Posts Tagged ‘friends’

postheadericon Celebrating 14 Years with a Plan

I wanted to take this time and share with you that during National Marriage Week as I was faciliating Money and Marriage Teleseminars, my husband and I were celebrating 14 wonderful years of marriage. We came into our marriage with our eyes open. What do I mean by that?

We both came into our marriage with debt and disclosed that information fully to each other. We knew that we had made mistakes and did not judge each other, yet we let that catapult our relationship into a STRONG and FORMIDABLE team. How many of you have heard… A THREEFOLD CORD is NOT EASILY BROKEN! Amen!

When we talked about getting married, my mindset was I do not want to incur anymore debt for a wedding. Sure it was my first and only marriage; however knowing what I knew about the existing debt, I was not of the mind to create more. I WANTED to be OUT OF DEBT and so did he. So we agreed on a Justice of the Peace ceremony. Our family was not in town and I am not big on crowds.

We got married and paid for everything we needed in cash and were still able to continue with life. What did we do about the DEBT? We established a five year plan to pay it off that we could live with. Bless GOD – we did it in two and a half years WITHOUT filing bankruptcy, WITHOUT buying and selling houses – WE WORKED the PLAN. So when I talk to you about Money and Marriage – Telling you first hand experience.

Remember each one of us came to our marriage with debt – things that we did in our past without the other person yet we had to handle the ramifications of those choices we made separately together. What did those things include include….effects of bankruptcy, creditor calls, restoration from being homeless, not having a bank account, not being able to or comfortable talking with family about money issues, not comfortable enough to talk with anyone in our church, let alone our friends, challenges in our Faith and much more.

As we celebrated our 14 years of Marital Happiness, Love, Family and LASTING when others thought we would not make it – our twins were celebrating with us. They simply adore their example of marriage, love and happiness. We make sure and create memories for them that they will never forget. They do the same for us.

So for those of you that are engaged, newly married and married for many years, keep on pressing on and HAVE A PLAN. Even at 14 years we have plans that are short-term and long-term. We have fun making them as well as making them a reality and going beyond them.

To my Hubby, thank you my Love for who you are, whose you are and all that you are becoming. Thank you for 14 years of trials & triumphs, happy times and sad times, the ever growing TESTIMONY that our Marriage and Family is.

postheadericon What Grade is your Money and Marriage?

Iknow reading that title many of you are already thinking of what grade you are. I want you to read this post and be honest with yourself. Only you know what your money and marriage is about. Take the time to read through and be determined this day to make a change.

Grade  A –  You and your spouse openly and honestly communicate about money in marriage weekly if not several times a week. You have mutual financial goals set and are accomplishing those goals. No one person is bearing the financial burden. You and your spouse have dealt with financial challenges and survived them together without letting the stress of the financial challenges change who you are. You have learned that your love can conquer all and you work together as a team not as opponents. There is no pointing the finger in this grade, each accepts responsibility for financial mistakes and move on to solutions. Husbands and wives in this category have discovered what works best for them joint account or separate account or a combination of both. Have taken financial classes and also helped other couples.

Grade B – You and your spouse communicate about money about twice a month. One person is managing the money and makes sure the other one is knowledgeable about the finances. The person managing the money is bearing the burden of knowing immediately about the finances and tends to stress about it before talking with the other. There have been times when the money manager has been overwhelmed with the financial challenges and managed to get it resolved without including the spouse. When the money manager is overwhelmed it is evident that the personality changes which adds more stress to the marriage. Once it is resolved, returned to natural self. Will get financial help if they feel it is necessary.

Grade C –  You and your spouse are not communicating about money until an unexpected emergency happens. Then you go into panic mode and operate out of desperation. Once the emergency is solved, you return to the same behavior of not talking about money. The person that is managing the money, pays some bills and not others hoping that the spouse does not find out. There are no mutual financial goals. One person begins to feel as if there needs are not being met due to a lack of finances. Want to get help but think you cannot afford it and that leads to more financial mistakes.

Grade D –   You and your spouse found out that one of you came into the marriage with existing debt and doesn’t like it one bit. Furthermore, that person is a shopper. The silent treatment has set in because emotions have taken over because they had a different expectation for their marriage relationship than what is actually happening. The spouse without debt is not even sure if they are going to stay. Every day they think about it while at work and dread coming home because it makes them mad. This spouse without the debt is being driven by emotions and does not even want to look at what could be a solution. This makes the marriage very stressful and could also lead to health problems.  There are thoughts of getting out of debt but embarrassment stops you.

Grade F – There is no communication on any level about money. There is no joint account  – everything is separate. Both parties place the blame on each other which leads to no resolution. They keep ending up in the vicious cycle of debt. All they see is continuous debt and say to themselves why bother, not sure if this marriage is going to last anyway. Husband and wife came to the marriage with financial baggage and things are unraveling in a fast past. While the money issues are unraveling, the husband and wife are growing father and father apart. This couple is not thinking about money and marriage issues in any way, shape or form.

This post was designed to make you evaluate your money and marriage relationship. Are you talking enough? If you would like counseling or want the financial education program I created, send me an email via drtaffy@moneytalkmatters.com .

Copyright ©2009 – Dr. Taffy Wagner – Permission granted to use and reproduce with proper citation.

postheadericon Guy I Love has Debt from a Prior Marriage and Wedding

I must admit when I saw this, my heart almost sank because it saddened me and gave me cause for concern. Why? Women all over the world think they are in love with men like this and there is a lot to think about before getting even more serious. I imagine this person already knows the answer to the question: Do I continue the relationship?

The first thing that I want this writer to know is this, you cannot ignore those red flags that are coming up in your spirit. Let’s be honest. You are already questioning whether or not you should continue this relationship for several reasons:

1) The man has debt from a prior marriage and a wedding which are two separate items. Sure the wedding debt is part of it but he has other debt. Yes, I heard that and read it without your saying it.  So you are already concerned that if the two of you get serious that he will not ever have any money.

2) Sure you love him and thinks he feels the same way, but is it enough? Well, more than likely if this has not alreadyhappened, you will end up paying for the majority of your dates or extra expenditures even before you get married if the relationship were to go that far.

3) I sense that you could easily become resentful if you are the only one that is coming to the table with money. The question is if he has all this debt, is he working and what is his game plan to pay off the debt? Before you heavily consider getting married, you need to ensure that he has a realistic financial plan for cleaning up this debt (I recommend) prior to entering into another marriage.  The idea of him entering into another marriage with debt from a previous wedding sounds like toooo much pressure on a new marriage.

** Reason I say pressure is because when you think the money should be applied towards the new household (which you and he have), that money could be going towards his previous household.

4) What are the red flags saying to you? I imagine you are also not comfortable discussing this with anyone because you know what they would say. Be true to yourself. There is no reason to pretend because that only lasts so long. Furthermore, that could end up costing you more in the long run.

Ladies, before you go any further evaluate everything – your debt and his debt. What is his plan for paying off the debt which should not involve you? What is your financial plan for yourself. Money is very important and when you have a situation like this, do not avoid the discussion by any means.

postheadericon Throwing in the Towel because of Money Issues in Marriage!

Hmmm. This title came to me while I was writing a different post. Yes, this means it is for someone out there. There are many husbands and wives that throw in the marriage towel because of money challenges that present in marriage. Let me ask you a few questions:

1) Are you throwing in the towel because you are no longer willing to fight for your marriage? Marriage with two committed people does take work and it does not have to be hard like everyone says it is. People’s perception of marriage has gotten distorted based on what friends have experienced in marriage, family members in marriage, as well as co-workers. Recommendation: When it comes to your marriage, be honest with yourself – search deep down and ask yourself have you given it your best shot.

2) Can the financial issues not be repaired? Are there so many financial issues that you feel you have not options? If you feel that you have no options, did you take steps to consult with a financial counselor or advisor to get counseling on your specific situation. Or are you continuing to utilize your credit card and incur more debt thereby making the financial issues worse? Recommendation: Before you throw in the towel because you feel the financial issues cannot be repaired, be honest with yourself. What part of the financial issues that exist did you cause? They were not caused by one party – both of you are in this together. Second if the financial challenges got to be sooo difficult and you chose to move out (I didn’t say divorce) and get a place of your own, now you are incurring more bills. That did not solve the problem. As a matter of fact,  that creates a bigger financial problem for the marriage. Why? Because now you have chosen to live a separate life and incur additional debt. Question: Is that what your goal was when you decided to leave? Next question: What happens if you decide to work it out within your marriage and now you return with a new stack of bills?

  3) I cannot help but wonder, how many people entered into marriage without talking about finances. Then once they found out there was existing debt on a husband or wife’s part that was brought into the marriage, they are ready to throw in the towel. Recommendation:  Not meaning to sound harsh – this is how I see it. You have to a legal age to get married, which means you are an adult. I am sure a lot of couples had discussions prior to getting married that invooved money, yet they creatively skirted around the deeper issues that involved money that could have raised a red flag. Be honest with yourself, if you did not discuss money before and are starting to find out some not so pretty financial habits – take the time now to talk before you make any hasty, life long decisions.

Before you throw in the towel because of the pressure and stress, be honest with yourself about your role in your money and marriage.

postheadericon Is There an Approved Dating Period before Marriage?

This morning after class with our twins, I was doing some research and discovered this article that is titled, Is One Month Into Dating Too Soon to Get Hitched? Of course as suspected, this article is talking about famous people tying the knot after one month of dating. Then it goes on to share the pros and cons.

I started thinking about is there an approved dating period before marriage? Truly there are some people that get married in a short period of time after dating because they just know they have found their best friend, soul mate that they want to spend the rest of their life with.

Let me share my own example, many many years prior to meeting my husband, I had two serious relationships where one lasted for four years and the other was three years. Neither of those led me to walk down the aisle saying “I Do” and believe me every day of my life, I am truly thankful for that. There was waaaaaay to much drama in each.

But when I met my husband, we only dated for six months and then we were married. We knew after three months of dating that we were supposed to be married. We spent lots of time talking about our pasts, things we did and what we would like to do. I am a very no nonsense type of woman – what you see is what you get. No time for pretending to be someone else.

 Here is what I would have to say if someone is asking to get married after a month of dating or even a few weeks:

1) What is the hurry? Is there some information that you are about to find out that if you are married does not have to be disclosed? Is there some legal trouble they are about to get in and this would permit them to avoid it. 

2) Is their financial gain on the other person’s behalf by doing it sooo fast? You have to be very careful when it comes to a “rushed” marriage when you haven’t known each other for so long.

3)  Sometimes children are involved… enough said.

I am not saying that people should not get married. What I am saying is people should take the time to get to know each other and do not gloss over what could appear to be a “red flag” even while dating before moving on to walking down the aisle.

Marriage is a wonderful lifestyle and should not be entered into on a whim or because it is what everyone is doing. Take the time to date and have fun, it doesn’t stop once you are married to the right person.

                                    marry me graphic

postheadericon Husband Loans Money to Friends without Telling Wife

Let me say right off I know this one is going to be loaded. When the question came in to my email, I thought to myself there are other wives this is happening to or vice versa. So let’s take it one step at a time.

Obviously the wife who wrote in anonymously found out after the fact. First question, how did she find out? Did she discover that money was missing from their joint accout? Or did he say, by the way honey a couple of weeks ago I loaned this friend some money?

I guarantee you the wife that wrote that sent that question in, is more than likely mad because he did it and she did not know about, may not even like the friend the money was loaned to and probably feels she cannot trust her man with their money because he will give it away to whomever he wants without talking with her about it as if she does not have a say so.

Money is a serious subject that cannot be avoided between a husband and wife. Husband and wives do you have an understanding about loaning money to friends, relatives or colleagues? If you do not, this is something that should be discussed beforehand. It will prevent the type of email I received.

When people lose trust in relationships, it is hard to get it back. It takes a lot of work. Then the question becomes did he really loan the money or give the money. Either way it is a serious discussion that must be had in order to prevent what the couple is dealing with right now in their relationship.

This is not saying you should not loan money, but husbands and wives should know what they agree on when it comes to loaning money, to whom and agreeing even on an amount that will not affect their household finances. Be careful, because you do not want to become a personal banker at the risk of your own marriage. It’s not worth the risk.

postheadericon Marriage and Money Movie #29 – A Good Man is Hard to Find

This movie came highly recommended to me by a colleague, Mary Chatman, CEO of Creations of Love, Inc. I have to say WOW! This was not what I expected and it truly kept me on the edge of my seat.

Darin Dewitt Henson, Golden Brooks, Erica Campbell, Mel Jackson, Bishop Noel Jones, Darius McCrary, Hill Harper and Melissa De Sousa what a cast. There are so many dynamics in this movie, I am attempting to summarize it without giving too much away.

The below is a a familiar story that people might have actually heard in real life: Man meets woman when they are younger, fall in love and he asks her to marry him. She says yes under one condition that he would never leave her. Man is invovled in his church and woman feels as if she has taken a back seat to his duties at the church. Man says that she doesn’t come second, but any time she wants to plan something, he has a commitment at the Church. Woman feels unappreciated and unwanted. Woman has a great paying job and completes a top level degree, that no doubt her husband paid for. Woman is offered a job that is paying her more and her soon to be new boss make advances. Woman invites new boss to a dinner gathering and husband is late to the gathering and still meets her new boss and does not like him.

Woman goes to work the next day and complains to the new boss. What do you think happens next. What happens next, sets off a chain of events that you do not expect by a long shot. You will have to get a copy of this movie and add it to your library. It it soooo worth it.

Money Implications:

Just because one person makes more money than the other in marriage, does not mean that the one who makes less is any more less driven than the one who makes a lot of money. There will always be people who think they can come into your life and give you the world, yet in the end it is a game to them. People love the chase. Don’t fall for the trap.

Money Tip #1: Do not forget about investments spouses made in each other and the marriage.

Money Tip #2: The grass may look greaner on the other side and that new person is only using different fertilizer with a devastating result.

Money Tip #3: Do not allow illegal activity to go in your house that could result in something detrimental to your family. It is not worth it.

Observations:

Couple #1: Main Couple who is Rachel (Golden Brooks) and Clarence (Darrin Henson) were in a marriage that dealt with him paying for her higher college education, him being involved in the Church and her feeling as if she came second to the church. They had an adult son that did not want to work but was involved with some illegal activity.

Couple #2: Bruce and Charlene a very interesting couple. Bruce worked with Clarence at the Auto Shop and is a drinker. Charlene has a good job and loves her husband. Within this relationship they deal with alcoholism, pregnancy and physical abuse.

Not a couple: What is interesting you have Rachel’s friend, Monica who met her boss, Damion Marshall. You will have to watch the movie to find out what happens.

Recommendations:

(1) Do not subject yourself to physical abuse in any relationship it is not worth it. That can cost you tons of money in the long run whether it is legal fees or even therapy bills.

(2) When you are in a marriage, do not let it drive you to do anything illegal or anything that would endanger your life.

(3) Make it known if someone begins flirting with you that you are happily married. Do not even let your mind begin to go there. You cannot afford the consequences of infidelity.

(4) For those that are spiritual, when it comes to involvement in your Church and your marriage, healthy boundaries must be set here too. Families should not feel as if they are paying a heavy price because of the Church.

 

If you are seeking guidance in money and marriage, contact Dr. Taffy via emal at drtaffy@moneytalkmatters. com

postheadericon Marriage and Money Movie #28 – Something New

I remember when this movie came out, I could not wait to watch. Now everytime it comes on tv, another that has me glued to the tube. Sanaa Lathan, Donald Faison, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Alfre Woodard, Taraji P. Henson, Mike Epps, Earl Billings and Golden Brooks are some of my favorite actors and actresses.

Corporate lawyer, independent woman that is not dating but everyone including her parents want her to finds love. Her friends tell her to try something new and do not worry about finding the “ideal black man.” Lo and behold she finds love in an unexpected place with a different package than she expected. Her friends set her up on a blind date with a landscaper and she is thrown for a minute.

She needs landscaping done and hires him to do it. He comes over to work on a weekend and discover that she is dressed in professional attire and comments. She shares that she has to go to work and is on target to become a partner. Before you know it, Kendra (Sanaa’s character) and Brian are spending more time together and she likes him.

Her family on the other hand has other ideas. This movie deals with race, money, parents and friends. I barely scratched the surface of this movie in my summary, grab your copy below if you want to know all the details.

Money Implications:

When it comes to your profession and you work in an environment where you might be the only person of your ethnicity, do not let it keep you from become successful and reaching your goals. Sure there will be people in the work environment that have a limiting mindset and could even talk down to you, utilize that as encouragement to press forward to success. Do not let their limitations stifle your earning potential.

Money Tip #1: You can settle for someone that makes the parent(s) happy but you will not be happy and could do things that would destroy your relationship. That comes at a price.

Money Tip #2: Stand by your beliefs even when completing a job, there is nothing greater than your integrity. If it makes the boss mad, so be it – be true to yourself and the facts.

Money Tip #3: Do not speak false information, you will be found out. This could cost you, your relationship and your job.

Observations:
Once she realized who truly was in her heart, she could no longer deny it and went after her man. Most of us know the truth pretty rapidly. Do not marry the wrong person because the money was spent or you were trying to save face. No noe will know the full story unless you choose to divulge it.

Stay true to who you really are and do not which I cannot stress enough get into the habit of pleasing your parents. Do not forsake your spouse for your parents.

Putting the parents before your spouse can destroy your marriage and relationship.

Recommendations:

(1) Be true to who you are and what your heart says.

(2) Keep an ongoing ledger or online tool to track your money. This will aid yo in the future if you have to remove something.

(3) Love is not about material things. It is fine to have material things but do not let material things have you.

(4) Race should not matter when it comes to love.

postheadericon Marriage and Money Movie #25 – Guess Who

I had to watch this movie a second time to make sure it fit the marriage and money movie reviews. I am sooooo glad I did because it was a great addition. This movie had various dynamics that I am going to point out that can benefit so many on different levels. Take your time when you are reading these reviews because if you can think back to the movie, you can see these different points of view.

Without giving too much away this movie dealt with an affluent family, race, unemployment, lies, and money. One of my favorite actors that I got to see in person and truly miss that was in the movie – the late Bernie Mac. Ashton Kutcher was also in this movie.

Ashton plays Simon in this movie and has become engaged to Bernie’s (Percy) daughter – Teresa. Simon and Teresa are going to her parents for the weekend to celebrate their 25th anniversary. She has not told her parents that he is white. Percy has pulled Simon’s credit report and is pleased with what he sees. When they arrive, Percy mistakes the cab driver, who is black for his daughter, Teresa’s boyfriend. Then when Simon introduces himself as her boyfriend, Percy is taken shocked. Percy looks around to see if anyone sees Simon standing in the yard and says we need to go inside. Then he begins in on Simon with the 20 questions. He is very suspicious of simon.

Percy later asks his wife, why didn’t the daughter tell them he was white. Wife admits she had figured it out. Simon begins contacting old friends and colleagues to see if he can get a job before anyone discovers he does not have a job. Percy does not like him from the start and wants to take him to a hotel.

Money Implications:

Do not hide your financial background from your soon to be spouse. When the truth is revealed it could divide and destroy your relationship and marriage. There is nothing wrong with putting your cards on the table to ensure the one you love knows you are not attempting to keep secrets, especially financial secrets.

Do not lie about your employment situation. You can only pretend so much and it will catch up with you.

Money Tip #1: If you love someone, love them regardless of income.

Money Tip #2: For parents, do not make your grown son or daughter feel as if their choices are wrong when it comes to a mate without talking with your future son or daughter-in-law.

Money Tip #3: Do not prejudge a person based on the color of their skin. That type of discrimination affects a person as a whole which includes their work performance.

Money Tip #4: Parents should be knowledgeable of how their future son or daughter-in-law handle different financial situations.

Observations:

When it comes to love, race should not matter. Your heart does not discriminate – love who you love and enjoy life.

Do not lie about your employment because it will affect the entire household. Once you say “I Do”, all situations (employment, education, financial and more) affect the household.

If you start out lying to your future spouse, you will slip up and the relationship could begin to deteriorate.

Recommendations:

1) Be honest and proud of your soon-to-be spouse. You are the one that has to live with the person and make joint decisions. You should not be embarrassed about this person or anything.

2) Know that when you enter into a marriage and it is different races, you can get the looks and even some comments – do not address people’s ignorance. Love the one you are with because they love you. You don’t have to impress anyone.

3) Talk WITH each other versus AT each other. The power of speech also affects your finances, ability to work effectively and efficiently whether you work for someone else or have your own business.

4) When you are building a relationship with your in-laws, it takes time. Build the relationship without passing judgment. This is your soon-to-be spouse’s parents.

5) Before you borrow money from parents or in-laws, know up front that a lot can happen from that i.e. change in the relationship, parents watching how you spend (they may think you are wasting their money) money and more. Make sure everyone understands whether it is a gift or a loan.

postheadericon Marriage and Money Movie #23 – Love and Other Four Letter Words

I must admit when this movie came out, I must have missed it in the theaters. Yet, about four months ago when I was watching TV, the title made me stop and watch. Love and Other Four Letter Words – let me be honest I know some four letter words that people dislike, so I thought to myself go ahead and watch it. Below is my brief summary.

TV Personality, Stormie wants to grant her dying grandmother’s wish that she be married. So she in turn talks with her assistant and they pay this gentleman to pretend that he is going to marry her. Stormie goes along with it as long as she can and she even talks with her childhood pal who is a minister. Stormie’s Nana calls and says she is coming out there. You must watch this movie to find out what happens in the end.

Money Implications:Being a strong, independent successful woman does not mean that you cannot enjoy life as well. The character Stormie in this movie was willing to pay someone and pretend to make someone else happy in her family but not be true to herself. Marriage is a serious commitment and should not be taken lightly.

Money Tip #1: Do not plot with friends in order to marry someone because of their money. Be true to yourself and who you love.

Money Tip #2: Being independent, career oriented does not mean that you cannot have a relationship if that is what you desire. As a matter of fact, kudos to you for knowing who you are and bringing assets to the marriage table.

Observation:
This person was all about pleasing her dying “Nana” no doubt, someone she would do anything for. Parents nor relatives wishes for us cannot dictate how we live. Sometimes parents are attempting to live through their young children (adults) and it causes more problems.

Recommendations:
(1) Being an independent person has given you the opportunity learn how to manage money on your own. Take those lessons into your marriage and establish mutual financial goals.

(2) Once you are married, learn how to relax somewhat and know that you do not have to carry the load all by ourself. You know have a spouse that you can depend on.

(3) Love can lasts for a lifetime. Make decisions based on facts not emotions.

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