The Buck Stops Here: Getting Through A Financial Crisis
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By Mia Bolaris-Forget
When you think of newlyweds, most of us think of a time in any couple’s life where the two continue to explore their very special bond and union and bask in the love, intimacy, and romance that the two share.
It’s also a time, when for most, especially young couples, when the two, experience, perhaps for the very first time, a host of adult situations and circumstances
Among the key concerns, money and family with finances generally leading the way; and that’s when couple’s usually realize the honeymoon is over…and its at this stage that both need to proceed with love, care and caution so that the marriage doesn’t have to be.
1. The Firing Squad: When you’re working for others there’s always the chance that one of you will be let go and that means being down one income. However, as frustrated and disappointed as you are, experts assert that this is NOT the time to fight but rather ban together. And, it’s up to the employed partner to be supportive and complimentary.
While you don’t have to “lay it on thick”, boosting your mate’s confidence, ego, and morale may just help him/her find a job faster and sooner, or at least not give up hope.
But, you also have to make sure that you don’t avoid actually discussing getting through the rough spots for too long, because that eventually may result in resentment.
· Sit down and collaboratively look at your (current) finances and expenses and discuss how and where you can cut back that is acceptable to both of you.
· Look into long term options if it seems like the lay off or “unemployment” phase may last longer than a month. Consider tapping into savings, home equity, renting out some of your space, downsizing to one vehicles, canceling trips, etc.
· Work together. Look at your mate’s resume and even ask for still another option. Also ask family and friends for job recommendations. Even ask if there’s a job at your office for your mate. Remember, teamwork is key.
· Maintain a loving and positive attitude, especially if you see your mate is really trying and doing his or her part.
· Tap into your creativity. Consider turning hobbies into income earners, plus, you can continue looking for a job.
Smart Strategies: This means planning ahead by putting aside at least three months of wages (preferably from the higher salary). This can serve as your “magic money” in case of emergency.
2. Moving Up (And Out): Another possibility is that one of you not only gets “promoted” but also relocated. In this instance, especially if it’s a career or financial move your partner has been waiting for you need to be supportive of the situation. Start by putting it all on paper and making a list of the pros and cons, thinking more long term rather than short term; taking into account the following:
· Long term career growth
· Local companies that would allow you to pursue your career if the transition doesn’t work out
· Are their career options and opportunities for your spouse
· What does the new area have to offer, including weather, and how well do you think you can fit in there.
· Is the pay hike worth your while? Don’t forget to factor in cost of living including price of homes, apartments, land tax, gas, groceries, etc.
· Will the move make both of your happy and will both of you be able to be away from friends and family and rely on just the two of you as you start over.
Smart Strategies: Come up with an acceptable list of places and situations that would warrant moving to giving you both a heads up as to which places get a thumbs up and which get a thumbs down, ahead of time. And, knowing this can help you avoid tension, arguments, and frustration.
3. Your Job Is A “Prison Sentence”: If one of you absolutely HATES your job and/or going to work, it can definitely affect your relationship. Try to make thing better by listening to your mate and helping get him/her motivated and generate a game plan.
· Help your partner put his or her goals in order and set a time frame for each. Make sure to “follow-up” and see how your partner is doing. Your support can make all the difference in the world.
· Encourage your mate to spend some quality time thinking about the future and looking for a new job. Make it a team project and spend at least an hour a day on it.
· Help your partner compile a list of those you both know who may be able with a new job or career path and help him or her make contact immediately.
· Stay strong and supportive. And, above all help your mate realize his/her dreams and goals or at least try to.
Smart strategies: Start putting money aside just in case your partner decides to quit without having found another job. Also focus on your mate’s strengths, even some of his or her passions that he/she/or your both can turn into a lucrative and meaningful career.
4. When You’re Married To Someone Who Is Married To Their Job: While having an ambitious partner may be a positive, living with someone who make work the only priority can be challenging, especially if you’re not like that. On that note, experts suggest being supportive until your mate’s calendar frees up and be willing to take some of the pressure off with a nice meal, and possibly a backrub.
· Make time for you and your mate by treating the relationship as part of the workday. Schedule dates and personal time in both your day planners.
· Be open, honest and expressive letting your spouse know how the long hours and hectic schedule is affecting you, but try to avoid placing blame, simply make your feelings known.
Smart strategies: Plan our and acceptable schedule to keep you both on track before either of you gets into the habit of working late or trying to accomplish too much during the day. If there are certain expectations you have of your partner or a certain amount of time you want to spend with him or her, start collaborating your calendars, even if you have to sacrifice a few luxuries or dollars to do it.
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