"Sign here, Honey"

It’s one month from tax time. If you’re like most wives I know, you’ll let your husband consult with the accountant. You have too many other things to do, and besides, you’re not interested in all those forms. BIG MISTAKE! Your signature is required to file a joint tax return. Your signature means you read it, understood it and agreed with the information. ...more

Who Protects the Second Wife?

We take life on the local road for granted. The oncoming car will stay in its lane. The tailgating driver behind us won’t ram our rear fender. The grazing deer won’t run out on the road . The driver in the weaving car can handle his tire blowout. The bridge will hold and get us across the river.“I’ll only be gone a few hours” he had said. “We’ll review the paperwork later.”...more

An Expensive Wedding Ritual

The rehearsal dinner is often the first time that a bride and groom get to know each other’s family.A  friend's son is getting married in a few weeks. She recently got a closer look at Maria, her future daughter-in-law and her ideas about money, value and entitlement.  For years, Maria had fantasized about "her special day", and all the trimmings that go along with it....more

Is Valentine’s Day Just For Women?

According to the Greeting Card Association, an estimated one billion Valentine cards are sent each year; 85 percent of them are purchased by women. Yet it’s men who feel most of the pressure to spend money, sometimes lots of it, because their wife or girlfriend takes this day very seriously....more

The Courage to Call Off the Wedding

I met Ellen on a flight to New York. She had just called off her wedding, scheduled for Valentine’s Day. Ellen was in her late thirties. This would have been her second marriage.“It’s almost as complicated to call off the wedding as it is to put it together,” she said. “Strange how everyone seems to take my decision personally. My parents, my daughter, my friends and co-workers, all  trying to reassure me that it’s natural to feel nervous before your wedding. I wasn’t nervous. There were red flags, and I paid attention to them."...more

It's Too Easy to Get Married

It's easier to get married than it is to get a driver's license or buy a gun.If you want a driver's license, you need to go through driver's education of some sort, then pass a written test and go for a test drive with someone from the Department of Motor Vehicles. For the gun, you must wait 10 days, or whatever the law is in your state, while the authorities run identity checks on you....more

Beware the Seductive Financial Advisor

 I met a financial advisor after I was widowed 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 money 'really works".  “Ultimately, it comes down to your peace of mind and the trust we establish in the relationship”, he said....more

Money is Not about Money

I once attended a workshop about money and its relationship to our cultural norms and icons. One of the exercises for our group was to chew a brand new $100 bill. We did it, but most of us gagged.The purpose of the exercise was to demonstrate that money – the thing itself – is neutral. Pieces of paper, diamonds, chunks of gold to which we assign a cultural worth have no direct value in nourishing us, keeping us warm, or sheltering us.  In this exercise, money even turned out to be disgusting....more

5 Undisputable Truths about Marriage

Truth Number One...more

Silence Is the Enemy of Intimacy

Is discussing money a hot button subject with your husband?Is your husband involved in deals you don't understand?Even worse, does he withhold financial information?If you're resentful or angry about the lack of financial openness and intimacy between you, you're probably angry about a lot of other things; your sex life, for example....more