Money Moral Dilemma: Should I ask my girlfriend to repay me or let it go?

edited 12 January 2021 at 3:00PM in Marriage, Relationships & Families
92 replies 66.1K views


  • lpegdenlpegden Forumite
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    Oh dear, not very nice position for you to be in and it sounds unfair on you. There's never any need for aggression, so I'd really want to understand where this response was coming from. Questions that spring to mind 1) Do you think she feels able to pay you back right now? If she feels unable to, perhaps she feels embarrassed but is unable to express it 2) Do you earn more, and if so do you think she's tried to 'keep up with you' and got herself into a bit of a hole? 3) Do you think there's a way you could reframe how you ask her? I wonder if this has been something brewing/ growing for you over time, but for her you asking her to pay you back £2k has come out of the blue 4) As others have said, do you think she realized at the time she would need to pay you back? If it wasn't clear, and points 1 and 2 are at play, she might feel a bit in shock. 5) It's clear that this is upsetting you. Do you think she understands that? 

    It's very clear that you need to talk this through and come to a resolution, (hopefully one in which she pays you back!!). I would dig deeper to understand her reaction better. Good luck!
  • moloch4moloch4 Forumite
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    MoneySaving Newbie

    You made the choice to pay for those things and you aren’t entitled to get it back, so there’s no “she owes me” (unless of course it was explicitly agreed she would pay you back, then it’s more than a money issue: she doesn’t respect you). 

    I was in a similar relationship where I consciously paid for things, including things that was agreed to be paid back, it never was. The same energy and generosity was never reciprocated. If this sounds like your relationship you will only end up further disappointed and you’ll be happier in the long run if you end it.

    Be well.

  • AshagillAshagill Forumite
    53 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    My partner and I have our own finances, even though we own a house together, it’s important to us to be financially independent. When it came to buying take aways and stuff we found our joint account didn’t always cover it but on a holiday with some friends we got the Splitwise app and both of us still use it, it’s changed everything. We now buy things with our own money and put it on there, keeping track of who owes what. We now almost never pay each other back but if he’s in debt to me he’ll buy the next takeaway or whatever. Keeps our joint account healthy and we feel neither of us is taking advantage of the other.
    £2,000 is a lot but if you started using this app, she could pay you back slowly by getting the groceries or whathaveyou.
    "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their validity." ~ Abraham Lincoln
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User]
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    Let it go. The first time you lend someone money and they fail to pay you back should be the last time you lend that person money. 

    As a couple you should be able to discuss finances without one of you flying off the handle. You need to decide if you want to stay with someone whom you cannot have a civilised discussion about household finances with or if you’re just going to suck it up and keep paying for things. 
  • AfourteenAfourteen Forumite
    69 Posts
    Fourth Anniversary 10 Posts
    So are you living together? If you are then the pair of you really need to have put your partnership finances in place before now. With both earning you need a household account that both of you contribute to - equally I hope.
    If not living together then you need to have a serious think on where want the relationship to go and how the finances affect that. From experience small 'loans' not repaid can mount to large sums, as you have found. Maybe your girlfriend believes that you paying when she asks for 'help with her contribution' - i.e. asking for a loan means because the pair of you are in a relationship she doesn't have to repay the loan.
    The limited information you have given us doesn't really give enough detail to supply a sensible answer.
    Is she so badly paid that she can't contribute fully? Is she very free with her money? Does she have lots of debts? All of those questions you need answers to; sit her down and ask her outright.
    All I can say is I once went out with a girl for about 6 months who never made a contribution to our joint expenses, her excuse initially was that she was freelance and not earning very much. The closing straw was she dropped her open handbag and I helped her pick up the contents including a pay advice that showed just how much she was earning - more than me; she was very much a believer that the man paid for everything.
    So either way I think you have to say enough is enough; living together, then set up a household account to which both contribute; not living together, time to go your separate ways, sorry.
  • Abs99Abs99 Forumite
    7 Posts
    Part of the Furniture First Post Combo Breaker
    I guess it comes down to a few things, did she actively ‘borrow’ money from you or did you take it upon yourself to pay things? Sometimes we all need just a little time to get things together and if you just jump in and pay it without talking it through that, on the surface is fine, but nobody likes to feel like they are a passenger in their own life, it can be suffocating. Are you paying rent/bills every month or are you talking about here and there over a number of years? If this is just you totting up your spending where you think it’s been uneven is it possible that she could say the same thing about you over other expenditure? There has to be an element of ebb and flow. It is also a question of how much and how often and for what reason, you freely admit small amounts over a period of time, so she may just be peeved that you are keeping such an exact tally over small amounts over a long period, life isnt always equal 100% Do you share all chores exactly 50/50 for example? (You may well do!) All of that said... if her go to response when money is discussed is to get mad or more worryingly, aggressive,  it doesn’t bode well for the future and so if you can’t cope with things not always being exactly 50/50 financially between you then maybe it’s time to move on. 
  • suavegeezersuavegeezer Forumite
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    MoneySaving Newbie
    It’s not good if you’re arguing about money at this stage. My gf & I don’t really argue (luckily). Nevertheless one of the best things my gf & I did was get a no overdraft joint account for joint spending (inc holidays, groceries, gifts for others) as well as maintaining our own individual current accounts. (Monzo and its app are v useful for joint account.) It helps us talk have the conversation about money and we get to do so rationally and transparently. I still pay for stuff myself, but that’s my choice. As for the 2K, just ask her to put it towards the engagement ring. (That’s a joke. Don’t do that.) 
  • bambibearbambibear Forumite
    202 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Getting defensive over money matters sounds like she may have money issues. We have 2 kids who have similar incomes and both got similar mortgages a few years ago. The youngest was 21 and his sister 23. He saved really easily and is now saving loads over lockdown, by stark contrast, his sister is paying off credit card debts and still living to her means every month. Whenever we asked her about money she’d get defensive, using lines like “I am a grown up, I don’t need any help” until I asked her one day outright “ I know you, and your spending so exactly how much are you in debt?”. She admitted it straight away, but she’s always been the same like that, would never discuss money because basically she didn’t have any. 
    But sorry to say, if your girlfriend can’t/won’t discuss money with you then a long term relationship is doomed as there’s no trust there. If I was you I’d try and sit down with her and tell her that you’re worried about her money situation because every time you bring it up she gets aggressive and it’s as though she has something to hide and if there’s to be a chance of you staying together, you should be able to talk about anything. Good luck.
  • pollypennypollypenny Forumite
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    It's that you say these are small amounts, built up over time which bothers me. If you've chosen and booked expensive holidays together and she's paid £200 less than you, proportionately to your incomes, then I expect she's shocked to find her 'bills' totted up. 

    However, if she's extravagant and you've given her £50 here and there to meet credit card bills, for example, she is in the wrong. 
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

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  • JohnEversonJohnEverson Forumite
    2 Posts
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    MoneySaving Newbie
    The defensiveness and aggressiveness is probably a sign that her finances are in a bad way and she doesn’t want you probing. It may well be that she’s up to her eyes in debt or other problems and the £2k she owes you is just the tip of the iceberg. Ditch her and move on or this will be a constant problem in your relationship and can only get worse.
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