My mother (86) always says that financial worries are the worst ones to have in a relationship. As far as I’m aware, money was never too tight to mention (lyrics, video, Wiki) while growing up. In 2013, I was afraid that I was heading for a personal bankruptcy following my divorce battles in various courts that lasted for 4-5 years. Fortunately, my string of bad luck of (at least) 7 years finally reversed in 2014. I survived.
As a teenager, money was tight and I developed a frugal attitude to cope with that. However, every disadvantage has its advantage, a quote by professional soccer player Johan Cruyff. I’ve never smoked anything in my life. Occasionally, I felt ashamed of my frugal attitude and I vowed to relax it some day.
Nowadays, I’ve mixed feelings about frugality. I don’t mind picking up the tab when someone else cannot. I do mind when someone else can pick up the tab but is unwilling. Usually, these people have a job and an income while I have neither. This hurts my feelings. My ratio can cope with it though.
It was not easy (for me) to address money issues. In 2014, my relationship of 5 years broke down after discussing these. She used money to retaliate at me. I don’t blame her. I did the same during my marriage. It’s about a power struggle. The real issue that appeared, was that we had both lost respect for each other.
Probably, that 2014 moment defined my current views on money. Money is about (self) respect. This also explains the term fuck-you-money, which is an attitude of having no respect for anyone who has less money.
Maintaining a monetary balance between romantic partners is also about (mutual) respect. The absence of this balance will affect the ledger of a relationship (my 2016 blog).
Being generous is often viewed as a virtue and being frugal as a vice. This view may change, however, once you know the intentions behind these frugal and/or generous deeds. Intentions define (self) respect. Retaliation is never about having good intentions.
“Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people that they don’t like.” A quote by Will Rogers (1879-1935), a “Cherokee-American cowboy, comedian, humorist, social commentator, vaudeville performer and actor”.
Note: all markings (bold, italic, underlining) by LO unless stated otherwise.