When I was much younger, I was watching a Bollywood movie at a friend’s house, and the main character of the movie was trying to win over the heart of a beautiful young woman who was from an affluent home. At the end of the movie, the poor guy succeeded in getting the girl to fall in love with him and move into his (very) humble abode. I remember my friend’s mother saying “Those two are yet to understand the concept of paying bills! Give that girl a few months or years, and she’ll go running back to her parents house when she realizes that love without money is not exactly what it is cracked up to be.” I did not understand why my friend’s mum felt the need to say the words she said while looking at her young teenage daughter (my friend’s younger sister).
No Money, No Love
These days, so much emphasis is placed on having money. Is money so important in relationships? Well, let’s see, according to statistics a lot of marriages have ended because couples could no longer cope with having money problems. As an African, not having money may not only earn the man disrespect from his wife, but it would also make him lose the respect of his children, siblings, aging parents and other family members.
Most women would rather remain single than go into an intimate relationship with a man who does not earn enough money to support the lifestyle to which they are accustomed.
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I sat with a group of friends and we were talking about how things have changed and why so many people are interested in dating people who are financially comfortable. My friend Lilly (not real name) said (emphatically) to me that she will NEVER have anything to do with a “penniless” man….ever! I begged her tell me why she felt so strongly about avoiding so-called penniless men and she had a lot to say.
Been There, Done That – Lilly’s Story
Lilly is one of those women who works really hard and has old fashioned values, she comes from a home where the man of the house pays the bills, and takes care of his woman. She met a nice young fellow when she went to a local karaoke bar with friends. The guy seemed really nice and most importantly, he had a job. She thought that she had met the man of her dreams, they started dating and she felt really comfortable with him. But, Lilly noticed that he was not the old fashioned man that she wanted to be in a relationship with. He did not mind “taking” money from her to pay for groceries, utility bills and other stuff; this bothered her a bit, and when she told her mother. Her mother was furious and told her to “Leave that man! Unless you plan to be the bread winner of the family! God forbid!” Lilly was a little confused, this guy is nice, intelligent and he goes to church for Pete’s sake!
She decided to ignore her mother’s advice and continue with the relationship. She borrowed him money to start up his “master business project” and helped him secure a loan to rent his posh office space and purchase an official vehicle for his business. She gave him all her heart, body, should and of course, 80 percent of the money in her savings account.
Her boyfriend started landing huge contracts, and started making a lot of money. Soon, he moved into a bigger apartment, a bigger office space, he hired more people and bought a more expensive car. Yup, he had arrived.
Lilly thought, she would be treated like a queen by the man she stood by, supported and loved for 3 years of her life. He started acting weird; he did not want to be seen with her, he was not as thoughtful and caring like he used to be. She noticed that he was spending more and more time with a very pretty lady. She decided to confront him; she had packed her bags and waited for him to come home. After confronting him, he admitted to seeing someone else. Lilly screamed for a few minutes and broke a couple of things around the apartment; she later calmed down and asked him one simple question; “why?” He looked her straight in the eye, and said “I now have money! I HAVE A CHOICE! Women worship the ground I walk on, I can date any woman I want. Yes, you were good to me; I will write you a check to pay you back what I owe you!”
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When I heard Lilly’s story, I didn’t blame her for deciding not to date someone who is not financially comfortable, she had learned a lesson ….a hard one.
But, not all men will change when their financial situation improves. Some men will move mountains to put a smile on the face of the partner who had stuck with them through thick and thin.
Yes, money does give you a choice but you also need to be wise! Here are a couple of things I have learned in life about love and money:
- You never really know someone until they have money – remember, when they have money, they NOW have a choice, they can choose to be with you or choose to be with someone who they thought was way out of their league when they were penniless.
- Money is not everything – do you really want to be with a man or woman who is only with you because of what they hope to gain from you?
- Do not despise people who live to marry into affluence. You do not know what they have had to endure in life. Then again, there are people who do not mind supporting their partners financially.
- Never make money the reason why you would even consider remaining in an abusive relationship. Money will always remain on earth…but, you only have one life to live.
- Do not be afraid to cut certain people out of your life, especially if you discover that they would do virtually anything for money.
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