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(Some Guy)   Are marriages happier when women control the money?   ( moneyish.com) divider line
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529 clicks; posted to Discussion » on 21 Apr 2017 at 10:20 AM (25 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2017-04-21 09:58:50 AM  
Mine was, but then my wife got pregnant and the hormone swings freaked her out trying to balance the checkbook and keep track of all the bills. I took over, and got the insurance paid off, and all the other things she'd sort of lost track of, and got us back into the black--enough to buy a new car and cover all the new furniture for the baby and a few things that she'd had her eye on for a while.

It was NOT met with any gratitude. In fact, I suspect that contributed to the fall of our marriage.

A husband who had better financial sense did not amuse her in the least...

So, yeah, maybe it WAS happier, but we couldn't afford it.
 
2017-04-21 10:03:14 AM  
My first marriage my wife did a great job paying the bills.  The problem was she thought all the money was hers.  I had to fight to get the oil in the cars changed because she didn't think it was necessary.  For example

I'm STILL paying for that one.
 
2017-04-21 10:03:51 AM  
www.comedycouch.com

In Soviet Russia, first you get the women to control the money, then you get the power,THEN you get the woman!  You've been great Branson! T-shirts are available in the commissary!
 
2017-04-21 10:24:13 AM  
I've had my bills and payments all automated for about a decade now. I can get forgetful when I've been drinking and would rather not forget any bills. Creating a budget and sticking to it is basic, regardless of if you have a partner or not.
 
2017-04-21 10:28:50 AM  
No.
 
2017-04-21 10:29:49 AM  
No.  Next question.
 
2017-04-21 10:41:25 AM  
What do you mean by "control"? Most of the heavy hitters in the budget (housing, short term savings, retirement savings, phones/tv/internet/water/gas/electric, gym membership, groceries, kids activities) should be decided jointly as a couple. The only things that you have any 'control' over at that point is the discretionary budget, which in a fair world should just be split equally and then let each of you do what you wish.
 
2017-04-21 10:43:59 AM  
Married 27 years to an accountant wifey. Just waiting for death to come to my door and grab my 401k account that I've paid into for 30 years..
 
2017-04-21 10:45:16 AM  

turbocucumber: No.


bikerbob59: No.  Next question.

 
2017-04-21 10:49:13 AM  
Maybe, maybe not.
However, having similar credit scores works pretty well...
It's working well for me so far...
 
2017-04-21 10:50:06 AM  
We discuss any purchases bigger than weekly groceries together anyway and once the budget is set it's mostly just a matter of paying the bills and checking to see if we are sticking to the budget appropriately.  She does all the actual transactions (we've had issues with automatic payments so we make them manually) and we just consider it one of the chores in our division of labor.
 
2017-04-21 10:54:43 AM  
fark no.
 
2017-04-21 10:55:16 AM  

Egoy3k: We discuss any purchases bigger than weekly groceries together anyway and once the budget is set it's mostly just a matter of paying the bills and checking to see if we are sticking to the budget appropriately.  She does all the actual transactions (we've had issues with automatic payments so we make them manually) and we just consider it one of the chores in our division of labor.


Pretty similar boat here.  I do the spreadsheets, taxes, all that fun stuff and she makes sure we have all the food we need and the kid has everything she needs.  Very little conflict.  I don't see how a marriage could work without cooperation.
 
2017-04-21 10:57:49 AM  
My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.
 
2017-04-21 10:58:27 AM  
not married, but we're living together for 7 year now and have 2 kids. She does the paying work so she controls the money.
I have minor quibbles but on the whole she allocates the $ very well. Could I do a better job? yes and no. When it comes to grocery shopping, i am far less picky about things like brands, will buy generic and eat just about anything, wheras she and the kids can be quite picky and selective. I could potentially cut our bill almost in half, but nobody but me would actually eat the stuff so not worth it in the long run.
Little things like Hulu, Netflix, my cigarettes, those makeup bags  the GF and daughter get in the mail (seriously, get your gf\wife\teen daughter these if they're already not getting one, they will love you for it!) and the sons growing Lego obsession add up quick though taking those little pleasures and creature comforts out of the equation would lead to a very bored, volatile, unhappy household, so NOT a good idea.
 
2017-04-21 11:01:07 AM  

nekom: Egoy3k: We discuss any purchases bigger than weekly groceries together anyway and once the budget is set it's mostly just a matter of paying the bills and checking to see if we are sticking to the budget appropriately.  She does all the actual transactions (we've had issues with automatic payments so we make them manually) and we just consider it one of the chores in our division of labor.

Pretty similar boat here.  I do the spreadsheets, taxes, all that fun stuff and she makes sure we have all the food we need and the kid has everything she needs.  Very little conflict.  I don't see how a marriage could work without cooperation.


I've see a lot of marriages that 'work' (for a certain value of work) without cooperation but I can't imagine why the people in them don't do themselves and all of their friends and a favor and divorce.  I deal with shiat all day, when I come home I want to see my friend and partner not an enemy that I'm trying to get one over on.
 
2017-04-21 11:10:40 AM  

Shaggy_C: What do you mean by "control"? Most of the heavy hitters in the budget (housing, short term savings, retirement savings, phones/tv/internet/water/gas/electric, gym membership, groceries, kids activities) should be decided jointly as a couple. The only things that you have any 'control' over at that point is the discretionary budget, which in a fair world should just be split equally and then let each of you do what you wish.


That's the way we basically do it. We drew up a budget of household expenses, split it down the middle, adjusted for whoever's paying the health insurance and we contribute that to a joint account.

We still have personal accounts that we use for things that only benefit an individual. That way if she splurges on shoes or I buy a new computer it's no skin off the other's back.
 
2017-04-21 11:32:49 AM  

Shaggy_C: What do you mean by "control"? Most of the heavy hitters in the budget (housing, short term savings, retirement savings, phones/tv/internet/water/gas/electric, gym membership, groceries, kids activities) should be decided jointly as a couple. The only things that you have any 'control' over at that point is the discretionary budget, which in a fair world should just be split equally and then let each of you do what you wish.


This.  Neither of you should be unaware of major financial transactions.  My grandmother kept the checkbook and my grandfather handled all the major transactions.  As a result, when my grandfather died we had to dig out records to find where all his assets were.  My grandmother was just used to writing checks out of the checking account and telling my grandfather when it was low.

/He had records going back to the 1970's on everything.
//Good luck sorting it out though.
 
2017-04-21 11:32:56 AM  
When I was married, I controlled the money in that I paid the bills (because he refused) and knew what was left for non-essentials. Unfortunately neither of us were very good at deciding what was essential, so that meant bills weren't always paid on time.

Since I've been living on my own, I've become amazing at it. I work as a substitute teacher (not willing to sacrifice my evenings to grading and lesson planning while my kiddos are still little) so I don't get paid during the summer. I currently have all but $300 a month in bills paid off until November. House, car, electric, cell phone, internet, etc etc... all paid through October. Plus I have the money needed to cover the remaining bills, money for essentials, and lots of fun money set aside.

Honestly, I don't know that I could ever go back to a situation where I'm not 100% in control of every penny. I would probably fair even worse in a next relationship than I did in my last barring finding someone who either wants to keep everything separate or is willing to have his woman hand him cash and tell him that's all he gets for the month.
 
2017-04-21 11:41:41 AM  
depends on the woman, i suppose. Didn't work out for me for me and my marriage.
 
2017-04-21 11:54:07 AM  
1st Marraige.

Me: Pays all the bills
Her: I don't know where any of the money is or where it's going!
Me: OK, you can pay the bills if you want.
Her: OK.  I'll do that!
Me: Ignorance is bliss!
*/ 8  years later... /*
Her:  Here's a divorce decree.  You get to pay off the 10s of thousands in credit card debt I've racked up.

Second marriage:
Me: Pays all the bills
Her: I don't know where any of the money is or where it's going!
Me: OK, you can pay the bills if you want.
Her: OK.  I'll do that!
Me: Ignorance is bliss!
 
2017-04-21 11:56:58 AM  
Reading through this thread, I'm heartened to see I'm not alone in the way my wife and I have come to handle finances.

We've tried it both ways; she "controlled" the money (read: paid the bills and balanced the books), I "controlled" the money (read: same). She had a stretch a couple years back where keeping things balanced for us got overwhelming, and asked me to take over. Unfortunately, I had too much pride to admit when it started to do the same for me, and so several things spiraled a bit out of control for us. I note the comment from Psychette above, where she(?) notes the challenge in establishing "what was essential."

Thankfully, after a LOT of discussion, shouting, making up, and apologizing, we've come to the realization that we both need to have our hand on the controls, you know, actually be the partnership that a healthy marriage should be. A lot of that involved me swallowing my pride and acknowledging that she does have a bit of a better head for when we will be pushing too close to the budget, but also from her convincing me that using a software program like Quicken would be a good idea...(protip: It really was, and I feel really stupid for not doing so a long, long time ago.) Some of that also involved her acknowledging that I see a lot more value in our "fun money" than she does, so we compromise in other areas. But, fun upshot of getting a better handle on the budget overall means there's not as big of a pinch on fun money to begin with.

/TL:DR; Work with your SO. You both need to know what's what for your money.
 
2017-04-21 12:00:54 PM  
I handle the family finances, and it's a good thing.  We have a joint account, and every January I prepare a budget based on both the previous year's and upcoming year's projected expenditures, so we can adjust our deposits into the account accordingly.  I handle most of the bill pays -- every time we receive a bill in the mail, I log into our joint account and schedule the payment immediately.

Can my wife do this?  Uhhh.  The few bills that go through her are frequently forgotten and paid late.  And she's been known to screw up her own account so badly that, instead of reconciling it, she'll close it and open a new account instead (learned that trick from her dad, from what she's said).
 
2017-04-21 12:14:07 PM  
My wife and I kept separate bank accounts. She managed the household bills but there was otherwise no "control" over finances. We basically split the bills otherwise our money was or own. Part of my check was direct deposited into her account and she would take care of paying the mortgage, electric etc.

We did it that way because I'm terrible about paying paying bill on time. I have everything possible set up for automatic payments because I'm a professional procrastinator.
 
2017-04-21 12:17:46 PM  
Separate checking accounts... This worked for me when I made double what my G/F did, and when I was dating a multimillionaire. So long as the bills get paid, everyone is happy.

/ sucks at accounting, always found it better to let the women handle the accounting.
 
2017-04-21 12:23:14 PM  
As a years long paypig to financial dominatrix Princess Sierra I must answer in the affirmative.
 
2017-04-21 12:43:57 PM  
Yes, because lesbians are even more cheerful and carefree after they tie the knot.
 
2017-04-21 12:59:18 PM  

seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.


img.fark.net

Did you bring a history of poor financial decisions to the relationship or something?
 
2017-04-21 01:05:52 PM  
Me: Honey, why did you buy all this stuff (wondering why the checkbook balance wasn't enough to cover several bills about to come in)?
Her:  Oh, there was money in the account so I assumed you already paid all the bills this month and it was available to buy other stuff with
 
2017-04-21 01:14:50 PM  

donutsauce: seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.

[img.fark.net image 160x160]

Did you bring a history of poor financial decisions to the relationship or something?


I was a bit more puzzled about the fact that she's a kept woman.  I guess it's good work if you can get it.
 
2017-04-21 01:18:23 PM  
Marriages are happier when there's enough money and no one's blowing it on stupid shiat (regardless of gender).
 
2017-04-21 01:25:51 PM  
She controls day to day spending mostly and I control long term investing (401K, IRA). We both pay the bills together. My check goes into separate accounts depending on use (one for bills, one for short terms savings one for stupid stuff).
 
2017-04-21 01:26:43 PM  
"Control the money?"

Jesus wept.  Whoever is better with finances should handle the bills and rent/mortgage, regardless of gender.  Talk about big purchases together, don't sweat the small stuff.  You should have nothing but joint accounts, excepting a possible side account each for buying presents and personal frivolities.

If you don't trust someone this much (or vice versa) don't contractually agree to basically be the same goddamn person in the eyes of the law.  Just move in together.
 
2017-04-21 01:28:12 PM  
Happier when the person who has the talent/desire to do it - regardless of gender - 'controls' the money, although in most sane-ish marriages control more means the person handling disbursements etc. than controlling it.  I've seen people try to force it, when one person just sucks ass at it and tries to/is pushed into doing it anyway.  Rarely works out well.
 
2017-04-21 01:32:36 PM  
This lady is primary income, source of insurance and keeper of the bills for the house. I wish I wasn't. I'd hand it over as soon as he got a "real" (read: paying more than slave wages) job. I'd do it now, but I have a very "my money, my control" mindset. We keep completely separate accounts as a result. Pretty much everything is on auto-payment at my end except the mortgage which is paid in cash (split 50/50 between us). He also is responsible for the quarterly house bills (garbage, water, sewer) but I get everything else including daycare, groceries, pet food, etc. We've talked over getting a joint account but can't agree on a bank or a percentage of payroll to be directly routed to savings. Just remember, the Happy Wife = Happy Life adage is pretty true (from my perspective).
 
2017-04-21 01:51:19 PM  
Not when said woman

• is often confused by simple arithmetic, and
• state repeatedly, and believe, "budgets never work" as an excuse for laziness and lack of discipline, and
• can't understand the drawbacks of buying things on credit, and
• use an addiction to cable TV home shopping networks to self-medicate her clinical depression.

She seemed sane before we got married, honest. Now I can't retire.
 
2017-04-21 01:54:56 PM  

rosekolodny: donutsauce: seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.

[img.fark.net image 160x160]

Did you bring a history of poor financial decisions to the relationship or something?

I was a bit more puzzled about the fact that she's a kept woman.  I guess it's good work if you can get it.


Haha no to both, I go to school full-time. My husband is military, and when we had to move I obviously left my job, instead of working he told me to take the time and finish up school. So for over a year that's what I've been doing. And the only reason he has the "big savings account", is because he had it before we got married, there was no reason for me to have access to it because it wasn't mine. Now that I've been part of the savings plan we're going to add me, and he'll take what he had before we got married and put it into another account.
 
2017-04-21 01:59:42 PM  
My parents: Mom handles the money and dad gets an allowance.

My experience: First wife controlled the money. Money handling was never a point of stress beyond the fact we didn't have enough of it. I'm no more than adequate at handling things so I just kinda defaulted to my parent's system.

Second Marriage (on the way to divorce): I handled the money, still wasn't enough of it, but it's only tangentially related to the main dovorce issue. I handled the money because my schedule is more flexibile and, as a contractor, my pay is more erratic.

Both cases no major decisions were made unilaterally. My mom made a unilateral decision once. Just once, when she bought dad the Supervan for chistmas one year. While he liked the van he didn't much like a decision on something that big being made without him.

Supervan was 70's awesome. Was either a '77 or a '78 (can't remember atm) Dodge, Wood paneling on the inside walls, baby blue shag carpet, big bay windows on the back quarters, sleeper sofa in the back. And yes it had custom "Supervan" nameplates on it.
 
2017-04-21 02:06:32 PM  
On one hand, my girlfriend is loaded.

On the other hand, a wise man once said, "Never let a woman have your money"
 
2017-04-21 02:08:26 PM  
A buddy of mine is in the last stages of a divorce where finances were a major point of stress on the relationship.  It's not my intent to air dirty laundry, but they both had backgrounds in accounting.  I don't know if that made it worse or not.
 
2017-04-21 02:12:49 PM  
Any money decision involving a couple hundred dollars or more, we'll talk it over and make solid decision together. No problem.

Aside from that, she handles the routine chore of banking/online payments/check-writing.

The very idea of "which partner controls the money in this relationship" is foreign to me. It seems like the very antithesis of a happy, balanced marriage. It's all ours... the assets, and the allocation of those assets.
 
2017-04-21 02:16:08 PM  

Mr_Fabulous: Any money decision involving a couple hundred dollars or more, we'll talk it over and make solid decision together. No problem.

Aside from that, she handles the routine chore of banking/online payments/check-writing.

The very idea of "which partner controls the money in this relationship" is foreign to me. It seems like the very antithesis of a happy, balanced marriage. It's all ours... the assets, and the allocation of those assets.


I should add that we've been happily married for over 28 years. And we're both full-time employed.
 
2017-04-21 02:24:18 PM  
We keep it pretty simple.

I make almost all the money from my job, and 2 side businesses(90% probably).   I pay all of the bills.

She works part time,  and she keeps all of her money.

We do most of our shopping together,  and if I want anything over....say...$50,  I run it by her first.

She can spend her money on whatever she wants whenever.

Although a lot of the time she uses her money on gifts for  peoples birthdays/special events/etc.

Works for us.
 
2017-04-21 02:26:29 PM  

seriously.though: rosekolodny: donutsauce: seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.

[img.fark.net image 160x160]

Did you bring a history of poor financial decisions to the relationship or something?

I was a bit more puzzled about the fact that she's a kept woman.  I guess it's good work if you can get it.

Haha no to both, I go to school full-time. My husband is military, and when we had to move I obviously left my job, instead of working he told me to take the time and finish up school. So for over a year that's what I've been doing. And the only reason he has the "big savings account", is because he had it before we got married, there was no reason for me to have access to it because it wasn't mine. Now that I've been part of the savings plan we're going to add me, and he'll take what he had before we got married and put it into another account.


Gotcha.  Fascinating viewing it from the "all assets combine upon marriage" camp.  Different strokes for different folks.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 
2017-04-21 02:29:47 PM  

donutsauce: seriously.though: rosekolodny: donutsauce: seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.

[img.fark.net image 160x160]

Did you bring a history of poor financial decisions to the relationship or something?

I was a bit more puzzled about the fact that she's a kept woman.  I guess it's good work if you can get it.

Haha no to both, I go to school full-time. My husband is military, and when we had to move I obviously left my job, instead of working he told me to take the time and finish up school. So for over a year that's what I've been doing. And the only reason he has the "big savings account", is because he had it before we got married, there was no reason for me to have access to it because it wasn't mine. Now that I've been part of the savings plan we're going to add me, and he'll take what he had before we got married and put it into another account.

Gotcha.  Fascinating viewing it from the "all assets combine upon marriage" camp.  Different strokes for different folks.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯


The big account was saved from his deployment before we ever met, I'd be a huge asshole to even think I had any rights to it. Funny thing though, the car he bought me is 100% mine, he signed it over as soon as payments were finished. Even though I don't work, he never wants me to feel like I have to stay with him, he likes that I want to.
 
2017-04-21 02:38:03 PM  
Can someone shed some light for me on how it works when keeping separate accounts, especially if they vary in size drastically?

If one spouse can afford a vacation and the other can't, do they go alone or with someone else?  Do they "buy their counterpart a vacation" like it's a gift?

If one spouse can afford a 300k house and the other 150k, do they meet in the middle and one pays more or something?

If one spouse has enough to retire and the other doesn't, they go ahead and retire first and the other one works until they can afford to retire?

If one spouse blows every penny on a fancy car, is that ok because "separate accounts"?

Do you actually buy each other dinner or pay separately at dinner?
 
2017-04-21 02:41:16 PM  

seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.


this is the most interesting thing I have read today.
 
2017-04-21 02:47:50 PM  
Marriages are happier when people communicate about important stuff like money.

Marriages are even more happier when people do that communicating before getting married.
 
2017-04-21 02:51:56 PM  

ltdanman44: seriously.though: My husband "controls" the money, but I have my own account that he set up to automatically deposit part of his check into. If we need to buy anything big we talk about it. If I want something expensive we talk about that too. I have no issues because my wedding present was a "getaway fund", he gave me enough money so that if I ever want to leave him I can. Sounds cynical, but the piece of mind is great for our relationship. The one thing that I don't like is that he has the big savings account in his name only, but we've made it to the 5 year mark so I'll get added this year.

this is the most interesting thing I have read today.


Can't tell if that's snark or not...
 
2017-04-21 02:56:47 PM  

seriously.though: saved from his deployment


Hmm - does the source of that money play into why you feel that way towards it?  That would be completely understandable.
 
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