One Bed, One Bank Account: Better Conversations Podcast with Derek and Carrie Olsen. Ep. 004


Derek and Carrie Olsen Better Conversations Podcast Money and Marriage

If I can trust you in my bed, shouldn’t I be able to trust you in my bank account? (Tweet this)

Money within a marriage is like a ship at sea.

Both partners are on the ship. Both partners have a say in what direction to set sail. One person can take on all the duties, but the sailing is much easier when both partners work together.

When the ship finally arrives at its destination, both partners have to accept where they are. Having separate bunks on the same ship won’t allow two people to arrive in two different destinations.

Separate bank accounts within a marriage is like having separate bunks on the same ship: You will both arrive at the same destination.

Having a ‘roommate mentality’ within a marriage is at odds with the idea that a marriage is about oneness. Keeping separate bank accounts flies in the face of commitment.

For richer OR poorer, not for richer AND poorer.

If a married couple keeps separate finances, it would be possible for one partner to be poorer or richer than the other. The idea that one partner could be eating better food, driving a nicer car and going on vacations while the other is living paycheck-to-paycheck is, well, interesting.

When things are good, I am all in. When things are bad, I’ll be over here watching you sink.

Earning, spending, saving, and managing the money within a marriage doesn’t have to always be an equal effort. It’s not a 50/50 arrangement. It is a 100/100 arrangement. There is not a “balance” to achieve, that isn’t the goal. The goal is oneness. Chances are high that one of you will earn more than the other.

Throw it all in one pile.

The roll of paycheck-earner might shift back and forth several times over the course of a marriage. Keeping score of what money is earned by which partner is a fruitless pursuit.

Combining your money gives you the opportunity to align your values, priorities, and goals. In fact, they already are aligned, all of them, all the time. You are both heading in the same direction. A direction that is determined for each and by each. What one partner does with his or her money has a direct impact on the other partner. This is true even if you do keep separate finances.

I trust you here, but not there.

I don’t believe in fragmented trust, respect, and teamwork. I don’t believe it is possible to select one area of a marriage and keep that specific area separate. I don’t believe you can commit to each other in some areas but not in others. Not possible. Trust is trust.

But Derek!

We keep our money separate and it’s working just fine for us!

Is it? Maybe it’s not. How is keeping your money apart an example of working together? Maybe it isn’t working, it just looks and feels like it is. If your money is separate, where are the two of you planning on going together? (financially speaking)

If you have two dogs and you never let them out into the backyard at the same time, you could say that they get along really well. But how would you know? Keeping two dogs in two separate rooms does not mean that “things are working.”

Yup, we are really great friends, we NEVER see each other.

I never said it would be easier. Oneness isn’t always easy, easy isn’t the point.

If your car won’t start, not driving it isn’t the answer.

If your car won’t start, not driving it doesn’t mean the problem is fixed.

(I better stop while I am so far behind it looks like I am ahead.)

-Derek


Are you married and keeping your money separate or together? Let us know what is working for you.


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Entertaining and thought provoking conversations on money and marriage in less than 20 minutes.


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JeffAnderson

Introductionist: Jeff Anderson

(Thanks Jeff!)

Jeff simply has a gift for seeing “ordinary” scriptural truths in fresh new ways, and challenging people to expect more from their journey with God. He combines solid biblical research with application to our everyday lives. 

Jeff is an authorspeaker, teacher, advisor to churches and non-profits and financial mentor to many. Jeff is married to Stephanie and has four children: Austin, Cade, Gunnar and Autumn.


  • Shannon

    I’m slowly going through your podcasts! Very enjoyable to listen to! I agree on the one account thing. I can think of several couples I know who need to be listening to these topics. It makes such a difference when you marry someone who is able to talk about money, has similar money mentalities and who is on the same page on what to do with your joint money. I’ve been in situation where it was not a good match at all and accounts were separate for good reasons. People have power in who they choose as partners!

    • http://www.derekandcarrie.com/ Derek C. Olsen

      Shannon,

      Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving your note.

      Let us know what you would like to hear on our podcast!

      -Derek