Most couples have goals they are trying to reach together and if all another able-bodied woman can say is that you should get another job while she sits around and looks pretty, then you are a fool for going out and getting another job.
It may make you feel strong and protective and like you are the shit, but to be honest, a better solution would be to make sure you have your money right and make sure she has her money right before you make any kind of commitment. A relationship should be about two equals coming together to support and love each other.
True, money is not everything, but money is the number one reason why couples divorce.
I’m thinking that holds true for black lesbians too. Again, in this regard we are really no different from straight people.
So take money out of the equation by discussing it up front. If you’ve decided to move in together or make some sort of lasting commitment, that means you are a couple not just room mates. So, your financial decisions do impact each other.
So here are some questions that every couple who is committed to each other, not just dating, needs to ask:
- Do I know how much money my partner makes?
- Do I know what my partner’s spending habits are?
- Is my partner doing things that I can’t do because I make less than she does? And if so, how does that make me feel? How can I correct that? Can I spend less on shoes or get a second job? Or do I expect her to pitch in?
- Does my partner have access to or free use of my property like a car but never contributes to the car insurance, oil changes or gas?
- Is my partner paying for vacations and other trips while I offer to bring her free drinks at the all-inclusive resort? Is that truly fair?
- How can we split the bills in a way that make each other feel supported, not taken advantage of?
- Do we have any long-term goals together? How does money affect that?
- If something were to happen to my partner where she can’t work, would I be comfortable supporting us both?
Black women, we are already behind every other couple financially (i.e. straight white couples, gay white male couples). Plus we earn less than men and white women. Don’t chip away at your financial security by giving it all away to someone else no questions asked. Please protect what little assets you do have. If you’re engaged, start talking pre-nup, especially if you’re a mature couple with each bringing assets to the relationship. If you’re already married, think about a post-nuptial agreement. If you’re living together, see a lawyer, or simply put in writing what your expectations are and get the document notarized.
Love is a beautiful thing, but know that if you choose to get married without discussing finances first or signing a prenuptial agreement, you may end up in the same situation as Brittney and Glory.