1Figuring Out Where You Stand
1Evaluate how you feel. Take some time and check in with yourself about how you feel when he pays for everything. There is a chance that if you're reading this article, you might be uncomfortable with it for one reason or another. Know that there is no right or wrong way, only how you feel about it. Ask yourself why you are okay with it or why you are not.
- Do you like feeling pampered or spoiled by him?
- Are you concerned that he's paying for everything when he doesn't have the money to do so?
- Do you worry he feels obliged or obligated for some reason?
- Does it bother you when he refuses to let you pay for something, or even split the cost in half?
- Does he offer to pay because he thinks that you cannot afford to pay?
- Do feel obligated to him or like you have to acquiesce to his requests because he pays? This can include any impacts to your physical relationship or the control of the relationship.
- Do you think he pays to show off?
Consider where your relationship is. Think about where you are in the relationship and why he might be doing this. Have you just started dating? Or are you just “seeing each other” and haven't made it exclusive yet? If so, he may be paying for everything to impress you or because everything is new. Maybe you two just have different attitudes towards money. If you have been dating for awhile and he's always paid, maybe he feels like he has to keep paying or maybe it's time to revisit how you manage finances as a couple.
3Talk to him to find out why he always pays. The one real way you can truly understand why he might be paying for everything and how he feels about it, is to ask him. It may be something that is really important to him or he may feel like he has to, to impress you. Money can be a sensitive topic so make sure it's a conversation you have carefully and calmly.
- Open the topic. ”Hey, I've noticed when we go out, you always pay. Don't get me wrong, I love being spoiled by you! I was just wondering if that's something you like doing or something you feel like you have to do.”
- If you are afraid you are missing out on certain dates or trips because he doesn't have enough money to pay for both of you, and doesn't want you to pay anything, let him know. “I just don't want us to miss out on things because you feel like you have to pay all the time. I can pay sometimes too.”
4Remind him he does not have to pay for everything just to impress you. Maybe you have just started out dating each other, or maybe he set up an expectation he feels like he needs to uphold. He may feel like he has to pay for everything to impress you or continue to impress you. Let him know that is not the case, or remind him of it periodically.
- “You know I care about you, whether you take me out or whether we are just at home.
- "Just so you know, I'm impressed by you not your money.”
- Tell him other things that impress you about him that do not include him paying for things.
5Tell him if you don't like it. If your boyfriend paying for everything bothers you, let him know. It is important to keep open and honest communication in your relationship. Try and pick a time where you are both calm to talk about it. Avoid attacking him or appearing to blame him, but rather explain your side of things. Use "I" or "me" statements to keep the focus on how you are feeling, and have the goal be finding a solution.
- “I feel like maybe you think I can't take care of myself, or take care of you.”
- "I'd really like to pay for myself once and awhile. It's important to me."
- "It makes me feel like things are not equal between you and me. How can we fix that?"
2Letting Him Pay
1Thank him when he pays. If you have decided that you are okay with him paying, then the first step is to thank him when he does. Appreciate the fact that you have a loving boyfriend who wants to treat you. Be specific and make sure you are thanking him for whatever experience he gave you. Try saying something like the following:
- ”Thank you for dinner. That was the most delicious lasagna I've ever had!”
- ”Tonight was great. Thank you. I'm so glad you were there; that movie was scary!”
- ”I can't believe I got to see my favorite band! I'm going to remember this forever. Thank you!”
Tell him he doesn't have to. Even if you have talked about it and you have decided that you are okay with him paying for everything, make sure he knows he doesn't have to. Every once and awhile tell him he doesn't always have to pay. This way, as you go forward in your relationship he'll know it's okay if he has to cut back or stop at some point due to financial difficulties. He'll know that it is something he can talk to you about and not feel embarrassed.
3Reciprocate. If he likes taking you out to treat you, find your own ways to treat him or make him feel special. If you are good at cooking or baking, make a meal or dessert for him on special occasions. If you are artistic, you can create something especially for him. You can also do an activity with him you don't normally do, like watching a sports match or game. Just spend a little extra time and effort making sure he feels valued, as well.
- You should not feel obligated to do anything in return for your boyfriend taking you out. Whatever you do, make sure you are comfortable with it and that it comes from a place of wanting to do it, not feeling like you have to.
4Revisit the conversation about it to avoid arguments. As a way to keep up on the maintenance of your relationship make sure you talk about the money issue from time to time. If you notice that there are little arguments popping up about who pays for what, or if you notice he is getting stressed out about paying for things, it's probably time to talk.
- Open up the topic. ”Hey, is everything okay? You seem stressed.”
- Change plans for the evening. “We don't have to go out tonight. How about we stay home and I'll whip something up?”
- Remind him that you are in this together. “You know you can talk to me about anything. I know we just want each other to be happy.”
3Making a Different Agreement
1Offer to pay. If you have decided that you are not okay with him paying, and you have talked about it, then the first step is to start changing the behavior. The next time you are out, offer to pay the bill. He may be paying all the time because you haven't offered to pay. Since you two have talked about it and how you feel about it, there shouldn't be any arguments. Try being lighthearted about it, keeping your tone bright and cheery.
- ”Nope! My turn!”
- ”Hey, you've covered like the last 10 meals. I'm paying tonight.”
- If he takes out his wallet, ”Uh-uh, put it away mister. Tonight is on me.”
2Split the bill down the middle. Another way to change it up is to offer to split the bill in half or to “go dutch” (each person paying for what they ordered) with the bill. It doesn't need to be a big deal; just let him know that you'd like to pay for yourself once in a while, starting with this bill.
- An alternate way is to split the bill by items. Instead of splitting in half or for what you have ordered make an agreement to split up by parts. For example, if he pays for dinner then you pay for drinks and dessert. If you are going to the movies, he can pay for the tickets and you pay for drinks and popcorn.
Pay for alternate dates. You can also take turns with who pays for what dates. This works well with friends, too. If he pays for dinner one night, the next time you go out, you pay. Then the next date you have he pays, and so on, back and forth. This is a good way to evenly split the responsibility of paying without having to do check math every time the bill comes.
4Go on inexpensive or free dates. If you are uncomfortable with him paying for everything, but you can't come to an agreement about it, then just plan for dates that are very inexpensive or free. There are tons of fun, low key things you can do that are cost effective. This way, you still get to date and have fun, without the stress of figuring out who is going to pay or worrying about getting into an argument about it.
- For example, you and your boyfriend could go hiking or biking at a local park, take a trip to the beach, go to a free outdoor concert in your community, or stay in for a movie night.
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