The Case of the Broke Boo

Q: Dear Love Jays,

My boo is BROKE.

He has no money, no car, no job…and in the beginning I didn’t like it, but tried not to be superficial. I loved the way he treated me and I would offer to pay for things, meals,etc. Besides those things, he is damn near perfect. I never thought it bother me this much. In a relationship, I want to be able to travel, go to the movies, etc. Now, since we have been together for quite sometime, I feel I was completely wrong in starting this pattern. He has been applying for jobs and got a few interviews.

I understand he is going through a rough time and because I love him I do want to support him, but at the same time, I’m not comfortable or okay with doing this. This is eating away at my ego and my womanhood because I feel me paying for things trickles down to our relationship roles. I want to be the woman in the relationship and I want to be pampered. At this point I have no idea how to stop this. I want to offer and pay but then I don’t because I feel the values instilled in me as a child was that the man always pays.

A: Dear Broke as a Joke,

This question is very intriguing to me because we just received a similar question a couple of weeks ago, but it was from the male prospective. He couldn’t get his girlfriend to stop paying and you can’t get your boyfriend to start paying.

Financial stability plays a major role within relationships, I wish it didn’t, but unfortunately, it does matter. Money allows us to buy what we need to survive. So essentially, money=survival. Ugh, I have always hated math.

Let’s get to the meat of your question. You say you love him, he is trying to find work, but he is broke; you want to be able to do things that require money and you want to play the traditional woman role in the relationship. Is that everything?  Here are some things you need to ask yourself.


  1. You love him. Why and is that enough for you?
  2. He is trying to find work. How hard is he trying and does he even want a job?
  3. He is broke. Is he okay/comfortable with being broke?
  4. You want to be able to do things that require both parties to have an income. Have you seriously discussed these desires with your man? If so, what was his response? Did he hop on board or did he just have a “whatever” attitude about it?
  5. You want to feel like a woman and be pampered. Do you really need a man for that?

These may look like simple questions, but they are very important and harder to answer than you think. Be completely honest with yourself. Do not beat yourself up over how you truly feel. Sometimes people are with a quality person, but they just are not compatible. Personally, I am all about teamwork within a relationship. I believe each person should contribute as much as they can to the relationship, gender roles aside.

Conversely, if you did want to play into gender roles while it is standard for the woman to be “taken care of” as the man works, it is also standard for a woman to be her man’s backbone when he falls short.

Whether you are a man or woman, it can be frustrating when your partner is not pulling their weight. It causes you to become unbalanced as a couple and I think that’s why you are feeling so conflicted. You are not wrong in wanting what you want, your real task lies in determining whether or not your partner TRULY wants the same thing.


Miss J

Dear Dating A Broke Man,

Love is a powerful bond that can withstand just about anything; however, it’s important to understand that financial issues are at the center of many broken relationships and marriages.

Tradition has argued, just as your parents instilled in you, men should always pay for their woman. If I were to stop and poll 100 random men on the street, I’m sure most of them would prefer to pick up the tab for their lady. I, too, would like to pay for Miss J every time we go out to eat, but following tradition doesn’t always mirror reality.

Would you prefer your man to open a credit card, spending money he doesn’t own or would you prefer to pick up the slack while he looks for a stable income?

When you decided to date him, you ALREADY KNEW he didn’t have a job, a car or money; it was all right in front of you. You willingly entered a relationship with a man who could provide emotional support, not financial support. If being wined and dined or traveling was a major priority for you, why would you start the relationship?

You mentioned he is looking for jobs and was able to land some interviews, yet nothing has come to surface. Have you had a conversation with him expressing your frustration? If not, it’s time to sit your man down and explain that you are struggling to maintain the financial load. Unless you want to break with him, DO NOT attack him. When a man feels his manhood being challenged, we most often times shut down and ignore everything that’s said. Be encouraging and supportive, yet straightforward and honest.


Mr. J

P.S. Miss J and I made a vlog about this very topic…go ahead and take a look at this video.


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