Handing over money control.

3 Sep

In most marriages, the two people are opposite in a number of scenarios and they learn to balance each other out.

For example:

~ One person usually squeezes from the middle of the tube of tooth paste, and the other starts at the very end and keeps it all toward the top of the tube.

~ One person is usually the planner and calendar keeper, and the other is more fly by the seat of his/her pants and calls the other to keep track of the schedule.

~ One person is typically the clean freak and organizer, and the other tends to be more messy and less structured.

~ One person is generally the spender and one person is the saver.

You get the idea.  I’m sure you can think of more rather quickly that directly match you and your spouse.

In my marriage, I am the money manager.  I am organized, detailed, and very disciplined to know when we can spend money and when we cannot spend money.  I’m good with numbers (I always LOVED math in school) and I think critically to set up and plan out a budget.

My husband has always been fine with this method.  It works very well for us.  He never has to worry that a bill won’t get paid on time, or have the headache of messing with automatic withdrawals and direct deposits.

However, I’ve been recently challenged to re-think this strategy that has worked so wonderfully for us for the last 11 years.  And it came in the form of two “Oh man, you nailed me” comments.

1.) I carry a big burden being responsible for the budget.  I need to make sure we have enough money for all the bills we have, emergencies that arise, and try to fit in spending on recreation and wants.

I had never really given this much thought, but the responsibility doesn’t fit the scenario.  I’m not the leader of this family, however, I make (most) of the money decisions because I know our finances inside and out.  I then have the pressure of leadership that I don’t want, makes me sick with anxiety ALL the time, and removes really good and healthy male pressure from my husband that he can benefit from.

I know it sounds twisted, but men hate and absolutely love their role of financial provider and when he only has half the weight of his true responsibility on his shoulders, he isn’t getting the complete fulfillment he needs.

2.) I end up telling my husband what is best for him.  If he needs a new tool so he can work on a project he has to do, I end up basically deciding for him (based on the numbers aspect) if he really needs it and if we can afford to purchase it.

We are a team and there should be checks and balance to what he uses the money to purchase.  It isn’t as though he *owns* me and can slave drive me.  But in all reality, without being nasty about it, that is exactly what I do to him.

My husband will answer to God for how he led our family, and yet, I’m making some of the calls unintentionally by leading in ways that neither of us ever intended to actually be taking the leadership from him or put added anxiety on my shoulders; yet here we are.

When I first asked my husband if he felt disrespected by my handling the finances he said “No, I like it that way. I’m not good with money.”

And I thought “Whew, because I am a control freak and I am not handing over the reigns.”

And then I couldn’t let it go or shake the feeling that we needed to talk again.

So I told him that I thought we should reconsider the finances and that I would like him to take a more active role in handling them and he stepped up in a HUGE way!

He already started working on a new budget method and I’m really excited to watch him come up with systems I wouldn’t have thought of and give me some accountability and direction which will relieve me from SO much anxiety and pressure.

At the end of the day, he will feel the full weight of his responsibility as financial provider because he will be bringing in the money and spending it when and where it is most necessary for our family and I will be off the hook for being responsible for making the big calls.

Practical Application:

Pray diligently that I can let go of the control and the worry that it won’t get done *my way* or *in my timing* like it has for 11 years.

Watch and allow my husband to set up a system and method that he feels is best for our family.

Be thankful for the release of unnecessary anxiety and stress.

Trust God to lead my husband as he manages our finances and provides for us.


How about you? Any responsibilities you plan to hand back over to your husband… or have handed back over to him?  How did it go?  How did you do letting him take over?


3 Responses to “Handing over money control.”

  1. ronfurg September 25, 2012 at 10:09 am #

    I’m new to Lessons of Mercy and read this post at the suggestion contained in the “Surprise” post. Glad I did.

    • kaylagulick September 25, 2012 at 10:11 am #

      Thank you! I’m glad I’m learning it : )


  1. SURPRISE!!! « Lessons Of Mercy - September 25, 2012

    […] wrote fairly recently about money control in our home. To get the full picture of this post I’m writing today, you really should click […]

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