Should I Pay My Boyfriend’s Bills if I Only Visit on Weekends?

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Dear Penny,

My boyfriend of almost two years has recently asked me to start paying the electric and water bills at his place. I live about an hour’s drive from him, so I really only spend the weekends with him. I’ve washed my clothes there three times max in the almost two years, and I washed his clothes with mine those times.

I clean his house, watch his dogs, buy food and share the cost of going out, vacations, etc. I feel that he is not acknowledging my contributions in any way. So how should I handle this situation?

-S.

Dear S.,

You could offer to bring your own bottled water and a generator for your weekends together. You could research the going rates for cleaning and dog-sitting in your area, then invoice your boyfriend for your services. Ask him to reimburse you for transportation at the IRS standard mileage rate.

Better yet, you could not visit your boyfriend this weekend. Or next weekend. Or the weekend after that.

At most, he’ll free up a few bucks in his budget if you’re not there using his utilities. More importantly, you’ll free up your time. Then you can pursue someone who actually values ​​your companionship.

At best, your boyfriend is being an extreme cheapskate. But I can’t help but feel that he’s being manipulative by trying to make you responsible for his bills. Regardless, the proper way to handle this situation is to tell your boyfriend, “No , I’m not paying your utility bills. This is a completely ridiculous request.” This isn’t up for debate.

You can tell him why it’s so absurd on a financial level. You’re paying for gas and wear-and-tear on your vehicle from driving an hour each way to visit your boyfriend. I’m sure those costs alone are much higher than the tiny bit extra you’re adding to his utilities.

But also tell him how what he’s asking makes you feel. I think you’re spot on when you say your boyfriend isn’t acknowledging your contributions. This isn’t just…

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