Back to Basics–Love Extinguisher #4 Financial Neglect

debt

Today, we look at the third behavior that can put out the fire of love:  Financial Neglect!  The two most common complains we hear are “She only wants me for my wallet” and “He only wants me for my body.”  Well guess what folks, both are partly true and there is nothing wrong with either one. We addressed the men’s side with yesterday’s “Love Extinguisher #3 Physical Neglect” — and today it’s the ladies’ turn.  Oftentimes, women are created to long for security for themselves and their children–and a man who can provide that security for her family can win her heart!  But whether it’s the man or the woman, this particular extinguisher involves disregarding your spouse’s financial needs by becoming the sort of spouse who:

  • Is unemployed long-term due to lack of trying, and it is not part of a mutual agreementPlease bear in mind that this is NOT (I repeat NOT) a stay-at-home-parent where you agreed as a couple to have one parent raise the children and not work.  This is also NOT an earner who lost their job and is trying and trying and trying but the economy is bad they can’t find a job.  This is the person sits on the couch, playing video games all day, doesn’t help with the household chores or contribute to the family, doesn’t apply for work, and just expects their spouse to “take care of them.”  Behaving like that puts out the blazing fire of love.
  • Is unwilling/unable to live by a budget–This is the person who either just WILL NOT agree to a budget and spends impulsively -OR- the person who will agree to a budget to your face, but then when they see this or that item in the grocery store “that they need” they’re unable to exercise self-control and wait.  Either way, this person is choosing to put out the fire in their marriage by killing the love.
  • Has hidden debt–There are a couple kinds of people under this type of love extinguisher.  First there’s the person who ran up some debts when they were younger and they’re ashamed so they keep the debt a secret; they try to deal with it on their own, and it harms the marriage by putting a wedge between the husband and wife.  They are sprinkling water onto the fire of love.  Then there’s the person who is much, MUCH more harmful: the person who secretly gets a credit card and doesn’t tell their spouse or takes out a second mortgage without informing their spouse.  They put their spouse into financial hardship and literally pour water onto the blazing fire, extinguishing quite a bit!  Finally there’s a person who is actually a criminal, who takes out credit cards by forging a fake social security number or in their spouse’s name, or who takes out a loan in their spouse’s name without their permission, or who does devious financial things like hiding property to stay one step ahead of the Repo Man.  This person is DUMPING water onto the fire of love their spouse may have once had for them!!
  • Hides their spending or overspends–The dynamic is something we have all heard: The husband “has a talk” with his wife and tells her what she can and can not spend, and she feels like getting back at him for “controlling” her so she runs out, but a new pair of designer shoes, and hides them in the trunk -OR- she’s paying the bills and tells him they can’t afford this or that so he gets mad and just to prove he’s the boss, he buys a new fishing boat or motorcycle!  Whether its hiding a smaller purchase or overspending on a huge new toy, these people are killing their marriage and putting out the blaze of passion.
  • Has IRS or legal financial trouble like judgments or liens–You know, I don’t consider the IRS to be a friendly and cooperative group with flexible customer service…but when you have the IRS or the courts giving you legal financial troubles, the financial stress on the couple can be like a sieve pouring water on the fire.  If you avoid your legal financial troubles they don’t go away and you will slowly put out any passion your spouse felt for you.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll go ahead and continue our “Back to Basics” by going over all our Basic Concepts.   To understand what a Love Extinguisher is, you could read the Basic Concepts article to get a more indepth explanation.  Briefly, to help you envision the idea, think of your marriage like a campfire. There are actions that can quench the fire of love, and those actions are Love Extinguishers.  BUT there are also actions that stoke the fire of love and make it hotter–those are Love Kindlers.  The first week of September, we examined the Love Kindlers.  Then we had two weeks off while Dear Hubby was in the hospital….but this week we’ll continue the Love Extinguishers.  The first week of October we’ll look at the Seven Steps to End an Affair, and for the second week of October God willing, we’ll review the Seven Steps to Rebuilding After an Affair.  We hope you’ll join us on this journey to get “Back to the Basics”!!

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