How to Deal with Budget Opposition

There are two kinds of people in the world, spenders and savers. Oftentimes these two types of people like to fall in love and get married. And then they walk off into the sunset and never once does the issue of money become a source of tension in their new love nest.

Husband: You know, a new car would be nice. How 'bout I cash out my 401k?                     Wife: Great idea, Baby! I wanted to be prepared for retirement, but who cares? We'll live on love. (Birds chirp above their heads.) 

Uh, wait a minute…Okay, so maybe everything doesn’t turn to roses and moonlight when spouses with differing money philosophies decide how to handle their finances. It doesn’t mean the discussion and preceding action steps have to lead to an argument every time. Nor should one person’s resistance to taking charge of your combined earnings through budgeting be allowed to create a rift in the relationship.

Remember you’re a team: You more than likely got married because you wanted to do everything together, so budgeting should be no different. Maybe you have a different opinion about how to spend, save, or even divide up your earnings between the two of you, but your spouse should NEVER be viewed as the enemy.

Engage in open, honest, & calm dialogue: Talk about your financial goals, your basic needs, and material wants. Be inquisitive and really LISTEN to your spouse without judgement. For instance, if your husband expresses the material desire for a brand new car when your current vehicle is running perfectly, ask him how a new car would make his life better. Maybe even write down the pros and cons together so each of you can see how following through with that desire might affect things.

Perform a budgeting experiment: If your spouse is hesitant or resistant to the idea of budgeting, create an experimental version of the budget you’d like to utilize and ask your spouse to try it for just one month. Make note of the differences not only in monetary value at the end of the month, but also in quality of life and financial stress level. I am convinced that anyone who creates a realistic budget and makes the sacrifices necessary to stick with it for a month, will come to embrace the freedom budgeting creates. No unlimited shopping spree or Lamborghini could ever compare to the feeling of financial contentment.


One thought on “How to Deal with Budget Opposition

  1. Cathy Baker says:

    Great post, Allison! I’m more of the spender — Brian, the saver. No credit cards…must pay cash for fix-ups (which explains why it takes us longer than anyone else to fix things around our house) BUT… I wouldn’t change a thing, especially the hubby. 🙂 I’m thankful for his wisdom in money matters. It has saved us much heartache over the years.

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