It would be awesome if The Dandy acted like a full-out sugar daddy and bought me stuff when I mentioned wanting it. It has bothered me sometimes that he doesn’t, TBH. I know that sounds entitled as shit but the fact is, he makes exponentially more than I do and has even said he would like it if I dressed better – so the obvious solution here is to buy me some outfits we both like, yes? But he doesn’t buy me clothes unless I specifically ask for something for a birthday or Christmas gift. Also he’s seen me stressing out over not being able to afford things I want or need and hasn’t stepped in, even though he could easily have solved my problem. Easily.
If the shoe were on the other foot, I’d buy my partner stuff. I actually really love getting someone a thing I know they really want, plus I don’t like to see someone I love get stressed out over being poor, plus them stressing out over being poor while I live in the same apartment as them and constantly buy myself big-ticket items would seem kinda gauche.
But anyway. This all matters less and less since The Dandy told me outright that the few ~$200 vet bills he paid for are pretty much nothing to him and he doesn’t want me to reimburse him at all.
Bastardcat had his big dental surgery on Tuesday and that cost around $1200 and The Dandy paid for that, too, mostly by dint of arriving at the vet’s office first I guess. If we’d convened there to pick up Bastardcat at the same time, I don’t know if he would have glanced over at me to settle up the bill or what. Once I caught up with The Dandy and we had Bastardcat safely home, I told The Dandy to let me know if he wants me to give him any money for the bill. He acknowledged me with the smallest possible awkward grunt. It stresses me out that he never just says “It’s okay; I got this.” As it stands, I don’t know if he’s covering the vet appointment; I just know he hasn’t asked me to reimburse him yet. I suspect if he was going to ask for some money back, he would have by now; it’s been a few days. But I’m not positive.
But yeah. I think he’s covering pretty much all of the vet expenses (except I stepped up and paid for the visit that happened while The Dandy was laid off), and he’s clearly comfortable buying me groceries – in the beginning he would do big grocery trips where he’d pay for food for the whole household, but I felt weird getting stuff that I knew only I would eat. But he encouraged me to (“Aren’t you out of drinkable yogurts?”). And since then there have been several times when I asked to go grocery shopping because we were out of some things I like, and when he said ok I thought he meant he had stuff he wanted to get, too, but we ended up buying just stuff for me and he paid. There have also been several times when we were at a grocery store or drug store and I asked “is there anything you want? I have a big wad of cash burning a hole in my pocket…” and he either kept his items to an absolute minimum or insisted there was nothing he wanted. Other times, I’ve been like “Hey we’re almost out of cat food but I can probably drop by the store after work if you want” (alone, which means I use my money) and he’s like “Nah, we can just go tonight” (if we both go, that means he’s buying and I’m just keeping him company so it’s less of a chore).
And since not paying for groceries, cat supplies, or vet bills (and paying majorly reduced rent) has freed up a shit-ton of my money and I’m slowly learning to unclench and actually spend it, it means I’m buying myself a steady trickle of fun stuff. And The Dandy takes an interest in the things I buy without ever giving off a bitter vibe of “How dare you buy that instead of contributing to groceries you bitch.”
I’m not sure he would have been like this in the beginning ( but I wasn’t nearly as comfortable asking him to buy me stuff* as I later became, so I’ll never know). I suspect he was wary of being taken advantage of, wary of this turning into another Dandette situation, maybe even not feeling close enough to me yet to fully want to help and take care of me. But things shifted over time and here we are.
All of this to say: that pair of custom boots The Dandy bought me for my birthday back in April are finally done and they are fucking amazing! So, I immediately told the guy I wanted to buy another pair of boots from him in a different style. Those are now underway and will probably be done faster than that first pair. I’m not sure yet exactly how much they’re gonna end up being, but I’m betting around $600. Definitely no more than $800. And I can buy these for myself because, thanks to The Dandy, I’m finally not in desperate financial straits anymore.
I absolutely need more custom boots after this pair, too, but with how long these things can take sometimes I think I’ll ask for my third pair for Christmas. I have an idea for a very fancy pair of boots that could very well cost $1,000. When I asked The Dandy if that was outside of his budget for Christmas or birthday gifts for me, he said no, he’s willing. 😀 😀 😀
Although upon reflection I feel that it would be better to get something more practical first. So, for Christmas I’ll probably ask for more of an everyday pair (that is still a wee bit more expensive than I’m comfortable paying for myself – honestly, when I paid just over $600 for that first pair I just about hyperventilated at the cash register**). Perhaps I’ll ask for the wildly expensive and flashy ones for my birthday. And sometime in there I might buy myself yet another pair of the marginally cheaper and still very practical boots that they make.
To be clear, this is not me being super extravagant (although who the fuck cares if I was? The Dandy and I both earn our money fair and square and money is for spending). As far as everyday footwear goes, I’m down to one pair of running shoes and one pair of boots that’s beaten to absolute shit and the left sole is coming off (well, now I also have one pair of glorious custom boots). That’s it. And my feet are shaped and sized oddly enough that it’s really hard to find footwear that doesn’t hurt me. Often I’ve ended up spending $300, anyway, to get a decent-quality pair of off-the-rack leather boots that still fit me a bit weirdly but at least didn’t actively rip my feet up to the bleeding point or crunch my toes into a throbbing angry blob.
I need footwear right now. And skipping the whole bullshit shopping process is well worth a few hundred bucks extra to me.
*The Dandy doesn’t talk about our money imbalance openly, and the one time I brought it up, he looked like he would die of awkwardness. So everything is wrapped in elaborate layers of code. I’m not exactly saying “buy me X!” per se; I’m saying “I crave sushi.” But was I mean is “are you willing to take me out to sushi? Because I want some but quite honestly I will never be willing to spend the money on it.” If he replies “why don’t we go to that sushi place on Main Street?” that means “yes, I’m willing.” It’s a whole thing.
**It was technically The Dandy’s money paying for those, or mostly The Dandy’s money. My portion of the rent for April was slated to be around $450, and the boots I wanted started at $425, so The Dandy told me to just not pay him any rent that month and then buy the boots with my own debit card. I did not realize that the boots would end up being so much more than $425, in the end. I opted not to come home and ask The Dandy to fork over another $200, given that he’s paid all of Bastardcat’s vet bills so recently. 😛