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Money, Men, and Marriage

By: P.L. Matos

Money as the numbers have suggested may be the biggest reason for divorce.  Especially with today’s tough economic times, money is tighter than normal for most. It’s not hard to see why money can pose a big problem in your relationship.  Your world at times can revolve around it.  It affects your pyramid of basic needs from food to shelter to even self worth.  Tips to try:

Pay the Bills Together

Include your spouse when it comes to paying bills.  After all she is supposed to be your better half and if she was included in the process, it can produce four positive outcomes:

  • Limit arguments about how much you have available
  • Track where the money is being spent
  • Create inclusion to help tackle the problem as a team
  • Curve your spending habits

What you may find is that by including your spouse you will be able to tackle your finances, avoid arguments about money, and tackle the problem as a team.  You will both be aware of your finances and your areas of responsibility.  Those minor individual purchases will often curve as you realize you have a responsibility to one another.

50/50 & Joint Accounts

Many men have the urge to create a wall of “what’s yours is yours and what’s mine is mine.” As men, we look at it from a rational perspective and try and justify it using the reason that you perhaps make more money than she does or you spend less, or even require less than she does, therefore you should keep separate accounts.

This may be the downfall for many relationships and a huge mistake to do so.  If you are getting married or newly married, you should combine it all into one family pot.  If you’re supposed to be ‘one’ in marriage, you may want to approach it that way.  Have joint accounts where all of your resources go.

If you have a bigger savings and your afraid she will spend it down talk about these types of concerns before you go ahead and do this.  The fact is when you’re married, if you get a divorce she is going to get half of it anyways unless you have a prenuptial, so why build up paper thin walls?  It is easier to monitor your financial situation when combining accounts.  You both live in the same house, share the same utility bills, and even her loans are sadly now your loans when you get married.  If you have shared responsibility, you should share your resources.


Rule of thumb in your household before you pay out any bills should be to pay yourselves.  Savings is incredibly important and can take a huge strain off your marriage.  If you’re not squabbling over money, then you are way ahead of most people in their relationships.  Challenge yourselves to save a percentage of money or a set amount monthly to put in the bank.  This will help you keep track of your spending habits and will allow you build a nest egg for house projects, emergencies, vacations, and long term planning for things like kids if you so choose.

Spender vs. Saver

If you have the rare combination in your relationship where you are both savers, then congratulations don’t even bother reading this section.  If you are both spenders, inevitably one of you is bound to come to the realization that your relationship is dysfunctional and you need to change your strategy.

Take the time to pin down the spender and the saver.  Most Americans today do not live a very modest lifestyle and things are purchased on a need not on a want.  Most Americans have a sense of entitlement.  If you worked hard for it and you want it, then you should get it.  This was a very difficult mold and pattern to break.

What is important is that you identify your patterns and adjust accordingly.  Assign duties to each other as this may help to keep your relationship even keel.  Make the spender responsible for things relating to planning trips such as vacations and the saver responsible for grocery shopping, etc.

Credit Cards

  1. Remember, that a financial problem is the primary cause for divorce or separation and credit card debt is usually the primary reason for a financial problem.

Buying a House

Yes you probably hear it from everyone about how financially sound it is to purchase a home.  It can be especially financially sound to purchase one in today’s market.  These days you’re getting tax credits, low interest rates, and housing prices cut in almost half.  This should be one of your biggest priorities.  Don’t buy something for the sake of purchasing it.  Take the time and find the appropriate home to suit your needs.  You may drive the real estate agent crazy, but ultimately you need to be in love with you home.  When making your selection consider things like price and condition of course, but take into consideration the quality of the public school system, the layout of the house and how it fit our needs, and space.

  1. Just know that a house is a huge amount of work no matter how new it is and there will be plenty to do without having to repair things daily.

Making Big Decisions

  1. And at the end of the day, don’t you want to sit back, relax, and enjoy your beautiful TV and not have to hear someone complain about it?

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Article Source: - Money, Men, and Marriage