Season 6 Blogs: Episode 8
While Gail will not be able to answer questions posted on slice.ca, you can visit her personal blog here.
For Richer or Poorer: Paula & David
What a sad couple. When I walked in the door, I could feel the exhaustion oozing from Paula and David. They had already separated once, lost their condo, and been through a bankruptcy. I took a quick look around the house and then I gave Paula a hug and told her I could help. You had to see her lighten up.
Despite being together for 18 years and having two kids, marriage was not in the cards for Paula and David. While she loved him to bits, she couldn’t trust him.
The first decade together was easy. They had good incomes and they enjoyed eating out, socializing, doing whatever they wanted whenever they wanted. They decided they had enough coming in to buy a condo. They hadn’t bothered to save a penny for it and it was soon apparent they weren’t ready for home ownership.
David got laid off and was picky about jobs, so he was unemployed for far longer than they expected and they started depending on credit. David continued to blow money on his favourite hobby: turntables, speakers, receivers; he loves playing his vinyl. Paula got pregnant and David didn’t step up to the plate and make more money. He continued to order his stuff online and she continued to struggle to keep it all together.
David and Paula were stuck. Their apathy was affecting their quality of life. They couldn’t get excited about anything. And despite having been through a bankruptcy, they were back in the red to the tune of $56,000. Oy! LIFE was eating 72% of their income so they had no money for debt repayment or saving. And no wonder: you go shopping 56 times in 30 days and you’re pretty well guaranteed to be over budget!
Paula and David surprised me when I saw how much they embraced what they had to do to get out of the muck. And they surprised me when… well, watch the show and see.
According to The Book of Gail: Most of us were raised to think it’s rude to talk about money. Most people avoid the “chat” while dating and even after they hook up they keep not talking about money. It’s dumb. And it’s destructive. When you can’t talk about something as vital to your relationship as your financial foundation, you’re bound to develop cracks.
Gail’s to Do: Stop the silence! Talk with your partner about your feelings, attitudes, and beliefs about money. Listen to your partner's hopes, dreams, and concerns. Where there are differences, negotiate to close the gaps. Come on, if you’re having sex, you should be able to talk about money. So, no more nookie until you’re on the same page financially! That should get you in gear.