Why Your Partner’s Low Income Matters (And Why It Doesn’t)

There is exactly no one who would refuse an opportunity to give the digits in their bank account a little boost. Whether it’s for gadgets or shoes, food or beers – money is important. Figuring out exactly how important the little green goblins are is the hard part.

According to a 2012 study published in Family Relations journal, the strongest predictor of divorce was if couples argued about money. But how much you and your partner earn not only impacts your relationship, it dictates how you’re going to live the rest of your life (not a hyperbole).

So let’s say you earn a little more than your second half. Maybe it’s a little more oomph, maybe it’s a little more than just a little more. Is it okay to be concerned about his or her dollars?

Maybe they got a fat wallet.

The short answer is – yes. Because although we all like to be bashfully humble about our salary and generous with our tips, not only do you have the right to live the best life you can – you deserve it.

A partner with a low income would undoubtedly mean compromise on your side – from the house you live in to the food you eat, to the sorts of dates you go on every Friday night. You are not snobby, you are not a gold-digger and you are not shallow for being practical and avoiding a financial relationship that will maybe make you deeply resentful further down the beaten track.

But – highlighted, capitalised, NEON-COLOURED GLOWING ‘BUT’ – a partner is not just some extra digits to stick into a joint-bank account. If your only concern is the shortage of dollars they earn (not their ambition and not their spending habits, because that is a whole different can of worms we’re not getting into) maybe this is one of the rare times you should leave money out of the equation.

After all, doesn’t being successful and independently self-sufficient and all that jazz mean you have the freedom to make the choices you want to make, regardless of the other person’s ability to support you? Your partner, your soul-mate, the only one for you (gross), is someone you respect in their own right – whether that respect comes from their creativity, kindness, worldliness or something else.

We can’t all be Kanye

Yes, there might be someone out there who is just as creative, and just as kind, and just as worldly, who also earns more dosh! But in the truly delightful game of under-30s dating roulette, who knows what other kind of qualities this person may bring (hint: they may not all be good ones). That’s the risk you knowingly take.

Your financial stability matters. Money also definitely matters, but you can earn it yourself. So where does that leave your partner? Somewhere good, I hope.