Relationship fundi says women break it off over money, writes Zenoyise Madikwa

Money is the leading cause of relationships breaking up.

Money is the leading cause of relationships breaking up.

Carly Brown, a relationship expert, says 50percent of women who break up with their lovers, are motivated by money, but dress up the cause of the separation as misunderstanding.

Brown says it is advisable for women to date men who are financially compatible with them.

"Traditionally, men are meant to be providers. They are the ones who are supposed to pull the purse strings. That is why you will seldom find young girls dating their age mates because they know they cannot provide," said Brown.

Mandy Muholi, a teacher, said she was her boyfriend's cash cow for more than five years until she decided to get out of the relationship.

Muholi said at first the man seemed to have promising prospects, but she realised as time went by that she was blinded by love.

"We met when I was still vulnerable. I had just come out of a bad relationship when he embraced me. I took him into my house and bought him clothes and fed him," she said.

"Five months passed and he stopped talking about getting a job. He then started having expensive tastes."

Muholi said: "I'd buy him R200 shoes and he would tell me he does not wear cheap shoes.

"After this happened, I decided to end the relationship."

She says since she dumped her lover she is happier.

"I would advise women to aim high when it comes to choosing a partner."

Andile Masemola says she earns more than her live-in lover.

"Since I earn more than him, he expects me to do everything while he spends his money on expensive clothes, his sports car and parties, while I am forced to drive a cheap car," says Masemola.

"Sometimes he demands nice food he cannot afford."

Brown says usually people who earn less or have no income have expensive tastes.

He says that to them material things compensate for their lack of ability to provide.

"Being seen in nice clothes that you cannot afford massages their egos.

"It is easier to misuse something you did not work hard for than what you sweated for," said Brown.

"That is why you see men driving around in cars that belong to their girlfriends."

Brown warns that men who cannot provide are usually abusive, either emotionally, or physically.

"Men are a masculine breed. Anything that is a challenge to their masculinity is a threat.

That is why some men who do not have the matching financial muscle end up depriving their partners of love."

Amos Mama, 39, who was married for five years, said his wife left him because he used to say things that hurt her.

Mama said he verbally abused his wife because he felt inferior.

"Whenever my wife challenged something I did, I used to tell her she was rude to me because I did not get a salary that matched hers," said Mama.