It's no secret that finances are one of the biggest reasons why couples break up. And if you're on totally different pages on top of that? Big yikes.
Well, I recently stumbled across this post in the "Am I the Asshole" subreddit where a man was laid off and expected his girlfriend to cover the bills. Here's the full story:
BTW, if you've never heard of it, r/AmItheAsshole is a place where people can ask folks on the internet to weigh in on if they're being an asshole or not in certain situations.
"I lost my job four months ago, and EI (unemployment) doesn’t cover my full living expenses. I had to buy a car since mine had 330,000 km on it, and the engine issue wasn't worth fixing. After that, I had a couple thousand saved, and that has been completely wiped out, and now I’m not able to cover all my expenses. I asked my GF to help cover my expenses, and she has refused because I didn’t propose before this. We had been dating for three years and moved in for two."
"She had told me three dates in that she expected to be engaged after about two years of dating, and she is very unhappy with me because I didn’t propose. I’m sure she is the one; I’m just still hesitant about marriage, and she has told me she is trying to get over the fact she wasted three years with me. I told her to give me some time, and she has thankfully not pushed it. This was shortly before my work announced they were cutting people, and I was let go."
"Now, she says I’m expecting too much from her since I’m not ready for marriage but expecting her to help me with rent. We have been dating for three years — doesn’t that count for something?! If it was a year in, I understand if it was too early, but we have been together for a long time. But she said it was meaningless because I haven’t proposed, and she refuses to help me as I could just decide I don’t want marriage and bail at any time. I could have bailed at any time while dating and still can bail after we get engaged, but I didn’t, and I won’t. We have been serious for a long time; why are the ring and marriage all that matter?!"
"I’ve told her since she won’t help, it’s shown me she isn’t serious, too. She told me it’s fine, we can just end the lease, and I can go back to living with family if I can’t afford rent here. I’m getting interview requests back and did an interview already. Although I didn’t get it, it’s wild to me that she would waste three years over covering a bit more rent and groceries."
As you might imagine, there were tons of responses for this one!
In case you're not familiar, people usually respond with one of four options: YTA (you're the A-hole), NTA (not the A-hole), ESH (everyone sucks here), or NAH (no A-hole here).
Most people thought this guy was the A-hole:
"Your bills are your responsibility. If you weren't living together, she would have zero responsibility to cover you. As impractical as a 'two-year-mark proposal' is, she was upfront about it and her desire to get married. And I can see from her perspective that it just doesn't feel like you're committed to her, so why should she invest her hard-earned money into you at this point? You're expecting everything without giving anything."
"YTA. Well, well, well, how the tables have turned! She told you her terms for a more committed relationship, and you've refused them. She has continued your relationship but has adjusted her expectations and contributions accordingly. Why should she change them because suddenly you need the benefits of a more committed relationship, but aren't willing to actually make the commitment? This is the epitome of expecting wife duties for girlfriend wages."
"YTA. Your expenses are your responsibility. Four months is plenty of time to find a job. She wants a partner, and you want to be a mooch. You're threatening to end the relationship because she won't pull your weight, too. It's clear who is invested, and it's not you."
But others thought OP wasn't to blame:
"NTA. I am in similar position. My boyfriend is now also searching for a job. We've been together for three years and live together. I never, ever even had a doubt in my head to not help the person I love while he has difficulties. Because that's what partners are supposed to do. When there is difficult time, they help each other. For me, the ring means nothing. It is a formality, which benefits you only when you deal with bureaucratic stuff. You need to find a person who shares your values. And so far, I don't see that your girlfriend has the same outlook on relationships as you."
"NTA. My girlfriend and I have been together for six years. For those saying that she doesn’t need to help him because they aren’t 'married' and don't have children: My girlfriend and I have both lost jobs and had to cover each other's expenses at different times. Also, four months in not enough time to find a real job. I had to get a shitty retail job after six months because I could not get hired. I think the girlfriend is being toxic and manipulative. 'You want my support? Marry me, and then we’ll talk.'"
And some thought everyone sucked in this situation:
"NAH/ESH. You guys are not compatible together. I think it's stupid for her to have a hard timeline of 'propose by now or else,' but you also KNEW she had this boundary, so it's just as stupid for you to ignore it. You are correct that you could easily walk away from an engagement as well, but I also see why she feels like you'd be taking advantage of her. Whether or not you agree with her timeline, you are not giving her something that is important to her, but you expect her to give to you. This is just not a reasonable relationship anymore and possibly never was."
"Okay, so I'm gonna go against the grain with an ESH. I work helping unemployed people, so I know finding a job in four months isn’t as easy as some people in these comments assume it is. That being said, if you lose your job, then as a partner, you should be doing everything you can to be less of a burden. You should not be buying a car. You use the crap car, public transport, or walk. You become the caretaker. I'm talking all chores are done. In times like this, people forget that in a relationship, you work as a team against the problem. It's easy for people to turn on each other, and it all falls apart. You may feel shitty, but your partner isn't the problem, your situation is. Your partner is struggling, but if she blames you rather than you two working together, then it's doomed."