Hey All, Life Advice Please.

Discussion in 'Random' started by Sterling von Shimmer, Jul 2, 2019.

  1. Eyes On The Prize

    Eyes On The Prize Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    I was actually thinking about that as I was typing out my response - i couldve sworn some couples do a version of this through their place of worship! But I am not religous so my only frame of reference for this was what I see on TV and I wasnt sure what was right or wrong.


    IMO, everyone should go through some sort of counseling atleast once in their lives.
     
  2. alpaca

    alpaca Somewhere... some one.... is giving me a slow clap

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    Yep, the counseling started with a scan-tron "personality" type test. They asked about so many things like family, jobs, neighborhoods, money, hobbies, religion, kids, sex. The answers to those questions gave the counselor a starting off point for discussions. I was surprised at some of my husband to-be's answers.
     
  3. Sterling von Shimmer

    Sterling von Shimmer I Fierce Board instead of work/study

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    All this relationship talk has got me wondering about a question I’m struggling with myself: has anyone ever entered into a marriage with a crazy income disparity? Did you feel uncomfortable as the poor one?

    Because I kind of do. My fiancée will always make more money than me. Even when his athletic career is over in a few years, he’ll still probably make more money than me when he pursues sports therapy.

    Consequently, I feel insecure about what I bring to the table besides three dogs and my Flocheer subscription. When we get a joint bank account, I’m going to feel weird withdrawing his money like it’s mine. And the most cloying thought: what if he leaves me and I have nothing except three expensive dogs? It makes me want to stow away part of my income just in case of an “emergency,” but that doesn’t really seem like the right way to start a marriage.

    Full disclosure: we’re on the same page about money and I feel good about our decisions. This is mostly just a “me” problem in that I’m feeling insecure. But I figure this happens, right? It’s rare that two people come into a marriage making the exact same income. So surely I’m not alone in this?
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2019
  4. CoachTamara

    CoachTamara Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    My husband and I met while he was in law school and I was in grad school. He will always make more than me, but when we met I had a full time job and coached. We've been married six years, and a few years ago I got laid off and found out I was pregnant. I stayed home with my son for the first year, and then started my own business which is busy but also nowhere near the salary I was making before. It is TOUGH. Honestly, we are totally financially fine but for me, it's the thing I struggle with the most and has been the hardest part of our marriage. I don't want to ask for money or count on him financially, but I've had to sometimes and I found it absolutely humiliating. It's much more a me thing than a we thing-I don't think he thinks about it much at all.

    Every couple does finances differently, but I liked keeping our own separate accounts. We divide up expenses proportionally, so he pays more because he makes more but I also feel like I'm doing my fair share. He doesn't get to judge how much I spend on Taco Bell and kid's clothes, and I don't care how he spends his money. For us, it's easy and works. Every couple is different, and I think what works could be totally different for folks, but that has worked for us. I get it though-trust me. If you want to go into more detail, feel free to PM me as well, because it feels odd talking about our family financials on the public board. ;)
     
  5. tuckxandxtwist

    tuckxandxtwist Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    My husband and I are similar. I made more than him for the first few years of our relationship, but now I'm a mostly-SAHM, coaching a few nights a week and working part time for my family's business to ensure I can contribute to finances and he is the breadwinner. But the best thing for us is to keep our accounts separate. I'm much better at saving than he is, so I have even less disposable income because I'm always saving for the next big project for our house or trying to get some shuffled back for our kids college accounts. When it comes to bills, he pays more than I do, but that's because he does make more. I also don't want to see what he spends on golf clubs, or him to see what I spend when I go to Target...


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  6. catlady

    catlady Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    Once a career woman that made just slightly less than DH. Plot twist, you can't control life and our oldest was diagnosed with a chronic disease and one of us needed to be a stay at home parent to take care of medical needs. We both decided it made more sense for me to stay at home. Never once have I felt insecure about what I bring to the table as a stay at home mom, but I have a husband that see's the worth in me whether career or staying at home. We played the "what if" game throughout dating to see if our thoughts were at least somewhat on the same page when it came to life changing situations. Best advice I can give you, marry a person that wholeheartedly believes love is a choice and not something you grow in and out of. While that doesn't seem like the most romantic advice, it's the truth and a person that will choose to love through any situation will never make you feel less worthy because of money.

    On the opening question, my mom communicated her mouth off while my dad was a man of very few words. My mom broke off the engagement several times before they finally married and their main fight was always communication, they were married for 48 years before my dad passed away. I'm telling you, it's less about money and communication, and more about choosing to get up everyday and love the person you're with.
     
  7. alpaca

    alpaca Somewhere... some one.... is giving me a slow clap

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    Wait, providing a safety net for yourself "doesn't really seem like the right way to start a marriage." Please re-think that.

    An option for you is to start saving for retirement in a Roth IRA. Any contributions (not earnings) can later be withdrawn tax free. Best case scenario is that you have tax free IRA income to share when you retire. Worst case scenario is that you have an emergency fund in your name only in case of divorce.
     
  8. retiredl5cheer

    retiredl5cheer Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    My husband will always make more than me, and there is a very good chance that he'll end up making 5x times more than me in the future. We have a joint bank account, joint credit cards, and I manage the finances. There is no "your money" and "my money." It's all our money. He's so excited to be able to provide wonderful things and experiences for our family in the future and I'm happy to plan how to spend it with him.

    Something that we do occasionally do that I find helps is a financial check-in, meaning we sit down with my cash flow spreadsheet (documenting all monthly expenses, etc.) and our credit card statements (all other expenses) and figure out whether our habits are good or whether they need to be tweaked. We also OVER communicate about big purchases and any upcoming "hardships" i.e. we're having a baby and need to find an extra $1,800 a month for childcare, and talk through our plan to pay for those together.

    It may be that we're both just pretty laid back or it may be the way we look at finances and family in general, but it works really well for us and has never caused any issues. It's definitely possible.

    Also something to consider, coming from the wife of a family law attorney, is that once you get married, everything becomes "marital assets," regardless of whose name is on it. That may be state-by-state, but in the state of MD, it doesn't matter if your name is on your bank account and his name is on his, if you were to divorce, it would all be considered one big pot.
     
  9. Sterling von Shimmer

    Sterling von Shimmer I Fierce Board instead of work/study

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    When I said “stow away” I meant like secretly squirrelling money away without his knowledge to provide an emergency fund for myself, which seems dishonest even though it would all come from my paycheck. It wasn’t the creation of the safety net that didn’t seem like a good idea, it was the secrecy. But your idea sounds way better.

    And reading these responses has been enough for me to get the ball rolling in discussing our finances more. We’ve just been sort of assuming a lot about each other’s expectations in this area, and a joint checking account into which both of our paychecks would be deposited is one of those things. But I’m going to tell him I need my own still. Even though I really do think we’re a great match and will have a solid, loving partnership for the rest of our lives, I don’t feel comfortable going all in with him. I know it’s not very romantic, but that’s just how it is. I cannot, in good faith to myself, leave my livelihood in someone else’s hands.
     
  10. Sterling von Shimmer

    Sterling von Shimmer I Fierce Board instead of work/study

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    Yeah, it’s the “our money” part that gets me. I’m so uncomfortable with it. Honestly, deep down, it’s because I didn’t earn it and don’t feel worthy of the life it’s gotten us. His whole life reflects what he’s accomplished, and his income is a part of that. But I just feel lucky, and not in the good way. Instead, I feel like people see me as a gold digging cheerleader.
     
  11. omgitssydthekid

    omgitssydthekid Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    My husband currently makes about 2.5 more than I do. However, I have been in grad school over the last three years and while I have worked pretty close to full-time, it was an hourly job that was flexible with me and paid decent but certainly wasn’t a career. I graduated in May and once I get settled into a full-time caseload at my new job, he and I will make almost identical salaries with him making slightly more than me ($1,000-$2,000 annually). I have a greater earnings potential than he does, but his job is more stable than mine is. I have more flexibility in scheduling while his is more rigid. I think both of us bring something important to the table, regardless of income. We have a joint savings, joint checking, and joint investments. We also have individual retirement accounts, other investments, and checking accounts. Both of our paychecks are direct deposited into our joint checking. Bonuses are split between joint savings and person checking. Birthday money, Christmas money, graduation money, sidegig money all goes into our personal checking accounts and we can do whatever we want to with this money. We also have joint credit cards. This has worked really well for us. Every couple does things differently though, and it’s trial and error trying to figure out what works best for you and your family. I personally feel like it would be difficult to manage separate accounts, especially once children are involved, but that works really well for some people.

    I would recommend sitting down and really hashing out the finances piece before getting married. Put all of it on the table and try to figure out a budget moving forward. Maybe look into Financial Peace University? It might help with the confidence piece and feeling like you have control over your money.


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  12. Sterling von Shimmer

    Sterling von Shimmer I Fierce Board instead of work/study

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    Something else that I wonder about — and I’m super sorry if this is too personal or dark for the forum and please do not feel obligated to respond if it makes anyone uncomfortable — is what I would do if I was pregnant and found out the kid would be born with severe health problems. And not autism or Down’s or something else that’s a relatively common occurrence and for which there are accepted procedures and infrastructures in place (schools, living facilities, job placement services) to ensure quality of life. Like massive complications that could severely affect the kid’s comfort and life expectancy.

    I know the “right” answer is to go through with the birth and do whatever it takes for the kid, but I really don’t know if I could force a life on a person that I know will be difficult and painful. Just so I can be a mom. Granted, I’m not pregnant yet and do not know the feeling of bonding with a baby in utero and how that might affect my decision, but as of right now I could not tell you how I’d handle that situation. I really don’t know. But I think it merits a lot of thought.
     
  13. Ems

    Ems I have my own cheer message board

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    Also not to be a downer and completely cynical but... technically there are accepted procedures and infrastructures in place but the parents will have to fight tooth and nail for anything and everything regarding any service for children with autism or a developmental disability. And good luck when they’re adults and out of school, because the resources are far and few in between. And that child will probably be dependent on you forever, no matter their age. They can have a steady job and live independently but they might need reminders to pay their bills or clean their house or go to the dentist, among other things...


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  14. Eyes On The Prize

    Eyes On The Prize Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    And that's if they are high functioning. Otherwise, forget it.

    My room mate works with children with mild to severe autism as a school/boarding school aid. $500,000 a year per kid to basically keep them alive because they require 24/7 care that no one can provide on their own. The majority of the kids who get in there are from wealthy families or who were given up by their parents to become wards of the state and their school district pays for it. And even if you could afford it, space is severely limited. So you know there are millions of families out there trying to care for these individuals on their own because we don't have the resources to help them.





    I never really understood autism/developmental disabilities until I met my room mate. Turns out we romanticize the f*ck out of it to avoid having severely difficult conversations as a society. Her stories are horrific. Not only how the kids and families are treated by "the system" but how this stuff rips families apart and devastates lives because we can't care for them. Society hides these people away and the romanticized ideas that are pushed out to us prevent us from having the difficult conversations about the lack of resources at every level.

    We don't have "procedures and infrastructure in place" for these people and their families. Schools only take kids up to 18 or 21. Living facilities are scarce and you HAVE to be of a certain criteria. A lot of the students my room mate works with will never be able to be accepted into these facilities - a lot of them have self-harm tendencies and will lash out in violent ways towards themselves, towards staff, and towards other students. (A lot of places will not take kids who lash out in any way. And if they do it at the living facility, they will be released.) The outlook for these kids will either be 1. be released back to families who probably have aging parents and little to no access to resources; or 2. be put in a hospital and heavily sedated until the end of their lives; or 3. end up in some sort of jail setting from a crime/assault they committed. Job placement services only work if the person is super high functioning. They also are scarce and, like the living facilities, only take people of a certain criteria.

    FWIW, there is no "right" answer. No matter what, a "life" is potentially "lost". My room mate has countless stories of parents, siblings, caretakers, coworkers, etc with extreme and lasting mental health related issues from trying to help and care for them (which we also don't have the resources for). The blame the parents put on themselves is worse than the blame society puts on them. And the quality of life of some of these kids is so unbelievably sad. You start to wonder which option is the most humane one.
     
  15. catlady

    catlady Slow your roll, Sparkle.

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    The majority of catastrophic diseases, injuries and TBI's happen after birth. My thoughts are you love them, keep them as comfortable as possible and take care of them the same way you would want someone to take care of you if something happened. The older I get, the more I think we mess with nature too much. We burden society with healthcare bills fighting to keep some people alive that are truly trying to die, and then we kill others that are fighting to live that we say will be burdens or "deserve to move on." Us humans are truly hypocritical and selfish beings.