, they have always paid. Well, now my chickening has got me in trouble as he sent me his travel itinerary through work today leaving the weekend prior so we can spend time together before his conference. Yes, he does make about seven times what I make, not that it matters, but it is a lot easier for him to go on trips (though the company is paying for this, not the extra days in the hotel) than me. It is not that I cant wing it/afford it, just dont want to continuously dip into my savings for this trip as quite honestly I would rather go home and see my family. I mean if it is only (I say chuckling to myself as I could do a lot with that) the six hundred dollar plane ticket (I am sure that I will pick up some incidentals too), I also have two dogs to put in the kennel which is another four hundred bucksHow do I sound to you?, Does this sound stingy?what are your thoughts?Many thanks for all your help, I really appreciate it!..

Comment #7

I think that you need to have a heart to heart with this guy and tell him about how much this is costing you in kennel fees, airline, etc. If he doesn't want to pitch in and help then he may have to go on trips without end up in the poor house because you chickened out...

Comment #8

I think that until you get the nerve up to talk to him you're just causing yourself STRESS and why would you do that?Don't put this all on him, SPEAK UP!!!..

Comment #9

It is not that I mind paying for things at all, in fact I like to buy my SO gifts and pay for dinner; in the past, like you said, I really enjoyed when my bf would be shocked and surprised that I picked up the tabs and appreciative of the gifts that I bought him. I do pick up the tabs for lunches or breakfasts more than often especially since I dont eat that much as my proportion of the bill as I dont drink and always get a salad is like 15% (my friends pointed this out to me) at most.Everytime he has brought up trips it has either been out in the open at work or with his family/friends on the phone and just not the right time to have the conversation. At the same time, I dont know how to bring up the conversation either? I guess I really get confused that when he asked me do you want to go to az with me and do you want to go to ca with methat meant he was taking me. In the past for other relationships when taking a guy home to see my folks in Oregon I paid for everything as I asked them to come with me so just confusing to me...

Comment #10

You say, sounds like fun, can we talk about it later, please? And then when you're alone, you say, I'd love to go but my budget is tight this month (or whatever), so I can't afford it unless you're able to treat me this time (or whatever it is you want/need from him).Easy squeezy. I honestly don't understand why this is so hard for you? Are you not an assertive person?Sheri..

Comment #11

Sheri gives good advice. How do you bring up the conversation? Just like you did here...

Comment #12

Yes it's learning to communicate honestly, and  to both take into consideration the other one's feelings and to try to work out reasonable compromises is essential.  Good luck with the conversation.


Comment #13

This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.


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