Should you pay for him to go back to school?

Diploma and Black Grad HatSo, you want to pay for your man to go back to school. You aren’t the first woman to contemplate this. It’s been the common back story of female characters in movies for years. The woman drops out of college and takes a second job to help her man get through law school, or medical school, or business school, etc. He graduates then leaves her for someone a little less weathered by stress and hard work. She finally goes back to school in her forties or fifties after having lost her youth to heartbreak and bitterness and falls in love with a professor half her age. There’s moonlight and a naked ass shot, because somehow gravity always forgets the ass, right? Snap out of it, that’s Hollywood, not real life.

Let’s look at the facts. Higher education is important. In this day and age, people with college degrees are flipping burgers so not having one is simply not an option. Graduate degrees are even better and now your partner wants to educate himself and you are in a position to help him. What next?

Basics first, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Does he have a good track record completing things he starts?
  2. Will this be a vanity degree?
  3. Will his degree make a tangible difference in his career?
  4. Will his post-graduation salary more than make up for the cost of getting the degree?
  5. Can he afford to contribute or will it all fall solely on you?
  6. Can you afford to pay for his education without altering your lifestyle or picking up extra work?
  7. Do you have a solid commitment to each other and your future, i.e. are you married?
  8. Will this be a loan?
  9. If it is a loan, is he willing to sign a binding, legal contract?
  10. Will paying for his degree make you feel resentment toward him?

Think of education like an investment. You are investing your money in your shared future, his future career, his future A graduate tosses a cap.ability to bring in money, and both of your future happiness. If he cannot complete simple tasks, it is not a good investment. If he is not a man of his word, it is not a good investment. If he is pursuing a degree in philosophy because he loves Aristotle and wants to spend his time thinking deeply, it is not a good investment. If, however, he is pursuing a lucrative career path, has a track record of finishing projects both big and small, and he is willing to dedicate his own money as well as his time then you will see great returns on your investment.

Don’t be the woman who buys the educational money pit. Make good choices, know the ins and outs of your investments, and remember, just because you can afford to pay for his school doesn’t mean you are obligated.



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