Let’s talk about money, honey. As many of you know, I’m a big Dave Ramsey fan. I talked about how his class saved our marriage, and how we planned finances as newlyweds. His work has been a game-changer for us, even though Brian and I have grown and changed throughout our marriage. Let me give you an example of how we’ve had to make some shifts in our individual roles with finances.
Early on in our marriage, I was the one managing the spreadsheets. I liked looking at the numbers and I had a natural inclination to save. Brian on the other hand, was a bit more of a free spirit. I love this quality about him, especially when it comes to being generous. He loves being thoughtful about gifts and shopping at high-end grocery stores when we have people over for dinner.
These roles, as we learned through Financial Peace University, were the classic “Saver” and “Spender” role.
As we talked through all of this when the class started, Brian was apprehensive about the course because he didn’t want it to limit his love for helping people and being hospitable. But what we learned in this process was to really own our desires and learn how to work them into our budget. Because of that, we now have a budget line named “Hospitality” so that Brian can invite people over to dinner and cook up a five-start meal with all the high-end, speciality ingredients he wants. This is how he likes to bless people, so we made sure that was a priority in our budget.
And then, I became a mom and like we all know, everything changed.
Yes, I grew a human in my belly, but it also changed how I think, and that included how I spent money. So we swapped roles and Brian moved from being the Spender to the Saver. He manages the budget now and is the one driving us to save money to buy a home. But, the budget is something we still BOTH have a hand in.
Here’s what this looks like practically:
- Brian as the “nerd” builds the budget for the month.
- Me as the “free spirit” goes over it and makes adjustments as needed.
- We use Every Dollar to track our spending for each budget line.
This is a regular, ongoing conversation in our house. It’s not perfect, but it’s a priority for us to work towards our big goals.
If you’re just starting out as a couple or are staring down a mountain of debt, I suggest start small and talk about your role. Are you naturally the Saver or Spender? Start with that and then work towards a budget and a role that fits you best.