It’s counterintuitive to think about divorce when you marry. Few women do. Without thinking of the consequences of letting our husband manage our money, we set ourselves up for financial vulnerability. We trust him to be making financial choices that will benefit us both.
Sometimes he does. Sometimes he doesn’t. Most of the time, he’s not thinking of his future without us.
Money is never about money. It’s about what we fear and what we want, what we learned from our family, and how comfortable we feel discussing a touchy subject with our mate. It’s about power and leverage – who has it, how is it used, who is affected by it. It’s about the working dynamics of a relationship. A marriage can’t function without the ability to talk about money.
Unfortunately, if we’re not participating in the marital finances, we don’t find out how vulnerable we are until a crisis of widowhood or divorce changes our life. Not being able to talk about money comfortably, either before or during marriage, makes women financially vulnerable and resentful.
Here are six questions to answer for yourself before you’re slammed with a crisis:
Am I participating in financial decisions with my husband?
Do I understand our marital finances?
What do I need financially to feel secure?
How would I manage if I were widowed or divorced?
Do I sign documents without understanding them?
Do I know the location of all our financial records?
There are many more questions and answers in my book. The information can help make you financially intimate and feeling safe.