Money comes up a lot in relationships because it can so easily be a point of contention. People can feel taken advantage of when there’s a big wealth gap and people can feel neglected when their partner never shells out for a fancy dinner.
The best way to handle this is clear communication, but who does that?
In the case of Redditor u/bluemahoon the issue seems to be too much communication. She definitely doesn’t like what her boyfriend is saying.
She writes that she and her new boyfriend are going on their first “romantic weekend away” and he sent her a spreadsheet of the trip’s costs and “exactly how much I owe him.”
The OP explains that both she and her boyfriend have decent salaries and have always split date costs, so there hasn’t been tension around money before. They’ve been together a few months and went exclusive three weeks ago. They’re driving an hour away for an overnight at an Airbnb and aren’t planning anything extravagant.
The first red flag was that as they were planning her boyfriend asked, “What if we break up before the trip?”
She told him it wouldn’t be a huge expense and she could bring a friend instead if that happened, but it seems to have set the tone for vacation planning:
A few days later I messaged him to suggest a restaurant I thought we could visit on the trip, and he said “very nice but super expensive as well” and suggested we got takeaways instead. So I dropped the idea, as it wasn’t worth fighting.
Then he sent me a message explaining how he’d “broken down the cost of the weekend” so he could book the Airbnb, transport tickets and tickets to the tourist attraction. He’d attached a spreadsheet with our names in it, literally breaking down the cost of everything to the cent, with the final add up of everything telling me I owed him $167.99. I’m not tight with money at all, and would happily have just given him $200 to cover my share of the weekend (or booked some things each and let it all balance out) without the need to quibble over minor costs like this.
He’s an accountant so I get that he kinda does spreadsheets for a living, but this has ruined the vibe of the weekend for me. I’m his new girlfriend going on a romantic weekend away, not a client to send an invoice outlining every cent. It feels so procedural.
She asked readers if she was right to feel it was a “weird/unreasonable” way to deal with finances.
The comments are pretty split on Reddit and on Twitter, where it was posted by @redditships.
The consensus seems to be that a spreadsheet isn’t inherently bad, but these two clearly have different approaches to finances (surprise!) which means they should talk about it.
Though there were people who think the real red flag buried in this story is him asking about breaking up just three weeks into their relationship:
There are people who make spreadsheets and people who don’t and they need to work together to come to some sort of understanding:
Maybe they can work it out by talking over coffee. That’ll be $4.50 each.
Lead image: Pexels.