A relationship, particularly starting one, costs money. That may sound crass or cynical, but it’s true. In a male-female relationship, for example, the male may try to fill the traditional gentleman role, paying for dinners, drinks, movie tickets, cabs. Or maybe the female wants to assert her independence by paying her share or more, refusing to let some peer patronize her with his purchasing power (how’s that for alliteration?). Whatever the case, someone must pay for all those new-couple dates. It adds up.
This is particularly bad news for today’s twenty-somethings. A less obvious impact of this recession era is its effect on young people’s ability to date successfully. Of course, money is not what makes a strong relationship. But a notable lack of it can certainly hurt, and in a world of sparse job markets, government shutdowns, and fragile economies, surprising your lady with flowers or taking your beau to a ballgame grows increasingly difficult. And most of you can forget about jewelry or romantic getaways.
With young people living at home longer, privacy has become a rare commodity, while the prevalence of long-distance relationships has increased--along with the cost of travel for visits (some actually say long-distance relationships are stronger). Partnerships need privacy to breathe and face time to flourish. Yet those who do opt for their own place in, say, Brooklyn, better be prepared to have little cash left over for dates.
And finally, stressful discussions about money and savings and debt never help a relationship. Serious financial worries are supposed to come later, when kids and houses muddle the picture. Our twenties are for learning to take care of ourselves and finding someone to do it with. They are for fun and romance and independence. Don’t let a little recession rob you of those joys.
Up next: Five Cheap, Romantic Dating Ideas