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relationship give & take

hi folks.

I'm having some trouble resolving some relationship stuff. I'm sure the internet is not a good advice source, but here I am. I'm basically bad at saying things to get across what I mean. (ie people misunderstand me, I sound like a jerk, etc)

Anyway, I'm seeing someone & have been for a few months. I like her but I feel like I give alot and it isn't really reciprocated. Not that every little thing has to be even, but I AM a poor student (literally, I haven't been able to afford my rent since about december, even though I work etc). I cook alot and she eats at my place pretty often (like a few breakfasts/dinners a week). She doesn't really cook so I've never eaten at her place. She doesn't usually offer to help chop/cook/do dishes. We sometimes get groceries together and split the bill, but usually keep them at my place and I cook everything. We haven't done this since before xmas break.

Basically, I am frustrated and stressed because

a) I have no money to provide food for a second person,
and b) I feel like a housewife, although we don't live together, and I like cooking for people once in a while but I don't want to be a housewife!

I'm not sure how to talk to her about this. I feel like she needs to be more independent of me, and more understanding of my lack of money. Yesterday on campus I took out $20 for lunch and she had no food, so I bought some for her, and all of the money was gone by the end of the day. We rarely buy each other food on campus.

Anyway, on top of my job cutting my hours, struggling to finish school and trying to find a new job, this is really stressful to me even though it seems small. I suppose this post is mostly for venting, but I don't really know how to talk to her about it without hurting her feelings. I feel like I give so much and I can't afford to, especially when I don't get much in return. anyone have a simliar issue?


Be up front and honest.

Tell her that money is tight. Go ahead and explain how tight. Tell her you like dining with her, and that you want to think of ways to keep doing that.

If this goes well, ask her to help. A lot of people will assume that if you're not asking for help, you don't nee it. So ask her, "Please chop this" or to help wash dishes.

It's a bum situation, to be sure. But speak up first. If she is still mooch-ish.... RUN!


Yeah.  In terms of food prep, I wouldn't "talk" to her about it.  If it was me and I was doing dinner prep, I'd just simply ask her to chop.  Who doesn't like to be in the kitchen and help during food prep??  That's time for great, fun conversation.  For cleanup, I'd ask her if she wants to wash and rinse or dry and put away.

In terms of a food budget, I'd probably weasel out of a conversation about that, too.  If she was coming over and you knew what you might make, like pasta, ask her to swing by the store and pick up some noodles and/or sauce.

Toward the end of college I got really broke and had about $12 a week for food.  I ate a lot of beans and rice (no condiments or other toppings or a tortilla or anything).  If it comes down to it, have that on hand.  If she's coming over, tell her you have beens and rice and to pick something up on her way if she wants anything on it.

If she's resentful of food prep, clean up, or contributing to meals, it's time to evaluate the relationship.


Yes, get this out on the table. Away from an actual meal scenario. I mean, don't wait to bring it up until the next time you're stuck with paying for lunch...but sometime when you're just walking and talking, or even on the phone. Just say it. Offer to get together at other times of day if you can, or just suggest that she chip in, both monetarily and with the work.

Be honest. Tell her you wish you could be generous all the time, but you can't. And that you're starting to feel uncomfortable with her lack of help. She may be blissfully unaware--some people are--but a little embarassment may make her stop and think. If she gets mad and "guilts" on you, she's a mooch. And you don't need a mooch.


I can understand your situation! The way it works with my and my bf is that I cook for the 2 of us and buy the groceries, and the bf washes dishes, does laundry and buys gas, and we split rent equally. Relationships are all about fairness and compromise, don't be afraid to be open about financial stuff with your gf. Tell her you're trying to save up money but finding it hard when paying for food for 2 people. Lots of young ladies are just plain spoiled and they don't know better, or they are looking for a sugar daddy.


I think the best thing is to be honest and up front.  If you keep it about you and not about her, she is less likely to get defensive.  This is probably a really good thing.  I think it is important for relationships to go through these types of conflicts.  How you two handle this will be a good indicator of how future (bigger?) problems will be handled.  You deserve to have the relationship you want, and you deserve to be equal.  ;)


and you need to nip it in the bud now - the longer you drag it out, the more set in her ways she'll be and the angrier you're going to get.  address this - like today!


It might help to write it all down so you can think it out and get what you want to say straight in your mind. Be kind, but watch out. She may try to talk you down or change the subject or make it all about how unkind you are.

And when you've said what you have to say, stop talking. Some people when they're on the defensive will try to fill up any silence with talk, and thereby give themselves away. Others let that silence fall to see what will happen. Use silence as an ally. (Thank you, Sun-Tzu).


it sounds like pro/con list time. but i agree with the above--try to give her a ticket for the clue bus.


I absolutely agree with talking to her, especially about asking for help. It may honestly be that she hasn't thought about it and it's well worth requesting that she pick up some groceries or making an agreement to divide the chores up. I never have a problem with cooking for my guy but he knows washing up is his duty - plus he'll often bring round a dessert or something.


When I heard of the community I thought it would be wonderful to expand to a new community, meet
like minded people and share thoughts and services with fellow members.
My name is Victoria Yuna Logan from San Jose, California
Do look forward of building great relationship with the members here.

It's nice to meet everyone, and I hope to make some friends while posting here.


Hi Yuna! Welcome! You might want to try this same post in "Happy Hour"! Thanks!

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