A lesson from “True Life”

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“It scares me because his bills are now MY bills.”

This was a great quote from a show I watched last night called “True Life: I’m a Newlywed.”  I was so excited to actually watch this episode when I saw the commercial for it. It is a documentary show about 2 couples that had promised to not live together or give themselves to each other until they’re wedding night. Just that part alone intrigued me. But as it went on, we got to see one couple sit down and discuss their finances.  It was one of their main goals to accomplish within their first month of marriage.  First off, I think that was a kick-butt goal to place on a newlywed list.

What really got me, is the instant realization of what they were getting into.  The new, bright-eyed wife was blind-sided when she found out how much her new husband owed in credit cards, and even more hardening for her, that he’s repeatedly paid his bills late.  That was her quote above.  And that was something that I thought of, and think think about, as a young wife.  His bills are my bills and mine are his. No more singular debt to deal with, but “family” debt to conquer.  Boy was that a hard thing to realize right away, especially since we moved in together, got married and started our family all within a few months and had been living two states away from each other up until that point. 

Finances wasn’t in any conversation until our bills collided in the mailbox.  I totally felt for these couples, but it helped hubby and I see that we’ve come a long way from that newlywed stage of dealing with finances.  It’s a well-oiled machine now with a few hiccups, but I do wish that we would have either counseled about how to deal with it before we married, or just took it upon ourselves to stop staring into each other eyes for a moment and have a “grown up” talk. I’m sure it would have made a world of difference during that first year.

About Amiyrah

My name is Amiyrah and I'm an an African American fashion & lifestyle blogger based in Ohio.

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  1. 5.20.10
    Liz said:

    Personally I think it’s a bad idea not to live together until you’re married. What if you can’t stand living with the other person? You learn a lot about someone by living with them. It’s an antiquated notion IMO.

    Finances should definitely be discussed well before marriage. I guess this goes along with the fact that most people are pretty clueless about personal finance. Thankfully my parents taught me to balance a ledger for my own bank account as soon as I could do arithmetic and started getting checks in the mail from relatives. 🙂 That and being frugal probably means you’re more aware of finances in general. If all goes according to plan, there won’t be any surprises once the whole legal union kicks in.

  2. 5.21.10
    Melissa said:

    I saw this show and was totally floored by this. I can’t believe people actually live like that. My husband and I dated a few years before getting married and we discussed our finances thoroughly. There were no shocking revelations for us. I just don’t get people. No wonder the world is in such a mess.

  3. 5.23.10
    Jaime said:

    Even with counseling, it is amazing how many couples break up due to financial stress. I know that after my husband and I made a commitment to each other to live a debt free life and began budgeting together we have felt a definite relief and really realized that we were on the same page just going about it in different ways. 🙂