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3.5.20

We share everything! But do we really?

Earlier this year, as I was having dinner with my boyfriend, I told him about how proud I was to have lasted 27 days without spending any money (on clothes at least...). I couldn't keep up the good work for 3 more days because as a fashion editor, let's face it, it's a miracle to spend a week without buying something you've put on five 'must-have' selections.
Anyway, Zara had revealed yet a new collection, and I had my eyes on a pair of pants, that I already own in two different colors. Let's say, that I couldn't let those white ones go. But I was able to last 27 days, without buying anything, clothes-wise, and I was proud, to say the least. But my boyfriend surprisingly wasn't impressed with my capacity to not draw my credit card for a whole month. 

As I was explaining to him the great joy I was feeling, literally liberated and more aware of my spendings, and after being able to choose wisely what I wanted to spend my money on this month, he corrected me. 
'Our money', he said. 
When did my money become our money? Does it just grow into 'our money' whenever you are a proud participant of a long-term relationship? 


Historically speaking, to say one's woman money is her partner, would make us go back to the 60s. It wasn't until 1965, that women, finally, at least in France, were allowed to open to their own bank accounts without the approval of their husband. This law voted in France marked the beginning of freedom for women, who didn't have to rely on their husbands. 

In a relationship for over 5 years now, my boyfriend and I have always joked about the fact that we shared everything, including money. Of course, this was particularly valid, when we shared money as long as it affected his bank account, rather than mine. In fact, for the first couple of years, our relationship relied on his ability to work and get paid, while I was still at school, not financially independent. When I first started to work, our dates and other outgoings still relied on him, since he was making more than I did, three times more, to be exact. 
Being a young, financially dependent women, money was a surreal concept for me. Although I didn't grow up with loaded parents, throwing money at me like a spoiled child, my parents reasonably responded positively to my shopping demands, when needed. I wasn't spoiled nor wasn't to pity, I was the normality. A kid that could ask for something to her parents, that would grant or not her wishes. You could be sure that if my mother sensed that my wish to have yet another Barbie doll was unreasonable and absurd, she'll just let me cry my eyeballs out until I moved on and realized she was actually right. 
I didn't fully understand it, not until I had to pay for my own expenses, taxes, and charges. So of course, it was easy for me to attribute someone else's revenue to myself when actually it wasn't mine to have nor to spend. 

Now, as we share an actual household and have a joint account, supplied every week or so, equally from our parts, you could say that 'my money, his money, are our money'. But does my money have to be all his and the same for him? 
Getting into an argument about it, he couldn't understand how my money had to be all mine when we were supposed to share everything. When I don't lecture him about the fact that he's bought yet another pair of sneakers when our wall still needs some decoration, I couldn't figure out why he was so upset, okay upset may be a strong word, let's say, annoyed about the fact that I bought a stupid pair of pants.  At the end of the day, my money is mine first before it has to belong to anyone else. As part of my freedom and my rights as a woman, my money is mine until I decide to do whatever I want to do with it. My money and well as other sensitive topics, concern my happiness and my rules. 

Did I get this right? 

Love,

Elsa. 



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