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Money Mistake Monday – Doesn’t Care How You Pay For It Girlfriend Syndrome.

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In this first post in what I hope will be a series of weekly posts titled “Money Mistake Monday”, I wanted to share with you a little something called “The Fancy High-End Wants Everything And Doesn’t Care How You Pay For It Girlfriend Syndrome”. A few years back (about 8 years) I was dating this girl who was an attorney. She owned her own house, drove a new fancy car, had the nicest shoes and clothing a girl could ever want. What the hell she wanted to do with me was anyone’s guess; I guess I was a bit of a fixer-upper project. I had a bunch of earrings, I played guitar in a rock band, I drove a piece of crap Honda Civic. I was, by no means, rich. In fact, I was not even living comfortably…I was struggling to pay back thousands of dollars in credit card debt and student loans, spending way too much time figuring how who I was while at the same time trying to maintain a “Me? No worries” lifestyle. But I digress…

This girl wanted to be treated like royalty. We went to expensive dinners, we went away on expensive weekends, etc. I even traded in my paid-off but still drivable Honda for a brand new leased Audi in order to impress her. I acted like I could afford everything…and I could. On credit. And for the entire time we were together, I pretended that nothing was wrong and I was made of money. I paid for everything and when the relationship was over, I paid even more handsomely. My credit card debt had ballooned to way more than I owed before I met her and I was left holding the bag after a failed relationship.

The thing that I took away from this relationship was that I could no longer pretend to be living the high life while struggling just to live the low life. I was no longer going to allow another person to make me feel like I needed more stuff, needed to make more money, or needed to support their lifestyle. If someone did not like the way I lived my life and the amount of money that I made, then the relationship just would not only not work out; it would not even get started in the first place.

So my Money Mistake for this Monday is allowing another person dictate my lifestyle, whether I could afford it or not. Let this be a warning – it could happen to you!


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Comments (15)

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  1. Pinyo says:

    That’s really bad. Sorry to hear about that. I guess I am fortunate to married someone who has similar spending habits and lifestyle.

  2. david says:

    I married one too Pinyo, this was in reference to a girlfriend from 8 years ago!

  3. Mrs. Micah says:

    I’ve heard of such girls who then blame the man for being in debt if/when they get married. I’m sure it could be vice-versa, but with gender roles about paying and such still being comparatively traditional I’m sure the former happens more often.

  4. Bo says:

    David, I feel your (past) pain! I think sometimes she just has to be okay with McDonald’s for dinner…

    Fortunately, I married on that is!

  5. SavingDiva says:

    I’ve had this happen, but with friends…your friends assume that you’ll buy a round of drinks if they do…and then they order a $20 drink…ugh!

  6. Nicole says:

    At risk of sounding contrary, it doesn’t sound as though your mistake was that you dated a high-maintenance girl, but that you weren’t honest with her about your ability to pay for the lifestyle that she wanted to live. If, as you say, you behaved as if you could afford all those things, why is she to blame for your debt? Who can say what would have happened if you were more forthcoming?

  7. David says:

    I didn’t say she was to blame for my debt, I said I was. I fully took the blame several times in the article!

  8. david says:

    In this post I see that being honest and straightforward is crucial for a healthy relationship. I hate impressing people =).

  9. Wheels and heels man – nothing but trouble (if my wife sees this she’ll kill me!)

    Seriously though, this is a great message. It is too easy to blame others and the fact that you recognized the issue is great. I look forward to other posts in this series.

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