Sunday, June 03, 2007

Marital Financial Bliss #6

I read a message board LLNOE, where people are paying off debt. No biggie right? But some of the spouses are not on board. But I read a thread where one spouse "reimburses" the other spouse for their spending and was complaining about the spouse not being on "board" to pay off debt. WHAT?

That's just nuts. I would rebell if my DH tried to put me on a reimbursement system and I think he'd feel the same. I guess that is probably the reason for the debt, lack of communication about money between spouses.

I wonder what would happen if more people before marriage had to go to premarital counseling which included a huge section on money? Since money is the number factor for divorce, what would happen if people had to talk about their relationship with money before marriage?

Would it help or hurt? Would we be more open? People share about past relationships, family life, etc, and yet they never discuss their debts, views on retirement, etc before marriage. Why is there so many issues with money? I wonder do most people discuss finances before marriage?

DH and I didn't really discuss finances before marriage, but then again we shared pretty much our entire adult lives together so there wasn't much before marriage. We graduated college and meet. So now sometimes we have issues over spending money, but usually it's DH's problem. I am not a spendthrift, but he's such a cheapskate that it raises issues. But we're dealing with them, he can wear clothes that are new and can have more than 1 pair of shoes!

But back to the case, why would someone require their spouse to put in receipts for reimbursment? It sounds like a control issue to me.

How do you split bills and finances with the spouse? Does anyone else have a spouse who doesn't feel like they deserve anything? Or castigates themselves for purchasing anything? Or feels that a penny spent on anything not absolutely necessary is wrong? That they are a bad person for spending money?


Its MY Day :) said...

It must be completly terrifying going into a marriage without a agreement about how money is handled.

We all KNOW that money is a main course of does this not factor into the thinking of most people?

With 3 months to go until our wedding, we have set financial goals for our future, include homeownership, understanding that his car will need to be replaced in the next 2-3 years because of age and condition, retirement savings, and our personal comfort with debt levels and reduction while saving. Its just a given, you have got to be on the same page.

Terri said...

I think you should go back and read the whole thread. There's a more complete explaination about what's going on. The budget is being readjusted based upon the wife's receipts.

Living Almost Large said...

Terri I read the whole thread, and I get they are "redoing" the budget. But I still wouldn't be with someone who had me turn in receipts. I like the way DR works in debt payoff and I think his way of cash envelopes is better than antyhing because both spouses are accountable to just the cash. NOT to each other. By one person being accountable to the OTHER person it makes them seem like a child.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but turning in reciepts when you are an adult? Um, if the money is budget and there why should you? Sounds like one is the parent and the other the child.

I wouldn't appreciate my spouse treating me like a child. But then again if the marriage work, great.

But I think if you poll most financial bloggers, if they ran something like that by their spouse, turning in receipts, what would they do?

Anonymous said...

I think the point he's trying to make is to show his spouse that she doesn't need to spend her money on these items if they're in the budget...not that she needs to get reimbursed. Each time they do this they're adjusting the budget. We keep our receipts and add items into the budget, but we're both on board to budgeting. His wife is not. She fights it. I don't think this is the only thing he's done to try to get her to see how it works, just one of several things.

It's hard to do when you're pulling in different directions.


Living Almost Large said...

Terri, if you work DR's plan and make cash envelopes, it doesn't matter if it's not in the budget. If you have the cash for clothes say $50/month then it can be spent on clothes. Which clothes or how much doesn't matter, it's money for clothes. You do not have to answer every penny.

Same thing for kids expenses, food, etc. You spend money already spent on paper you do not have to account for every penny, and if you read the whole thread most people suggested this as a method of budgeting because IT WORKS!

It does not make one spouse accountable to another, it makes them accountable to $100 or $200 period. You don't have to justify money spent, it's a choice, buy a don't get b. Buy B, don't get C. It's all about choices.

This way no one is able to point fingers because you already decided this month we're spending $400/month on clothes or $400 on food or $400/vacation.

There is no guilt, hence why it's stupid to collect reciepts for reimbursement. To "Justify" spending. If I did that my hubby would laugh in my face. I collect reciepts to reconcile our accounts, not to justify spending.

We know we have $400/month to eat out, how we spend it doesn't matter, but we only have that much. That is budgeting. What the guy is doing is a control issue. His wife has to justify her expenses...can you say controlling?

If she knew she had $400/month for kids clothes because that's what they decide to spend how can he control her if she says "well I spent it and now it's gone." He'd probably have a heart attack that he couldn't control every penny his wife spent. Notice he didn't talk about using Dave Ramsey's Envelope cash system...strange.