My boyfriend refused to pay an extra 25 cents for a fast-food value meal and made me drive across town to save a quarter

Tracey Folly

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events I experienced firsthand; used with permission.

I should have known it was a bad sign when my boyfriend made me drive across town so he could save a quarter on a fast-food value meal. But I was young and naïve and in love, so I went along with it.

It turns out that my boyfriend was a bit of a cheapskate. He would always try to save a few pennies here and there, no matter how much it cost me in time or effort. From then on, I started paying more attention to how he treated money. And I realized that his thrifty ways were actually costing me a lot more in the long run.

Don't get me wrong. I definitely think anyone who wants to drive clear across town to save twenty-five cents should do so. It's their business. However, we aren't talking about someone who drove himself to an alternate McDonald's to save a quarter. We're talking about someone who made me drive twenty minutes through city traffic in my car using my gas so he could save a few cents.

In the beginning of our relationship, we had an agreement that we would each pay for our own food when we went out to it. I was fine with that arrangement. It worked for a while.

After a few dates, I drove us to the local McDonald's when he announced that it was the wrong McDonald's. He advised me I needed to drive to the other McDonald's, the one with the slightly lower prices, or else he wasn't paying for his own meal.

I obediently drove him to the other McDonald's, where we ordered and paid for our food separately as usual.

Shortly thereafter, the same thing happened. We were at a store that shared a parking lot with McDonald's, but it was the wrong McDonald's.

My boyfriend refused to go inside unless I agreed to pay for his entire meal.

Not wanting to drive across town again, I agreed to pay for his entire meal if we could just get out of the car and go inside. Clearly, I should have agreed to give him the extra quarter, at most, because he never paid for his own meal again.

Once he found a loophole for getting me to pay for his food, he was done taking out his wallet for good. Even if I drove to the less expensive McDonald's, he insisted I pay for both our meals.

If I didn't have enough money for both of us, then I didn't get to eat.

It got to the point where I had to start packing my own food with me whenever we went out, just so I wouldn't go hungry.

I eventually realized that his cheap ways were costing me a lot more than just money. They were costing me my time, my effort, and my dignity.

Not to mention, his penny-pinching ways were taking a toll on our relationship. I was always resentful of him, and I constantly felt like he was taking advantage of me.

I finally reached my breaking point when he made me drive him an hour out of the way to save fifty cents on a fast-food value meal. That's when I knew I had to end things.

I dumped his cheap self and never looked back. And I vowed to never date another cheapskate again.

Do you have a story about dating a cheapskate? Share it in the comments.

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Writing about relationships online since 2009.

Massachusetts State

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