• Keeping Friends

in the Media – What do you do? A friend earns more money (RD.com)

March 31, 2017 | By | 11 Replies Continue Reading

Screenshot (Reader's Digest)

Screenshot (Reader’s Digest)

How do you handle the awkward situation of having a friend who earns more money than you do? Does this put the kibosh on a friendship? What are some ways to make the issue of money differences recede into the background so you can concentrate on what initially drew you together as friends?

On RD.com, Andrea Blair Cirignano writes:

You’re a struggling artist and your BFF just got promoted—again! Income disparities between friends can cause a rift if you’re not careful. 

Cirignano spoke to several experts, including The Friendship Doctor, soliciting their advice. You can read the article in its entirety on the Reader’s Digest website.


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Category: Friends and Money

Comments (11)

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  1. LauraSL says:

    Sometimes money issues are not just because one friend makes more. It can be different value systems when it comes to spending. Sometimes the friend with less means is a spend thrift and relies on credit cards, while the friend with the higher income is more conservative with her spending.

    In the situation where the friend who earns more suggests pricey places and graciously offers to treat, that friend should be sensitive to the face that offering to pay can hurt their friends pride, even if done graciously. The friend with the lower income just needs to go somewhere where in line with their budget, where they can enjoy treating too.

  2. Laura says:

    The minute the awareness of money (in any capacity) comes between friends it can be a problem.
    I have a cousin who always INSISTS she pick up the tab whenever my sis and I grab dinner with her; she’s older, successful, no kids, and it’s her pleasure to do it, which is awesome. When someone is genuine about it, then it’s not a problem. The minute someone brings it up in a competitive tone or manner, proceed with caution!

    Ultimately, true friendship won’t succumb to differences in status, etc. If it does, time to reconsider. No one should begrudge your success-financial or otherwise. God Bless.

  3. Lady Mary says:

    Not really related to a wage gap, but I did have a friend who finally stopped insisting on buying my meals when we ate together. When I would offer to pay for her lunch the next time, she wouldn’t allow me to do it. It was totally one-way…so uncomfortable for me. This went on for at least 5 years. I even expressed to her that I wasn’t comfortable with this and why did she continually insist on buying my meal and not allowing me to reciprocate? She said her father programmed her to always pick up the tab for other people, no matter whether it was a restaurant or a gas station, just wherever she was, if she was with friends or family, always buy. While I appreciate the generous thought, it was so awkward because she so totally refused to allow me to reciprocate. Finally we got past that and go dutch now, but it was a bit of a battle for both of us, I think. Isn’t that the oddest friend problem to have? lol but it’s a true story.

  4. Mena says:

    Hi, Jason nice to know you have a friend that is a great person inside out.However, Irene, I do think it will change the relationship a little..Did you ever hear the saying keeping up with the Joness’?..While your friend will have the financial capacity to do or go where she desires …you on the other hand will not keep up because of budget..you can get together at home for coffee once in a while..am speaking from personal experience..as long as your frienship remains simple everything will remain the same…Good Luck!

    • jason says:

      yeah, i barely see this guy, he hangs out with another guy that i went to school with from 1st grade who is a hedge fund manager and owns real estate and does very well,and i think he drives a bentley, they never call my broke a**

  5. jason says:

    i have a lawyer friend who has a beamer and pretty new tahoe, im embarrassed to park in front of his home in my 10 yr old altima with hail damage and faded paint job…. he is a great person on the inside though, i dont think he cares….

    • Lady Mary says:

      Hi Jason, in my experience the friend you describe will likely remain kind and open, but their partner/spouse/gf/bf is the one who starts making snide comments and injecting negativity. I hope that doesn’t happen in your case. If it does, even though it stings, it’s good to know what the person really thinks so that you can adjust (lower) your expectations of them.

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