As I have shared, my focus for the month is money. And as a person who stays at home raising my honey badgers, I don’t currently bring in a paycheck. During this season of life my husband is the financial provider, so in order to focus on mastering our money we had to talk about money. Interestingly enough, before I could bring up the conversation my husband informed me he had also been looking over our budget and where we could possibly make changes.
As we have all heard, money is one of the issues that creates the largest points of tension in a relationship. My husband and I have a great relationship. I can and do pretty much tell him everything; Even when he probably wants me to stop talking, I tell him all about all the things. So talking about money with a man that I have been with for 16 years should be easy, right? Wrong. Talking about money is still just one of those difficult things that you kind of just have to grin and bear it and get through as partners. Financially we are on the same page; we both understand and know where we need to make changes. However, I believe one of the reasons finances can be challenging to discuss with my husband, is that I feel guilty.
I feel guilty when we have more month that money. I feel guilty about the money we have on our credit card, or when we discuss having to eat out less. I feel guilt. Why? Because I don’t contribute financially to our family. I know i’m not alone in this. I recently had a discussion with other stay at home moms, who said they feel the same way. They shared that it’s easy for them to have their husbands spend money on themselves because it’s his money; but when it comes to spending on oneself, its difficult. His money, because it’s his paycheck. That’s where the guilt comes from. And this guilt, entirely self-imposed.
Right after our discussion, I immediately started googling jobs in mental health counseling so I could contribute to our family. And as I listened to this inner monologue running through my head, I realized how ridiculous that was. Even typing his money, his paycheck makes me feel and sound ridiculous. Because contribution to a family isn’t merely financial. Its about adding value. Right now, I don’t monetarily add value; But I add value. I add value in ways that I don’t believe I could be doing if I was working.
So I stopped googling jobs, because in this season of life staying at home with our honey badgers adds more value than a paycheck could. And this decision is one that we made together in our marriage. Yes, two incomes would help. And someday, having two incomes again will help us achieve the financial success that we plan to achieve. However in the meantime I will focus on what I can control and what is important. I will continue to focus on open communication with my husband about our finances. I will continue to work on our budget and find ways to better save, invest, and spend our money. I will continue to read books, and listen to podcasts and educate myself so that instead of contributing financially, I contribute by adding value.