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Is My Underachieving 52-12 months-Outdated Boyfriend Utilizing Me?

Pricey Penny,

My boyfriend is a little bit of an underachiever. He’s 52 and makes $15 an hour working about 25 to 30 hours per week. He has his paychecks garnished for again baby assist. He says he was injured and couldn’t work a lot when his youngsters had been rising up, so he solely nets a pair hundred every week. He lives along with his dad and mom and doesn’t pay for meals or lease. 

In the meantime, I’m a single mother incomes over $100,000 working two jobs. I’m not tremendous wealthy as a result of I’ve college-age youngsters to assist and a reasonably sizable mortgage. I paid off my boyfriend’s previous money owed, his cellphone invoice, his auto insurance coverage and all our relationship bills, similar to leisure and consuming out. It’s getting costly, and I’m going into debt. 

I miss with the ability to go on a few first rate holidays every year. (He says he’ll go along with me, however he has zero funds to contribute.) He actually is a candy man who treats me very well, however I’m beginning to resent this association. Is he utilizing me?


Pricey S.,

Perhaps your boyfriend is utilizing you, or perhaps he’s simply actually lazy. You’ll by no means know with 100% certainty what’s happening in his head. Regardless, although, it sounds such as you really feel used on this relationship. Don’t dismiss that feeling.

One other obvious pink flag you shouldn’t ignore is your boyfriend’s delinquent baby assist. Do you imagine he did the very best he may to offer for his youngsters? If the reply is not any, RUN. Somebody who shirks their obligations as a dad or mum is unlikely to be a superb companion.

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Let’s assume you continue to need this relationship to work, although. The simplest approach to determine in case your boyfriend is utilizing you is to shut your pockets. Stop paying for dates. And for heaven’s sake, don’t pay this grown man’s payments once more. Inform him the reality — which is that it’s essential reduce on bills as a result of this relationship is placing you in debt. In case your boyfriend is utilizing you, he’ll bolt fairly rapidly.

But when he’s merely lazy, he could stick round, even when he doesn’t put a lot worth in your relationship. Positive, he’ll be disenchanted that his girlfriend is now not functioning as his ATM. However typically lazy folks linger in relationships as a result of they’re getting leisure and affection. For those who dumped him, your boyfriend would want to seek out this stuff elsewhere. That requires no less than a modicum of effort.

What it’s essential do is take a look at whether or not he’s keen to match your effort as soon as you’re taking cash off the desk. If he does worth the connection, this can be a good alternative for him to show it. Ask him to take turns cooking dinner for one another at dwelling or planning cheap date concepts. See if he can provide you with one thing higher than Netflix and chill.

Outearning your important different doesn’t essentially spell doom for a relationship. What typically is a deal breaker, although, is when your work ethics are fully out of sync. You clearly have targets when you’re pushed to work two jobs and earn six figures on prime of being a single dad or mum. However some individuals are content material with conserving themselves fed and clothed, even when it means dwelling with their dad and mom endlessly and by no means climbing out of debt.

Although you say your boyfriend is a candy man who treats you effectively, don’t give him an excessive amount of credit score. It’s straightforward to be nice when somebody caters to you, particularly once you additionally place zero expectations on them.

Do you have to resolve to proceed this relationship, it’s important that you just hold your funds separate. Which means no co-signing for him, no paying his payments and no transferring in collectively.

And when you’ve paid off the debt that you just’ve accrued from this relationship, please take a type of holidays you’ve been lacking. Even when you’re nonetheless along with your boyfriend, there’s no rule that you must journey collectively. You may take a solo journey or journey with a buddy or go on a gaggle tour. Don’t put your life on maintain in hopes that your boyfriend will morph right into a financially accountable grownup.

Finally, you must ask your self whether or not you’re keen to proceed issues roughly as is, with you footing the invoice for each splurge. Perhaps you get pleasure from his companionship a lot that you just’re tremendous with that. However it’s additionally OK to resolve that you just wish to construct a life solely with a companion who shares your ambition.

Robin Hartill is a licensed monetary planner and a senior author at The Penny Hoarder. Ship your difficult cash inquiries to [email protected].



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