posted Thu, 04 May 2006
SH and I had The Talk the other day. You know the one. The Talk you have when you are Maybe Getting Serious.
I have not had this talk with many boyfriends. Heck, I don’t even talk about this subject with my sister -- and we talk about everything. I know when she lost her virginity! (Ooops! I mean, she’s still as pure as the driven snow, Mom. Even though she’s almost 39 years old.)
If I become a bag lady, I’m sure not going to waste any of my money feeding the darn birds.
But we did it, even though it was uncomfortable. Maybe everyone hates talking about this subject. It’s hard, it’s taboo, it’s emotional. It has such different meaning for everyone.
SH has always been more willing to talk about the difficult issues than I have. Me, I want just to be in the moment. Why do we have to talk the relationship to death? Why can’t we just be in the relationship? It is what it is. Don’t make me talk about it. Talk talk talk. That’s a bunch of baloney. I’m not interested in talking about feelings and where we are in the relationship and where it’s going. I just want to watch the movie, so hand me the remote already.
Not that I mind debate, but debate about things outside of the relationship, like politics and whether we should follow the recipe and add the bay leaf with the vegetables or wait until you add the stock. Whether to keep the radio dial on the station playing “Back in Black” or try for a song SH says isn’t “boring.” Whether the directors’ cut of “The Blues Brothers” is better than the regular version (it’s not). And so on. I love arguing about those sorts of things.
But he pushed me to the wall on this issue. We have already wrangled religion to the ground. I decided long ago ardent atheists – the kind who think those of us who believe in God are not only wrong but stupid – were out of my dating pool. SH is Lutheran, which is as close as I’ve gotten to a nice Catholic boy in a long time. I dated a Catholic boy when I was in grad school, but he was anything but nice, as it turned out. Lutheran is pretty good and it’s a lot closer to Catholic than Muslim, which is what Gomez was, not that that was really ever going to go anywhere, but what was I thinking? He spoke French. I was an idiote.
We have come to somewhat of a truce on religion; we already agree on how children should be raised (keep them locked in their rooms until they are 22 and give them nothing but bread and water); all that was left was the one thing no one ever wants to talk about.
As in – how much each of us make. Or made, in my case. We didn’t share net worth, but I don’t know him well enough for that. As I said, I don’t like this relationship talk. He brought it up and this was TMI for me. (OK, he brought it up in response to an issue I raised, so I sorta started it.)
I have never before known how much money a boyfriend earned. Ever. I have never thought it was any of my bidness. (Not that I wasn’t curious, mind you. I’m human.) Even with the boyfriends who have wanted to marry me. Maybe if I had been interested in marrying them, I would have thought that relevant information, but I turned them down.
I’ve never asked. I’ve never snooped. (How would you find that information, I wonder?) I’ve always earned my own money and assumed I would be taking care of myself for the rest of my life. So a boyfriend’s income has never seemed relevant.
See, I am convinced that I am going to be dirt-poor when I am old. I know there is no inheritance waiting for me. (There better not be, Mom. You should enjoy anything you have and not worry about saving it for us.) I am panicked that I will never find a good-paying job again and that I will be reduced to temp work for the rest of my life. Not only will I make almost no money ($10/hr, no benefits), but the loss of status will destroy me because as you all know, I am a complete snob.
I know that even if I ever got married, it wouldn’t matter because my husband would lose his job and then I’d have to support not only myself but him as well so then I’m buying Alpo for two and that’s just a little stressful, don’t you think? Throw a couple of kids into the equation and I’m advising you guys to buy stock in whoever makes Quaaludes or prozac or whatever drug I would have to take to keep me sane. The pressure would kill me.
Do you think I might have a weird thing about money?
The end of the line
11 months ago