Finding love after 50. The website for middle aged singles and senior singles, providing information and dating advice for middle age dating and senior dating. This column's topic: The danger of co-mingling funds for couples who meet, date and decide to get married later in life.
Don't Mingle Funds
Linda of Chattanooga, Tennessee, e-mailed: "In my marriage, I wasn't allowed to have my name on any financial papers or documents-not even the check book. I never knew how much my husband earned until we were divorced.
"Four years after going through a really ugly marriage and divorce, and now very secure in my own right, I'm faced with learning to trust a lovely man.
There is no way I would lose myself in another manipulation. Can you give some insight on the coming together of two people in their early 50s? My trust issues deal with money."
Linda described her new man: "Al is a gift from God," and "He and I are compatible in so very many ways, "and "He is very different from my ex…"
Linda said her trust issues deal with money. While I agree that money is a big part of her issues, I think the bigger issue is manipulation. Money is one of the primary weapons a manipulator uses to maintain control.
In any relationship where one party controls the other, trouble lurks. In our free society, no one has the right to control another, including a spouse. Usually it takes years to bust loose from being controlled.
If you're controlled, you must bust loose, unless you're happy being a slave to another. Allowing yourself to be controlled is your own fault. You allowed the situation to happen. Perhaps you married young and were too naïve to know better. Perhaps you were raised to think the man was always in charge, and it was your duty to be an obedient housewife. Balderdash.
Let's give Linda credit for busting loose from her controlling husband, for now being secure and for vowing to never be controlled again.
She said, "Al and I are enjoying a fine relationship and look forward to a lot of years of joy. We've talked about the financial end and we
both agree in the event of marriage there would be a penup. When Al recognized my reservations concerning mingling money, he suggested…"Whoa, Linda, stop right there. I'm concerned with the mingling of money aspect.
It's important for a woman to control her own money. You've clawed your way back and now you're considering opening up the chance to have financial issues again. Don't co-mingle your funds.
You and Al can have a beautiful life together without co-mingling money. Prenups are fine but won't protect you if someone disappears with your money. Share expenses, that's great, but keep assets separate.
If Al is as wonderful as you say he is, and loves you, he'll stick with you if you don't mingle funds. Protect your assets like they're your own. Because they are. At your age, you wouldn't have another opportunity to dig yourself out again. By maintaining control over your money, you'll fulfill your promise to not lose yourself in another manipulation.
READER COMMENTS AND TOM'S RESPONSES
Patricia, Palm Desert: "I'm still down here in the desert searching for dates with men who like and/or tolerate horses. So far, all my dates live out of town or state…makes it hard to get to know each other well enough to light a fire.
"Response: When used together, the words "horses "and "women"
make me quake. A year ago, I wrote a column about women and horses and the women's equestrian community still hasn't forgiven me.