I’ve been dating a girl on and off for the past year and a half. Although I dated many women prior to her, she was the first one who I developed feelings for. Despite this, the relationship has never been consistent or official. She has wanted a relationship from the beginning, but I have continually struggled with the idea of commitment for multiple reasons. We’ve been spending more time together lately and it has been great, but I’m still hesitant.
We are in very different financial situations. I graduated from an undergrad program a few years back, have a good career, and live comfortably. I live a fairly simple lifestyle and consistently invest most of my spare income into long-term investments. I’m not overly frugal or cheap, but I understand the importance of money and the benefits of investing as much as possible early in life.
She is educated and working on her graduate degree, but she seems to have no regard for debt or maintaining any savings. She has been taking out loans throughout her undergraduate and graduate programs and likely has a large amount of debt. Despite this, she wants to continue school following the graduate degree and apply for doctorate programs. The educational path has questionable job opportunities. She works currently, but it is a part-time job with mediocre pay.
I’ve grown accustomed to paying every time we go out. She’s fairly simple and never demands anything extravagant, so I tend to sympathize with her financial situation and foot the bill. This doesn’t bother me too much, but it definitely limits the things that I want to do with her. She’ll sometimes suggest going on a trip together. Although this sounds appealing, I know that I’ll be paying for two flights, hotels, and everything else. I think it’s the principle of it rather than the spending the actual money.
I’ve also noticed that whenever I show more commitment to her, she starts to bring up her financial struggles. She has never point-blank asked for help, but she has dropped hints about how difficult it is to pay all of her bills. I’ve been blunt with her in the past and recommended that she take a few years off from school, develop a career and some sort of savings, and then start back. I understand the importance of education and the difficulty in going back, but I’ve delayed my graduate studies until I have confidence that I can pay it upfront. But, she refuses to consider this and wants to continue her education.
From a financial standpoint, she’s a horrible investment. Assuming I did become serious with her, I can expect to pay for everything for the next 3 years while she’s in school. By the time this is over, she will probably have $100k+ in debt.
What is your opinion on this situation? Am I being too shallow and analytical about this? Or, is it a good idea to move on? I’ve dated girls in the past who paid everything 50/50 and it was great. It made traveling and doing recreational activities much more fun. Of course, they had other flaws about them.