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Woman Called Out For Buying New Clothes Instead Of Helping Boyfriend Pay Off His Student Loans

Matej Kastelic / EyeEm via Getty Images

Our finances are our own responsibility.  Even if we enter a partnership, it’s important to communicate that no one person in the relationship is more entitled to the other person’s money.  It is unfair to ask that person to contribute to the finances of one person.

A Redditor, whose username has since been deleted, was running into an issue of this nature with her boyfriend, when he made a comment about how she was wasting money on clothing instead of contributing to his student loan payments, which were affecting household finances.

Unsure if somehow she was not doing something she should be, she went to the popular subReddit “Am I The A**hole?” or “AITA” to get feedback from objective strangers.

She asked:

“AITA for buying clothes when bf is still paying off student loans?”

Our original poster, or OP, finally made a huge milestone in her loan payments.

“I(29F[emale]) FINALLY paid off my student loans after 6 years 🥳.”

“I haven’t bought any new clothes or shoes since high school to save money so I’ve basically donated most of them and am starting to buy a professional wardrobe.”

“I’m from a very poor family so getting something new that’s not a hand-me-down is amazing and once I have something new I want to wear it around the house.”

But OP’s boyfriend is jealous because he hasn’t paid down his debt.

“My bf is annoyed when I bring home new things or wore them around him so I try to hide them or leave them in my car and bring home after he’s gone to work and wear it then.”

“I went out recently and bought a coat and Mary Janes back and didn’t hide them in time.”

“He saw them and got mad because he believes I was spending frivolously and he told me if I was going to waste money I could help him pay down his debt.”

“I’m annoyed because I worked hard to pay off my loans and I’m finally getting to buy things I’ve always wanted and we got into a fight.”

Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

Redditors were a bit incredulous that OP had to even ask if she was wrong.

“A relationship is also about celebrating successes. Where’s the BF’s happiness that one of them is now debt free?”

“Why just resentment that OP bought new clothes for herself? She achieved a milestone and she’s celebrating.”

“And believe you me, I know exactly how that feels!! We literally bought clothes for all our family on a long overdue trip to visit them, just because WE were debt free and it was our celebration.”

“OP – you’re awesome. Way to be responsible and pay off your debt. Celebrate. Treat yourself. You have (literally!!) earned it.”-KeepLkngForIntllgnce

“NTA. Exactly. His debt, his problem. OP needs to go shopping, for a new boyfriend. Why in the hell is OP hiding anything?”

“You hide when you are afraid of something. Does OP really want to hide the rest of her life?”-lastcall4coffee

“I’m gonna address the other side of this issue (not the bf expecting you to pay his debts) – i also grew up ummm very frugally.”

“And if/when you finally get into a situation and mindset where you allow yourself to buy new shoes once every 10 years – doesn’t it just feel like a rainbow sundae with extra cherries?!?”

“You earned this satisfaction. enjoy it. And don’t let anyone who claims they care about you take that small and important happiness away.”

“NTA. and keep taking care of yourself, OP.”-effyoucreeps

“I see a lot of people focusing on the ‘pay off his debt’ part, which of course, she should not do.”

“But I think there is something much more sinister going on here. BF thinks he has the right to tell her that she can’t buy herself things.”

“Even if there were no suggestion of paying for his loans instead, this is extremely concerning. It’s none of his damn business what she buys for herself. At all. Period.”

“If they were married and sharing finances and she were being irresponsible with money, maybe. But a boyfriend? No.”

“You do not get a vote in whether or not I’m allowed to buy new clothes. Your opinion is neither wanted nor needed. This is controlling behavior and will extend to other things.”

“OP, STOP HIDING YOUR PURCHASES from any man. You should not be ashamed of spending money you earned.”-Icy_Obligation

And Redditors are noting that OP’s boyfriend seems to be really resentful and controlling–a big red flag.

“NTA. Unless you specifically agreed to pay his debt, it’s his debt and you have no obligation to hide new stuff you buy with your money.”

“I hope this guy has great qualities you didn’t mention, because this seems selfish and sketchy as hell.”-madelinegumbo

“Why should you help him pay his debt? How ridiculous. NTA. It’s not like you’re celebrating when he doesn’t have money for food. Your life is changing.”

“Maybe time to change your boyfriend to a less resentful one. If he’s jealous of anything good happening to you it’s not good for you long term.”

“Imagine you get a promotion and he gets into a fight with you for going to work because he didn’t get a promotion too?! How ridiculous!! No way are you in the wrong here.”-asianinindia

“Time to also graduate to a more successful man. If you feel guilty for feeling good, DROP HIM. I know how you feel, I didn’t buy clothes for like a decade and it can really effect you.”

“Like that sounds so superficial, but when everyone you know is looking cute and you’re just trying to re-wear the same rags for years it can really make you feel bad.”

“First off, good job on paying off your loans. The fact that he can only love you if you’re struggling with him and can’t celebrate you enjoying your life, F**K HIM.”

“Also why the f**k do YOU need to pay HIS debt? If your man is not buying you clothes, like leave him nevermind he’s telling you to give him your money instead of spending your hard earned money on yourself.”

“LOL is he on crack? ok so he has you on edge hiding your purchases and you’re not allowed to live. He’s also a broke a** scrub now?”

“This post is deeply personal in another way because I had a narcissistic older sister who viewed my money as hers and treated me like sh*t for years.”

“She would literally steal my birthday money and refuse to pay me back. I also had to hide my shopping from her because I wasn’t allowed to get ANYTHING if she didn’t have it first.”

“Like my mom and I were scared of pissing her off so we would hide anything if my mom bought it for me. That’s how f**king awful and evil she was.”-Powerful_Mixtape

“I’m inferring from your post BF didn’t help you pay off your loans. Why would he then turn around and expect you help pay his?”

“This sounds like some SDE where he doesn’t like you’re in a more financially comfortable spot than he is.”

“Professional clothing is an investment in your own future, and also you’re an adult so if you want to buy an extra purse/sandals/dress with YOUR money guess what you can do that too.”

“I don’t ever like to just unilaterally say from a single snapshot of life you should walk away/dump him etc., but his attitude at the least requires a conversation.”

“A good partner is happy for you and supports your successes. Guy you’re describing sounds like a jealous dick. For your own sake, find out if that’s the case sooner rather than later.”

“Paying off your loans at 29 is such a great accomplishment! Be proud of that bc it’s awesome and so hard to do. In the famous words of Donna and Tom, ‘Treat yo’ self.’ And give no f**ks.”-Tralfamadorians_go

People are telling her to live her own glamorous life–without her boyfriend, if need be.

“NTA. Paying his loans is his own responsibility. Y’all aren’t married, what’s yours is yours and what’s his is his.”

“He is not entitled to your money just cause you paid off your debt before he is able to do the same.”

“As long as you’re making responsible decisions and living within your means, do what you want. You deserve to enjoy the fruits of life that you earn.”-Iamthebanana238

“NTA. He is responsible for his loans and cannot tell you how to spend your pocket money. Now it’d be different if you were buying clothes and not paying your fair portion of shared expenses like rent.”

“But that doesn’t seem to be the case at all.”

“Just because you two are in a relationship, doesn’t mean you have to burden yourself with his debt and he shouldn’t shame you into having to tip toe around with your clothes shopping.”

“Unless you plan on getting married and agreeing to taking on his loans, there is zero reason for you to pay for any of it.”

“Sidenote: Congrats on paying off your loans. That’s a huge accomplishment and I am happy for you.”-Zephestus

“NTA but girl? Your bf is making you feel so guilty about buying new clothes that you are literally going through so much trouble to avoid a fight/his anger. That is not normal!!”

“I totally understand him being a bit salty however an adult should be able to realise that they are being a bit silly.”

“They should also just be so proud and excited for you! They should want you to finally treat yourself and be so confident and cute in your new stuff!”

“You did something amazing and you deserve a partner who wants to celebrate you and your achievements.”-Saucym3atballs

“I’m a 34 year old guy that knows a thing or two because I’ve seen a thing or two. I hate the reddit cliche of ‘break up with them’ at the first sign of trouble in a relationship.”

“NTA. Break up with him. This behavior from him isn’t just about you paying off student loans and wanting to celebrate a bit and buy a professional wardrobe.”

“You should be team mates. You should help set each other up for success and you should share each other’s success and failures.”

“He should be helping you pick out clothes and celebrating with you – not killing your joy. What’s going to happen when you’re the first to do other things?”

“What happens when he can’t afford to buy a house but you can, and he tries to pick out the house you have to pay for?”

“What happens when you get an award at work that he’s been wanting? This is a sign of resentment. Resentment is the seed that ends all relationships.”

“Walk away now. This is going to get so much worse in time.”-Esozh_007

If OP wants to buy shiny new clothes, she should do so without fear of retaliation or resentment from her partner.

If he can’t get behind her, hopefully she will dance away from his life and thrive on her own.

Written by Mike Walsh

Mike is a writer, dancer, actor, and singer who recently graduated with his MFA from Columbia University. Mike's daily ambitions are to meet new dogs and make new puns on a daily basis. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @mikerowavables.