Dear Coleen: 'My wealthy partner is reluctant to splash his cash on me'

Dear Coleen

I divorced a toxic narcissist some years ago. Although he’s wealthy, he shafted me during the divorce a nd I ended up with a poor settlement for me and our child. I vowed never to be made a fool of again.

Two years ago, I met a man with a top 3% earner job. After his divorce (from a rich wife) he spent his money on a large house. He’s very careful with money in relation to us, but generous with things for himself and his adult children, and on his house project.

We hardly ever go out for dinner and stay in cheap B&Bs if we go away. He’s loving and generous with his time and we have tons of shared interests, so maybe I can’t have it all.

But I’ve felt a slow build-up of resentment and I’m concerned for my future.

Recently, I was told my job contract was ending. I earn £24,000 and when I added up how much I’d spent on our relationship (we live five hours apart), it was 27% of my income for food and booze when he stays with me, plus wear and tear on my car driving to his place, and my sexy wardrobe (clothes, toys etc) to give him a fun time after a cold marriage. I’ve also bought us tickets to concerts.

I told him I was terrified about being unemployed and may not get a job quickly, and explained how much I’d spent on us, but he didn’t take the hint, so I put it in a spreadsheet and read it out to him.

He was very upset, saying I was being cold and saw our ­relationship purely financially.

He said he’d pay for food when he visits, but hasn’t offered to reimburse me.

He claims his mortgage takes everything, but he’s seen his kids, who live abroad, five times in the past five months. Last year, he spent £10,000 on a family holiday.

I feel he’s not doing the right thing by me, even though he says he loves me. Am I being unreasonable?

I’d have given him my last penny, but not now.

Coleen says

You’re basing the success of this relationship – and your happiness – just on money. If you’ve been spending more money on this relationship than you can afford, then that’s the conversation you should have.

Then you could have talked about how you’d deal with that going forward. But giving him a spreadsheet and expecting him to reimburse you like it’s a business arrangement is bound to feel cold. My partner earns less than me, but if he ever put a spreadsheet in front of me, he’d be out the door!

Answer me this – would you have gone out with him if he didn’t have a highly paid job? It sounds as if you’re looking for someone to say, “Don’t worry, I’ll pay for your life, it’s all sorted.”

Maybe you need to ask where the relationship is heading. Perhaps you’re insecure about how serious he is about you.

The fact is, even though he has a good job, he has serious financial commitments. And why shouldn’t he travel to see his kids or holiday with them?

So, I think you need to be honest with yourself about what you’re looking for.

Your ex-hubby was wealthy, so you know money alone doesn’t bring happiness if you’re with the wrong person.

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