Are you better off married?

by Kristina on April 25, 2013 · 7 comments

Good morning Dinks.  It’s that time of the year again, the time of the year when young ladies my age are sending out their wedding invitations for their summer weddings.  Apparently I am at that age when I should be getting married, getting pregnant and settling down.  It seems like everywhere I turn and every time I open my mail box I am receiving another invitation to attend someone’s baby shower or wedding.

I thought that the wave of my friends and co-workers getting married and having babies was over, but I guess that I was wrong. So yet again I am going to dance the night away and smile my way through another summer of weddings and baby showers.  But what should I do if my happily ever after doesn’t include a house, two kids and all of the financial stress that comes along with it?

One of my co-workers got married to the man of her dreams last year and now she is blissfully pregnant and expecting her first child.  Three years ago my co-worker was complaining about how she had no money; some days she would even cry about how much debt she had and now only a year later she is debt free.  I know that marriage means you are supposed to share everything with your spouse and live happily ever after, but what if the only thing your spouse has is debt?

Debt may be a deal breaker

I feel that this is why couples should talk about finances, goals and money before they get married because no one likes an unpleasant surprise after they have already put a ring on their loved ones finger.

I know that some people get married for money and I don’t think that this is the whole story in my co-workers case.  I truly believe that my co-worker is happily married but I also believe that money is a big part of her happiness.  She no longer has the stress of being thousands of dollars in debt; she now enjoys having access to a bank account with two incomes and a husband who never says no.

After dating for years and finally getting married in her 40s my co-worker has found happiness with a man who is financially stable and willing to share his comfy money cushion with his wife. Is he a good husband or is he just a sucker?

Maybe a spouse feels obligated

This is surprisingly not the first time that one of my co-workers (at the bank) has married a man who willingly pays off their debt.  I have another co-worker has been married for several years now, when she was still dating her now-husband many years ago he paid all of their monthly expenses (including the mortgage) so that she could focus on paying off her student loans and other debt.

This man didn’t hand over fists full of money, but he did let his girlfriend live rent free for many years so that she could become debt free.  Should one spouse put financial stress on them self so that the other spouse can reap the financial rewards? I am not so sure.

Photo by DieselDemon

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 James April 25, 2013 at 10:39 pm

Are you better off married…for sure!

2 KC @ genxfinance April 25, 2013 at 10:48 pm

There maybe guys who are suckers but there are those who are fully aware of that and they’re okay with it. Maybe James’ right. Maybe you are better off married. ;)

3 Carolyn April 26, 2013 at 11:42 am

From the title of this post. I was expecting some useful info about the monetary benefits of getting married. Is it worth it?

4 Bonnie June 5, 2013 at 12:37 pm

I got married relatively young by my generation’s standards. We tied the knot when I was about 4 months shy of my 21st birthday and while my husband was quite a bit older than me at 27, he was in the same place financially as I was at the time, because he was a recent immigrant to the United States who had come with nothing but the clothes on his back. In a lot of ways this actually worked in our favor because while we didn’t have money for a wedding, honeymoon, house, or even furniture, we didn’t have many expectations either. Neither of us stood to make any material gains or losses from the marriage because neither of us had anything.

Everything we’ve “achieved” in our adult lives has been achieved together. It’s harder for us to have the mindset of one of us “owing” the other one because we started out on even ground. I know that there is a lot of advice out there cautioning young adults not to get married so young, but personally, for us, it actually worked out great. In our thirties we’ve gotten to a point where we have no debt, live in a paid-off house, and are saving nearly 100% of my take-home pay. Without each other, I don’t see how we could have gotten to this point. Starting out young and poor helped us become accustomed to a lower standard of living which has made it easier to save more as our earnings increase over the years.

I love being married. Yes, there have been some really tough times, but whenever I look at the bigger picture, I realize just how much my husband and I complete each other, not just in emotional and sentimental ways, but financially too.

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