It’s Friday, so today, I’m going to talk about dating! I’ve been single for awhile now, but I still have amusing date stories from time to time.
I was on a date recently and we were discussing salary and how powerful negotiating your salary can be. We are both in the same industry and we compared our initial offers out of college and what we started at. It was interesting hearing how he negotiated his salary, how he based his arguments, and what he had his offer improved to. I (stupidly) did not negotiate my salary at all when I started. I definitely think that I’m doing okay now, but some days, I still kick myself for not negotiating.
When he turned the conversation to me and asked “Well, what do you make?” I felt really, really weird. Here is this guy who I don’t know very well directly asking me how much money I make. That doesn’t seem so weird in the context that he had just flat-out told me how much he was going to make this year, but I realized that I didn’t want to tell him. My current forecasts suggest that I will net more than what he expects to gross this year. That is a pretty significant difference.
At the end of a first date I went on last year, we argued over who was going to pay, which turned into us each calculating how much the other person earned. We both figured out that the difference was around $10,000, which at our income level, was negligible. I thought that situation was kind of cute. But me netting more than the guy is going to gross? That’s way too much of a difference to voice too early on.
When I relayed the recent date story to a friend of mine, she told me that I’m really a grown-up now. We agreed that in a serious relationship, it is one thing to tell the guy how much we earn, but on the first few dates, it’s a bit weird.
Readers, how early in a relationship/dating would you tell someone how much you earn?