What If My Spouse Won’t Budget

One of the common questions or concerns we get is what should one do when their spouse won’t participate in the budgeting process.  That’s a great question.  Here’s a 4-step starting point:

1. You budget what you can control.  Make sure there’s a plan that includes giving, saving, and wise spending (with some fun).  Make sure the bills are getting paid (hopefully on time).  Make it obvious that you’re doing it.  Print it out, put it on the fridge, start talking to your friends about it.

2. You don’t nag them about it.  Do not give them a hard time because they’re not participating.  Do not talk about them to your friends.  Especially do not talk down to them or about them to anyone else while they are present.  That is soooo disrespectful.

3. You sacrifice even when they don’t.  Sacrifice something you enjoy so that the plan will work.  Sacrifice something you enjoy so that they can keep something that they enjoy.  Even when they don’t reciprocate such sacrifice, you do it anyway.

4. You show them results.  Show them the savings you’re accomplishing by having a plan.  Show them the progress you’re making toward paying down debt.  Show them the freedom you can experience by having a plan that includes fun stuff rather than letting unplanned stuff ruin your fun.

Do those things and you just might be surprised when your spouse has a change of heart and starts to show interest in what you’re doing.

What else might you add to this list?

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