Guys Aren’t The Only Ones Who Need To Prove Themselves

Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): Daisylive

:
Comment: I have been dating my boyfriend for almost 6 months now, and he has basically been living with me since about a month into our relationship when he first started sleeping over.

If you were to ask him, he like me, would say he lives here. He has his own drawer and shelves in the cupboard. Keeps his toothbrush here. Has a key to my door and clicker for the garage. He even signed up at my local gym with my address.

In fact he only goes home maybe once or twice a week for a change of clothes or to pick up his mail. And sleeps there only occasionally.

We stay at my place because it is nicer and bigger and located very close to both of our places of work.

The thing is, when I recently brought up sharing living expenses I was met with a flat out “no”. He said he’s already paying utilities and taxes and all on his own place – though he’s actually using them here! He’s not generally a cheap guy. He still pays for all our dates and stuff, and is always the one to drive places (to be fair), but still, I feel like his investing in our place, shows an investment in our relationship.

Also, when I’ve asked him to do stuff around the house, he only does it reluctantly. If he’s sleeping here regularly, then I think he should take a bit more care and do his share of the cleaning, maintenance (i.e. change lightbulbs without me asking), etc.

It’s not just the money that bothers me, but also the lack of commitment he’s showing.

I think now that we’re living together, it’s time to step up and show me that he’s really a partner in this. I’ve considered asking him to open a joint account so we could really share expenses, but I’m not sure if the next step should be a ring first. WDYT?
Age: 37
City: Toronto
State: Ontario

 

I just want to make sure I have this straight:

You’ve been dating for six months and in that time he has paid for all of your dates “and stuff”  and for the gas it takes to go back and forth from those dates, and you’ve contributed nothing in that area. Yet you feel that he should split living expenses with you to prove to you he’s invested in the relationship. Do I have this right?

It sounds like he’s doing a fair amount of investing in your relationship, if you ask me. I have to say that I don’t blame him for refusing to contribute to household expenses. He’s currently covering 100% of your entertainment expenses, plus using his car to chauffeur you around town. And then there’s that “other stuff” he pays for. Despite all that, you now want him to split your utilities and rent? Want him to spit shine your shoes, too? He’s refusing to contribute financially and help around the house because he probably resents your entitlement. Change a light bulb?

Daisy, he’s your partner, not your super. It’s your home. Change the damn bulb yourself.

I think now that we’re living together, it’s time to step up and show me that he’s really a partner in this.

But…you’re not living together. He just crashes at your place frequently. There’s a difference. He has a whole drawer and a cupboard to himself? And you think that constitutes living together? For real?

Just because you’ve decided that you two are living together doesn’t mean you are. A merger like that is far more involved than giving someone closet space and a key. There is more to consider. In most cases, the two people co-habitating bind themselves legally via a lease or a mortgage. Has he done that yet? No? Then you’re not living together. Moving in together is a big step because it usually involves a risk of some kind (usually legal or financial) that ups the ante. He hasn’t risked anything yet. So, no, I don’t think he would say you two live together if asked.

The fact that he hasn’t given up his place should tell you that he doesn’t consider you two “living together.” In fact, you should take that as a sign that he just might be keeping his place around in case things don’t work out with you. That he “reluctantly” does chores should also be a clue to you that he doesn’t consider your home his home.

You’re so busy looking for signs that he’s invested in the relationship that you’ve developed a blindspot for your own bad behavior.  What are you doing to show him you’re in this for the long haul? That’s what he’s likely asking himself, and that’s probably why you’re being met with such resistance.

Thoughts?

Sometimes the love of your life is the love of your life. (R)

@ATWYSingle

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55 Responses to “Guys Aren’t The Only Ones Who Need To Prove Themselves”

  1. fuzzilla Says:

    When I quickly skimmed this I thought Moxie was being too harsh, but digging into it more – yeah, “practically” living together isn’t “actually” living together. He’s right, he still has his own rent and utilities to pay, on top of all your dates.

    Is this the ol’ “hoops women make you jump through” argument that often comes up? Is there a hidden agenda where she’s really worried about her finances but too ashamed to admit it so instead goes on this, “Well, if you *realllllly* loved me” kick?

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  2. coffeestop Says:

    I would be reluctant to get myself into a situation like that in the first place. Toronto is not NYC but it is getting there and does have very expensive housing so issues like shared costs are relevant.While Moxie kind of did a tut tut to the OP and I think she was right it however it does sort of sound like the BF has a great set up, “practically living” there with his own place taking advantage of some of the perks of sort of living together. On the other hand I want to shake the OP for allowing this to happen. That was just dumb because now she has built up expectations about the relationship that might not be realistic. Here is what is going to happen, the BF will get bored with this scenario because she is asking more of him and fade on the relationship. She is wrong for thinking he should be going around changing light bulbs without being asked and he is wrong for lulling her into thinking they actually are living together. It won’t end well because they never really discussed what the expectations would be with him being there frequently and now the pattern has been set.

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    • fuzzilla Says:

      That’s true, maybe she is clinging to the symbolic nature of “practically living together,” and telling herself the situation is enough to make her happy when it isn’t. I’d think a more productive question would be why doesn’t he give up his apartment and make it official, or why labels and living together are so important to her in the first place.

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      • coffeestop Says:

        I don’t do well with ambiguity so that is why I would never allow somebody to live with me part time. I think he did not think things through and now she is planning her life with him based on his general passivity. They will break up over this. He thinks “cool now I can join that gym I like close to her place” and she thinks “cool now that he is here part time I can convince him to ditch his place and move in permanently.”

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        • fuzzilla Says:

          There was one guy I dated who tried to nudge me in the kinda/sorta living together direction and I was like, “Yeah, no. You do not want to rush something like that.”

          It’s only natural to spend lots of time at each other’s places if you’re dating for a while, so I could see why the OP’s BF is like, “WTF?” The guy I’m referring to would say things like, “I picture my shelves over there, my TV over here” as we sat together in bed. I was like, “Uh…NOPE. Too much, too soon.” He’d talk like that and yet was really ambivalent about introducing me to his daughter. Hello, if we live together, she’ll be crashing at *my* place on the weekends. And yet you’re all stressed out about the three of us chillin’ at an ice cream joint for half an hour..?

          I don’t do well with ambiguity, either. Plus I’m old enough that sweeping things under the rug has bit me in the ass enough times.

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    • Fyodor Says:

      Or maybe he likes spending a lot of time with her but at six months understandably isn’t ready for the commitment of living together. And as someone who is paying his own rent and utilities doesn’t want feel obligated to fund hers or be her maintenance man.

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    • Fyodor Says:

      They’ve been together six months. If he were stringing her along he wouldn’t be spending all his time with her and staying over six days a week. The fact that he does so is as strong an indication of serious interest as one could reasonably expect at this point.

      She should do the following

      1. Understand that staying over a lot when you’re not living together is not the same as living together and does not entitle her to his money.

      2. TALK to him about where he sees the relationship going instead of demanding that he pay her money to which she’s not entitled to somehow demonstrate his commitment. Explain to him that she doesn’t want to continue committing all of her time to the relationship if it isn’t moving towards a long term commitment. Ask whether he sees himself wanting to move in together, get married etc.

      3. If he’s on the same page then think about getting a place together.

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    • ATWYSingle Says:

      What perks? The perks that he would get even if he didn’t have an omigod drawer at her apartment?

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 7

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      • fuzzilla Says:

        Perks like nice gyms, shops, restaurants, public transportation within walking distance – things that people who live in big cities take for granted. Just a possible angle if her home/neighborhood are considerably nicer than his.

        Overall, I agree – he doesn’t *actually* live there, so no, he doesn’t owe her rent. She’s saying “money” when she means “commitment” and she needs to use her big girl words and have the scary talk she’s afraid of.

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  3. Greg Figueroa Says:

    The funny thing is she probably encourages him to stay.

    But to be fair to her, when you start using my address as your address for things, there has to be some talk about paying some expenses. Now if she gave her blessing, she can’t use that as a complaint.

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    • fuzzilla Says:

      Yeah, the gym thing was weird. Is there a discount by zip code? Sounds like she lives in a much nicer home/neighborhood, so maybe she’s resentful that he’s enjoying the perks of that without the investment. Although yeah, she apparently agreed to it…and that’s what you get when you sweep shit under the rug without real talk about expectations.

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      • Lisa Says:

        It’s probably more for convenience, closer to where she lives, where he spends much of his time. Why drive back to the old neighborhood to use the old gym if you’re only there once or twice a week, right?

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      • Greg Figueroa Says:

        Agreed, but is it like school districts, where you go to the school that is in your district. I didn’t know gyms had a zip code or address boundaries. Typically, you hand them an ID with your actual address. The OP didn’t state that he had an ID with her address on it.

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        • fuzzilla Says:

          **I didn’t know gyms had a zip code or address boundaries. Typically, you hand them an ID with your actual address.**

          I was just throwing out theories. Actually, with the YMCA, you can get a better deal on a household membership that you split with someone (that’s what we do), so maybe that’s it..?

          Anyway, yeah, it just seems like she’s focusing on the wrong things. Like, if you resent his being there so much, why do you want more of a commitment?

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          • D. Says:

            Because she doesn’t resent it. What she resents is that he isn’t moving forward at the pace she wants. The money thing is just something concrete that she’s latched on to as a demonstration of his commitment (and it also doesn’t hurt that it’d ease her own financial concerns).

            Basically, the fight about the socks on the floor isn’t really about socks on the floor. The fight about “You don’t chip in around here” isn’t really about him chipping in.

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            • fuzzilla Says:

              Yeah, makes sense. Maybe she’s like the guy who wants to e-mail his old classmate that he “admires her sexuality” or like Dater X 3.0 – trying so hard to get what they want through a certain narrative that they actually start believing their own bullshit…

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    • Joe Says:

      Using someone’s address is something that can just kinda happen. I have had girlfriends and others use my address. Do I expect a payment for this? Hell no! The reality of this stuff, is that it goes both ways. If she wants to delve into that, then she has to delve into the freebies she also gets.

      The real truth is the entitlement issue that has been brought up b y many. It’s real and a big stumbling block to forward progress in her relationship, and dare I say, many modern relationships. People like to get the upper hand. I suppose it’s a natural inclination in our modern world of over-competitiveness, self-centeredness and twisted ideas about protecting ourselves.

      In normal relationships, for two to become one, one cannot overly dominate the other or overly claim a special entitlemet. To her defence I will say that she does need a clear discussion on the primary use of her living space. But as she has this discussion, she has to be willing to acknowledge the entitled benefits that she enjoys.

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  4. bbdawg Says:

    Tough situation. I don’t really think the issue is all black and white about he pays for dates and she for the apartment, stuff like this, both him paying for dates and him staying over needs to be calmly discussed. He has NOT moved in therefore she can’t ask him to pay for the house bills or clean. That’s not his house.

    If she is unhappy with the situation she needs to TELL him in clear, non-emotional terms what she is unhappy about and what she wants to change. the bottom line here is control, she wants control of the situation while the guy doesn’t want to move in so he can keep both his independence and the convenience. IMO the OP is afraid he will lose the guy if she speaks up and that does not bide well.

    The OP should ask for some time off from the relationship so they can both figure out what they want. Or just ask him not to stay in her house so often if it bothers her so much. It sounds like it’s a case of “too much too soon”. These initial steps – spending a lot of time together and blending lives should be taken slowly and carefully so boundaries are discussed and respected.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

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    • bbdawg Says:

      Just reading the story again, I find it a little scary, the guy has the keys to everything…he’s taking wayyy too much space…I’m sorry I would not feel comfortable in this situation at all. It’s the OP’s fault that she has given him all this space though. Before giving him a copy of the keys (and the garage thingie!!!!) I would have had a real discussion with the guy. It’s time to claim your space back…or at least define some boundaries here.

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      • Jesse Says:

        I had a girl who offered me her keys like right away and I was offended. Slow down! She was trying to sew things up way to fast. Maybe this guy fell for the same ruse, and now that she isn’t seeing that he is “all in” on the relationship, she’s a little mad at him and herself over this. I can see her boiling over saying “I had plans for us!”

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    • Fyodor Says:

      I also don’t agree with this whole theme about how he’s getting “benefits” of living there. The main “benefit” of a place is not having to pay for another place to live.

      Her spending lots of time with him and/or sleeping with him isn’t some sort favor for which he owes her-it’s part of the relationship which both parties are supposed to enjoy.

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  5. PhDinCute Says:

    I agree with pretty much everything bbdawg said. It sounds like things moved a little too fast without discussion or agreements first.

    If he’s squatting with you he should chip in for rent and utilities- him buying you dinner does not absolve him of this responsibility. The fact that he refuses says a lot about his character (freeloader, much?)

    You’re not his mom, housekeeper, etc. and this arrangement will breed resentment (and the death of good sex).

    Learn a good lesson, slow down, and protect what you’ve earned in life!

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 25

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    • ATWYSingle Says:

      Freeloader? I bet if you tallied all the money he spent on dates, gas and “other stuff” it would equal his share of the rent and utilities each month. But I guess that doesn’t count because men are *supposed* to pay for dates, amirite?

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    • BTownGirl Says:

      Good God, he is still paying his own rent/mortgage/utilities for his actual home, because as we’ve established, he is not really living with her. She literally has paid not one red cent towards dates and now she wants him paying towards her apartment/house too?! That is insane. Seriously. I have dated some seriously wealthy men who, and I’m really going to blow your mind here, have spent a few nights a week at my home and I have never, ever, ever even thought of saying, “Hey babe, half on the water bill? YOU DID SWIM IN MY POOL, YOU KNOW!” My guess is that he’s keeping his options open and that’s a seriously wise move.

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    • E-B Says:

      Part of the problem is that the OP is pulling a “bait and switch.” She encouraged the guy to stay over a lot, and now is changing the terms by asking for money. I’m not saying the guy is right (he is a bit creepy), but it’s not like she talked to him ahead of time about splitting expenses or asked him to actually move in together.

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  6. Francesca Says:

    I think she sounds very entitled so I am wondering what kind of ‘chores’ she’s imposing. But in a broader sense, if he is crashing at her place that often, helping tidying up after himself sounds like a given to me. I explain: if they have gotten to a point in the relationship where he spends at least three days a week there (which is what this sounds like) it wouldn’t be unreasonable to expect him to do the dishes or hoover or do small things around the house. Otherwise she’d be maiding for him.

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  7. D. Says:

    So, the following is PURE CONJECTURE, but I think it jives with the tone of the OP’s letter.

    My guess is that this isn’t about the money. It’s about the “commitment issue.” I’m guessing that the OP hasn’t actually talked openly with the guy about formally moving in, probably because she’s afraid to, probably because she recognizes that the guy doesn’t want to do that yet. That or they’ve had the discussion and she knows he doesn’t want to yet.

    This, in turn, gets her worried about how committed he is, where this is all going, yadda yadda yadda. But rather than continue to bug him about moving in — which he’s either implicitly or explicitly made clear is not happening yet, she focuses on the issue of rent. So the argument of “Move in!” “No!” becomes “Pay rent!” “No!”

    The rent becomes representational of his “commitment” to her, because it acts as kind of an incremental step to getting him to move in. After all, if he starts paying rent, then it’s easy to say “Well, it’s silly of you to pay rent on two places. You might as well just move in at this point!” My bet is everyone is aware of this fact, but nobody is actually talking about it directly.

    As for the other stuff like him using her address for his gym membership (which is odd, but doesn’t really matter), and the fact that he has keys and a garage clicker…so what? They have not moved in together.

    I don’t know if the OP has lived with a man before in the context of a relationship, but having a drawer, keys, and a toothbrush there is not the same thing as “Let’s merge all of our possessions and decide what to do with the duplicates or the stuff the other person can’t stand.” Nor does it address who pays which expenses, who does which chores (or whether you hire someone), etc., etc. It’s complicated stuff and it should only really be done when both parties actually want to live together.

    Without that baseline desire, all the other stuff becomes a massive fucking headache for all involved. You need to both want to live together, because you want to be with each other all the time to make all the other bullshit seem worth dealing with. If one party isn’t there yet, it’s a mistake for the other to try to push the point.

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    • E-B Says:

      That is EXACTLY what the OP is trying to do. Instead of actually addressing their relationship, she is using money as a measure of commitment and as a way to get him to commit further in the future.

      But I think the guy is pretty scuzzy too. He’s enjoying way to many benefits at her place, and he sounds a little too comfortable with the status quo.

      It amazes me how both parties are reluctant to discuss their relationship.

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  8. Dayna Says:

    Why aren’t you asking the guy to move in? You are 37. You must know this situation is not what any adult would call living together. You both sound awfully immature if this is the direction your relationship is going – pay for your own electricity? I’m guessing there’s a lot of presumption going on in this relationship and you will be bitterly surprised when he bails. And I don’t agreed that his sleeping over indicates a desire to spend time and grow the relationship. It indicates nothing but a desire to stay in your apartment. Stop inviting people in then acting surprised when they stay. It costs you very little having him there, so clearly you know what’s going on.

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  9. Isambard Says:

    I couldn’t get over the “shelves in the cupboard” comment. If they aren’t even comingling food how could they be living together?

    Or is that me just being overly food-centric? :-)

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  10. Lisa Says:

    The bf is NOT ready to move in. He is NOT ready to give up his own place (and therefore start paying rent at hers). He is NOT ready to open a joint account. And he is NOT ready to put a ring on it.

    I would caution the LW against bringing up any of these points. He has not suggested it. And when she suggested the rent, he flatly refused. He is NOT there yet. If she keeps pressing the rent issue, she will drive him away bc he will start to think that she considers him a freeloader.

    Yes, he is running up her utility bills. How much? Assuming he works fulltime and roughly on the same schedule she does, then not much. An extra shower a day, maybe an extra tv on for a few hours. But depending on their dating style, he might be compensating for this and more by paying for their dates and also driving. Or do they only go out once or twice a month? Do they stay in and eat the food she buys and cooks? If they go out, are they driving around the corner to a local watering hole or are they doing road trips and running all over town? Do they just watch the Netflix she subscribes to? We don’t have that information. But it really is key to determining whether this guy is pulling his weight in the relationship or taking her for a ride.

    It sounds like she owns her own home, and yes, that can be a lot for one person to maintain. It’s always very tempting as a woman, to want to ask they guy to do your home maintenance and home improvements. And maybe she dated some men in the past who were happy to do this. This guy isn’t. I would think most considerate ppl would gladly change a lightbulb in their SO’s home w/o being asked. But note: he isn’t. Also most considerate ppl would offer to buy groceries occasionally in their SO usually bought/cooked the food they ate. But note: he isn’t. Again, he takes them out for food and entertainment a lot and doesn’t feel he should have to. Or maybe she is forever pestering him to do this, do that, fix this, move that, and he is fed up w/ it and won’t even change a lightbulb bc he is so annoyed with it. Only she knows what exactly is going on.

    But no, he should not be expected to pay her any portion of rent or bills while he continues to maintain his own place. And it seems like he still wants to maintain his own place. And that may be for the best bc it’s still early, and she might be smart to keep her eyes open regarding the type of man he really is.

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  11. mxf Says:

    “I’ve considered asking him to open a joint account so we could really share expenses, but I’m not sure if the next step should be a ring first. WDYT?”

    I think yikes. It’s strange to me that someone would consider the escalation of commitment in the face of their partner saying “no” to the smaller asks.

    “Want to kick in some expenses around here?” No.
    “Ok, want to open a joint account or maybe GET ENGAGED instead?”

    If they’ve been together for “almost” six months (people on a commitment path do favour rounding up) and he’s been sleeping over since after a month of dating, that’s four months and change of them establishing this routine. To me, that’s too soon for the oh-well-you’re-always-over-why-don’t-we-live-together talk, and unless both parties are crazy enthused about marrying each other ASAP, way too soon for getting-engaged talk. It sounds like signing up for a gym membership in an SO’s neighbourhood is just about the right amount of commitment for a relationship that’s going pretty well.

    It’s totally ok to check in with someone you think you have a future with and ask if they think they see a future with you, but it should feel like a joint discussion, not a negotiation. And using other pressure points as leverage (seriously, how much does it actually cost to have a second human sleep in one’s space?) will just breed frustration and resentment for everyone. Maybe ask him if he thinks he’d like to live in your apartment one day, or would he rather get a new space if you guys decide to live together, and see how he reacts? If he’s super vague, he’s either not nearly ready enough or not interested enough. If he considers the question and answers with his input for the future (“maybe, but I don’t see raising a family here,” etc) then relax on the timing a bit. It’s tough to have these conversations but they get easier and easier with time.

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  12. maria Says:

    yeah, the OP needs to tell him to spend a little less time at her apartment. she’s pretty uncomfortable with it. she sounds more annoyed at his presence than anything else. not a good sign if you have only been together 6 months. at 6 months you should want to see your boyfriend often, not get annoyed with him.

    I agree with everyone else that it is pretty damn ridiculous to jump to the conclusion that you live together because he sleeps over a lot and has a drawer (LOL) he should clean up after himself help with dishes, and if he’s there when you are cleaning could lend a hand but he has no business paying you for anything. you don’t seem to enjoy him being around at all. you should reassess this relationship. six months is way too early for you to be so annoyed with him being over a lot. my bf and I have been together 7 months and I genuinely want him to stay over more and love having him around and miss him when he’s gone but we both respect each others space and boundaries and aren’t rushing.i have my space and he has his. i stay over sometimes and he stays over but it isn’t an every day thing–my ex on the other hand stayed at my apt every day from very early on and the relationship ended quite badly. there was a lot of false intimacy built up around him being over a lot. we also skipped the fun part of a new relationship–getting dressed up to see each other, going on fun dates, good night kisses etc by him staying over too much too soon. i too took it like we basically lived together but that was far from the truth. it was convenient for his job so i think that’s the real reason he stayed so much. nothing wrong with you wanting to spend some more time alone in your apartment. your letter makes it clear you don’t want him around so much so asking him to move in officially will be a huge mistake

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    • Lisa Says:

      I don’t think she is annoyed that he is spending time there. I think she is annoyed that he hasn’t proposed and isn’t acting like he wants to “play house.”

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      • maria Says:

        i’m sorry why should he propose after a couple months of dating? generally people who want to get married are excited to spent a lot of time together especially in the first year. she sounds bitter and annoyed that he is constantly at her place. I guess she wants to get married so he can take over paying ALL of the bills? from the sound of this letter, there isn’t much love or sweet feelings towards the guy she’s just looking for him to do repairs and foot the bill.

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        • Fyodor Says:

          I don’t think that she’s bitter and annoyed that he’s at her place. I think that she wants him around. I think that she’s angry that her relatively “people who haven’t moved in together but spend all their time together” relationship isn’t being treated as a “people who have moved in together relationship” and wants him to pay money to demonstrate his commitment.

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      • Lucy Says:

        I think he is feeling that she is trying to manipulate him into commitment with certain gestures – i.e. giving him the keys was supposed to make him commit more. If a guy twigs onto this, I think it’s very emasculating for them. So he is regaining his sense of dignity by only doing chores merely ‘reluctantly’. If she keeps on it will put the guy off from committing to her. She needs to make sure that if he does do something for her, she gives him lots of praise for it too. But if he thinks there’s an expectation, he’ll be reluctant to do it.

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  13. Donnie K Says:

    You’ve been together for six months and he still pays for all of your dates “and stuff” and also drives you around? Be thankful this guy hasn’t cut and run. The stench of entitlement is nauseating.

    If you’re serious about this relationship, I suggest you start picking up some dinner checks and entertainment expenses. Otherwise, don’t be surprised if you come home to find those drawers he occupies cleaned out. Sounds harsh? He’s your boyfriend, not an ATM machine.

    Start by doing your part.

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    • Lucy Says:

      She might be doing stuff that she didn’t mention in her original post – like cooking dinner and that sort of thing. Hopefully she’ll get back to this thread and say more. We shouldn’t jump to conclusions. Plus she mentioned things he did so she is obviously acknowledging his contribution. The main issue is expecting more than what she’s getting. Maybe a little patience is required.

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  14. Lucy Says:

    As others have said, I think the main issue here is her getting ahead of herself. I suppose when you’re spending nearly every waking moment together in the same space, it can almost feel like you’re living together. And maybe she wants to get married one day and doesn’t want the guy to take her for granted? They need to have a discussion about this. Maybe she should just have the house to herself at least a few days a week to regain some space and a life outside the relationship. She needs to slow down a bit as well. Since the guy is drawing back a bit, the worst she can do is keep pushing.

    I also get the feeling that she gave him the keys and let him stay over in her apartment while there was a hidden expectation that she would get her return on the investment. So it’s “I have given him the keys, why isn’t he doing x and y?”. Fact is people don’t play to your expectations and you can’t get annoyed at them for that. I think he can sense this hidden agenda and that’s why he’s withdrawing. Hidden agendas are in my view, the opposite of true romance.

    This has got me thinking. The next time I make a decision in a relationship, I’ll think: “What are my expectations from this action? And how sad will I be if it doesn’t pan out how I want it to?”.

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  15. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    In my experience, almost all women are “entitled” at least to this extent: When a guy contributes financially to dates/relationship, he is meeting expectations. When a woman contributes financially to dates/relationship it is a gift, for which she deserves special recognition, or as in the OP’s case, something tangible in return.

    I’m not even sure this is about insecurity or testing his commitment. After a lifetime of dating women, I’m fairly certain this is all just an unfair social convention – basic economics and greed.

    Moxie’s got this one right. To illustrate, imagine the genders were reversed in the OP’s story. A woman who pays for all the dates, and other stuff and drives her boyfriend around, and the boyfriend, on top of that, asks her to contribute some money to his expenses and do housework in exchange for her staying at his place frequently? Can you even imagine?

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    • Dayna Says:

      That is correct. When I moved in with my boyfriend he already owned his place and was paying these things on his own. He did not ask me to contribute. Instead I took the initiative and started paying for other things like daycare for our baby and major grocery orders. If you’re so stingy LR, I’m wondering what sort of partnership you are looking for?

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      • Lisa Says:

        That’s totally different, tho. You live there fulltime and the baby is yours also. You are supposed to be contributing! It doesn’t matter on which specific bills but in a way that s commensurate w/ your income. That’s completely to be expected.

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    • bbdawg Says:

      Yes and no, one important element of the letter is “commitment”. A lot of “dating” can be unfair to the man, yes, UNTIL he commits to the woman, they’re exclusive etc…at which point everything should be shared equally and the woman begins to do more of the work in many respects (housework, etc…). So if you tell me dating is unfair I hear you haven’t actually committed to a lot of women you’ve dated.

      This woman is using money as a means to get the man to commit to the relationship in ways he has not so far … he is not ready or willing to go with her program and she is putting up rules to try to have him actually move him and make the relationship “official”. It’s more complicated than entitlement, she is using it as a control mechanism.

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      • DrivingMeNutes Says:

        And I’m disagreeing with that point – I don’t think it’s “more complicated” than economics. If the genders were switched, you would say the guy is a basic freeloader, and wouldn’t even begin to dig deeper or suggest things were complicated, or that he was testing her commitment, or trying to get more commitment. Why is that? Because you’re assuming the social converntion is acceptable because, duh, it benefits you. You’ve made my point actually.

        I don’t think “dating” is unfair – that’s idiotic.

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        • bbdawg Says:

          You’re right, “dating” might benefit women, only on a very short-term basis. Because “commitment” is really the point of dating for most women, men win in the end, because it’s not relevant how often someone pays for something if he is not your boyfriend.

          Yes in the past I would go on 4 first dates with different men some weeks and spent zero dollars but in the end that was not relevant because the real prize is not free drinks, or sex, it is commitment and that is something men have a lot more control over than women, that’s the real priceless commodity at stake here.

          If it were the case that women would pay for dates but have the upper hand when it came to choosing who was going to commit to them, I bet a lot of women would take the initiative to pay really fast. This doesn’t quite work because (unlike women) men aren’t persuaded by ‘accomplishment’, security and money.

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        • D. Says:

          I’m not saying that the social contract thing doesn’t exist. Of course it does. And if the roles were reversed, the discussion wouldn’t be around “commitment” but rather around “cheapness.” That’s the world we live in.

          But consider this:

          What do you think would happen if this guy just started paying for stuff…but that was it? Like, if nothing else changed except the fact that he was paying for more things. What then?

          My guess is she’d be satisfied for a little while…but would then find something else to complain about. That’s because the issue isn’t the money in and of itself. The money is what she’s chosen as a manifestation of his commitment in lieu of actual commitment. If he could figure out a way to make her feel as if he’s committed, other than paying the money, she’d drop the money thing.

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  16. Mandy Says:

    Talking about splitting living expenses and joining finances shouldn’t happen until AFTER a couple talk about living together! I don’t get at all why the OP is unhappy over the expenses issue, and not at all concerned that they don’t live together and have no plans to live together. Shouldn’t that be the conversation? Like, “I was thinking, how would you feel about moving in here full time, since you spend so much time here already? We could put your name on the lease with mine, and I’ll get rid of a bunch of my crap to make room for your crap”. Not “Don’t you think you should start paying part of my bills since you’re here a lot?”.

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  17. Violetgirl Says:

    This post hits close to home for me. My boyfriend and I also have been together a few months, and he also spends almost every night at my apartment. He pays for most everything when we go out as well. However, I would never, ever in a million years ask him to pay for anything at my place considering he also has a place of his own to stay at with his own expenses, and is at my place because he CHOOSES to be with me because it makes him happy and vice versa. I think he goes above and beyond by paying for our dates, even though he makes significantly more money. I would also rather he stay at my house than vice versa because it is convenient for both of us (we both work closer to my place). Frankly I am disgusted by the OP’s attitude. She should be grateful he has been so generous and thrilled that he wants to spend as much time with her as he does and money on her. And in my opinion, six months is way too soon to move in!

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  18. Jordan Says:

    If a young man gets married, and starts a family and spends the rest of his life working at a soul-destroying job, he is held up as an example of virtue and responsibility. The other type of man, living only for himself, working only for himself, doing first one thing and then another simply because he enjoys it and because he has to keep only himself, sleeping where and when he wants,and facing women when he meets her on equal terms and not as one of a million slaves, is rejected by society. The free, unshackled man has no place in its midst.

    Esther Vilar – The Manipulated Man

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