Sasha Answers: Joint Accounts

December 17, 2012 18:24:11 Posted at December 17, 2012 18:24:11
Sasha Posted by Sasha

So my guy and I have been married a little over a year now. I'm still confused as to how we go about merging, or not merging, our finances? We each have separate accounts and we split bills 50/50. These expenses have increased heavily after buying a home and wedding spending.

I am a junior in my job and make far less than him. I also am carrying student debt and he is not. It feels so wrong to be cut some slack on going dutch, but I am struggling. My confidence is taking a beating because I used to be financially independent; it was a big deal to me and I was proud of myself. Now I worry about money all the time. I don't think he realizes how broke I am because we do not access each other's accounts.

What's the norm these days? Such unfamiliar territory.

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The norm is whatever works for the couple.  How’s that for a grey area answer? 

I think it all comes down to an arrangement that works best for both of you at a particular time.  Some couples have joint funds, others have personal accounts and a joint fund for bills, and others have an agreement where one person pays for the house supplies while the other partner pays for the bigger expenses.   I mean, anything goes.

In my relationship we split everything 50/50, but once my lady parts decide to make a baby, things are going to have to change.  And when I eventually go back to work, they’ll change again.  So T, the point here is that there doesn't need to be one steadfast rule.

However what does need to happen is you have to have a frank discussion with your husband, and you shouldn't be afraid or embarrassed.  Remember, this is a partnership which means you guys have to know what’s going on with each other both emotionally and financially.  It’s just part of being in a grown up relationship.  I know, boring, right?

He needs to know you’re struggling and TOGETHER you need to find a solution.  I would hope that he steps up to cover you for a few months until your job becomes more stable, but if you’re one of those people who doesn't want to feel like a mooch then you can always work out some sort of payment plan.   Trust me, you’re going to feel so much better if you're more upfront about all of this.

Thanks for writing in and keep your LIFE+ STYLE questions at me here.

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