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mostlyclueless's avatar

How do I (or should I even bother to?) get the money my exboyfriend owes me?

Asked by mostlyclueless (701points) October 2nd, 2010

My ex and I broke up last March. He moved away in May (he had moved here to be with me). I had plenty of storage space, and he didn’t have living arrangements where he was going, so he left some stuff with me for storage. We parted on very amicable terms.

He moved, met someone else, and more or less cut off contact with me. I mailed the stuff he left with me to his parents’ house. It was about $80. He has said repeatedly that he would pay me back, but he has not done so yet, and I know that money is very tight for him.

However, I also know that his girlfriend lives more than 200 miles away and he routinely sees her. I cannot imagine this happens for free.

So I am assuming that he is choosing to spend his money to see her rather than to pay me back. I find this fucking offensive.

Am I being unreasonable? Do I call him up and put my foot down and demand he pay me back immediately? Or should I just sit here (like a fucking chump) and wait for him to pay me back…?

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21 Answers

kevbo's avatar

$80 is not much, but clearly you have other issues at stake.

I successfully collected from a deadbeat friend (who owed me around $1,200) by shaming her. I knew that her mother had a lot of influence with her and wrote the mother explaining the situation and asking the mother to buy out the debt. I don’t know whether the mother gave her daughter (my former friend) the money, but I was paid in full by my former friend within a couple of weeks.

I never felt bad about it because my former friend’s behavior forced me to act like a dick. And, I rather enjoyed it.

So who is most influential to your ex-boyfriend?

mostlyclueless's avatar

@kevbo: Here’s the thing. I know that if I called him up and said, “Look, I need you to give me this money RIGHT. NOW.” he would probably do it.

But I’ve been reluctant to do that because I know it would cause financial hardship for him.

But then when I realized he must be voluntarily spending money on this other girl, I thought maybe I shouldn’t give a fuck about his financial hardship.

kevbo's avatar

Are you asking “us” for permission? Do you need more information to decide how to handle this?

mostlyclueless's avatar

I guess I don’t know if I’m being crazy and jealous or reasonable. Objective third parties seem like a good idea, all things considered.

kevbo's avatar

Ah. No, you’re not being unreasonable. He wants to move on and so do you. You two can close the books by settling this now. So, tell him that. So what if he has to suck it up for a month. At the very least he needs to give you something now and more next week or next month until this is done.

Further, if he doesn’t have it, he should borrow from someone else with whom he will continue to have a relationship in order to pay you.

lillycoyote's avatar

You can take him to small claims court but unless you absolutely need the money and are willing to go through that, I, personally, would said good riddance and move on. Not that you are being unreasonable to want to be paid the money you are owed, that’s not unreasonable at all, it’s just a matter of choosing one’s battles wisely, I think. How much aggravation, effort and nonsense is it worth to you to get 80$ back from someone you’re probably better off simply being done with and never having to deal with again? People can do a lot more damage to someone than stiff them for $80. I just don’t think it’s worth all the trouble getting it back would be.

MissA's avatar

@lillycoyote and @kevbo

have given you very good advice. I believe that you’re possibly hurt more than in need of the money…which is quite understandable. You know what to do. Just do it.

Jeruba's avatar

I would write it off. How he’s spending his time and money now is irrelevant. I would not be sending him the message that he still has that much power over me. I would just dust my hands of him, debt and all.

Garebo's avatar

Yeah, get over him, find someone who cares about you, a descent virile man.

MissA's avatar

Imagine if you’d been with him for several years!

He’s done you a huge favor by showing
himself now instead of later.

I agree with @Jeruba, too.

BarnacleBill's avatar

If you’re too nice to put him in a position of hardship so he has to miss seeing his new girlfriend and taking her out, then yes, you have no right to complain.

You need to call him and get your money, because you will be stewing about this for a long time. You are in a position where you cannot move past this. He’s the irresponsible one here; he should have either made arrangements to collect his stuff himself, or told you to toss the stuff if he couldn’t afford mail them back.

Get your money and be done with it, either by calling his parents as @Kevbo suggested, or by calling him. Remind him that men pay their debts, especially to ex-girlfriends.

jca's avatar

I don’t feel that eighty dollars is a lot to lose. However, i understand it bothers you that he is going to see the girlfriend and obviously spending money to make that trip, so he’s not that broke, then. you said if he paid you it would cause financial hardship for him. that’s not your problem.

what i would do if i were you is write him a short, nice note (not nasty, not cool and civil, just chummy) ” Greetings – I still haven’t received the 80 you owe me. Please make arrangements to try to pay it, or you can pay payments if you’d like. Hope you’re doing well. Take Care.”

Then if he does not pay it, i would just write it off. Beyond a quick note i feel like it’s not worth pursuing and getting pissed off over. If it gets nasty between you two it’s going to cause you further distress, anger, frustration and to me, that’s not worth 80 dollars.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Let it go, I doubt he’ll ever pay you back and it’s not worth you alone obsessing and hurting over. Like others say, be thankful he’s left so you can be open to someone better suited for you, someone who’d be more a man than to stick you with an expense of any amount.

marinelife's avatar

I would let it go. To think that you are stewing about how he is spending his time and money means that you are still thinking about him.

You could make one more attempt to collect (without mentioning him seeing the girlfriend).

Tell him you don’t want to have any unfinished business between the two of you, and you need him to pay you what he owes now.

mostlyclueless's avatar

Sigh. All right, I’ll write it off. But can all you agree with me that he’s being an inconsiderate jerk? Please? Thanks.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@mostlyclueless: I agree with you, he’s a slug.

marinelife's avatar

Yes, he is.

lillycoyote's avatar

@mostlyclueless I think most everyone here would agree with you on that one; he’s a dick, a jerk, an inconsiderate jackass, all of that.

jca's avatar

please post an update if you wish and let us know the outcome.

alovehangoverr's avatar


It depends on why you want the money back.

Do you want it back because you feel it should be paid back & you need it?

Or do you want it back because you’ve got some sort of feelings for this guy again?

If you’re serious about wanting to put your foot down & collect up—do it & get it over with. Don’t worry about his potential “financial hardships”—just handle it. I mean, sure, it’s considerate of you to think of the problems it might cause him, but if you’re constantly going to be doing that you’ll never get your money back. Plus, I’m sure it wasn’t exactly fun for you to shell out money to ship his stuff to his parents house. Stuff that he is legally responsible for & should have taken care of himself.

So, go get your $80 & really move on.. because I doubt you’ll really let all this ex-relationship baggage go if you’re stewing about money he owes you & money he’s spending on his new relationship instead of paying back his old one.

Garebo's avatar

I like that!-no “unfinished business”-if it was only that easy, life would be even more grand.

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