Tag Archives: money

Too poor to afford high-end love

Titanic Jack and Rose

“You can’t give my daughter the things she needs in life. You say you love her, but love alone won’t put food on the table, nor clothe her. Just leave her alone. She needs someone who can sustain her prestigious life. She’s from a rich family, and you are poor. You’re not meant for her. You two can’t be together.”

Those are such depressing words, especially if it’s about someone one truly loves. I don’t know if I will ever conform to the idea of parents deciding who their children fall in love with, based on the financial status of their partners.

I consider it discrimination, and one of the worst kinds for that matter. Love is beautiful, but the minute we start putting up such barriers, we corrupt it. I understand a parent’s desire to protect his/her children; to ensure their needs are taken care of even after they leave the nest, but causing them untold misery while trying to prevent a love that’s already deep-rooted is unfair to say the least.

I grew up in a family where dad’s mother thought her children should marry into rich families. But as it is with love, it’s hard to dictate where it grows, so dad fell in love with mom, who’s from a poor family and his mother has never accepted it to date. I attribute many of the problems mom and dad have had to his mother’s incitement. Somehow she has always been bent on splitting them up.

I know in most of my posts I complain about dad’s shortcomings; even so, I see some good in him sometimes, especially when he is not drunk. Sometimes I wonder what kind of a man he would be if he didn’t drink so much.

On a good day, when he is sober, I see so much kindness in him; he radiates lots of compassion. But that side of him disappears the instant he imbibes anything alcoholic. I pray for a day to come when he won’t crave alcohol anymore. Maybe then, if all goes well, my sisters and I will have the dad from our early childhood back; a dad who wasn’t so cold… Everyone’s allowed to dream, right?

Back to love matters though, I don’t agree with parents preventing their children from dating certain people because they are from poor backgrounds. Money comes and goes. A rich man might go bankrupt the next day while a poor man’s star shines bright and he finds himself at the helm of a multi-billion company.

I always think, if a poor teenage boy falls in love with a rich teenage girl, who’s to say in a couple of years the boy won’t be rich? No one knows what tomorrow will bring. Luck changes, and I have an aunt who would attest to this.

When she was in college she fell in love with a poor guy and they even went ahead to get a baby. Her mom, who obviously felt her daughter deserved better, was against the relationship therefore she had my aunt break up with her boyfriend. Subsequently, she took the new born baby, so my aunt could finish up with her studies.

Fast-forward to thirty something years later, my aunt is still unmarried, and the poor guy her mom didn’t want for her is now a rich man. Everytime I think about my aunt’s predicament I wonder, if she went back in time, would she have fought for her love? And her mother, my grandma, if she knew the impecunious young man she rejected would one day be rich, would she have let him marry her daughter?

The words at the beginning of the post are from a show I was watching yesterday. A teenage girl’s mother was talking to her daughter’s boyfriend, asking him to keep off her because clearly she deserved someone from a rich family. The girl’s father additionally, asked the young boy to go make money first and when he was rich he would be free to marry his princess.

In a funny twist of fate though, the young boy grew up without parents because he was switched at birth with the same girl by the man’s wife, who was furious with her husband for cheating on her. Oblivious to them, the girl the parents are trying so hard to protect from poverty isn’t their flesh and blood and the poor boy is the one who is actually their real son.

Parents do many things-some of them awful- with their children’s best interests at heart. However, sometimes it is advisable for them to step back and let the kids forge out their own paths. I have seen enough instances-in real life and in movies-where parents meddle in their children’s love life and none of them has ever had a happy ending.

The last boyfriend my big sister had was an Indian guy and seeing as we’re not Indians, mom asked dad what he thought about the relationship. He didn’t have a problem with it. He said he wouldn’t want to butt in into our love lives, lest we had a fate similar to his sister’s. Hearing those words from him made me realize the seriousness of the issue.

He is not happy his elder sister is single, and it’s their mom who personally orchestrated it; in her attempt to fix her daughter’s life, she ruined it instead. I am not a mother yet, but I believe when I am, I will let my kids choose who they want to love, because part of being a parent is knowing when to stay out of children’s affairs.

It’s not easy I know, but one has to let their children make such choices. If it works out, good for them; if it doesn’t, well…the parents won’t have anything to blame themselves for. And money, as important as it is; lack of it is not enough to keep two people who truly love each other apart.

No romance without finance?

no romance without finance

Love doesn’t discriminate; like a weed, it can sprout just about anywhere. That is what I learned as I was growing up. It doesn’t look at how deep pockets are, or one’s skin colour, race, religion etc… and it’s for all- both the haves and the have nots. That is the kind of love I grew up knowing.

Looking at current dating trends though, I’m inclined to believe somewhere down the line things changed. Love changed; or the concept of love at least. They said money can’t buy love, but to some extent I beg to differ. Nowadays people consider one’s payslip before they can say the three words, eight letters: I love you.

Money may not buy one love, but it will buy them someone who pretends to love them. Technically I wouldn’t call that love, but that seems to be the new face of love. Relationships-most of them-have been re-defined by the ‘no romance without finance’ concept.

Sometimes I’m left wondering; does it mean only well-heeled people can find life partners? And if that is the case, what will happen to those who earn meagre wages? Will they be condemned to solitude just because they can’t afford romantic dates/getaways in high end resorts?

I particularly empathize with men who don’t earn much because with the way things are going, majority of women want to don designer apparels, live in mansions and drive luxury cars and as it is, in a family setting, the man is considered the main provider; ergo, if a guy can’t afford his woman’s expenses, he stands a high risk of losing her to a moneyed bloke.

Sadly, that- as I said before- is the new face of love; the rich takes it all. What makes it even more complicated is the fact that even if a guy isn’t particularly wealthy but the wife is, there tend to be issues. Low self-esteem on the guy’s part and all.

Recently, I was listening to this debate on radio about a guy who had beef with his wife: He had lost his job so his wife, who was the sole breadwinner, suggested he stay home and look after their daughter. She said it would be easier if he babysat as that would help do away with unnecessary costs. He wasn’t the least bit pleased.

Many guys called in to give their two-cents-worth on the matter and no one seemed okay with the idea of a man staying home while the woman brought the dough, with some citing emasculation. Personally I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that, but I’m thinking it has to do with the male ego, which I totally understand.

The reason I brought that debate up is to show why men still feel the need to be the ones making more money in a relationship. It’s a burden placed on them by the society. That said, I feel it shouldn’t be that way. I understand money is an important thing, but it shouldn’t be the defining factor in matters love.

Some months ago I wrote a post about gold-digging, giving an example of a cousin of mine, who moved to the city in search of a tycoon. Her mom was very happy telling mom on phone how her daughter was bent on finding herself a rich guy, and concerned, mom just told her to ask my cousin not to take anyone’s husband.

About a fortnight ago, mom called my aunt to ask if my cousin could come work in her beauty spa as she specialized in that field. Turns out my cousin couldn’t make it since she recently gave birth. Her mom, voicing her displeasure, said my cousin just had to get herself pregnant. “Now she would have come to work, but she can’t.”

Based on what mom told me, my aunt sounded clearly pissed. When she learned about my cousin’s state she sent her last born daughter to go get her sister, who was still in the city. The news had me gobsmacked; my cousin was back home, without her rich tycoon, jobless and with a baby. Considering her initial motives, project tycoon sounded like a backfired plan.

I felt bad for her, mainly for one reason. At gram’s funeral last October, she was in the company of a cute guy, but apparently she didn’t want him as he wasn’t rich. Love is more than money. If she had stayed with him, chances are right now they would both have well-paying jobs and her baby would have a present dad. They would have made a really cute family.

Money isn’t everything. Sometimes the people with the most money are the unhappiest. And true love is rare. It’s like a comet; comes once in God-knows how many years. If one finds someone who loves them for real, they should stick by them, and curve out a path together-in riches and poverty.

Additionally, money comes and goes. So what happens to a relationship which started as a ‘business’? You know, buy me a Porsche, and I will… (Fill blank space) etc. kinda deals. What happens when all the money runs out? Do the partners start regrouping, finding other mates who are more loaded? That isn’t love.

Some of my cousin’s older siblings were even hoping their sister didn’t catch something in the process. It’s just sad. Sometimes we find love and just blow it because the person doesn’t have money.

The way I see it, becoming a millionaire is hard, but it’s easier than finding true love. If one finds love, they should hold on to it. Money will come when it comes.

Women are gold diggers: part two

In my opinion, men are right when they say women are gold-diggers; but only to some extent. This said, I feel they make a grave mistake when they assume all women are gold-diggers. It’s extremely offensive when an honest woman is treated as one; as a gold digger.

Last month my sister was trying to find a company where she could intern. A friend of hers, who works in a bank, helped her secure a position in one of their branches. When my sister told him she had gotten the internship, he light-heartedly told her she owed him a few drinks.

Friday, that same week, he called her in the morning before she left for school asking her out later in the evening. They had never gone out before as he was engaged when they first met and was going to tie the knot in a few weeks; however he and his fiancée split up last year. Thrilled, my sister agreed to it, thinking he wanted to take her out as it was her birthday.”

When my sister came back home, she wouldn’t stop complaining how unchivalrous the guy had been. Apparently they had gone to two clubs and in both places she had paid for all their drinks.

“I know he had said I owed him a few drinks for helping me get the internship,” she complained, looking visibly disappointed, “but he asked me out. And this was our first time out together. He should at least have offered to go dutch.”

I tried pacifying her, even though I found myself lost for words. I was of the same opinion, that since he asked her out he should have paid for the drinks. I reasoned, if she had asked him out it would have been okay for her to foot the bill, but he asked her out; plus that was their first time out together.

Sometimes I like to think of myself as a little traditional. Maybe I’m wrong; but first impressions really matter. I have no issue paying bills or going dutch with a guy, just not on the first date. And if I do it, I would love to be the one who offers to pay half or all of it, and not because I was pushed to it.

“I’m never going out with him again,” she vowed. “He let me pay the bill, and he knew it was my birthday.”

I couldn’t blame her for her decision. If I was in her situation I wouldn’t either.

While they were talking about him getting her an internship, he told her teaching was his first love. Even though he worked in a bank, he worked part-time as a lecturer and would love to get a permanent teaching job. She asked him to apply for a job in the university she goes to.

After their night out, they rarely talk. Yesterday he sent her a copy of the CV he had sent to her school applying for a position as a lecturer. In the CV he had indicated how much he makes per month at the bank. He could be the next multi-millionaire in town for all I know; if he’s not one already. After getting over my shock, I started wondering why he would bother to send her a copy of his CV when there’s nothing she could do to help him get the job, as much as she wanted to return the favour. I just assumed he wanted to impress her with the money; anyone could be lured by that enormous figure. Maybe I was wrong.

He could be a generous guy, but the thought that he let my sister pay for their drinks on their first ‘date’ and on her birthday, had me thinking he’s just stingy. He had the chance to make a good first impression, but he blew it. In my opinion he broke at least all rules of dating etiquette. My sister already vowed to never go out with him, simply because she deduced he was ungallant; tight-fisted. If ever she went out with him again in future, it wouldn’t be for his charm but solely for the money.

Luckily for him, my sisters and I know in life there are things that are far more important than money. It may sound hypocritical to some, but truth is money is not everything. I know of guys who earn meagre wages but never miss the chance to treat a woman like a lady. Not all women are money-minded; chasing men only for their wealth. All they hope to get from a man are the small gestures, like him pulling out a sit for her, paying the bill-even if it’s only on the first date…

In short, not all women are gold diggers. In the process of trying to impress a woman with his wealth, a man could actually end up losing her because if she’s not after the money, that will be a real deal-breaker.

Women are gold diggers: part one

Women are gold diggers. That’s what many men seem to think nowadays. Are they right? Or it’s just a ploy to make women come off as unbelievably materialistic

Wikipedia defines gold digger as: slang for a greedy person (stereotypically a woman) who only dates (and subsequently marries) wealthy partners with the (typically) sole intention of exploiting said wealth. The term is usually pejorative.

I have this cousin, who I’d only seen once when I was five and never met again until I was a teenager; I wrote about our encounter in Belinda. When I first laid my eyes on her, she seemed to have a very soft demeanour, and was quite shy; she had trouble looking someone straight in the eyes. From what I gathered, that was her first time in the city as she and her family lived in a farm in the countryside.

When they visited, she was accompanied by her mom and elder brother; it was just a normal courtesy call. Two days later, when her mom and brother left for their home she was left behind. Her mom-my aunt-wanted mom to have her enrolled in a school as she had dropped out for lack of funds. Mom had refused because at the time we were also having some money issues; my aunt therefore, requested mom to find her a job then.

We knew it would be difficult to get her a decent job since she didn’t have papers; nonetheless, mom said she would try. Seven months down the line, mom hadn’t managed to find her a job. Afraid that my cousin would take more time before she found a job, mom called my aunt and suggested that my cousin go back home. Eventually she did.

During her stay with us, I realized she was somewhat introverted. At first I thought she was still feeling nervous around us-my sisters and I-since we were practically strangers but as weeks passed by, she didn’t seem to loosen up. If we were doing karaoke we would ask her to join in but she would diffidently refuse; she didn’t have the guts to stand in front of us. We would playfully drag her off the seat to come sing with us but she would giggle, covering her face with her hands. She really was shy.

As months passed by, it occurred to me, she wasn’t the demure lass we had all assumed her to be. For instance, she could actually sing. Once, I was walking to the kitchen when I heard her singing in the living room to Celine Dion’s songs. I treaded softly to the living room and found her singing blithely; she didn’t seem to have a care in the world.

“So you can sing?” I said, shocked and impressed at the same time.

She swung around swiftly, clearly stunned to find me standing there. Assuming her timid self, she plonked herself in the nearest couch. I thought maybe she was afraid of me or something, so I told her, “No, carry on. You really have a beautiful voice.” I made sure my voice came out soft, in case she was scared. She didn’t sing again that day though.

Weeks later, my big sister bumped into my ex. He wanted to see me, so she invited him over for lunch the next day. When my sister told me we would be having a guest I gave my cousin a brief explanation about who he was so she wouldn’t feel out of place when he came.

The following day my ex came, accompanied by one of his friends, who was also an acquaintance. My sister and I prepared the food and later set the table. When the four of us were sitted, my cousin showed up, dressed in a revealing top and fitting pants, and her face completely made up. Again, I was shocked, yet impressed at the same time.

Shocked, because she had actually done her own make up given that I was always the one who was doing it as she didn’t seem to know how and had never shown the interest to learn; and impressed because she had made the effort to look nice. She was a girl of many surprises. Those innocent acts convinced me she wasn’t as coy. I got the impression she had so much concealed beneath her introverted façade.

When she left, we didn’t keep in touch. I only heard she had found a job in the city. After that I only saw her once. Her mom had visited and she came to see her at our place. The next time I saw her was at grams’ funeral last October. She showed up with a very cute guy, who after much prodding, she introduced only as a friend. I had a few questions to ask about ‘her friend’ but I wasn’t in the mood for it.

This past Monday, mom called her mom to check up on her. While they were talking mom asked about my cousin. Turns out she’s looking for a rich man to marry. Mom asked my aunt about the ‘friend’ my cousin was with. My aunt just said my cousin didn’t want him because he wasn’t loaded.

Mom didn’t know what to reply to that. She only told my aunt, “Just tell her not to get anyone’s husband.”

So, if women are gold-diggers? Based on my cousin’s choice of men, I can’t refute the claims.

If money stopped talking

money talks

‘Money talks,’ how many times have I heard that expression? I wouldn’t even contemplate trying to figure how many times I’ve heard it. The expression isn’t just a misused cliché, it’s actually true; in my opinion atleast. Money really talks, and when it does, innocent people languish behind bars while the real felons walk the streets, free as birds. When money talks, unqualified people get jobs they don’t deserve while the really qualified ones watch helplessly as their hard earned credentials are sniffed at. When money talks,  truths are buried.

When one doesn’t have the money to ‘lubricate’ their way through hard situations, bad things happen. There’s just untold suffering. Nowadays it appears, to get things done, one has to keep ‘oiling’ hands of those, whose assistance they need. And when one wants an illegal job done, all they have to do is fork some cash out. It’s slowly becoming the norm.

I was watching this prog the other day, where this guy was released from prison twenty years after he was wrongfully convicted. Turns out his best friend-now sworn enemy- had him incarcerated; he had made him the fall guy in a business deal gone bad.

At the time of his imprisonment, his young wife was pregnant. Unfortunately she died while giving birth to their baby girl. His best friend’s wife gave the baby up for adoption secretly then passed her off as dead. When this man came out of prison, he thought both his wife and daughter were dead. As he wanted to give them a proper burial, he asked if he could have their bodies exhumed. After filling out all the necessary paperwork, he was told he would get the necessary permit in a few days.

His ex-friend’s wife went to visit her old friend at the cemetery. While there, one of the attendants saw her and assuming she was still friends with the deceased’s husband, asked her to inform him the bodies were ready for exhumation. The news caught her off guard; she hadn’t known there were such plans going on.

She was worried. She knew if the graves were dug up, the man would discover his daughter was still alive. That would go contrary to her plans. In an attempt to sabotage the exhumation, she signed a fat cheque, asking the attendant to say he misplaced the documents. At first the guy was like, “That would be contravening my work ethics.” But that was until he glanced at the cheque. His so called work ethics flew out the window; appearing totally non-existent, as he eyed the cheque lustfully.

Just by the sheer act of illegal money changing hands, a desperate, innocent guy would never know his daughter was still alive. That’s what got me thinking, when money talks, awful things happen. So what would happen, if money stopped talking?

It’s easy to dismiss the scene as the creative work of an adept scriptwriter, but truth is, just because it’s a fictional scene doesn’t mean someone somewhere hasn’t experienced the same plight. It might not be particularly about having dead bodies exhumed, but in the world we live today, wrong things happen in broad daylight because money changed hands illegally. Unlawful practices such as bribery are deeply entrenched in our society.

I envision a world where everyone remains true to their work ethics; a world where someone-in desperate need of money or not-refuses to dirty their hands with heinous crimes just because they’re being paid to do it; a world where money doesn’t talk.