I met a financial advisor years ago who had the most seductively soothing bedside manner. He had been recommended by a friend who said this man was ‘really great working with widows’.
The advisor explained that it’s hard for women whose husband had managed the investments to understand how the market works. “Ultimately, it comes down to your peace of mind and the trust we establish in the relationship”, he said.
But given what I’d been through with my husband, clanging bells and caution lights flashed through my mind. The trust thing again – ‘Trust me honey’, ‘don’t worry about a thing darling’, ‘just relax and go shopping’, ‘I’ll take care of everything’.
I felt a faint tinge of romantic illusion still clinging to my liberated female psyche. How perfect – someone to take care of everything so I can focus on living happily ever after.
But I know the real world doesn’t work that way. One thing I know for sure – there’s nothing romantic about money. Money isn’t about trust or being reassured that everything will be fine.
I believe in information, financial education, hard-headed realism, and planning for the worst. The worst, whatever that is, may never happen. But if it does, at least I’ll understand how it happened.
This particular advisor may relieve stress for many women who still live with illusions. I’m not one of them.