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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!