The topic of how young Nigerians navigate romantic relationships with their earnings is a minefield of hot takes. In our Love Currency series, we get into what relationships across income brackets look like in different Nigerian cities.

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After COVID, Julia* quit her insurance job to focus on being a food blogger. In this article, she tells us how her boyfriend influenced her decision, going from earning ₦30k to ₦700k monthly and her plan to be financially independent.

Occupation and location

Food blogger, social media manager and influencer, living in Abuja 

Monthly income

In a slow month, she makes about ₦400k and ₦700k in a good month. 

Monthly bills and recurring expenses

Bolt: ₦84k on average 

Data: ₦20k – ₦25k

Clothing: ₦40k

Service charge: ₦12k for light and water 

Church donations: ₦150k or less

Savings: She’s part of an ₦80k monthly osusu

Black tax: About ₦100k

How did you meet your partner? 

During my NYSC service year in 2019, an uncle got me a job with his brother, “Chairman” (that’s how everyone referred to him). Apart from the insurance company I worked for, Chairman also owned a real estate company where my uncle asked us to meet. When I got there, my uncle wasn’t around yet, I had to find somewhere to wait, and that’s how I ended up in Festus’ office. He worked with the facility management department of the real estate company. We passed the time bantering and just gisting. He even offered me Eclairs chocolate. After two hours of waiting for my uncle, that didn’t show up, I decided to leave and he offered to pay for my cab home.

Oshey, sweet boy

LOL, I agree. I could tell he liked me once we started talking on WhatsApp in the days that followed. 

What about you?

I liked him, but I couldn’t date him till after six months.  


I had someone else in my life, so it was complicated. It quickly became uncomplicated after the guy got married to someone else sha, LOL. 

And that’s when you started dating?

Yes. Because we can’t really remember the exact date, we chose the date in March 2019, when we first started talking on WhatsApp, to celebrate our anniversary.

How were you doing the relationship thing then? 

Even though I passed out from my NYSC in June 2019, I was still working at the insurance company where they paid me ₦30k per month. I didn’t have money to spend on him. He, on the other hand, used to assist a lot with cab fares and ₦5k or more, when I started visiting restaurants for food reviews in February 2020. He even gave me ₦30k for three months because he was trying to convince me to quit my insurance job.


I didn’t enjoy working there. So he tried to convince me I could afford to leave.

Did it work? 

Since we couldn’t go to the office during COVID, I was mostly working from home, and I had time to learn more about social media management. After the COVID lockdown in 2020, the company started talking about transitioning to working from the office and confirming me as a full staff. Even though the salary was going to be increased to ₦70k, I quit. I couldn’t see myself working there any longer.

And what did you do next? 

I started working on building my brand. Somedays, I’d visit restaurants to try their menu and make videos for them. My boyfriend would assist with my cab fare and ₦5k on most days. During that time, I was charging ₦5k for six posts. In 2022, my rates moved to ₦100k per post, ₦150k for a reel, and ₦250k for a picture post, story and reel. I even hired two staff to assist me with posting on social media and, on few occasions, creating content from restaurants. I’m in the process of hiring a third person now. 

Rich babe!

LOL, I actually get fewer clients now since I reviewed my price list this year. When it was ₦100k for a complete package (story, reel, picture post), I used to get about 12 clients monthly. Now I only get three to five offers monthly. But I’ll choose quality over quantity anyway. 

How much of this “new money” goes into your relationship? 

We’re not really big on gifts, but we try to get something for each other on birthdays. For his birthday this year, I got him a cake and perfume. I also sent him money. Everything was approximately ₦70k. While for my birthday, he got me a cake, two customized shirts and tote bags for my brand.

We still don’t go on actual dates because he doesn’t like going out, and since my work keeps me outside most of the time, I prefer to spend my time indoors too. 

What does that look like? 

We spend time watching movies, gisting and just chilling. He usually takes care of the major feeding. But either of us could buy the drinks and munchies. That usually costs ₦5k or less.

How often do you spend time together? 

I’m at his place at least five times a week, LMAO. It’s easier there because whenever I’m home, there’s always one expense or another I need to sort. 

How come? 

My parents are separated — my mum is practically a single mother of four. She works as a caterer, but the cash inflow is not steady, and since I make good money, I can afford to support the home. 

So you don’t go out except for work? 

I go to parties or for drinks on a few occasions, but it’s usually with friends and my boyfriend. The bill is usually between ₦15k – ₦20k, which we either decide to split, or one of us pays. I’ve been picking up the tab more often now. 


We’ve had opposite years. With my brand peaking in March 2022, Festus is yet to sell any major property at the real estate company, which is usually how he cashes out. Although he now heads the facility department, he gets major bonuses whenever he sells a piece of property. When this happens, he’d send me about ₦50k – ₦70k, and we’d go to Shoprite for junk food because I love them. But since the money stopped coming this year, he’s now become more financially prudent.

In what way? 

He doesn’t give me money again. Every month after his salary, he has a budget allocated to each expense. But I’m never on the list because he believes I have my own money. 

I’m sha waiting for next week when he’s supposed to close a significant deal. 

Do you have conversations about money? 

Nope. I went from earning little to earning much in a short period. Maybe when we’re seriously considering marriage, we’d talk about it, but for now, there’s really nothing to say. 

Does he know how much you earn? 

Not really. But I tell him whenever I get an offer. He definitely thinks I earn more than I do because now he borrows money from me and has a hard time paying. 

How do you save? 

I have ₦300k locked in my PiggyVest. I usually add randomly whenever I have money, sometimes ₦20k, ₦30k. I also like to think my Canon EOS camera is an investment, and I can sell it if I’m that pressed for cash. I got it for ₦410k in December 2021. 

What’s your ideal financial future as a couple? 

I don’t know as a couple — I feel like anybody can still serve you breakfast, so I’m trying to focus on my own plans. 

And what’s that? 

I want to own a digital marketing company with about 30 staff members. And be rich enough to take care of me and two kids comfortably. Even if they have their father to provide for them, I’d love the financial independence to take them on vacations.

*Names have been changed for the purpose of anonymity.

If you’re interested in talking about how money moves in your relationship, this is a good place to start.

Read the other Love Currency stories here.


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