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I live in London which is a very expensive city. Like a lot of people I work in finance which I find quite dull and unfulfilling and it is very competitive so despite my best efforts I have been unable to get into any of the "sexier" areas and in my mid 30s it probably is not going to happen for me at least not without doing an expensive MBA which I am not sure I want to do and the "sexier" areas come with even longer hours and more stress. And I am feeling burnt out and always seem to feel stressed and unhappy which probably contributes to the mild depression and anxiety and insomnia I have had most of my adult life. So I feel like I really need to change my life. 

I want to eventually find the right woman. But even women who are not that high maintenance or materialistic seem to prefer a man who earns a good salary and is ideally is a homeowner and because the kind of educated cultured women I am attracted to tend to have good careers and have good salaries they tend to expect the same from their men and have the usual expensive city tastes such as eating out, theatre, drinking, luxury travel and so on.  So even if they pay their own way it is still expensive to keep up. 

At the same time though I am a bit bored of these temporary pleasures. Eating out all the time and drinking a lot isn't ideal for one's health and are easy to take for granted. Holidays are great but the time flies by and then they are over. And I kinda feel with the right person simple things would be enough.  

And unfortunately I have an attachment to London. Maybe I could move elsewhere if I got married and settled down. But I have spent my entire life here and I think it would be difficult to be single in a much smaller city at my age.  

I am thinking in the near future of switching to teaching which is more of a vocation and offers a better work/life balance. It would also give me some flexibility in the future to consider living outside of London if I were to settle down. And perhaps with the long holidays I would be able to escape somewhere with a slower pace of life.   

But it would result in a massive reduction in my salary and I am worried about the impact on my dating prospects.  And because I have grown up with a comfortable lifestyle I was able to maintain in my 20s and 30s with my career I do not know how I would handle the step down in my lifestyle. And I might just end up trading work-related stress for money worries especially with high inflation. And of course long holidays are no use if you do not have enough money to go anywhere. 

I have spoken a bit about this to my mum and she says "Oh everyone is in the same boat and it will make more sense when you buy a flat, get married, start a family etc" but I do not know if I believe her. And I remember my father who came home after long days tired and irritable and would just crash and only really seemed happy on holiday which is only a few weeks of the year!



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If your work is soul destroying that's no good.  I was a teacher before I entered a much higher paying field that required even more hours than teaching (teaching did - all the prepping/planning, dealing with parents -especially as a newbie) - and I worked crazy unpredictable hours for 15 years.  But it wasn't soul destroying. Yes at times I was fried. Really fried. 

But I look back on those years with positivity -I was passionate about my work, it was challenging, interesting, and the downsides completely worth it.  I had no interest in whether a boyfriend owned a home -I too lived in a major city back then - but financial stability -yes. I did not date men who taught children/teenagers because back then the salary was really low (which was one reason I left teaching although I loved it) - and that might sound materialistic but in my city a teacher could not live a financially stable lifestyle and save $.  I didn't need expensive dates or vacations either.  I valued teachers and did not want to be the main provider if we had a child. 

I savedd $ over an 11 year period while I was single so that if I met a man who needed a second income if we had a child I could contribute from my savings and be home longer than maternity leave (which I was - 7.5 years).  I dated a lot and as you can see I was nothing like the women you are  generalizing about.  

So here's what I would do.  If you want to teach -go for it.  And then get a side hustle/second job especially during summers maybe involving your financial background - you will work just as many hours and maybe more but if you're passionate about teaching it won't be soul destroying.

I'll give you a different perspective on holidays -if you want a child - in the past 6 years we've taken our son to 3 European countries -the third one was a few weeks ago.  He's 13.  A week each time.  Also all over the U.S. many times. Nothing -I mean nothing -equals the education, the enjoyment, the growth he's experienced from the traveling.  Other than the trip to Disney I guess and a few other "just for fun" trips. 

We take him all over -not kid friendly - mostly not -we have taught him also how to be a good tourist, how to interact with locals -he insists on learning a few words at least -like "please" and "thank you."  It's not just "vacation" and it's not a vacation for me at all. I work so hard prepping/planning etc and the long flights are hard on this 55 year old body lol.  But just consider that the $ at least to me is worth it (all of the european trips involved my husband's work which helped defray part of the expenses).  

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2 hours ago, jazz_lover said:

it would result in a massive reduction in my salary and I am worried about the impact on my dating prospects. 

Don't revolve professional choices around "dating prospects". Do some part-time consulting rather than chitchatting all day with useless women. 

I replied in your other thread on this :


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Try readjusting your way of thinking.  Dating and seeking women who match your social economics / or the desire to find a woman with character and goals that match yours.

If that's what's keeping you stuck in a soul draining field that doesn't bring you joy, then that negative mindset probably isn't going to bring the right woman into your life to begin with.



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I think I noticed on some other thread the pattern regarding your women. If your ultimate goal is to go outside of London for a more peaceful life, do you really think some "party girl" from London, would be happy with you going outside of London. Thus making her leave her party life behind. For a smaller salary so therefore even affecting the lifestyle of both of you?

I feel like you want a certain lifestyle. And the girl who would come with that lifestyle. Kind of girls that are there because you provide something, would leave as soon as you stop providing it. You "slaving away" for a certain lifestyle, finding a girl that would go with that, and then go to some village to be a teacher, is not a realistic solution. Because its just not. Though I also feel that, if you want somebody to accept your more peaceful life that you would build, you would have more chances to find that kind of girls outside of London. You would maybe have less choices, but more luck in finding anybody who would go along with more peaceful lifestyle.

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Hey Jazz,


Are you really set on London? 

I say this because it is almost impossible to own even a flat without a very good salary. A family house with a garden and garage and the whole schbang - oh my goodness. Often mega bucks. 

London is not for the regular Joe. Team an insane mortgage with the price of eating out and drinking and travelling and all the rest of it as well as supporting a family - you will have to be near a millionaire to keep it all up. 

Happiness is very important. It’s not the only thing, but we only get one life. You have to make it count. You want to think - I did it my way. Not someone else’s way. Or the way you think it should be done.


I would so strongly suggest moving outside of London. Relocate to, well, there are beautiful and classy and happening places all over the country. You may find the women have a better attitude and more kind and down to earth expectations. 

I know it is said often as a cliche, but no one lays on their death bed wishing, God, if only I had worked more and made more money! They are left wit their memories. Hopefully of stand out, happy times. Hopefully of a life filled with love, and people who loved them. 

You need enough money to live a comfortable lifestyle and to not stress and worry about money. This is true. But trying to keep up with a London lifestyle is going to put sweat on your brow if you don’t have the income, or feel like you are forever jumping through hoops and straining yourself.


My husband, given half the chance, would trade places with me in a heartbeat if he could. He owns his own business, I stay at home with our three young children. He would ADORE to work less and enjoy himself doing simple things. He’s a simple kinda guy when it comes to pleasures. But he is in a financial trap at the moment, which is very stressful. We have so many bills, he has to keep on the hamster wheel. He is happy to do it for us, but it doesn’t make him happy. Me and the kids do.


I am not saying life is one big romantic fairy tale where we all slip off into our dream vocations and can disregard the need to pay our bills or have a roof over our heads - but, there is more to life than work. 

If you speak to people who have had near death experiences, or been through serious illnesses, their perspectives and regrets often change.


You want to be with someone who is right for you. And for that to happen, you need to start doing what is right for you, to attract the right person!


All the best OP! Sorry to ramble! 


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Money can buy happiness do a degree, but you will still feel like you are "empty". Its not the KEY to happiness though. Do what you love and the rest will follow. You owe it to yourself. Don't worry about what's down the road, make yourself happy right now. The right woman will come along and love you for the person who you ARE and not what you make. 🙂

Staying in a career that you don't love doing will drain you and rob you of your precious time. Time over money, you can always get more money but you can never get more time. 

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On 7/25/2022 at 7:01 AM, jazz_lover said:

I want to eventually find the right woman. But even women who are not that high maintenance or materialistic seem to prefer a man who earns a good salary and is ideally is a homeowner and because the kind of educated cultured women I am attracted to tend to have good careers and have good salaries they tend to expect the same from their men and have the usual expensive city tastes such as eating out, theatre, drinking, luxury travel and so on.  So even if they pay their own way it is still expensive to keep up. 


Sounds like you are trying to date out of your league.  Very common.  I always feel bad for those people because there is never any solution for that . .  because being told to be more realistic about the kind of woman you can actually get sounds like settling because you're not getting what you want.  But wanting what you can never have and hoping for the exception to the rule is a fool's errand.

No real comments on the career issue because I am at the point in my life where I will gladly choose happiness over money, and I do so on a regular basis.

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Evening Jazz,


Just to add, the psychology professor and author/lecturer Jordan Peterson has some interesting points to make about mate selection in humans, and dominance hierarchy’s within our species.


I think the crux of it is - women generally want a partner to match their education, their financial situation, or better. Women marry across and up their hierarchy. Men marry across and below. Generally speaking. 

This comes from a biological drive women have inside them. It says, if they choose to have children, the become vulnerable, and need providing for and protecting. This has been ingrained in our ancient and animalistic survival for hundreds of thousands of years. Now in modern day this usually equates to, a man with a steady and secure job, a competent man, an intelligent man, a strong and healthy man and also a man who seems like he is going to stick around.


I realise this is generalising. But women still look for the age old and very predictable traits in men - healthy, competent, intelligent, financially secure or able to provide financially (match them financially, to above). Generally. There are obviously exceptions to this rule. But women, especially women looking to start families, consciously and unconsciously think of these things.


Whether you think such things as alpha, beta, omega or sigma males and females exist, there is a power play that goes on underneath our noses everyday of our lives.  Searching for a partner is no different. We want the best we can get, generally speaking. No one wants to feel like they settled. The likelihood is, you will be able to shoot for someone who is similar to yourself. People normally marry very similar partners anyway, on the social, attractiveness and economic scale. It’s not a down beat thing at all. It’s a very natural thing, and means there is definitely a perfectly great and beautiful woman out there for you.


If you want a type of, “trophy wife”, unfortunately the cliche stands, you have to be some kind of “trophy husband!”


I don’t mean to sound bleak or discourage you. I am just trying to interject some biology into the equation for explanation sake.


I do wish you the best of luck. 

Men can compensate for lack of great looks by being wildly charismatic and magnetic. Men can compensate for a lack of a great paying job by being wildly handsome. Sometimes entrepreneurial spirit and intelligent creativity can trump a hefty bank account because it gives off an air of competent and unique great potential and attractive risk taking. Sometimes rare and special talent can captivate over looks or money. 

Life isn’t black and white but, there are generalisations and the general population tend to follow those patterns.




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Thanks for the insightful responses.

Will look into the forensic accountancy option which would be a more achievable pivot.  

Not convinced I will be able to do anything with the finance during the summers. But probably would be ways to earn some extra money to supplement a teaching income. 

As for the dating it makes sense that most women would not contemplate dating a man who earns less than them and a lot of the women earning low incomes would ideally like a relationship with a higher earner. It is an economic society. And especially in a city like London raising a family is very expensive and I think at my age women do have that at the back of their mind whereas women in their 20s are probably a lot more about looks and a guy being cool and fun and so on. 

Also I know that a lot of the dating options in London are illusory. There are a lot of serial daters out there and I think a lot of people treat dating as a pastime/a way to let off steam and aren't seriously looking for a relationship or have become impossibly picky because there is the illusion of choice with millions of options.  Also very common for people to keep their options open and date multiple people because it is so easy to do so.  

 So perhaps if I do decide to teaching I will have to reconcile with the idea of moving outside London. My dating optiions will be more limited but there won't be as much competition and possible to find women with a more moderate lifestyle similar to the one I will have to adopt and the women I do meet will perhaps be more relationship focused. 

Anyway food for thought. 



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1 hour ago, jazz_lover said:

As for the dating it makes sense that most women would not contemplate dating a man who earns less than them and a lot of the women earning low incomes would ideally like a relationship with a higher earner. It is an economic society.

I cared about work ethic, financial values and financial stability not the salary #.  But if the person made a low salary because our financial values/work ethic/ambition were not compatible that would be an issue.  Nothing to do with "society" - simply had to do with my life goals of marriage and family.  When I was single I started saving $ in case I met someone who made less than me as I wanted to be able to afford to be a stay at home mom for longer than maternity leave.  I saved for 11 years with this goal in mind.

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Putting your focus on what would please someone else enough to make them want you is like shoveling smoke. Instead, spend that same time and energy knowing what you want, and then do that. If, once you’ve established that, someone comes along who fits in your life, great. If not, it doesn’t matter because you’re already doing what makes you happy. 

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