Seeing Red

I fucked up. In an expensive way. Of course, being a joint account holder, I’m really only mostly to blame. But I’m supposed to be doing the watching, the counting, the balancing. I was supposed to notice. Lesson learned.

When I noticed the overdraft this afternoon, I appealed to the bank to credit back some of the fees. I knew I wouldn’t get all of them taken off, but they did give me something, which I was very grateful for. But I suppose this means it’s really time to sit down with the husband and make a budget. Because this shouldn’t have happened, even if I had caught it in time. We should have a buffer. I thought we did.

We discussed our finances when he got home from work. We decided to pay certain bills automatically so that, for example, it won’t take eight days for the rent check to go through, when in that eight days we think we have plenty of cash, which we can spend on silly things, like groceries. I’m just really embarrassed for not keeping a better eye on it. But I have to say how lucky I am to have such an understanding partner in this. He’s agreed to help me at least watch the balances in our account, and we both agreed to be more budget conscious with our spending. He wasn’t even mad or anything, and he helped me figure out exactly where I miscalculated. He knows we have money in savings to give us a buffer this month, now, and we talked about signing up for the overdraft protection, just in case (though this won’t likely happen again). He didn’t even care that I blamed it all on him when I was haggling with the financial service representative at the bank.

I hear so much about marriages ending because of money issues. Especially in the first year. I know that we’re in a good place, but part of me was also a little bit freaked out before I talked to James. It was irrational freaking out, though, and I knew it, because James is very understanding, and we are both one hundred percent for each other in this marriage. This certainly could have tested some couples, but for us, it was just another conversation, albeit a fairly serious one. It’s an amazing feeling to be able to work together like that.

I’m hesitant to publish this entry because of the personal nature of one’s financial situation, but I want to be honest about my experience with marriage so far, and money issues are ones that many couples have to face regularly, no matter if they’re living together before marriage, or married for years and years. I’m not putting this out there to give advice or preach in any way, just to express that things like these can happen to anyone, even someone who’s always been responsible with money. We learn from our own mistakes. And if we’re married or in a relationship, we learn from them together.

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