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Wedding Woes

4 men

Dear Prudence,

I recently moved in with my boyfriend of a year and a half. We are both in our early 30s and have a ton of fun together. He’s a great person with one big flaw. We were making exactly the same amount of money, but I recently got a promotion that has me making considerably more than him. I noticed he was having trouble making ends meet, so I offered to pay for more of the rent. I thought that would solve the problem, but I just learned that this month’s rent check bounced because he didn’t have enough in his account. I found this out from our landlord because he tried to keep it from me. This is the second time something like this has happened. I feel like I’m being lied to and I can’t trust him with money matters. I’ve asked him several times to be more transparent about money, but the financial shadiness persists. I want to work through this. Any advice?

—Boyfriend’s Money Management

Re: 4 men

  • They are living together.   Even if this isn't until death do they part he needs to uphold his end of the deal on their living situation. 

    She can be nice about this or blunt but the bottom line is that she's not a sugar momma, he needs to pay his fair share and if he doesn't, she doesn't get to consistently finance his poor choices.   

    Somehow the rent got paid before her promotion.   They need to get to a place where it can get paid.  Boyfriend doesn't need to disclose everything but in this business arrangement if he can't tell her what's going on I don't see that there's any reason it should continue. 
  • LW recently moved in with bf and also recently got a promotion. I wonder which happened first and if it was moving in first, how were they making it work financially before the promotion?

    I know it’s not a romantic subject but LW needs to have a detailed money talk with his/her boyfriend the way they would with any roommate.  Who’s contributing what?  What happens if someone isn’t able to?
    short+sassy
  • I don't normally think it's necessary for two people living together to share their finances with each other and/or have joint accounts.  But obviously he thought he could afford half the rent for this place and obviously he can't.  It should be very concerning for her...both now and for the future...that she's hitching her star to someone who doesn't understand even the basics of money.  Hopefully, he's willing to learn and she has the knowledge to teach him.

    Sounds like she already knows how much he makes.  She knows how much the rent is.  I assume she knows how much the utilities/cable are.  And she probably has at least a good idea of what other major bills he has.

    They need to have a "sit down", with pen and paper in hand, and go over all of his finances to determine where the problem is.  Write down his monthly income.  Write down ALL of his monthly expenses, no matter how minor.  And don't forget the catch-all "misc. spending" category that morning Starbucks lattes and McD "running out for lunch at work" fall into.

    Subtract expenses from income and, voila, she can immediately see if the problem is he doesn't make enough to cover his expenses.  Or if he blows his money on all kinds of stupid s**t, without even thinking about.  And they can form a plan from there.


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    MNNEBride
  • mrsconn23 said:
    Dear Prudence,

    I recently moved in with my boyfriend of a year and a half. We are both in our early 30s and have a ton of fun together. He’s a great person with one big flaw. We were making exactly the same amount of money, but I recently got a promotion that has me making considerably more than him. I noticed he was having trouble making ends meet, so I offered to pay for more of the rent. I thought that would solve the problem, but I just learned that this month’s rent check bounced because he didn’t have enough in his account. I found this out from our landlord because he tried to keep it from me. This is the second time something like this has happened. I feel like I’m being lied to and I can’t trust him with money matters. I’ve asked him several times to be more transparent about money, but the financial shadiness persists. I want to work through this. Any advice?

    —Boyfriend’s Money Management
    You feel like you are being lied to because he is lying to you and you feel like you can’t trust him with money because he has shown you cannot. Have fun working through a problem when he isn’t interested. 
    levioosa
  • I do believe people can have separate finances and live together; but you can’t live together without having a detailed finance discussion. If you can’t talk about this stuff you don’t have much of a relationship and any problems are just going to get worse. 
    eileenrobernursejSTARMOON44
  • Agree with @charlotte989875 H and I do not have joint accounts but we know who is responsible for what and we do a balancing payment to the other once a month. We sat down when we wanted to move in together and discussed how we would work our finances. We each pay a certain percentage of the finances.
    STARMOON44
  • Yea - there needs to be a "Where did the money go?" discussion... SNS - next time the check gets made out for rent not the BF...
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  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK member
    2500 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    You don't feel like you are being lied to. You ARE being lied to.

    Someone in their 30s who habitually bounces cheques for rent, no less, is not someone you should become financially intertwined with. I mean, does it matter where the money is going? You talk about this before the cheque bounces. Or even after the first bounced cheque. Not the second time. If this was a matter of sending money to a sick family member, or something serious, he should talk to his live-in partner about it! Fool me once...

    I would say: 'Obviously you can't afford this place. I can't afford it on my own. So I suggest we talk to landlord and see if we can sublet/ break the lease and we each move to separate places until you get your finances under control. Because I can't keep being worried if we are going to get evicted because of your spending and I don't want to police your finances."
    charlotte989875missJeanLouiseMesmrEwe
  • People who lie about money lie about other things, too.
    missJeanLouiseSTARMOON44
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