Q. I am 26 and my boyfriend is 29. We have been together for 10 years and have a 2-year-old son. We’ve both agreed for years that we want two kids. Once the baby was born, we talked about getting a house — and that’s when our goals started to differ.
We don’t have a home and are currently not even looking. We live with his parents, who are amazing, but we need our own place. He has a business in his parents’ name and saves all of his money for a house. We support ourselves with my income.
I feel like it’s time to move forward in life, and I’m the only one moving. I’ve been waiting for him to want the same things, but . . . how long do you wait? Is this a reason to let go?
A. We mention couples therapy a lot in this column, but seeking financial counseling can be just as important. You and your partner would benefit from a session or two with a financial planner, who could examine how you save money, divide expenses, and whether you’re getting closer to your goals. Sometimes it’s easier to talk about money in front of a stranger. It can also be revealing — you might find out you’re in better shape than you think.
Once you get to that professional’s office, make sure you ask the right questions. Are your goals realistic? When does your boyfriend think you’ll be ready to get a house? Two years from now? Five? Also, talk to your boyfriend about the other reasons he might want to stay put. Is it difficult for him to imagine life without his parents around? Do they help with child care? Maybe that’s affecting the plan.
It doesn’t seem like it’s time to let go. Based on what you’ve told us, it’s time to get more information.
A 29-year-old man with his own family is content to live with his parents? I’d say your issues go far beyond financial counseling. SEENITTOO
This has been a thing for at least a decade, possibly since millennials entered the workforce. HARRISBLACKWOODSTONE
If you break up, he will have a nice savings account and a place to live, and you will be broke. He should be contributing to the current expenses and you should each be saving some money. And if you already have a child and are planning to buy a house, why aren’t you talking about getting married? I know that is old-fashioned, but [this is] backwards. LEGALLYLIZ2017
Yes, I was thinking they should discuss this with an accountant, financial person, or lawyer. Being married does bring certain financial and legal benefits — health insurance, taxes, savings, health care proxy, etc. ASH
Have you discussed a timeline with him or are you hoping he’s reading your mind and knows your frustrations? NOMORESCREENNAMES
This! It’s hard to tell from this letter whether you are bringing up the conversation of buying a new home and he’s saying “not yet,” or whether you’re just hoping he’ll bring up the subject. BKLYNMOM
I don’t think he’s being honest about his savings!
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