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I view marriage as a business

22 June 2015, 14:08 Shakila Alivitsa

Nairobi - I think a lot of marriages would be more successful if the couples just agreed from the beginning that half of what marriage is made of is business.

Nothing creates more discord not just in marriage but in relationships as well as financial issues in terms of management. The men look at it as them having found a partner, the women on the other hand look at it as them finding someone who can now take over their burdens for them. Read: She has no financial responsibilities.

Do not be too disgruntled and say love is not all about money but companionship, loyalty and friendship. Half of it is especially when you now decide to be serious with that person. This is a whole new institution you are about to create and some of you go into it close-minded and without a clue on the responsibility you are about to take.

Initially when you are dating, the man, in most cases will woo you and you in your valiant efforts will try buy the odd dinner or two if you do not forget your purse occasionally. The odd gift to show appre4caistion or buying groceries once a month to cook at home. That is all honorable. But this is why I think marriage is actually a business of sorts with various departments. There is the children’s department, household department, financial department, medical and emergency department and or rural homes department. You just never think of all this things in the initial years of your marriage. You are going to be managing all of these and more and that involves a lot of money. Now most people do not discuss money in their relationships and they just assume that it will work out. Problem is, it never does and one or even both parties usually ends up feeling like they got shortchanged.

The woman will assume the man will continue giving her money to take care of the household expenses. Because now it is not just about her buying the odd grocery bag one weekend a month but buying everything that will run the now maximized household. The man will assume that that is a woman’s area and she should figure it out. That includes the stuff; this includes the maid. The woman will assume the man will pay the fees, some men usually do but she will feel disgruntled why he does not give her extra for their clothing, extras that the schools ask for in the diary, outings or swimming lessons and what not. This is usually the department that takes ¾ of your life’s work and salary! The man will assume he is taking care of the hard stuff, she earns a salary, and she should need to chip in in the smaller stuff. They do not communicate it so the grudge is there but no one speaks.

That is how marriages get to a point of everyone not understanding what role they play in that family, confusion over who should take care of arising responsibilities. People just never see it as a merger, a new ‘business’ of sorts and they should have drawn out the contract in the beginning.

As a couple, you should actually sit down and talk to each other, counsel each other on who is bringing what to the table. Write it down if necessary. Do not say, ‘I will pay fees, you take care of the household expenses’ and think everything is done. It is much easier when you draw out a plan of your salaries, how much each of you is willing to contribute in a joint account for the household, another for the medical and another for emergencies. Then the one taking hold of the larger responsibilities like fees, rent or mortgages gets exempted from also taking care of the smaller things like clothing and minor structures. That way, you avoid confusion and open a way of bot of you talking about money without feeling uncomfortable or shortchanged when someone is making their recommendations. On the other hand, if one of you does not work, that is self-explanatory. If one of you gets fired, that is where the emergency fund comes in to help the other spouse to hold up the running of things until the other gets back on their feet. Otherwise without proper discussion you are setting yourselves up for failure already.

Always consider the other half of your marriage as a business with a lifelong partner and you will save yourselves some grief.

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- MyNews24

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