I love reading advice columns, and Dear Prudence is one of my favorites. Jesus, that bitch is clueless. Her advice usually consists of “go to therapy”, and she appears not to realize that most “therapists” are retards who took psych degrees and can’t find any other job.
She’s always good for a laugh, though, and her response to this writer is one of the best I’ve had in a long time:
Q. Married but Financially Separate: My husband and I have been married for five years and have totally separate finances—bank accounts, credit cards, nothing is shared. He makes significantly more money than I do and pays all of the bills with the exception of the mortgage, which I pay. He “gives” me money weekly for groceries and incidentals. Regardless, I am pretty much broke all of the time. We don’t have a joint credit card or bank account and I get really resentful when he spends lots of money on something and I am relegated to the local discount store, a place he wouldn’t consider gracing. He refuses to join our finances or have a joint credit card. This isn’t a partnership. As he would say, what’s mine is mine and what’s yours is yours. Is he on a power trip or paranoid? I know I blew it by not discussing how we would handle our money before getting married but I didn’t and now this is a serious issue for me.
Let’s take this apart, shall we?
My husband and I have been married for five years and have totally separate finances—bank accounts, credit cards, nothing is shared.
Hmm. I wonder why? Anyone get the feeling that something is being left out here? Totally separate finances for five years feels like some sort of reaction, no? I wonder what cupcake would like to DO with that joint bank account and what she intends to purchase with the shared credit card?
Oh, let’s just start with the assumption that MEN SUCK and this guy is no different. He’s a big mean asshole who won’t foot wifey’s bills.
In which case, why did you marry him?
I’m seeing some excellent judgement from cupcake right off the bat.
He makes significantly more money than I do and pays all of the bills with the exception of the mortgage, which I pay.
Oh boo hoo. Does he have some actual, real, marketable skills that translate into an income and you don’t? Let me guess. Women’s studies major? Psychology? Art history?
And he pays all the bills! What a jerk! YOU have to pay the mortgage? Well, that’s bullshit. Why should you have to pay any bills at all?
I wonder how much the “bills” amount to after the mortgage is paid?
According to this graph, based on Department of Labor statistics, the average couple spends about $10 000/year on housing. Out of an annual expenditures budget of just under $50 000. So cupcake, who has to pay the mortgage, is likely spending about $10 000 per year, leaving her husband, who pays all the other bills, on the hook for $40 000 a year.
That’s so mean! He pays, on average, FOUR TIMES MORE for all the bills, and this bitch is whining?
He “gives” me money weekly for groceries and incidentals. Regardless, I am pretty much broke all of the time.
So basically, she doesn’t earn very much money, has to pay a quarter of their expenses, he gives her money ON TOP of that, and she’s still broke most of the time.
Sounds like a really responsible sort of person, no? Gosh, this is a perplexing situation indeed. Why on earth doesn’t he want to give her access to his bank account?
We don’t have a joint credit card or bank account and I get really resentful when he spends lots of money on something and I am relegated to the local discount store, a place he wouldn’t consider gracing.
Awww. You get wesentful? You don’t wike him spending money on himself? You have to go to the discount store?
Hey, I have an idea! Get a better job! Or a second job. Or, you know, shut the fuck up.
He refuses to join our finances or have a joint credit card. This isn’t a partnership. As he would say, what’s mine is mine and what’s yours is yours. Is he on a power trip or paranoid?
Let’s see. By your own admission, you are resentful of your husband, you don’t earn much money, you can’t manage the little money you DO earn PLUS what he gives you on top of that and you are broke most of the time.
Hmm. Is he on a power trip or paranoid? I’m not sure how you are defining those terms, but if you mean “is he responding rationally and prudently to an immature sulky little bitch of a wife who can’t even manage her allowance”, then yes to both!
I know I blew it by not discussing how we would handle our money before getting married but I didn’t and now this is a serious issue for me.
You know what, sweetpea? I’m thinking he’s having the exact same thoughts. He blew it by marrying you, and he doesn’t intend to blow it any further by giving you carte blanche access to the family resources.
So what is Prudie’s advice?
MAKE HIM PAY FOR MARRIAGE COUNSELING!
And if that doesn’t work, get a divorce.
A: Since you don’t mention other more pleasant aspects of life that you do share, I’m wondering if there is any part of your union that does feel like a partnership. (I hope your weekly stipend isn’t for services rendered.) If not, what are you doing in it? There is something you two need to do together and for which your husband should pay: marriage counseling. Tell him that you thought you married the handsome prince, but you feel like Cinderella before the ball. Explain that you have become so resentful of your disparate financial conditions that your marriage is at stake. Do keep in mind that since you are chronically broke, if you two do split, you’re going to have to learn to live within your own means.
At least Prudie has the good sense to remind Cupcake that she will be paying all her own bills should she decide to go that route. Well, depending on whether or she can secure alimony payments, that is.
Odds are pretty good she’ll get a few years worth of access to that bank account, which just might be enough time to line up the proper Prince Charming who will grasp that she is not Cinderella BEFORE the ball, she is Cinderella AFTER the ball.
Having read this column, I am now even more grateful that I have a husband who shares not just his life with me, but his money, too.
True story: Once NurseRatchet was over for a visit and Mr. JB came home and took my wallet out of my purse, looked over all the receipts, took them, counted the cash I had and then put my wallet back in my purse.
After he left, Ratchet threw a fit! How dare he? He checks your purchases? Just goes in your purse whenever he wants? Counts your money? Do you have to grovel for that money? Do you have no privacy at all?
Ratchet is kind of a bitch. I don’t really see her anymore, but that’s another story. The point here is how she assumed that our finances were something deeply personal and separate. They’re not. Mr. JB checks my wallet pretty much every day because he files all the receipts in the event that I need to exchange or return something. If it was up to me, I would never find a receipt ever. I can barely find my keys, never mind a receipt for the hairdryer I bought six weeks ago. He also likes me to have a certain amount of cash in my wallet, in case I want coffee or need to buy some small thing. I never check to see if I have money before I go somewhere, because I KNOW that I do.
I have access to our bank account, but I never touch it. If I’m not going to bother learning how our budget works (and I’m not), then I figure I have no business messing with it. I use my Visa or the cash in my wallet for whatever I want or need to buy. Anything bigger than $40, I run by Mr. JB first. I’m not asking for permission, I’m asking if that purchase will mess with his budget. It works very well for us, because I’m not a big shopper and I don’t spend a lot of money (except for the bookstore – I can be pretty deadly in the bookstore).
And once I go back to work, none of this will change. I will have whatever money I earn deposited into our joint account, which I will then proceed to ignore completely and I’ll keep using my Visa and trusting that my wallet is filled with cash.
It works because I’m actually a grown-up with some concept of how money and budgets work. We never carry credit card debt and I would consider it a huge personal failure to ever blow our family budget to the point that was necessary. It’s just not going to happen.
What happens when you marry someone like cupcake who can’t manage her allowance and is perpetually broke?
You keep your accounts separate. Seems pretty reasonable to me. If cupcake wants to be Cinderella AFTER the ball, she can get her ass out of that pumpkin and go earn some money. Prince Charming is hardly likely to foot the bill for some resentful little bitch who thinks the solution to her problems is the Prince’s cash and a joint credit card.
You know, I just realized something. I never put my wallet in the same place twice. Right now I have no idea where it is. That means Mr.JB has to go hunting for it every day to make sure I have money.
That must be really fucking annoying.
I’ll have to work on that.
Lots of love,