DearSugar and Middle Class Melissa need your help. She's in a relationship with a man who comes from an upper class family and has all upper class friends. She is starting to feel a rift in her relationship because she's unable to relate to his lifestyle. Though she loves her boyfriend, she's questioning if it's possible to have a happy and successful relationship with someone who comes from a different "class." What do you think? Any advice you could offer up would be a great help to her.
I'm in a relationship with a guy who comes from a completely different background than me. I've never been the type of girl who considers money or class when it comes to boyfriends. I've always held the view that love and
material possessions are not mutually exclusive. I would never not date a guy because he came from a poor family, and likewise, I would never not date a guy because he was wealthy. I myself am an intelligent, open-minded 23-year-old who comes from a middle-class background. In my past, I have tended to date guys with backgrounds similar to myself however, for the past year, I've been in an exclusive relationship with a guy who comes from a wealthy family. He was shipped off to boarding school at the age of 14, has a graduate degree from an Ivy League university, and has lived and traveled all over the world. He's a 28-year-old artist who does not have a "real" job. He has no health insurance, and his rent and other bills are taken care of by his parents, although he does send them money when he manages to sell artwork from time to time.
I've never been jealous of his comfortable situation, and until recent months, it had never been an issue whatsoever. But recently, I have found myself starting to get annoyed by his lack of sensitivity. For example, he refuses to go to "normal" restaurants or supermarkets because he only eats organic foods. I however, cannot afford to always go to these expensive places, and because of his "choice of profession," he's not exactly generous when it comes to picking up the tab. Also, whenever I'm spending time with him and his friends, they talk about things that I can never relate to — their favorite restaurants in Mexico, experiences they've had at socialite parties, what it was like living in Berlin for the summer — you get the idea.
In these instances, I'm left sitting there with nothing to say, and it makes me feel completely worthless. I have always been proud of the accomplishments I've had in my life but he doesn't seem to ever acknowledge them. I know that he doesn't mean to hurt me, I think he's just used to dating girls more like him. I've tried to talk to him about this, but he assures me that he doesn't in any way think that he's "better than me" so is this just the kind of thing that happens when you date someone outside of your "class" or is he just a jerk? For the most part our relationship is good. I care about him a lot. He is intelligent, talented, and makes me strive to be a better person, I just don't want to lose myself in the process.