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Ask E. Jean For DearSugar: Should I Trade Up?

Dear E. Jean,
I’m 29, educated, attractive, fun, and creative. I’ve been in relationship with a great guy for about five months. The only problem is that he's an aspiring (indie) rock star, and I'm guessing that deep down his greatest love will always be his music.

So my question: Am I selling myself short here? Should I trade in the fun, cute musician for someone more stable and commitment-minded?

I'm not sure exactly what I want for my future or what's the sure path to happiness, but perhaps it's time to trade in the rock shows for an investment portfolio and a secure future?

My greatest fear is waking up one morning when I'm 35 and it's just me and the cat! — Rocker or Banker?

To see E. Jean's answer,


Rocker, My Rosebud,

Now, now. God knows I love men — what sex! — and I confess I've romped with many a handsome specimen in my time, but I'd rather wake up with a cat than with 99 percent of them.

So I do not understand your quandary, my luv.

Aren't you on this earth to enjoy as many lads as you like? Why limit yourself to just rockers and bankers? Why not let cowboys, movie stars, race car drivers, internet billionaires, college professors, male models, and hedge funders thrill you to the marrow?

Because here's the deal: There's no such thing as a "secure future." Get that straight, or you'll be surprised (and possibly miserable) the rest of your life. Yes, you can plan for a brilliant future; you can marry a commitment-minded man; your love can be pure and flame-like; but only a half-witted female depends on a dude for "stability."

It will take self-discipline. But if you can create a way to earn a comfortable income yourself, you’ll be free from the limitations, expectations, and the demands of men. Free from your own uncertainty. You won't be afraid if a guy is secure or stable. You can love whomever you like, commit for as long as you like, and not give a flying fig for their financial statements.

To see more advice from E. Jean visit Elle magazine and

Join The Conversation
Janine22 Janine22 8 years
I don't really think that his career should be such a large factor in this decision, unless you really can't stand his lifestyle. If you don't like it now, then you probably won't like it several years down the road. You should stay with him if you love him and he treats you well and makes you happy. You should have your own career so that you don't have to worry about being supported by a man.
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 8 years
Be with a man you enjoy being with now. If even you don't know what you want your future to be like how do you know a musician isn't going to be part of it? Deal with it if it becomes an issue and just have fun for now.
Asia84 Asia84 8 years
call me a b*tch, but i rather date a guy that works at McDonalds than a car salesman. I need you to bring home a stable check every 2 weeks. we don't have time for the shenanigans and the "juice me up" pep talks. If i have to take care of some grown muthaf*cka, then i might as well be single. it's not about being taken care of, it's about not being the donkey wife who works her a*s off and then homeboy just up and leaves and you're left with your finger in your a*s. at least the guy from McDonalds can bring home a McRib sandwich to feed out kids.
Asia84 Asia84 8 years
I make my own money too, and my thing is that I would not want to be 35 with a 35 year old boyfriend (yeah, eggs drying up) and i'm footin' the bill. and i think the OP is feeling like that even if he blows up (gets a great record deal), he's gonna be off on tour, always in the studio, gone ALL the d*mn time. yeah, with an investment banks, they travel. but i think the idea of living on a tour bus is unstable to the OP. Everything is contingent upon rather or not his album sells... she sounds like she doesn't even like him all that much in the first place. he's nice, and probably a good lay, but she's with him because she rather not become 35 plus with drying eggs saying she shoulda stayed with him.
Blackwood Blackwood 8 years
If you feel that you need a certain type of man around you to be stable in any sense, then it's not just the situation that's wrong to begin with. If the whole rocker vibe is such a turn off for you, then I can't see why would you want to be with a guy like that in the first place. However, if you do, then don't expect him to change, so if you do know for a fact that you could never be happy with his lifestyle, please let him go and focus yourself on finding someone who has the qualities you want in a man for a serious relationship. It's not bad to have standards, but expecting the "wrong" people to fulfill them is. It's that simple.
K-is-For-Kait K-is-For-Kait 8 years
Chasing after the guy with the most money will never make you happy. If you like the indie rock star guy, don't worry about anything else! If you're still worrying about money, focus on your own finances rather than those of your partner so that YOU secure some financial stability instead of expecting a man to provide it for you!
sundaygreen sundaygreen 8 years
Doesn't sound like you want to be with the indie rocker wannabe to begin with, to be honest.
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 8 years
Trading up is never a bad idea if you're not emotionally attached or in love. Dont waste your time. ;) But since you are almost 30, I think you should be more focused on finding out what you want for your future, what makes you happy, and what is really important to you in life. I dont know that you're that far behind the curve, but I think most people by 30 have at least an inkling of what they want out of life whether it be marriage/family or a career, or just fun/partying and living in the moment. Which are you? And if he isnt in the path of your goals, then yes, trade him in.
alltherage alltherage 8 years
well said e. jean!
Kelliegrl Kelliegrl 8 years
I feel a lot like you - I make good money, two degrees, knocking on 30, etc and definitely see the appeal with the rocker type. But in the end you have to ask yourself who you're most likely going to be happy with. For me, I value hard work and stability in a man b/c that's what I expect from myself. If something about the relationship is always a constant nag, you're better off finding a more compatible person. BTW, those bankers aren't always stable either. Dated one for three yrs. didn't turn out so hot (egos the size of Jupiter - well not all of them I suppose). Besides all of them are losing their jobs in this economy :-)
Shopaholichunny Shopaholichunny 8 years
I agree Ladies!!! :D
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
take it from a girl who married the "rock star", make sure he has a back up plan, that all his energy just isnt focused on MUSIC MUSIC MUSIC because if you get someone who has a one track (no pun intended) mind, you will find yourself stuck in an neverending loop of "its taking off, we got a gig, we are recording!,i have to quit my job because we are going on tour, i need money for equipment, the tour went bust, i cant find a job, music is my passion, kids? i am not ready wheres my pedals?" and so on and so forth.
karlotta karlotta 8 years
I make my own money and my own stable future, so I can enjoy my musician boyfriend for however long I please!
lovelie lovelie 8 years
Excellent advice E. Jean!! High expectations, unrealistic deadlines, throw them all out. They seem to only lead to disappointment.
geebers geebers 8 years
Right on E. Jean. You need to be secure YOURSELF. Stop relying on a man! On the other hand- dont be his b!tch either- make sure this rocker isnt taking advantage and expecting you to support him.
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
Yeah, nothing is sure thing in relationships. Don't think that it'll be smooth sailing with a banker or a guy in a different profession.
partysugar partysugar 8 years
Rock on E.Jean!
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