Don’t Worry…I’ve got this one??

 

separate-bank-accounts

 

What is happening to marriage these days? I pose the question as I’m seeing more and more of what I’m about to speak of each and every day and it’s bothersome. Is it that people lost track of what to look for in a mate, or that they don’t understand what marriage actually is actually representing? If my grandparents were alive today, unfortunately seeing this would probably give them a heart attack!

My point? I’m getting there; to explain this I’ll use different names so as not to rattle anyone. Out to dinner one night, my wife and I with another couple had a fantastic evening and then the bills came. Samantha’s husband James spoke up and said I got this one honey you got it the other night. Now, of course, I had an idea what was going on but I wanted to see if he had a different outlook on it than I’ve heard before….he didn’t.

I asked jokingly, “you got it?” We are close enough that i know James wouldn’t take offense. James then goes on to tell me that they split the bills down the center and whatever money is left over from their own paychecks is what they call a slush fund. Separate bank accounts are kept for this to do with as they please.

Now the fun began, the great debate, or what I liked to call discussion over something that no matter what he was going to tell me I wasn’t about to agree with. I was brought up with an old fashioned sort of outlook on things where what’s mine is ours and what’s hers is ours. We hold two bank accounts that are both joint one for bills and one for savings and after the bills are paid, what is left is ours. This doesn’t mean 50/50, this means that it is on a need basis. The question that always gets me flared up is when I ask, what if one of you goes through an illness or loses a job? The sad part is that the diehard people that do this usually answer as James did, “she or I would pay back what was owed upon returning to work”. Apparently, I have marriage all wrong as I thought in order to love someone completely and honestly is to trust them with absolutely everything about yourself inside and out. Am I wrong? What is your point of view?

Comments (18)

  • Its definitely not the way we do things, but if it works for them, why not?

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    • Well, I’m by no means a doctor in any way, however, and for sure if they feel it works for them it will continue. I just think your relationship should not start out and end based upon what’s yours is your and what’s mine is mine as trust is very important in a relationship.

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      • I absolutely agree, i cant imagine having to owe my husband money.

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  • Wow! I’ve heard of this arrangement before but to state that your partner will “pay what’s owed” is ludicrous! As you said “What’s mine is ours and what’s hers is ours”! My wife handles ALL the finances in the house and if either of want something, we ONLY ever buy needs, if the $ is there we get it.
    You made a good point about either getting sick too, where will the “emergency cash” come from?

    Reply
    • I totally agree with you Jason!! Buy what you need, not what you want.

      Tammy Bell
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  • That is crazy! We make jokes about who will pay for what , but it is all out of the same joint account. I take care of the finances so it seems I get all the money, but in reality it is paying for us to survive as a family. Extra money we like to save for rainy days or maybe buy our daughter something she needs..

    Tammy Bell
    Reply
  • This is the arrangement my hubby and I have, I think it comes from the fact that we came into the marriage with student debts we were each individually responsible for. So when we split that out of our “joint bills” it just evolved into splitting all the bills. Basically my husband has his own account and it covers anything house related or his own credit cards and student loans. I have my own account and it covers my car and anything child related. And yes when I “borrow” money from my hubby I pay it back. And in regards to sickness, my hubby was sick and couldn’t work for a year. With the help of family and myself we made ends met. When my husband was healthy again he paid back what I used or borrowed to keep us going. I don’t think it is really that different then having a joint account, the bills are paid, savings are adding up and all the extra stuff is covered too. I don’t understand why the original author is so appalled by the concept of keeping them separate, it doesn’t have any réflexion on how “joint” we are as a married couple, we actually argue less about money then most cause we have individual control. But really to each their own, who cares all us life is being paid for.

    Trish
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  • I’m all for separate accounts though it never worked for us they way this article describes. He always paid when we were out and he was the one to always give me cash because I never carried it with me (I’m a pro-debit believer and he was a pro-cash believer who felt strongly against me going out without cash). Some bills came out of his account and others out of mine but there was no reason behind which one and why, it was more a matter of who took care of it at the time – he did then he used his account, I did then I used my account… The reason we were both pro separate accounts is because sometimes when we are previewed to how our spouses choose to spend their money (i.e. whatever fancies him that I may think it’s a waste of money and vice versa) it can lead to arguments that when we actually stop to think about it are trivial in the grand scheme of things. It’s not the same seeing $$ come out of the account to pay for XYZ vs simply seeing XYZ being worn/used without any knowledge of how much it actually cost. When you see XYZ being worn/used you tend to focus more the item itself and what it does or how good it looks or how happy it makes your spouse feel rather than on the $$ spent on it…

    Crazyleila
    Reply
  • I think a lot of problems in marriages and divorce comes from having seperate accounts with your spouse. You are married so you should be doing things together. At least that’s how my husband and I do it and we don’t have any issues about who is paying what. We pay our bills together and spend our money together. I think this is how it should be. Now a days a lot of people would argue with me on that but that’s why there are a lot more divorced people and also a lot of unhappy marriages out there….

    My opinion 🙂

    Melissa
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    • Why would separate accounts lead to divorce, just curious why you think that?

      Trish
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  • My husband and I have separate accounts, too, but it’s only out of convenience. Technically we are both on both accounts so we both own them together, but we each balance the books on our accounts we came into the relationship with. We started with separate accounts when we first dated and then we dated for 7 years, so it’s really just habit at this point. We don’t split things 50/50 and we never really did, but I think it’s important to be able to have your own money that you always know the balance of. There have been times that I had more money when we were dating and first married and he had car payments, and now that we have kids and I don’t work as much, he has more, but we both have things we pay for and we adjust it as our finances change. Question for those with one single account: What if you both “splurge” on something the same day and you go into overdraft? And, how do you keep surprises under wraps if you can both see the balance and transactions at any time? I love being able to surprise hubby by stopping into his favorite store, but I would hate it if our bank app alerted him every time I bought him something (that being said, I don’t care if he sees what I buy unless it’s for him. I don’t have shopping secrets otherwise!)

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  • Excellent, a discussion is now forming. My whole point behind this is that for better or worse as the marriage vows state is what you take your spouse for. This in “My Opinion” is sharing everything including all forms of finances. I have never had an issue hiding a gift as I would just withdraw cash and pay for it. Does this lead to divorce? I can’t say one way or another, however, I can tell you that when a couple are divorced due to financial issues, it’s because one or the other had a separate account. There are those out there that have separate accounts and have no issues. I have distant relatives that do this as well as friends. I have also seen couples see the other do without things because their account couldn’t pay for it on this pay or next. In the end, I am not saying marry for money as I was making double of what my wife made when we first met and that made no bearing on my love for her. I’m saying we went all in as you never know what can happen in life and when your going to need each other the most. You should never feel like you have to “Pay Back” your spouse, again in my opinion.

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  • It is funny this topic has come up, because as you said it rattles me too! I know many married couples in my circle that split the bills dinner and checks down the middle. I don’t get it. My hubby and I have always shared money. Heck we bought a house when I was 18 and since then our life has been together. I believe this is what makes us strong and such a success.

    Tammy Mitchell
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  • I actually had no idea that it was so common to split accounts! We got married, merged everything and have never looked back. It works great for us, we never question one another on spending habits as we both generate an income so it’s very much a partnership.

    Sharon Vinderine
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  • Sharon, it’s funny you should say that, because I only know one couple in our circle that has only one account that they share. That being said, the ones that hold two accounts don’t “pay each other back” when they are short on funds, and it’s not treated like a 50/50 thing, I always just assumed it was more of what our reasoning was – convenience, easier to balance, and for gifts and such as well as having two different bank accounts in case one was having issues (as has been the case more than I’d like when credit cards have been hacked and we’ve had to freeze accounts or wallet stolen and cards cancelled as a precautionary measure). But, I am clearly in the minority on this one and I’m wondering if this is a regional thing, if it’s just our friends!

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  • It’s probably more common than I imagined as I see from this stream and when I posted it on Facebook. I think it’s more a topic that I’ve never discussed with my friends and therefore had no idea that it was such a common practice. Even when it comes to gifts, it doesn’t really bother either one of us that the other could look at the credit card and see the cost of it because the reality is you just Google it and get the same result 🙂

    Sharon Vinderine
    Reply
  • We have 3 accounts a joint and then individual. The hubby likes to spend I like to save for the bigger items that I want for instance a kobo reader. The hubby is mr. put it on a credit card and get it now I am a saver. If it is a house item it comes from the joint. When I win something it is mine to do with what I want the same as if he goes to the casino and wins. He hates the internet so I pay for it. I hate sports so he pays for the sports channel. Hey whatever works right? I win way more than he does hehe. I don’t really think there is a right or wrong way and I would never criticize a system or arrangement that works for anyone. Bravo to all that have an arrangement that works.

    Jo-Anne Pfoh
    Reply
  • In our first years of marriage prior to children, my husband and I had separate accounts, not because we didn’t trust one another more so because we kept our old ones and didn’t think to merge it since we were both generating our own incomes and thought why change it?
    After I started working from home and after children, we finally decided to merge our accounts and were totally OK with it.
    We have our own income that goes into it, we use what we need and pay whatever needs to be paid.
    To each their own I always say. Whatever works for you! 🙂

    Reply

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