This is a popular phrase that many married women say when (playfully) explaining how they wish money would be divided in their marriage. When I got married five years ago, my husband and I made a brave decision in regards to money in our marriage. We decided that:
“What is mine is mine, what is his is his and what is ours is ours.”
That’s right; we decided in order to keep arguments in our marriage to a minimum we would keep separate bank accounts. You see money is a funny topic to some married couples and brings unnecessary arguments into the marriage.
I like to shop; however, my husband is a “penny pincher”. To keep his blood pressure from going through the roof, he doesn’t have to see what I spend my money on. Instead, if he sees too many new outfits in our closet, he will investigate. The only thing he cares about is if the bills are paid and if money is saved. Nothing else matters. If he wants to spend his money on season tickets to his favorite football’s team schedule, he can do that. The only thing I care about is if his bills are paid and if money is saved.
And in the 5 years we’ve been married we’ve never argued about money.
Before talking to other married couples, we assumed this was how ALL married couples handled their money. However, after playing spades one night with some friends of ours we realized that we were certainly in the minority. One of our friends ( a woman) said that they put ALL of their money together because that was what you are ‘supposed to do when you got married.’ Her husband just couldn’t understand why we didn’t just pool all of our money together. He reasoned that money made in the marriage should be communal property. We agreed but we felt like it’s more ‘adult like’ to give one another freedom in regards to how we spend our money.
You see, before we got married we lived together for nine years and there were times in the beginning, that we clashed over what one another spent our money on. After a few ‘blow ups’, we agreed that we would set goals and dates for bills. But after that, we were going to be adults and spend our money without the fear of being reprimanded by one another. We ultimately decided that money was something we did not want to fight about. Yes, we had a child together but that didn’t mean we had to merge EVERYTHING. We paid household bills out of one another’s account and if we needed to combine monies for what ever reason we did.
With this decision, there was no secrecy. We both have one another’s banking information and we’re both listed on one another’s accounts; however, we don’t feel the need to ‘police’ one another. We have the liberty to take money from one another’s account (the only rule is to let the other one know) if needed. When my husband was out of work after a layoff, he had complete access to my money. When I need some extra money, I have a card to go into his account and get what I need. This right here is REAL trust. Now tell me what you guys do!