Get Your Hands Out Of My Pockets: The Debate On Borrowing Money In Relationships

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Hi-  I need the male perspective on a topic- Men who borrow money from their girlfriends, what feedback you can provide on that situation? I’ve noticed it being a habit with my man- and as financially stable as I am, it definitely does not hurt my pocket and he always pays me back, on time. I guess i’m lowkey bothered by it because ‘aint a man suppose to support a woman!??!’ by no means do I want him to pay all my bills and living expenses, but I guess if a situation were to arise where I can’t fend for my own financial burdens, I’d like the comfort of knowing my man’s got me- but if im noticing a pattern that he comes to me when his checkbook doesn’t align, then who am I suppose to turn to when and if my time comes?

Good Morning dear reader. I understand your dilemma, and will try to shed light on this topic from a man’s perspective. They say money is the root of all evil. I think that’s BS. When I was taking my driver’s ed courses, my instructor told us on day 1 that a car was an asset but also a deadly weapon, if used incorrectly. I feel the same way about money. The evil isn’t in the resource, but in the intentions of the one who uses the resource. There are a few points with your email I wanted to address to provide clarity to your situation:

Knowing your significant other before you make it official
When we first meet people who we might consider “exclusive dating material,” we will judge them. We should scrutinize their actions, and compare their behaviour against our personal preferences  to determine whether that person will be worth the trouble of dating. You may notice things about them that will raise a red flag. I would think that a woman would pay close attention to a man’s financial stability and fiscal responsibility if she wanted him as “hers.” This isn’t an indictment on women as gold diggers, but a commendation of their perceptive nature. If you deal with a man who has money for the latest copy of NBA2K13 on XBOX, wears the trendiest clothes, but yet has no money to pay his personal bills, chances are he is fiscally irresponsible. Women don’t want a man who can’t handle his own, because they won’t be able to handle bigger issues as they arise. Did your man exhibit these characteristics before he was your boyfriend? Did he pay for dates or were you always the one paying the bill? If you had a certain criteria for the financial standing of a significant other, and this man didn’t meet those requirements, then the blame is squarely on your shoulders for allowing the relationship to go any further than casual dating.

“‘Aint a man suppose to support a woman?!”
See…this is where I have an issue with women at times. This line of thinking directly links to my previous point on boyfriend pre-screening. Men and women love to decide when gender norms apply, and this usually happens when it’s in our best interest. You say in the paragraph that you are financially stable, and that loaning your boyfriend the money doesn’t really hurt your bottom line, yet you still have this gender specification looming in the back of your mind. You aren’t wrong for it. I feel the same way most of the time! However, I do think it’s circumstantial and situational. I’m not one of those dudes who would lose 75% of my testosterone if my girlfriend made more money than me. It would motivate me to do the best I could to be the most financially stable I could become. It makes the situation a tad confusing when you want to herald your individual financial accomplishments, while chiding your man’s potential to support you.

Can you see how that can be contradictory? I know that you’re not looking for your boyfriend to pay your bills, and that you would want the peace of mind to know that if you were in a financial jam, that he would hold you down. I would concur with your concerns, if he didn’t pay you back. You said he does pay you back. Trust me when I say loaning money to family and friends is one of the worst actions ever invented in life! If and when they don’t pay you back, it can be a huge issue. He pays his debts, and I can respect that. If he pays his debts, that shows to me that he does have financial responsibility, and that can translate to financial support.

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  • Uncle Hugh, BP

    As a man, I have too much pride to borrow money from a woman I'm dating that's what family and friends are for, and even on the rare occasion I borrow from them, I can't pay them back fast enough. The three key things here are:

    1. Are you comfortable with his income level? I suppose I can't fault a woman making $90K a year for being slightly hesitant to date someone making $30K. But if you make that decision, you can't come back at him with "who am I suppose to turn to when and if my time comes". If he's borrowing money, can promptly pay it back, and he is a good steward with the money he does earn, then that would suggest he is competent at handling money and responsible borrowing money.

    2. Is he living within his means? Pride is an inherent check on a man borrowing money. If he's borrowing in emergency situations, cool. If he's doing once a month for trivial items, that's an eye-raiser.

    3. How long have you been dating? If you've been dating for six-months and he's habitually borrowing money, that is not a good sign.

  • http://biggerthomas.wordpress.com/ madscientist7

    "Men: how do you feel about borrowing money from a girlfriend?"

    wouldn't do it. plain and simple. i have too much pride for all that.
    My recent post Build a Fence to Keep Asians Out???

  • cynicaloptmst81

    Good advice!

    The issue for me is financial responsibility. There are a few circumstantial exceptions (laid off, medical emergency, etc.), but no grown person should constantly have to borrow money. My bf is switching careers and he has asked to borrow money 1 time ($35…returned the following day) in the 1 1/2 yrs we've been official. Stuff like that should be planned in advance so you won't have to keep hitting someone else's pocket. Since my divorce, I had to face the reality that the average black man in my age range was not making the kind of money I make (legally, lol). So, financialy responsibility is what I look for…which you described in your first point. If you live within your means and manage your money well, you can save…no matter your salary…which gives you money to help me out if I'm in a major, unforeseen jam. And thats what's important…can you support me if I'm in dire need? That question goes to any person in a relationship…male or female. I'm cool with lending money if you're in a financial jam that isn't your fault…

  • jwoodny

    For me, it's kinda emasculating to have to ask a woman to borrow money, even if it is for something legitimate and I really need it. In general, I just feel weird having to ask someone for a loan.

    But if her boyfriend is asking on a regular occurrence, something doesn't sound right. The fact that he pays it back is irrelevant. I mean if it's for the same bill or he's not saying why he needs to borrow so often, I'd have questions if she was my sister or homey.
    My recent post I’m Ok With Not Fitting Into Your Corporate Box

  • Dr. J

    I been in this situation before both ways, it really doesn't matter. Sometimes it's a matter of just a quick cash loan to keep you from going in your savings. One time I borrowed like $250 from my girl because I wanted to make sure I didn't have too many checks process through my bill money checking account. I could have transferred the money from my wild out budget account but that would affect our weekend. It was cool. I had the money, I just don't like transferring money when I know as soon as I get paid, i'll re-up.

  • http://inanimatethoughts.blogspot.com Animate

    Here we go…looking for an issue in a relationship.

    Look, he is paying back, on time at that. I assume without you even having to ask. Unless there are other issues in the relationship don't make this one.
    My recent post Murci, Murci Me

    • CPT Callamity

      Basically. I'd see if dude just borrowed money and she never saw it again. He's handling his debts and that is a virtue alone.

    • Alakaii Hawaii

      +1

      I don't fancy looking for issues in stuff I prefer to see the positive side of things.

  • The Analyst

    <div id="idc-comment-msg-div-396303324" class="idc-message"><a class="idc-close" title="Click to Close Message" href="javascript: IDC.ui.close_message(396303324)"><span>Close Message</span> Comment posted. <p class="idc-nomargin"><a class="idc-share-facebook" target="_new" href="http://www.facebook.com/sharer.php?u=http%3A%2F%2 Fwww.singleblackmale.org%2F2012%2F07%2F05%2Fborrowing-money-in-relationships%2F#IDComment396303324&t=I%20just%20commented%20on%20The%20Debate%20on%20Borrowing%20Money%20In%20Relationships" style="text-decoration: none;"><span class="idc-share-inner"><span>Share on Facebook</span></span> or <a href="javascript: IDC.ui.close_message(396303324)">Close MessageSo…from what I just read…a woman asked another man what she should do about her man borrowing money and paying it back? Because she's under the impression that even though she's fiscally responsible and has enough to take care of herself, she should still be taken care of? Especially in the event she ends up not being able to support herself?

    Oh.

    Aight.

    Some women will find anything to complain about. He borrowing money from what I'm assuming are legitimate reasons and paying it back. You'd think one would be thankful to even get courtesy…And if it's really an issue…why not just, I don't know, NOT give him the money?

    Sorry. Don't mean to sound asshole-ish. I'm lightweight confused and being highkey facetious.

    To answer the question. I don't ask people for money in general unless it's absolutely necessary. But I'll ask my girl if I have to. Amongst other things, that's why she's there. To provide support.

  • Alakaii Hawaii

    lol @ letting a man borrow money. lol. no. You can take my private lesson on wealth building at the beginning of the relationship and skip this issue altogether.

    "Where is the fine line between independence with money and dependence on men?"

    I have no idea. I make my own money and I make a lot of it but I put it towards things I'm passionate about. All of it. because I'm "daddy's little girl". He pays for all of MY stuff and I pay for everyone else's stuff who can't afford anything. Sooooo. I'm not really sure. I would expect a man to let me spend his money because I'm frugal and I make sound investments and then I can essentially pay for myself. I think that makes me dependent; because, even if I could tell a man how we should invest he has to have the resources to do so and all the prosperity that comes from his initial investment is a consequence of HIS money so, I think that makes me dependent. Which is fairly annoying and a bit of a zing to my pride. but we're co-dependents. He needs me too. Just not to borrow money. lol. no.

    • http://inanimatethoughts.blogspot.com Animate

      "I would expect a man to let me spend his money"

      Sweet Jeebus I hope you are joking.
      My recent post Murci, Murci Me

      • Alakaii Hawaii

        No, I'm pretty serious. I like sharing. It makes me feel comfortable; it's more so a childish notion of someone stronger giving someone weaker something to play with. Except I do really cool stuff with toys? I don't know. Like I would expect a man to let me spend his money on something that would triple his bank account and we can share the prosperity. because it's fun to play with money because I'm good at making more of it so it would be really sweet and comforting for a guy to let me innocently play with his money. Is that weird? How does it work for you?

        • Alakaii Hawaii

          Hm.

          Let me smooth that out.

          Like how guys who can afford it take women on shopping trips and she "plays with his money"….except majority of the men I look at are probably recovering from higher education costs and the cost of liing independently and aren't balling out of control like that. So when I "play with his money" I would be investing it. I would expect a man to let me invest his money in our future. I wanna be wealthy. it's really specific. and I don't have the resources. so yeah? I'm pretty serious about it unless it's weird. than I was just joking.

  • Adonis

    I believe in giving & taking money, but not borrowing, both ways…

    If you lend money to family & friends & S/Os, charge it to the game

  • http://www.therealslimjackson.com Slim Jackson

    A man has no obligation to financially support a woman he isn't married to. A woman doesn't have this obligation either.

    Her guy sounds like a noble dude and he isn't too filled with pride to ask for something when he needs it. In fact, he sounds reliable. I'd put this gripe aside for the greater good if I were her.
    My recent post Why You Should Say No More Often

    • Alakaii Hawaii

      I dunno. She's clearly uncomfortable with the dynamic now so he should take it upon himself to readjust his finances. I'm sure there's things in his life he spends unnecessary amounts of money on so he can fix that himself or just ask her to help with a budget or something seeing as how she's the stable one. It would make sense to learn from her as opposed to relying on her — as he would a credit card or loan from a bank. That way HE'S financially indepdendent because "A man has no obligation to financially support a woman he isn't married to. A woman doesn't have this obligation either." which is a sentiment I agree with. He also pays her back in a timely manner so there's not really too much of a problem there.

    • Young Heaux

      "A man has no obligation to financially support a woman he isn't married to. A woman doesn't have this obligation either."

      This is not necessarily true.

      • Uncle Hugh, BP

        Young Heaux: "This is not necessarily true."

        Expound.

  • icare

    If this is a continual request, that is definitely something to think about. I understand that you make more money, which is fine. I also understand that you fear that if one day you fall on hard times, that he will not be able to support you. That is a legitament fear. I feel that if he continuously asks you for money, there isnt any room in his budget to help you out if you needed it. Its not about the fact that you make more than him, but that regardless of his wages or salary, he has no wiggle room. I say, keep on with the relationship, but if it does not cease and you both are really serious about each other, a talk about finances is in order.

  • Young Heaux

    Hmm… I've never made borrowing money, from anyone, a habit. And I find it difficult to trust in people who do, even if they're good for it.

  • Bree

    I will and have lend money to any family, friend, and yes my man if they needed it. "The fine line between independence with money and dependence on men" is the reasons why. My thing is you shouldn't have to constantly borrow money from anyone if your handling your business right. Technically speaking u should only have to borrow money when ur in a jam, fix, tight situation, and/or when totally unexpected sh** just happens. That should only happen once in a blue moon. I've taken out cash advances before I borrowed money from anyone. More than just financially responsible I try to always be financially prepared. This is the purpose of saving and having an emergency money fund. If your financially responsible u should be fairly well prepared for any financial hiccups and unexpected things that could happen.
    Regardless of whether this dude pays it back or not, him borrowing money so frequently is reason to be concerned. He could be establishing a habit of paying the money back right away right now so that when he doesn't pay it back she is more understanding and excuses it more quicky and easily.
    Bottom line girlfriend needs to just ask the dude why he needs the money in the first place. She also needs to find out why he needs to borrow it so frequently from her. If it were me I would try to find ways to help him out without loaning him money all the time. I would talk to him about getting a part time job or other options and things he could do to get this extra money that he seems to need so often. A part time job is actually ideal because going to your girl all the time to borrow money is not a good look. Not only that it gives her family 1 more reason to hate on him and warn her against him if they find out, (yall know how family and friends can be).
    How long she has known him is irrelevant to me also. If they have been together for 3 yrs does that make it better and more understandable that he asks her to borrow money all the time? Do folks really allow people to get away with more and get more from them just because they've known them and been with them for a long period of time? This is something folks can use against you and take advantage of it if you let them, so have to be very careful with that.
    I'm thinking this guy has some type of financial situation going on where maybe he is coming up short on some bills or something every month if he is asking her for money on a regular basis. Her loaning him money all the time shouldn't become the way he handles whatever it is. What is he going to do if she comes up short or if something happens with her and she doesn't have it to give him?
    She just needs to make sure the reasons he needs this money are legit and stop lending all the time. Once in a while is cool, all the time signifies a problem to me.

  • Bree

    Streetz realistically you can know someone for over a year and unless you work with them, know their supervisor or a close cowrker, their accountant, or do their taxes, have seen their bank accounts and financial statements you won't know the whole truth about their finances know matter how long u have known them. I know married people who hide financial things from their spouse, and they do it very well. So what makes you think you can know someone your dating or in a relationship with's finances like your are their accountant or tax preparer? People hide stuff all the time or just don't tell you stuff.
    So I'm just curious to know unless u were engaged to a woman how u would go about finding out the truth about her spending habits and her finances????
    Another example is my own father…..he foolishly took out a personal loan to court his wife. She never knew this until after they were married. She thought he made close to six figures. Had no reason to ever question anything and never really did. He just admitted to it long after they were married, u see what can happen with that.

  • petersburgh

    Well I don't believe in that gender role thing. If you're in a relationship and your partner needs support regardless of if you are the woman or man, you help your partner out. Of course you weigh up the situation because it may not always be legitimate. I never had to borrow money from anyone except my parents back in the day so I don't know how it feels but I think as long as your partner understands it's a loan and pays back on time, there shouldn't be a problem.

  • http://theshynarcissist.blogspot.com tSN

    I think that if you are with someone and it is serious, not like a one month relationship, support if they need it is important, no matter what kind of support. It really is up to you to decide whether they are legit or not…you're the one in the relationship, after all. I think lending your man money is ok, if it's not making you broke. I would expect him to do the same for me if I needed him to. If I have an emergency though and no money, that's what my folks are for lol
    My recent post Hateration

  • http://www.himloveshe.com salkis

    Honestly, I think 'freedom' comes with a price, for women, we now get men who have no shame in not being able to support a woman, to have the nerve to ask her for half the rent etc. It is a man's job to do these things,e specially if there married. If a woman wants to claim independence and you making the money, understand that you are being looked at as his equal..well you sort of like a man yourself…oh well.

  • Hmph

    Ok, what if you took a hit during the recession like me and had to take a job as a janitor and currently only make 13000 a year? Then your man of 4/5 years who is a gov't employee that makes at least 40000 or higher asks to borrow money and doesn't pay you back when you really need it for tution, rent, utilities, etc…? Thats my situation right now.

  • SistergirlinSc

    I never lend money to men period.

  • TAMMY

    NEVER EVER LOAN MONEY , I LOANED MY IRISH EX-BOYFRIEND ALMOST 2000.00 , HE NEVER RETURNED AND DID NOT CARE ABOUT ME EITHER , WORSE I FOUND OUT THAT STUPIDLY ENOUGH I PAID HIS VERIZON CABLE AND CELL BILL FOR THE HOUSE HE AND THE WOMAN HE MARRIED WHILE I DIDN`T KNOW, I ASKED AND BEGGED HIM TO PAY BACK , NEVER ANSWERED GUESS WHAT GUYS 2 YEARS LATER , KARMA
    HE IS DIVORCING AND PAYING AND LOOSING MUCH MORE AND DAUGHTER SUSPENDED FROM SCHOOL FOR CRIMINAL CHARGES . GOD WORKS
    TAMARA

    • newlgirl

      Karma is definitely alive. A friend lost like 17k to an ex bf.

      I lost 50 bucks, I was pissed because I knew he could pay it back and didn't. Lending money don't work unless you can say I trust this person 100% with my money. For me the 50 bucks was a lesson. Most guys that really love you will never ask for money they don't intend to pay back, those that do are users.

      I don't lend money to anyone EVER. If I am lending, that means I am giving and dont mind giving to the person I am giving to.

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  • sweetninnocent

    I befriended a man on a online dating website. We have been talking for about 8 months and he lives in another state. He gets a government check every month, pays his bills then spends the rest of his funds however he chooses.. I work 40hrs pay my bills and save the rest. Keep in mind I have never laid eyes on this man. He asked to borrow 2,500 to start a business with a friend. … I told him i have never even met you. He still expects me to do this…………….just doesnt set right with me…….what do you all think

    • OMG

      Run honey as fast as your legs can carry you, and if they aint fast enuf, leave em behind!!!

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