August 26, 2011
A couple of days ago, one of those unthinkable things happened - there was an earthquake on the East Coast. People were posting all on Facebook and there was that "Breaking News" on our local station. Some of my friends were saying how it caught them off guard, others were saying was it an earthquake. Regardless of which question was asked, some had comfort and others did not. Because this wasn't expected, its easy to see why some were not calm. Let's face it one of the money matters that happens in marriage is there are times when the unknown may cause unexpected emotions to flood a person. Let me ask you, what happens in your marriage when there is a "money shake-up". The money shake-up could be a lack of money or unexpected financial expense that hinders the remaining finances. How do you handle it? How does your spouse handle it? Do you blame each other? Do you begin arguing? Or do you both step back and let cooler heads prevail? Money is an area where a marriage can be tested at different times. I like to think that when it comes to money you really find out what your marriage is made of! Can it withstand the test of time, because some of those test are only temporary. Can it withstand a job loss, someone becoming self-employed and it taking a while for the business to get off the floor or becoming parents? How do you talk about these shake-ups? When my husband and I have had some money shake-ups, I always look at it as preparing us to go to the next level which is right in front of us. A shake-up is not a time to get distracted, BUT rejoice and keep your eye on the prize. Think about the last shake-up that occurred: what were you about to do prior to the money shake-up? When the shake-up happened did you put that step on hold or did you press on and keep going for it. I have gotten to where I will recognize the shake-up for what it is, share it with my husband and keep my eye on the prize. Are you in the midst of a money shake-up now? How are you handling it?
August 24, 2011
I was out at some meetings this morning and when I returned there was so much happening on the internet, I just decided to sit and read the comments. There was a posting about an alleged split up between Will and Jada, then there was an earthquake on the East Coast and of course, there was still a lot of memories and tributes being shared about Nick Ashford of the duo Ashford and Simpson. As I sat there and was watching the post regarding Will and Jada, I began thinking to myself how many married couples out there may truly be in trouble, are non-celebrities and not even half the people would even care that are family and friends let alone some strangers. Later in the day, Will and Jada released a statement saying their marriage was in tact. Yet in still, there was a big sigh of relief all over the internet when that news came. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking their marriage - what I am saying is this, we need to be more concerned with the marriages in our immediate circle that we can affect. What about your own marriage? If you are weathering a storm right now, do you care enough to hang in there and get some help or do you throw in the towel because it appears too difficult? If Will and Jada were to split, as a fan there is nothing I could do for them other than pray. Yet if a neighbor or someone who works with my husband has a marriage that is in trouble there's a lot more that I could do because they are within my reach. Granted they may not share that there are problems for one reason or another; the fact remains they are within my circle and I'm willing to lend an ear. As you read this, how many of your friends or colleagues are having some challenges within their marriage and have come to you? Did you offer them sound advice or did you send them away because you didn't believe you were qualified to give them advice? Sometimes people need an ear -someone that will listen. It's not always about giving advice BUT being there whether they are right or wrong. Get involved in your own marriage and don't just let stuff happen!
August 23, 2011
Tonight I found out that one of my favorite singers of a duo died. Nick Ashford of Ashford and Simpson passed today from complications of throat cancer. Brides and Grooms he and his wife are one of my all time favorite couples. Click the link to read about him. Watch this video: Solid (they are talking about marriage)... http://youtu.be/HzBfJOUEG1U Prayers for Valerie and his family.
August 20, 2011
A great premarital financial counseling question came in: When after getting engaged should you combine finances? I wanted to take this anonymous question and turn it into a post because there are others I am sure that have this same question. Let me caution engaged couples right from the jump by saying just because you have gotten engaged does not mean that you have to combine finances. Answer these questions: 1) How long have you known your future spouse? 2) What do you know about his or her financial behavior? Spender or saver? Do they pay their bills on time? Do they have any outstanding debt that is not being paid? 3) Is someone asking you to combine your finances very soon after engagement? If so, what is their motivation? I understand that sometimes it is easier to combine finances. Make sure you know who you are marrying, you trust this person. 4) Are you combining finances because you are moving in together? Is one person moving into the future spouse's current apartment and their name is not going to be on the lease. An engagement period is a time to get to know your future spouse. True enough you are not going to know everything. What you will find out without a shadow of a doubt is some financial behavior whether good or bad. There's nothing like planning a wedding for a bride and groom to find out each other's stance on money in a small window - for a particular event. Some of you may find out that your future spouse has relied on mommy and daddy heavily. Or that someone has been choosing not to pay bills. When it comes to money and marriage, it is not a time to sugarcoat it. I can see an episode of Court TV now playing out in my mind - girl meets boy, they get engaged, they combine finances, this made him very happy because he was bad at managing money. Now he has access to her money as well and within a few months, he leaves and she is stuck with all the bills that he made. Believe me this can happen both ways. The above was just a hypothetical -- I KNOW this happens more often than it should.