The other day I had coffee with a man I dated briefly a year ago and with whom I’ve stayed in touch. As we were catching up, he chided me for not having an elective medical procedure that he thinks is important and I think is less so. When he pressed why I hadn’t done it, I responded, “All it takes is money.”
He pounced. “You didn’t really say that did you? All it really takes is love.”
I thought I knew where he was coming from — that money is just the manifestation of love. But he continued, “I’ve seen some of the poorest people in the world who were deliriously happy because they were surrounded by love. They loved deeply and passionately and were loved in return. All you really need is love.”
As I drove home, I pondered his comment. Is all you need love? I know I have had years of meager income yet when I was in love it was tolerable. When you feel loved, you feel supported and able to conquer anything. As the Beatles’ song “All You Need Is Love” goes, “There’s nothing you can do that can’t be done.”
I also know that one of the top reasons couples have difficulty or break up is over money. Does that mean that they weren’t really in love? Or that it takes more than love?
Recently I watched the 1993 film Indecent Proposal. In it a billionaire, played by Robert Redford, offers a married couple, played by Demi Moore and Woody Harrelson, one million dollars for him (Redford) to sleep with Demi. After much soul searching, they accept. What follows is a heart-wrenching test of their love. Although it was clear they were deeply in love, not having money had strained their relationship. Then this act, which resulted in their having money, taxed their relationship.
So what do you think? Do you think Lennon and McCartney were right — that all it takes is love? Or do you think love is the foundation but other things need to be in place to be happy?