Why choose between heart and head?
There was a guy I was close to that stopped at a gas station the day before Valentine's Day.
As I waited in the car to see if he’d spend his last few dollar bills on his nicotine habit or on a greeting card with hearts and happy sentiments for me, I was disappointed to see the telltale emerald pack of Newport’s clinched in his grip, with him banging the cigs against his palm to compact the tobacco like he often did.
We were broke college kids, but that act taught me a lot about him. Not that I expected him to buy some huge gift or indulge in something pricey. It was the sentiment that counted. Sometimes, women are called gold diggers for having such thoughts.
They are criticized for looking at their future marriage and husbands as credit restoration services and gravy trains. But with that guy, I erred on the side of not being a gold digger so much that I often footed the bill to pay for plenty of things in our former relationship.
When I met my current love, one of the things that attracted me to him was his stable job and steady paycheck—and of course, love and fate and kismet and all those other things that spell “meant to be” in a union. Not that I didn’t have my own steady paycheck—I did, and that’s how we met: at the job.
The fact that we were both college graduates working in a corporate environment meant that we had plenty of things in common. We had similar upbringings, healthy work ethics and parents that taught us to try and be responsible enough to make it to work on time and hold down careers.
Ethics like those oftentimes bring money along with them—and speak to temperaments that might coalesce.
Should you marry a man simply because he has money?
No. Money shouldn’t be the sole determining factor on whether or not to marry anyone. But just because a person has money doesn’t mean their spouse married them based on that fact alone. When Steven Spielberg’s wife, Kate Capshaw, was asked if she would’ve married the filmmaker even if he was poor, she answered honestly that she didn’t know.
Of course, the altruistic and politically correct thing to say would’ve been, “Sure! Yes, I’d live in a cardboard box with him!” But Kate’s honest answer reflected the fact that she earnestly thought about Steven being broke and how that would’ve made him a different man than the one she knew: driven, compassionate, creative and successful—financially, artistically and otherwise.
And that doesn’t mean that some women won’t stay with men prior to getting their big break in life, and be their cheerleader. Nor does it mean she’d leave him if something went wrong with his career. Heck, she might take the reigns and become—or remain—the cash cow.
Therefore, while obvious gold diggers exist and come in both sexes, that mindset isn’t always the case.