Since I posted Finances, Pride, and Respect a couple weeks ago, sharing some struggles that my husband and I were having with finances and how I had determined to deal with them, I thought I would give you an update.
We have now done our budgeting together twice, and wow. It is so much less stressful than I thought it would be. Simply being on the same page does wonders for our attitudes towards each other regarding money. My husband is really supportive of my thoughts on what we should do with the money that God provides us with, and also has some really good ideas.
Yesterday, after I came up with a preliminary budget, my husband and I talked it over. He thought it looked good, except that I had entirely forgotten that both of our sisters' birthdays are this week and we wanted to do something for each of them. We rearranged the different categories a bit to free up some money for gifts, and the problem was solved. If I had just budgeted and we had not talked it over, however, there would have been conflict. When my husband asked about buying something for his sister, I would have suggested using spending money, which would frustrate my husband because we have other things to spend that on. That would frustrate me because I would feel like he cares too much about spending money and does not appreciate me budgeting. I am so glad that we went over the budget together, and he was able to catch that mistake. Talking things over has helped us immensely in avoiding conflict.
I feel as if we have it easy as far as finance conflicts go. We did have some issues, but (so far) it seems that talking it over and being respectful and willing to listen to my husband's opinions has largely solved most of the conflict. With finances being near the top of the list of conflicts between spouses, I cannot believe that simply talking it over with a humble, respectful attitude could really be all that is needed. For my husband and I, it has worked so far. Whether or not it would work for others, I suppose is up to them to find out. It never hurts to try though, and what if that really is all that is needed to resolve much of the stress related to finances?