WARNING: This post might cause offense. The faint hearted, sentimental, and overly traditional are advised to check their blood pressure before reading. William Ifeanyi Moore and BellaNaija will not be responsible for any outrage that ensues from reading. Thank you.
Now that we have that out of the way, I want to ask a very sensitive question to you all. In a relationship (marriage), what is your take on the handling of finances? After my rather limited research I came up with two models.
Model 1 (My Money & Your Money A.K.A the water and oil model)
This model suggests that both parties keep their own money in their own account and a joint account is only used for contributions when the need arises.
Model 2 (Our Money and Our Money A.K.A Mi casa, Su case)
This model suggests that both parties put all their money into a collective purse and release a pre-determined amount or percentage to their personal accounts for personal expenses.
Rule: The tipping point is 50% of the total earnings. Once more than 50% of total earnings go into the joint account, it is a Models 2 arrangement, and vice-versa with less than 50%.
So, what model do you follow in your marriage (if you are married), and what model would you hope to follow if like me you are a singleton? I will kick it off with being the first to confess. I am very much unmarried, but I have every intention to live by the Model 2 system. Yes, I said it, come and beat me.
From conversations I have been having about this topic, I have found myself very much in a minority, especially among women. Most women seem to have this idea that, ‘his money is our money, but my money is my money’. To that I say, ‘you are on a bicycle, heading nowhere fast’.
The reasons most people choose to keep their own money are as follows:
1. What if we get a divorce? (It’s a joint account, you can always calculate your contributions and split. Both of you can sign)
2. What if he carries my money to one mistress? (Ermm, you can have the alert sent to his SMS and your e-mail. You will catch him)
3. What if he carries all our money and runs away? (You can set a limit that will require both parties to sign)
4. What if I want to do something for my family or invest in my friend’s business? (This is where communication comes in. You will discuss it. He has family too, when it is his turn, the matter will be tabled as well)
I could go on and on, but it all boils down to one thing; lack of trust. This really makes me wonder. Humans will contribute money with a business partner that they don’t even share kids with, but dread the idea of sharing their finances with their spouse? This not only highlights the fear and tainted expectations we go into marriages with, it also reflects a new found selfishness that our generation has become famous for. Instead of putting the benefit of the family first, we place our own needs in front.
The question is simple: If you don’t trust me with your money, why are you getting married to me in the first place? In my opinion, someone that can’t share their money with you in the world today will definitely not share their food with you when the zombie apocalypse arrives. And someone that will eat your money but won’t give you theirs to eat will consider cooking you when that apocalypse comes. So ask yourself, why are you even going into a marriage to start with? To get your parents off your back? To play out the script written by society? To cure your loneliness? Or to build a life with someone else? Marriage is not by force. If you aren’t willing to go all the way, don’t go at all. It really is a win-big/lose-big game. But to win, you have to go all in.
People that build together, save together. It’s not like Bonnie and Clyde had different safe houses for the loots. A word is enough for the wise. As always, I am just a learner. Don’t mind how strongly I feel about the issue. It’s probably because I grew up in a home with this system and it has worked just fine for my parents. I know no one shoe fits all, so please, tell me what works for you or people you know ☺
Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Mocker