Why Women Should Give a Crap About Personal Finance – LADIES- LISTEN UP. Ever wonder why women should care about money? Isn’t that a man’s job? No! Ladies, it’s time to hear the cold hard truth about why you need to listen and care about your money situation.
It’s a chilly Sunday morning, Daylight Savings Time has just started, and all of my kids are all up by the ungodly hour of 5am. Kill me.
But that’s not where I’m going with this. I’m here writing this instead of getting my kids for church because I felt like I needed to.
I’ve been writing about personal finance now for more than 4 years and recently, I’ve felt like something needed to change.
Ladies – I’m talking to you.
Ladies – I have been failing you.
Ladies – I NEED YOU TO LISTEN.
I popped on Facebook this morning out of sheer boredom and trying to stay awake and not murder my children (jk). And within the first 3 swipes on my thumb, I saw 2 GoFundMe pages from women. 1 whose husband died unexpectedly and 1 whose house burned down and she and her 3 kids have nowhere to go.
These women are in crisis. Women who are scared out of their minds right now. Women who never thought that they’d be in this worst-case scenario, but here they are.
I could list off at least 15 worst-case-scenarios of why you – not your husband, not the state, not the government – but YOU need to give a crap about personal finance (aka – your money situation).
Everything from your husband dying, getting a divorce, physical abuse, emotional abuse, mental abuse, spiritual abuse, fire, medical emergencies, relocation, natural disasters, and so many more.
Listen to me when I say this: YOU need to get your money together.
Knights in shining armor don’t always come to your rescue. And even then, no one is guaranteed to live to 100 years old.
These 2 women from the GoFundMe pages that I saw, I’ll admit that I don’t know their whole stories. I don’t know where they are coming from.
But I do know that their stories are not unusual.
A lot of times, the “man handles the money” and women don’t know what to do when they’re in charge suddenly.
“The man handles the money because that’s ‘what God wants'” and the woman is left in the dark under the assumption that this is what their faith wants them to do. (Don’t crucify me, read on…)
“The man is supposed to take care of his family” but the woman is a single mom and doesn’t have a man.
Ladies. Not everything is doom and gloom.
But there is always (ALWAYS) a chance that even if you’re in the most stable of relationships, that it could all end in a second.
And then what?
What if you’re in the “good Christian marriage” and your husband does handle all of the money… and one day decides to leave. I’ve seen it happen more than it should. What happens next
What if your husband who is the sole provider has a heart attack at 30 and dies. It happens. What then?
What if you find yourself pregnant unexpectedly and he says he’ll stay and a few months down the road, he disappears. Then what?
The cold hard truth is that ladies, we need to stop waiting for our knights in shining armor to take care of us. We need to stop pretending like “our man is just going to take care of everything with the money.” We need to stop acting like “we just suck at money.”
I could get into the nitty gritty about how our systems are meant to keep women in the dark and to make women feel stupid when it comes to money. How our systems are designed to keep women dependent on men and others for financial security.
But I won’t.
My goal isn’t to beat you over the head with this. (Although it kind of is… but in a good way, I swear.) My goal is to help you open your eyes and see that you’ve got a job to do. Not for anyone else, but for YOU.
We all hear those horror stories of women whose husbands took all of the money and left and we want to say to ourselves that that could never happen to us. We hear those stories of the woman with 3 young kids and no husband and say that will never be us. We all hear about the woman whose husband died at 30 and didn’t have any life insurance or savings because he was too young to worry about that stuff and think that it could never happen to us.
The unfortunate reality is that it could. It all could happen.
We’re all hoping that the worst-case scenario could never – and would never – happen to us.
But it could.
We don’t have a crystal ball to see what the future will hold.
What I know for a fact is that no one will take care of you the same way that you take care of you.
Ladies. It’s time to REALLY learn about our money.
And no, I’m not talking about running out and joining the next MLM that comes to town to try to make a quick buck (don’t do that… ever). No, I’m not talking about becoming a day trader and needing to learn about trading stocks and investing (words that still confuse me).
I’m talking about do you know where your paycheck goes? Have you checked your bank account? Do you know about your life insurance policy? Do you have one? Have you started saving for retirement? Do you know how much you have left until you pay off your mortgage?
The good news is that ladies, money, in general, is NOT as hard as we’re taught to think it is.
Everything you need to know about money has been taught to you by the 3rd grade.
You don’t need Bob at the bank to “mansplain” how to open a checking account or to tell you that “your husband should help you do it.”
You don’t need another money “guru” to tell you that if you don’t make $100,000 a year that you’re screwed when it comes to your money.
What you do need is to start taking care of your own money.
Yes, even if your husband is the one who earns the only paycheck in the house.
Yes, even if you’re about to check on your balance and you know that it’s at -$23.
Yes, even if you don’t know what you need to do to login to the bank account app.
Growing up, my parents always taught me that women could do anything that a man can do.
It wasn’t until I married into a family that knew other people from church, inside of the Christian community, that genuinely believed that the men could do whatever they wanted with their money and that the women’s only job was to lie back and do what the man said. Women who were abused for decades. Men who physically and emotionally abused their wives to depend on them.
And in some rare cases, women who were able to leave after decades of abuse. But these women left these relationships with nothing to their names. Women who felt trapped for years because they had no money and no way out.
I have friends who found out that their husband was cheating on them and they chose to stay. Not because they felt like their marriage could be saved, but because they had no way out.
Women I know who had to find a job 3 weeks after their husband died at 30 because they didn’t know that even though he made good money, there were no savings and no insurance. So when he died, there was no money to keep them afloat.
Stop saying that this would never happen to you.
Stop saying that your husband is different and that he’ll take care of you.
Stop saying that you don’t need to hear about the money because “that’s a man’s job.”
This can happen to you.
You need to take care of you. You can still have an amazing husband who truly does love and support you, but you still need to take care of you.
This is NOT a man’s job.
This is a YOU job. This is a job that no one else can do for you.
No one is going to swoop into your life one day and say “let’s talk about money so that you can get it.”
No one is going to tell you “hey, even stay at home moms need to be saving for retirement, too.”
No one is going to say “hey ya know you’re 30 and you’re probably going to live to 99, but you should still have life insurance.”
If you want a better life, you need to make it happen.
If you are looking for a real reason to start to get serious about your money… this is it.
I mean this: you could have the best marriage ever. The most supportive, loving, caring husband ever. Not even a fake Instagram happy picture, but an actually picture-perfect relationship that people truly envy.
That doesn’t matter. You don’t need to be saving up for preparing to leave your husband or waiting for him to leave you.
That’s not what this is about.
This is a call to arm yourself with knowledge.
Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
Know that if the proverbial ISH hits the fan, you’re covered.
And even if it doesn’t, then you’re still covered.
This isn’t to scare you into thinking that your husband is going to wake up one morning and leave you with 4 kids to shack up with some 20 year old in Mexico.
This is to tell you: this is NOT a man’s job.
This is your job, too.
No one – read that again: NO ONE – will take care of you the way that you would take care of yourself.
So this is the turning point.
Ladies. As of today – right now – you’re going to get your money together.
No more mansplaining.
No more waiting for someone else to take care of you or handle it for you.
Do it for you.
Here’s a resource for everything that you need for…
- 15 Tips For Living on a $1,500 a Month Budget
- How to Save for the Newly Frugal
- 10 Habits of Highly Frugal People
- How to Afford to be a Stay at Home Mom on One Income
- Money Saving Hacks from an Extreme Cheapskate
- How to Make Saving Money Easy
- 10 Money Saving Challenges to Start Today!
- 8 Ways to Stop Spending Money You Don’t Have
- 11 Expenses to Stop Spending Money On
- 5 Tips to Get Your Food Spending Under Control
Getting Yourself in the Right Mind
- The Best Life Changing Books for Women
- How to Live on One Low Income
- Prepare for a New Baby When You are Broke – How to Have a Baby on a Budget
Marriage and Money
- How to Talk With Your Husband About Money
- 6 Ways to Stop Fighting About Money For Good
- Making the Marriage of a Saver and a Spender Work
- 7 Ways to Still Date Your Spouse When Money is Tight