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Feeling very conflicted

dude7691

Active Member
#1
Hi all :)

Been here before, 3 years ago I joined I think now. Things have improved since then :) A bit of background on me before I go into the main thing I need some advice with. I'm 21, living in Wales and self employed (sort of). I'm currently doing a degree with the Open Uni in economics. I have autism, I can act as if I'm normal but it's very clear the way I see things compared to others that I'm not. Anyway, I had a gambling problem when I was 17-18. Some of you on here may remember me coming here to talk about that. I was trading markets basically leveraged to the sky and beyond. I made £32k in a matter of 6 weeks, from an initial investment of £2.5k. I lost most of it following some idiotic gambles I made. Anyhow, I've now flipped and have become a compulsive saver. I've saved over £36k since then, through a combination of working in restaurants and student grants. This is great on paper, but has left me feeling so attached to my cash that I can no longer part with it, I only make absolutely essential purchases, and I can't invest in markets which I know I need to be doing if I want any hope of retiring, but that's a different story.

Anyway, the main topic of my thread is this next section. I was on Tinder about 4 months ago, and was initially just looking for a casual situation. However as is the case with a lot of casual relationships, we fell for each other and I can honestly say I've never felt so connected to someone. However, I've noticed my spending aversion becoming a serious issue. On my budget, I have a column for personal expenses and that includes dates and things of the like, projecting 4 years ahead when I want to buy a house (whether I will or not is to be seen). I've had my income massively drop since December, mostly due to a fall in demand in the industry I've been self employed in for the last year or so. It's unlikely to return any time soon. The cuts in interest rates have also killed that side to my income (and made me feel like even more of an idiot for not investing, out of allegiance to my budget). Also the time invested in a relationship, plus the mental impact of missing someone is really getting to me. I also just generally feel a bit young to be committing to someone so early, but I'm also aware that when you love someone you're never guaranteed to find someone else like that who reciprocates (in my case, I'm very much a niche when it comes to dating haha).

We're currently on a break from things, and I guess I feel like I can't make the right choice here (in terms of staying with her). I don't know which to put first. My mental health in the sense of being able to have the time to complete my degree (which I get paid a significant amount to do also, Wales is great for that), and being able to absorb the drop in my income with respect to my savings, or have the feeling that I know I'll have lost someone who really cares about me and who I reciprocate that with. I feel awful because I know she deserves better. Most people my age are very spend happy and although she doesn't want that, I feel like I'm not doing enough. The thought of spending money on "unnecessary" things though like takeaway food, dates in general etc. just eats me up inside and I can't help but think that money could go to better use. It's part of the reason I was only looking for casual things in the first place. I guess I've just never really mentally recovered from those losses I sustained years ago, I understand all too well how painful that is. Part of what makes this situation worse is the element of loneliness I will inevitably feel if I do let her go, I have absolutely no friends, they're all away at university and in general I struggle to connect with people nowadays, thanks to people mostly being so overly dramatic and opinionated that it drives me up the wall :D My autism doesn't help, I'm very set in my ways.

I'm sorry this might seem like a privileged post and my problems are insignificant compared with others, but that makes it worse in a way because no one in the real world understands how I can feel afraid of spending and how this controls me when I'm doing so "well" for my age.

Thank you :)
 
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dude7691

Active Member
#3
I'm glad that things are better now :)

Money is the top thing that couples argue about, so this is a common problem. Maybe there's a compromise that can be reached?
Hi may :)

Firstly thank you for your comment, I remember you were here when I first came here. It's great to see you about still and I hope you're keeping well!

You're right yes, albeit we've never really argued about it. She understands my views very well and was understanding when I said I needed to think things through. It's hard to say, my income at the moment is so low that I guess it will always worry me until I'm not spending anything beyond bare essentials, and seeing as we don't live together (120 miles away in fact, she moved back home from uni because of lockdowns) travel will always be a major expense at least in the medium term (3-5 years). As a percentage of my income, the outgoing is around 10% which is fairly high to me (people save less to their pensions). Dates maybe not, but I don't expect her to deprive herself of dates and enjoying herself because I'm overly frugal. She's even offered to pay for me but there's no way I could ever accept that, if I'm going somewhere I pay my share.

It sounds pathetic I know, but autism means I obsess over the little details, and it's what allowed me to be able to save in the first place I think. Rigorously budgeting being the main thing I can attribute to that really. My hobbies are very low cost (cycling, music production and gaming) so I guess I've just always become used to even £5-10 non-essential purchases making me feel a bit uneasy.

Thank you :)
 

LOSTINSIGHT

Well-Known Member
#4
So your problem went from one extreme to the other?
Get help and advice from trained professionals .
Nothing wrong with being thrifty but not spending money on a date in my opinion is way to far.
If you've a plan going forward and a relationship is in it ,,,you've no choice but to get help and find a compromise.
Your already aware of it .
Respect.
 
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#5
Hello :)
You're welcome!
I remember you were here
Yeah, I remember you too :)
It's great to see you about still and I hope you're keeping well!
I'm ok thanks. It's good to hear from you again, I'm glad that things are mostly better.
120 miles away in fact, she moved back home from uni because of lockdowns) travel will always be a major expense at least in the medium term (3-5 years)
I'm not sure if the UK has craigslist, but you can get very cheap, and sometimes free rides that way. Being able to see each other is likely essential to making your relationship work.

Saving money is generally a good thing, and I think most people don't save enough. It sounds like you're taking it too far though.

It might help to imagine that when you're spending money being with her, you're investing in the relationship. If you're able to keep the lines of communication open, and you can negotiate, you might be able to reach a good compromise. If it turns out that you're in a long-term relationship, you may be able to convince her of the merit of saving in order to retire early. Maybe you could also be persuaded to spend some time with her every once in a while where you can just forget about money and saving.
 

Auri

🎸🎼Rock Star🎼🎸
Safety & Support
SF Supporter
#6
Hiya Dude ;)
Can I ask what you're planning to do with your money? :) Do you have any big projects in mind? is it for future potential children (ok that's a joke :p) ? for early retirement and traveling the world? to give to charity? Like... what is it for? Just curious, not judging at all of course. :)
 

dude7691

Active Member
#7
So your problem went from one extreme to the other?
Get help and advice from trained professionals .
Nothing wrong with being thrifty but not spending money on a date in my opinion is way to far.
If you've a plan going forward and a relationship is in it ,,,you've no choice but to get help and find a compromise.
Your already aware of it .
Respect.
Hi there,

Yes pretty much, I'd say. And I'd love to but at the moment due to lockdowns getting in person help (most effective) is nearly impossible, so I'm on my own till the summer I think. I think I can handle it though :)
No I know what you mean, don't get me wrong if we ever go out for dates I'll happily pay my half and not share my inner fears, it's not fair on her and it just looks silly really, outwardly anyway.
Yeah, that's the thing my plan going forward isn't really to have a relationship but when you've met the perfect person, just 4-5 years too early it's tricky you know? Logic dictates you need to do the right thing and part ways your heart says otherwise.

Thank you :) My self awareness is probably one of my best qualities, and I'm working on fixing this.

All the best!
 

dude7691

Active Member
#8
Hello :)

You're welcome!

Yeah, I remember you too :)

I'm ok thanks. It's good to hear from you again, I'm glad that things are mostly better.

I'm not sure if the UK has craigslist, but you can get very cheap, and sometimes free rides that way. Being able to see each other is likely essential to making your relationship work.

Saving money is generally a good thing, and I think most people don't save enough. It sounds like you're taking it too far though.

It might help to imagine that when you're spending money being with her, you're investing in the relationship. If you're able to keep the lines of communication open, and you can negotiate, you might be able to reach a good compromise. If it turns out that you're in a long-term relationship, you may be able to convince her of the merit of saving in order to retire early. Maybe you could also be persuaded to spend some time with her every once in a while where you can just forget about money and saving.
Haha :D Time flies, it doesn't feel long ago at all really.

Thank you, and yes for the most part they are. I feel more content in myself and more confident. I'm learning from my mistakes which is a big thing. I know I wasn't alone in how I reacted last time, and I'll never forget those emotions. Once bitten, twice shy I suppose :)

Yeah, I'm currently getting the train if/when we see each other. It's about £20 each time, which isn't much to most people but that's sometimes a day's wage for me being self employed (I know right, horrendous). You are right though, seeing each other is important. Due to lockdowns at the moment it's not an option, even if we wanted to, however.

I think that's part of the issue. Most of my friends (before they all went away) were absolutely broke, and I'd always promised myself I'd never let myself be broke again. The further I am away from 0 the more my feeling of security increases and the better I perform in other areas of life. I don't really regret what I'm doing, because I still feel relatively content day to day (excluding this situation). I understand I may be depriving myself of things though. However if something I really want for myself comes up, I will buy it after careful consideration (waiting 2 weeks before purchasing it to make sure I really want it).

I've definitely tried to think of it that way, and thus far it's worked. It's just since having my pay drop I guess I've just had that urge to be more careful again. I hear you though, I just find compromise really difficult I think due to my autism. I've always been quite a black and white thinker, and that's worked well and against me on some occasions. Thank you for your advice again, I've listened to it and I'll strongly consider these options :)
 

dude7691

Active Member
#9
Hiya Dude ;)
Can I ask what you're planning to do with your money? :) Do you have any big projects in mind? is it for future potential children (ok that's a joke :p) ? for early retirement and traveling the world? to give to charity? Like... what is it for? Just curious, not judging at all of course. :)
Hey Auri :)

Well firstly to buy a house, and that's a maybe. If renting turns out to be cheaper, I'll stick to that :) If I choose not to, it'll go mostly into stocks during my 20's and probably 30's and (hopefully) grow. However long term, it'll go towards basically anything I want it to. Travelling is definitely up there, but only to a few specific places so I can imagine that wouldn't cost more than £5-10k, which isn't much over a lifetime. Most of it will probably go to charity, which would make me feel good :) My brother is also severely disabled so I'm more than happy to contribute to his care above and beyond what the government will. Plus I just enjoy the process I think, I find economics fascinating and investing makes me feel like a part of it :)

Oh yes and I nearly forgot :D I've always wanted a log cabin in the middle of somewhere cold and desolate, in a forest :D That's end game though, we'll see if I get that far!
 

Marga

Well-Known Member
#10
Hey Auri :)

Well firstly to buy a house, and that's a maybe. If renting turns out to be cheaper, I'll stick to that :) If I choose not to, it'll go mostly into stocks during my 20's and probably 30's and (hopefully) grow. However long term, it'll go towards basically anything I want it to. Travelling is definitely up there, but only to a few specific places so I can imagine that wouldn't cost more than £5-10k, which isn't much over a lifetime. Most of it will probably go to charity, which would make me feel good :) My brother is also severely disabled so I'm more than happy to contribute to his care above and beyond what the government will. Plus I just enjoy the process I think, I find economics fascinating and investing makes me feel like a part of it :)

Oh yes and I nearly forgot :D I've always wanted a log cabin in the middle of somewhere cold and desolate, in a forest :D That's end game though, we'll see if I get that far!
Hi Dude, I see what you are struggling with. In the list of things you plan to invest your money in, there is not a mention of children/family. You are very youg still and you have time for that, but does that mean that you already know you don't want to hace children in tge future? This might be a very important question to discuss with the girl. In case she would like to have children and you not than probably your relationship would have no future regardless of the money issue anyway.
 

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