As women, one of the things we are taught to do to protect ourselves is to keep a separate, often secret account from our husbands. We hear horror stories of women whose men had access to all of the money, then decided to leave, and the woman was left with absolutely nothing. Those are often the cautionary tales the well-meaning women in our lives tell us.
I have learned that finances are a touchy subject, and are handled quite differently from relationship to relationship. In the beginning of my marriage, a joint account was a terrible idea. My husband and I had totally different spending habits. He was used to splurging and not having to account to anyone about the money. I can be tight with the money. If I don’t see it as necessary, to me, it’s wasteful. My dad had to remind me that it’s ok to spend money sometimes.
As my husband and I have grown through the years, we have matured, and have a joint account. We very rarely have problems when it comes to sharing finances. Now aside from that, I also have a separate account. Is it because I don’t trust my husband? Not at all. Is it a big secret from him? Not quite. He is aware that I have another account. He’s not signed as having access, and if he needs something, and asks for my card, I have no problem letting him use it. His view on it is it’s his job to provide for the family, so what’s in his/our bank account, is his way of showing that. This works for us.
I know of couples who think it completely wrong to have separate bank accounts, and feel like it indicates secrecy in the relationship. I know of other couples who do not share any accounts, and split everything down the middle, and still have accounts the other doesn’t know about.
This is what I have learned. There is no right way. Finances are a very touchy subject, and whatever works for one couple, may not work for the other. Just because you choose to keep an account separate, or secret, if it works or you both, great! If you choose to only use a joint account with your significant other, again, if it works for you both, great!
My husband and I have no issues about my separate account. There are so many other things we can focus on, that this is not one of them. I opened the account years ago, and it’s just easier to have my direct deposit payments sent there. Most times I get paid earlier than regular banks. He knows that if any of us need something, and the joint account for whatever reason doesn’t cover it, then I have no hesitation about using this account to cover it. The way I see it is our family can and will not go without. Whoever’s name is on the account is not important to us. The selfish factor doesn’t exist, so therefore it doesn’t cause a problem in our marriage.
I’d love to hear from you. Were you taught to keep a separate, secret account from your man just in case? Have you done it? Are you doing it? How is it working out for you? Speak on it!