This Redditor rejected her boyfriend’s marriage proposal—all because of money! He was understandably upset, but she couldn’t understand why!
Endings and New Beginnings
After 21 years of marriage, OP (Original Poster), a 44-year-old woman, divorced her 47-year-old ex-husband, James, 2 years ago. OP wrote, “My ex and I were fighting a lot, but the divorce was less litigious than expected.”
Shortly after the divorce, she started dating her current boyfriend, who’s 45.
What She Got Out of the Divorce
Thanks to the laws in Massachusetts, OP stayed on her ex-husband’s group health insurance, but she would lose it the moment she or James remarried. Furthermore, because OP was a stay-at-home mother who raised their four children, currently aged 16, 18, 19, and 21, the judge ordered that she get alimony for life unless she, and she alone, remarried.
Throughout her marriage with her ex-husband, OP was utterly dependent and did not have to work because James was a doctor. They also considered that she would never make enough to cover the cost of childcare for their four kids.
It’s Just Not Possible Anymore
When OP checked before, she saw that if she had pursued her administrative job, she would have earned $17 per hour. It wasn’t feasible to make this income work then, and given her lack of experience, she might not even get $17 per hour if she worked now.
She said, “I have no chance of making even that now.”
Totally Against Marriage
Lucky for her, James hates the idea of marrying again more than he hates OP still being covered by his health insurance policy.
James’s exact words were, “Well, luckily for you, it’s not emotionally or financially cost-effective for me to marry just to get you off my health insurance.”
The Man of Her Dreams
So, now, the problem has something to do with OP’s current relationship. OP and her boyfriend are totally in love, and in many ways, she wishes she had met him first.
Compared to her ex-husband, her boyfriend is empathetic and values a healthy balance between work and personal life, so he would not be the type to be at work 24/7.
The Bare Minimum
Despite how very much in love they are, OP and her boyfriend don’t live under the same roof. Aside from giving small gifts to each other, they also pay for themselves.
An Inevitable Proposal
Everything was going well until they had a pregnancy scare, and since then, her boyfriend has changed. He told OP that he wanted them to live together if she ever got pregnant; he doesn’t want to live like “two divorced parents.”
This was also OP’s boyfriend’s turning point, leading him to propose to OP!
It’s a No for Her
OP got upset and turned down her boyfriend’s proposal. For her, putting love aside, the marriage would jeopardize her only source of income—the alimony and health insurance!
A Downgrade for the Family
She could not determine why her boyfriend was upset and didn’t understand her for rejecting him. Marrying and living together would mean they would rely on his salary as a case manager at a non-profit organization, which would only be half of the income OP is currently living on.
OP believed that doing so would inevitably lead to some “tension” on both sides.
There’s Really No Other Way
Moving in together was also not an option for them. According to OP, “The archaic family court laws would see that and assume that my boyfriend and I would be sharing finances or I would be in some supported by my boyfriend by the fact of us moving in together.”
OP noted that if she wouldn’t lose her benefits, she’d gladly move in with him and accept his proposal.
Redditors’ Opinions on the Matter
There is a mix of opinions among Redditors, and many have disagreed with OP. While they may think she’s not at fault, they still believe she’s in the wrong.
“I love how you call it an archaic law that is preventing you from living with your boyfriend, but this is the same law that you are taking advantage of, to the extent of not marrying the person that you want to live with and play house with. I’m a supporter of alimony to stay-at-home moms, but you can’t have it both ways. Not the a**hole, but realize that you are choosing money over your boyfriend. I don’t blame him for having a gigantic issue with that,” one commenter said.
Another Redditor added, “My favorite part of the post is that she’s fully dependent on her ex-husband’s income, yet she is still throwing jabs at her ex-husband for working a lot.”
Some people doubted her decisions and questioned why she would rely solely on her ex-husband financially.
One person commented, “Your kids are all old enough not to need a stay-at-home mom. Why not go back to school, get training, get a job? If your ex dies or becomes disabled and unable to pay alimony, you would be screwed as things are. If your boyfriend is employed and has health insurance, when you get married, his health insurance would then be updated to cover you and your kids.”
You Need to Think Straight!
Some comments focused on advising OP, reminding her of things she should be mindful of.
A Redditor said, “Not your attorney, but you should be aware that your ex-husband can still file for a modification when he reaches retirement age regardless of the fact that you were married for 20-plus years. You might not be set for life. I’d make sure that you’re saving for your own retirement funds.”
“You better use that health insurance to get your tubes tied. Another baby is the last thing you need, especially at 44,” another comment suggested.
Was OP wrong for rejecting her boyfriend’s proposal? What can you say about this?
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This post first appeared as She Heartlessly Rejected Her Boyfriend’s Proposal Just Because She Feared Losing Her “Only Source of Income” That Came From Her Ex-husband’s Health Insurance and Alimony. Was She a Selfish Jerk? on Quote Ambition.