Valentine’s Day is For Women

Two weeks to V day and the clues are all around us. 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

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

Credit Score Predicts Money Compatibility

You’re in love. He’s perfect. Finally, a man who shares your values about life, work, children, family.You want to spend the rest of your life with him.So now it’s time to talk about money, you know, beliefs, attitudes, expectations  and yes, FICO scores....more

Brides, Weddings and Barbie Dolls

There's a wonderful cartoon that shows a man kneeling in front of a woman, holding an open jewelry box with an engagement ring. He is saying, "Let's assume each other's debt. Trade in our independence for security and societal approval and celebrate with an event that will have cost overruns in the thousands."What's so romantic about starting married life with thousands of dollars in credit card debt for wedding related bills? ...more

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 his 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. ...more

An Engagement Ring Is Not a Christmas Gift

Did you know that 26% of engagements happen at Christmas time? Right up there with the stress of holiday obligations and partying, two people decide to commit their futures to each other. Not a good idea....more