I want a man with money. Yes, it is also important that he is God fearing, honest, loyal, funny, dependable, good with kids, a good dancer, a good dresser, tall, dark skin, and bears an uncanny resemblance to Morris Chestnut. Yet and still, even with all that going on, the man needs to have money. It's a deal breaker. No money, no me.
After years of dealing with Broke Ass Niggas (who always go through some shit), I have finally decided NO MORE! And I've gotta say, it's about damn time. The idea that a man's financial standing does not matter is a sweet little dream (more like a nightmare really), and I've finally woken up to reality. As politically incorrect as this sounds, what's in his wallet does matter! It is completely naive to think that love is all a couple needs. Why? Glad you asked. With nearly 50% of all marriages ending in divorce, money is the #1 (or #2, I can't remember) reason for marital strife. 9 times out of 10 if the finances ain't right, neither is the relationship.
We're all adults (at least I hope we all are...the mental capacity of some of my readers is questionable at best), so I'm gonna put it all out there. At a certain point in a person's life, dating just to date gets really old. If there really is NO potential for a future (i.e. marriage) there's really no point in pursuing the relationship (unless the sex is incredible, then the rules change). When looking at a potential lifelong mate, being in love is just the tip of the iceberg. Marriage is effectively tying two people's fates together for a lifetime (or 18 months if your Jennifer Lopez). Guess what? That fate includes finances. From bank accounts, to mortgages, to insurance policies, financial wellbeing is dependent upon 2 not just one. Now I don't know about ya'll, but I damn sure will not willingly go down with a sinking ship. But ignoring a man's financial standing and trying to pursue a relationship with a Broke Ass Nigga is doing just that. If a man has no savings, no credit, lives in the payday loan building, and robs from his left to feed his right, he's not relationship material. I don't care how good he looks, how nice he is, and blah blah blah. He ain't ready to be with nobody but an Ameriprise financial advisor.
Last week I was conversing over IM with The Mama's Boy and he was in a tizzy over an email discussion on the latest hot topic amongst Negroes. Over the past weekend every black woman in America went to go see Something New, sparking debate over the relationship possibilities for professional black women. The movie quoted the statistic that 47.2% of black women do not get married, especially highly educated, professional black women. That's pretty daunting, if I do say so myself. And what makes it even more worrisome is knowing that I belong in the category of black women who comprise the majority of that 47.2%. So that begs the question, why aren't so many of us getting married. Many will say that it's because it's so difficult to find the IBM (Ideal Black Man - also discussed in the movie). Now what is the IBM. One would say it's the black male version of someone like me. College educated, professional, middle class to upper class, and blah blah blah (add in personal preferences as needed). So if professional black women are unwilling to be unmarried forever and can't find the IBM, that only leaves a couple of alternatives: either marry outside the race OR marry "down" (a black man with less education with a less prestigious or lower earning career/job). Here is where Mama's boy got all hot and bothered. He had issues with the whole idea of marrying down (as do I) and basically said that women who weren't willing to look at men who made less or had less education were golddiggers. But I think he's missing something with such a pat analysis.
The number of letters after a man's name or the number of zeros on his paystub do not make me look up to or down on him. I know a lot of dumb PhDs who ain't worth shit (well actually I don't, but I do know several PhD candidates). The issue I have is SECURITY. If a person is not financially secure as an individual, it is highly unlikely any couple he is a part of will be financially secure. Many women who are worried about marrying "down" aren't hestitant because they won't be cruising around the world on their honeymoons. They are looking much further down the line to children, work interruptions, and retirement. When life happens, and it always does, it's pretty smart to want some sense that the finances will be stable. There's this idea that a woman wants a man who is financially set, so he can spoil her and take care of her. Honestly, most professional black women already splurge on and spoil their damn selves. A man's money is not needed. So it's not necessarily about money in and of itself, but moreso money management. Now I have to admit that often times a lot of women are quick to assume that if a man has a degree and a certain job title, then his bank statements are all good. We all know that's not always case. There are plenty of janitors who are better prepared for retirement than their investment banking counterparts. But more often than not, the more a person makes (man or woman), the more healthy the finances.
In my quest for the IBM, I have NEVER dated a man who makes as much money or more than I do. Both the Idiot Who Made Me Cry and the Guy Who Shouldn't Make Me Cry made a lot less than I did. And at one point or another I wanted both of them a lot more than I wanted a 2.5 carat princess cut Tiffany diamond in a platinum setting with bagets (well it was a close tie). The reason I didn't give a rat's ass about their salaries is because these men knew how to work with what they had. They were stable, unlike other Broke Ass Niggas I've known before. And although there were issues in both relationships, none of them were money related.
Unfortunately, my homegirl Chesty LaRue hasn't been so lucky. She too has been willing to date men who aren't rolling in dough, but with pretty scary results. For some reason, Broke Ass Niggas flock to Chesty, and when they do, they have a tendency to suck her dry (financially that is). They are always short on the rent, the car note, the light bill, or a $1.00 value meal and need a loan to make ends meet. Being the kind person she is, Chesty is always willing to help, but whenever she needs help or just a repayment, these dudes are nowhere to be found. Now think about going through that situation til death do you part? Ain't that much love in the world, now is there?
In my lifetime, I've seen quite a few unhappy unions because couples overlooked how important money would be in their lives. Some have gotten through the tough times, others haven't. From what I can see, marriage is hard enough without adding harassing bill collectors and negative account balances to the mix. My mama always told me to marry a man with dough. For once in my life, I think I'm gonna listen to her.