#RelationshipGoals: Are You Patient With Your Partner’s Lack Of Funds While Dating?
Andrew and I were doing that teenager thing where we stayed on the phone or on FaceTime all night long almost everyday. I’m grown and had work to do, so I couldn’t be messing around everyday on the phone with him, but I wanted to. When we weren’t talking, we were texting.
He’d send flowers to my job, mostly because he loved how I gushed about it on the phone when I got them.
“What did your coworkers think?” Andrew asked, pleased with himself as a boyfriend.
“OMG you know all the girls swooned,” I laughed.
“Babe, I’ve got some good news!” Andrew said one night on FaceTime.
Andrew threw two $100 bills at the screen. “I made some extra money and I’m gonna use it to come see you.”
“Aww, when babe? You know I’m going to Ghana…” I was leaving for my first trip to Africa in less than a month.
“I’ll be there in a week and a half, maybe two weeks. I saw a good deal for a ticket. Shit, that trip is half the reason I’m coming,” Andrew laughed.
“Oh yeah? Why?”
“Just gotta make sure of some things before you get out there with some mandingos!” Andrew cackled at his own joke.
Andrew’s phone was starting to become an issue in our relationship. He claimed it was a sh-tty phone so he wasn’t receiving messages or calls randomly. It was hard to connect. Sometimes when I called him the phone wouldn’t even ring. I remember feeling stressed out about our communication because it had become unreliable where it was once immediate and daily. I’m annoyed thinking about it now.
I wanted to offer to put him on my plan so that he could have a reliable phone and that communication would no longer be an issue in our long-distance relationship. I had so many thoughts in my head about giving things like this so early in a relationship. But then again, the timeline rules didn’t apply to us. Still, I didn’t want to feel like one of those blind girls in a relationship providing for a man who was only in it for how much he could get out of it. I mean, I’m nobody’s sugar momma. In fact, I actually aspire to be taken care of. Thoughts often swirled around in my head about Andrew’s intentions. Even though we had this whirlwind romance, I still needed to be sensible about how I connected myself with him and how I provided for him within our union.
When Andrew made his way to New York City, he booked the cheapest option with a connection coming and going. Hold up, wait a minute! I actually booked it because I was the one with the bank account. So those $100 bills he threw at the camera were the money he was bringing to me for booking the ticket for him. I know, sounds super suspect. And it was. But he was rebuilding his life after having served time. You’re judging me. Don’t do that. You’re gonna do it anyway, but just know I learned my lesson for sure with this relationship, but only after living in it for a year. Anyways, let’s keep going.
I wasn’t able to reach Andrew most of the day. But because I booked the flight, I was getting alerts. He checked in. He made his connection. He landed. But where was he? Sh-tty phone or not, I just didn’t understand why communicating with this man was so difficult. He was supposed to pull up at my apartment while the sun was still out. The trip was only what was left of Friday, all of Saturday, and he was leaving early Sunday. Andrew showed up to my apartment that night around 10pm. The whole night was gone.
“Babe! I made it! I’m here!” Andrew smiled, hugging me.
I was pissed. I didn’t hug him back.
He kept squeezing me, “So you ain’t happy to see me?”
“Andrew, why couldn’t I get in touch with you?”
He let me go and pulled out his phone. “Look at this piece of sh-t babe! It died. I plugged it in and waited and it wouldn’t come back on so I had to figure out how to get to you. Somebody let me tell them my IG login so I could get your address from my DM.” He was almost proud of himself for the resourcefulness.
“Why didn’t you DM me to let me know you were OK and on your way?” I asked.
“Damn, I didn’t even think of that babe. I was just coming to get you!” he said, singing the second half of his sentence. He was always doing that. Making songs from his sentences. We both were always doing that.
I smiled and kissed him. “You get on my nerves!”
We made love and I forgot all about how hard it was to reach him. We made the most of what was left of Friday night. We went out to a late night spot in Brooklyn and grinded the morning away. I called our Uber there and I called our Uber home when it was time to leave. At least Andrew got us some waters while we were at the club. His lack of finances hurt because it was something that I dealt with within my last relationship. I knew I didn’t want to deal with it again. But I also didn’t want to cut Andrew off based on his nearly empty wallet.
When we got home that night, we did what lovers do until we both were drained. The next day, I wanted brunch, but settled for scrambled eggs at my apartment. All Andrew wanted was some extra Z’s. Andrew and I spent the afternoon in Manhattan acting like tourists, taking photos and walking the Brooklyn Bridge back into the borough. It was a glorious day of conversations big and small: Do you want children? How do you think you’ll raise them to handle this, that, and the third? How do you like your coffee? I had never felt more exhilarated in love.
Andrew paid for a few of my things here and there on our tourist date. A latte here, a bottle of water there, a snack here, a T-shirt there. But I could tell with every moment he had to take out his wallet, he’d do the math.
“Instead of going out for dinner, let’s just stay in, cuddle up and get pizza,” I suggested when we got back to my apartment that evening.
“You sure babe? I know you’ve been wanting me to take you out,” Andrew countered.
I did want him to take me out, but I also wanted him to be able to survive his life when our weekend fantasy was over. I loved this man, I could be patient with his finances, right?
When it was time for Andrew to leave that next morning, we reluctantly said our see you laters. He handed me some cash. “That’s not all of it. I still owe you babe, but I’m good for it,” Andrew said, stuffing the money in my palm.
“You better be good for it,” I laughed, but I was worried. Was I starting a habit with this man to rely on me financially or was I proving to him that I’m willing to be there for him in richer or poorer? I mean, I wasn’t married to him, but our commitment would eventually lead us there. Am I not supposed to practice before the real thing?
Are you patient with your partner’s finances or lack thereof when you’re dating someone?