Monthly Archives: December 2015

What You Can’t Do When You Marry

You can remind, you can nag, you can plea, but  no matter how much you may want to, if you’re married, you can’t plan for your future without your husband’s  cooperation.

You can’t write your husband’s will. You can’t take his medical exam for life insurance or long-term care insurance. You can’t be his health care proxy if he doesn’t assign you durable powers of attorney to make medical decisions for him. You can’t be comfortable about your marital finances if he doesn’t share financial information with you.

You need your husband’s cooperation to protect yourself against what you would face if he were disabled or died. If your husband doesn’t face the fact that he’s mortal like you and me, your hands are tied. If all he does is reassure you not to worry about a thing, that doesn’t do anything for you except lull you into a false sense of security.

You can’t make your husband protect your financial interests in case your marriage ends. If it ends in divorce, chances are you’ll be in a combative position with him.  If it ends in death, it’s too late to do anything constructive about your financial situation.

You expect him to want to protect you because he says he loves you. But let’s get real. A marriage is as much a legal and financial partnership with obligations on both sides. But people have different definitions of love, and we can rarely be sure we’re ascribing the same characteristics to your love and his love.

If he won’t cooperate with you to get you the financial protection you need, it’s safe to assume that his definition of love doesn’t match yours. For me, that would be a deal breaker.