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harbour resentment towards my girlfriend over money (long, thanks for reading)


Johnt

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My girlfriend and I have been dating for a year and a half. She is a fascinating and intelligent girl, she's very multi-talented, holds a full time job and several free lance jobs as artist, writer (for a VERY prestigious newspaper) and PR agent. She is mature and sophisticated taste in clothes, food. She is considerate. It also helps that she is not bad looking either. I myself am somewhat similar except for in different ways I'm more of a left brained person and hence we're in completely different fields. Overall we work pretty well as a couple and when disagreements arise, things usually work out.

 

We've been planning a trip to France for a while and the planning process has been absolutely DETRIMENTAL to what used to be a quality relationship. I'm technically still a student and my money was saved up by working part time and making do with as little unnecessary things as possible.

 

I saved up just enough for

1. An air ticket with a high end airline + rail tickets

2. what I think is a generous accommodation allowance at $60/night ($120 for both of us) for the entire duration of the 2 and half week trip.

3. roughly about 40 euros/day of spending money.

 

But we have disagreed on accommodation. I thought, with that kind of budget we could get a decent place, perhaps a little out of town but still decent. but she approved of non of the places I suggested. Her concept of "That's not even IN Paris" = 20 minutes by metro from the Louvre. Apparently she doesn't have 40 minutes each day to save $100. She would reject a place based on how nice the photos look and I've seen her reject hotels based on a single negative review. I've also seen her reject a perfectly good place just because it allows smokers and I couldn't in anyway convince her that just because it allows smoking doesn't mean the room will smell like smoke.

 

So after being at loggerheads about this issue for over months, with lots of arguments, I decided that if I let this go on for much longer we'd both be single and possibly homeless in France, so I basically let her do what she wanted. That was a bit of mistake. She basically ended up blowing my budget by over $1000 for accommodation and the lord knows how much more. To make sure I will end up having enough for food I had to borrow a bit of money from my parents and the shame of borrowing from parents who aren't that well off for a holiday in France BURNS. Last night I had half a mind to call up and break up with her over this. (Usually I have a "live and let live" policy but only if it doesn't cost me my life's savings.)

 

I understand that with a past history of OCD, she's got a very high expectation for cleanliness and good service. As an artist she wants to indulge herself a little by living in "uniquely French" boutique hotels. But I just can't bring myself to justify borrowing money to pay for that. In retrospect it's as much my fault as it is hers. I should've stood firmly by my budget. She can either pay more for the luxuries or she can get over it and stay in my hotels or we don't go at all.

I don't really want to break up but I feel like our different views on money, her stubbornness and my inability to stare her down will lead to more festering resentment in the future.

 

Anyway, thanks for reading, I know I will need to learn to be more assertive in the future. I also know that money is a major point of argument for many married couples so any advice from people with similar experiences on that would be great.

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Lay all your cards on the table. Tell her the exact amount of your budget and how far it will stretch, places to stay, eating out and spending money etc. Make sure to stress to her that you are not going one penny over your budget. Then tell her if she is not satisfied with any of your choices, then she is most welcome to make her choices, but she will have to pay for it. If her budget can cover a lot more than yours, then it's up to her to put the money in. Her choice. She either puts up all the excess money to cover the costs of HER ideas for accommodation, etc, or you cancel the trip and she can go on her own. If she is not happy with this, then so be it.

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I would come up with the list of places and tell her to pick, as you did.

 

And tell her if she wants to stay somewhere else she can - but this is all you have, it's not made of elastic, and a place in this price range is IT for you.

 

IF you haven't gone yet - look into short notice vacation pricing for some of those pricier hotels. Some of them offer a steep discount for people that take a room someone else cancelled out on.

 

Another possibility - see if anyone is renting out an apartment there for the timeframe you need.

Something like this:

link removed

Unless she has her heels dug in on a "hotel" might give you better value overall - especially with a kitchen so you can prepare or bring back some meals.

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So why can't she contribute to the vacation? She makes money, you're a couple, it's only fair. You should have just told her that since you make X amount of money that's what there is, if she wants something more she needs to chip in. And tell her you had to borrow money from your parents just for food, so you want her to contribute something. Either that or you cut the trip short explaining to her that you are out of money and that's that. You can't eat on air and it's not fair to borrow it from other people.

 

You both need to have the money talk and sooner rather than later, there is zero excuse for her to spend all of your money, have no idea that you haven't got as much as she does, and then not contribute. And the whole "it's not good enough for me" would drive me absolutely crazy. Be prepared to live with high maintenance demands unless you get it all under control. You should have spoken up and she should get a clue too. Eiher you're a team and that includes planning a vacation together or you're not and this is an indication of the future. And $60 a day for vacation plus what you planned is more than plenty for most. It's alot more than I could ever afford, my idea of a vacation is when I get to drive up to the nearby lake with my own RV for a weekend. I can afford gas and fishing poles, that's it.

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She sounds spoiled. You have been together for long enough for her to know how much money you make and to be supportive to the fact that you are studying now. AND if I made more then my long-term boyfriend, and I wanted fancy vacations I would pay for them. You can`t afford it - she can, why fight about it and push you to pay for what SHE wants?

 

Make sure to stress to her that you are not going one penny over your budget. Then tell her if she is not satisfied with any of your choices, then she is most welcome to make her choices, but she will have to pay for it. If her budget can cover a lot more than yours, then it's up to her to put the money in. Her choice. She either puts up all the excess money to cover the costs of HER ideas for accommodation, etc, or you cancel the trip and she can go on her own. If she is not happy with this, then so be it. -- exactly that.

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I don't think going on a holiday you cannot afford is a good idea. You completely underestimated the budget. I'm sorry but 40euro a day spending money would not buy you a decent meal in Paris. Its a v expensive city and are you planning to just stand outside the tourist attractions and look up at them?

 

I think this holiday is a bad idea in general. You are a student. You cannot afford a holiday. And its a ridiculous idea IMO. Take her to a local hotel for a night-right now Paris is really not an option unless you want to run out of money on the first day.

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You can travel cheaply if you stay in hostels, eat breakfast at the hostel, have a simple sandwich for lunch, and then dinner try to find a less expensive restaurant or make your own dinner. Of course if you are in Paris, god, you should eat their amazing food!! Use the student discount everywhere you can, check if the museums are free on Sundays like some cities do that. I agree that 40 Euros a day in Paris isn't really going to get you anything. Especially not with this woman.

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3. roughly about 40 euros/day of spending money.

 

What are you expecting to do in Paris? Because that is not going to stretch far at all. Like basic meals covered.

 

It sounds to me that although you planned this trip, you haven't really discussed what exactly you want from this trip. And you as a student are willing to travel like a student, but as someone with a job, she wants to have a bit mroe.

 

Did you tell her that you can't afford it?

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A suggestion: check out euro disney and prices. You can get hotel plus theme park tickets together at discount prices and it usually includes breakfast. Then you could probably budget your meals and have money to get the train into paris for a day. I think young people have waaayyy more fun at euro disney then poncing around paris city. Ive done both and i think paris is over rated..

 

january/february is a good time to go coz its not too busy (no ques) and its cheaper especially midweek..

 

you can get a good hotel 15-20 minutes walk outside disney village which is a nice walkway. I enjoyed the walk, the place is beautiful. But the hotels provide free shuttle buses too if you dont want to walk.

 

January/february is very cold there so if you do decide to make sure you bring warm clothes.

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I think you made a mistake in allowing her to plan accommodations over your budget. If you weren't prepared to up your budget, why did you agree to that?

 

40 euro a day will be gone by lunchtime unless you plan to eat out of vending machines or buy your own groceries.

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