I have yet to speak on the topic of money and relationships, and one of the reasons why is because it can get pretty heated. There’s one news article after another pronouncing that the #1 cause for divorce is money, and for obvious reasons. Money can be easy to come by, but it’s just as easy to spend up and find yourself strapped for cash. If you get into a relationship with someone whose attitude towards money is the complete opposite of your own, things can go south quickly.
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A sub-topic in finances and relationships is the debate of who should pay most of the household bills. The conversations I’ve seen mostly come up in social media groups largely populated with women, so it’s often biased in a woman’s favor. The consensus seems to be that a man is expected to pay the rent and other major household expenses, otherwise his status is reduced to that of a roommate.
Although I consider myself to be very pro-woman (you know, with being a woman and all), I must say that I find this “rule” of paying household bills to be a little harsh. I grew up in a home where my stepdad was the breadwinner; however, I’ve been very independent since an early age and have always felt the need to be financially self-sufficient. I lived with roommates on a few occasions, but realized that I wasn’t about that roommate life, so I got my own place, where of course I was solely responsible for making sure bills were paid on time.
I never lived with a significant other until meeting my husband, and when we moved in together, the thought never crossed my mind that he would be the only one contributing to the bills. The whole time that we’ve been together, a portion of both incomes has gone towards rent and other expenses. This might be a big no-no in the world of relationships and finances, but I honestly don’t feel that it’s wrong. Maybe if he made six figures it wouldn’t be a big deal for him to pay all of the rent, but with me being in school right now and his hourly wage, we’re barely kissing half of a six-figure salary at the moment (before taxes). Sometimes it sucks, but it is what it is.
Anyway, I guess I don’t get the point of requiring one partner to shoulder all of the financial burden in a relationship. I’ve come across just as many bums in my life as the next woman, so I’m definitely not advocating for the ones that want to kick their feet up and play video games while the woman works all day. For *me* though, I think if two adults are living under the same roof, bills gotta get paid somehow, and as long as that’s done, I’m good.
What are your thoughts on relationships and finances? Do you think it’s the man’s responsibility to pay all the bills?