On 6/26/2017 at 6:45 AM, Davage said:
The word "budget" is so frequently used in a negative fashion in our society. Similar to being on a "diet". Too many people think of it as being negative and that it is restricting, when in fact it is the opposite. The budget allows you the freedom to spend the money that is in the "blow" envelope with absolutely no regrets.
Cherie - Your spouse absolutely needs to go to all of the classes to understand the full picture of the DR plan.
DW and I attended the 13 week version of FPU a few years ago. It allowed us to face our finances directly, and it inspired us to be 100% debt free today, including the house. I hope that your spouse gets the same inspiration from the classes. We enjoyed the classes for the social aspect (we don't get out much) as well as the financial aspect.
On 6/26/2017 at 7:57 AM, fpmomma said:
I agree with Davage, please help your spouse to continue attending the class, even if you must tone down your money-related conversations for the time being. There may be a "trigger point" or "lightbulb moment" for him at an unexpected time during the series. While my DH has been completely supportive of our DR methods, he has pretty much left it up to me to do all the detailed plans. Our "budget meetings" have most often consisted of his glancing at what I prepared--multiple tabs in an excel sheet--and telling me, "That's fine."
I know a lot of couples do the planning together and have lovely, harmonious, textbook-style talks with both participants contributing equally; my DH doesn't have the patience for those. He doesn't create roadblocks for me, but he doesn't help pave the road or draw the lines either. He's just in the car. Our FPU classes helped us with our initial confrontation of our financial issues. It took the "heat" out of our talks about money. But the hard, day-to-day planning and calculating has for the most part been my own. Directly as a result of our taking those classes together 10 years ago, we have just this month paid off our mortgage and are looking at the realities of a debt-free life. I believe you should continue your optimism, but you may need to accept a less-than-exuberant contribution from a reluctant or disinterested spouse. Best wishes to you--it's worth the lonely hours of budgeting.
On 6/26/2017 at 9:02 AM, Clever Username said:
This works for some people, maybe it'll work for you.
I know Dave talks about signing off on the budget, sometimes literally. Try that. Be hilariously inviting for him to join the July budget process, but don't force him. Both of you get a 50% vote. But be clear about this: when the plan is complete, you'll both sign and no changes will occur without an EBM emergency budget meeting
Then have your July meeting, where he won't attend. Take notes. I don't know your budget well enough, but make it something like this.
1. Utility review, complete. Vote 100%.
2. Fixed expense review, complete. Vote 100%.
3. Debt minimum review, complete. Vote 100%.
4. Grocery budget plan, complete. Vote 100%.
5. Anticipated expenses, complete. Vote 100%.
6. Restaurant lunches eliminated for husbands, complete. Vote 100%.
7. Blow money planning, reductions made, complete. Vote 100%.
8. Cable cancellation, complete. Vote 100%.
Put this list on the budget meeting page 2 and have him literally sign page 1 with you.
See what I mean. He needs some problems in his life. The meeting is the carrot, ignoring the meeting is the stick. He hasn't been attending the meeting because he has had no need to attend. You've got to create some need. If he doesn't want a say you have carte blanche to make ANY type of budget you want.
Literally, give him $5 to live on for the entire month of July. Remove access to any other money, so he has no ability to "borrow."
You know the phrase 'the only route to the father is though the son.'
The only route to the money is through the budget.
On 6/26/2017 at 9:11 AM, knitmom said:
Cherie, welcome to the "reluctant spouse club". I'm hoping you feel better now than you did when you posted earlier. Sometimes time does help (others, ehh, not so much-lol!)
First--spouse is a woman, correct? I remember you mentioning her name when you recapped on the wedding. I just don't want to refer to her as him, ya know?
Second, it will be fine. Deep breaths. You found Dave & totally embraced his ideas. She, didn't. And that is ok. She is going to the meetings with you & some of it will sink in. She probably won't have the "bang over the head, full steam ahead" moment you did, but she might. Either way, it's ok. Keep at what you are doing. Write out that budget & let her look at it. Hang it on the fridge. When money is needed, you can say "Hey, I took x out for groceries, we have x left", or "I budgeted x for our weekend with friends". You can also be super excited when paying stuff off & do your jumping up & down. She will be happy for you, you will be happy.
Do make sure she feels that she has enough blow money. Resentment for either of you will not be good.
Hang in there. We're here to listen & cheer you on!
On 6/26/2017 at 11:02 AM, mimi said:
My husband flat out refused to do anything Dave Ramsey related. If I so much as mentioned his name my husband would flat out refuse out of a knee jerk reaction. I learned to frame my questions differently. Instead of 'Dave says to pay off all the credit cards" I would say "Hey, what do you think about attacking the credit cards and getting them paid off". Suddenly we would be on the same page. It is funny how polarizing DR can be.
I have tried to get my husband to sit down and look at our budget and work out some plans for the future. He is just not interested. I put the tracking software on his phone so that he could update the budget as he spends and see how much is available in each category. He has never even signed into the software. He just messages me randomly to ask if he can spend on this or that. I am just happy at this point that dh understands that we have a budget and that he tries to stay within the limits. No one is perfect and we all have our individual strengths. Budgeting and finances are not my dh's strength and that is something we can work with as long as we are both respectful and supportive of each other.
On 6/26/2017 at 3:23 PM, jenninca said:
I learned early on that my DH was not going to be into DR. We created most of an initial zero-based budget together about 8 years ago and I have taken it from there. When he feels that something needs to be adjusted, we talk and adjust it if needed. He tells me what he wants (more allowance, travel, a home improvement, etc.) and I let him know how possible that is. He will never be one to track things day by day or even month by month. He wouldn't even know how close we are to paying off our mortgage if I didn't have a countdown plastered around our hallway. He just doesn't care. But 99% of the time, he won't overspend. It isn't totally DR but it works for us. Just wanted to let you know that working the plan is still possible even without a spouse that's totally onboard.
On 6/27/2017 at 6:53 AM, knitmom said:
Cherie--I hope you know we are all behind you 100%!! Gender awareness is a BIG topic in our schools now. Please let us know what we should refer to "spouse" as & we will honor your wishes! My dd has a dear friend who is gender neutral. I always mess up & refer to her as "her", vs you/they/etc..& then feel bad immediately! Luckily they are a good sport about it & know that I am "old"
Big hugs--I hope the dog is good today, things are good at home/work, & you have a great day
On 6/27/2017 at 7:49 AM, fpmomma said:
I'm all for using "Spouse" or SP rather than DH or DW abbreviations and will incorporate that into my posts from now on. Simpler...
On 6/29/2017 at 7:53 AM, momto6 said:
Cherie - Just so you know, this plan CAN be worked without your spouse being "on board". Truly. Mine climbed "on board" in BS 3. Before that, he was willing to live on the budget, but not participate in the making of the budget. Is it fair? Probably not.... but it's not fair that I dragged him into this and made him live on far less than he thought he should too.
I think what we finally did was this.....I explained very carefully, and with great emotion, exactly WHY I wanted to do this. LOGIC is great, and some folks work from that, but the reasons I wanted to do this were emotional more than logical (though there were those things too), and spouse would simply not agree with DR on logic. He disagreed with too many things DR said.I told him exactly what I needed from him. From not sabotaging my attempts and the program (like embezzling, or not recording purchases), to sitting down every so often (like once a month) going over the budget and letting me know when they felt something was out of line, or they were not ok with ANY budget line.I asked what he needed in blow money, keeping in mind it would be an EQUAL distribution... meaning if he got $10, I would get $10 in blow money. His number floored me, but with a bit of discussion, I agreed to it... provided that several of my budget categories that only he spent money on came out of his blow. (Haircuts, gas for his vehicle.) To be quite frank, I think he tried to work on less than he thought optimal at first, but then figured out that he couldn't, so was ready to throw out the whole thing. When we talked about it some more he gave an outrageous number... and I worked with it.We (I) worked hard those first two years... I had more discussions about how "poor" we were and whether or not he needed to get a second job. Which no, we weren't poor, we had a BEF, and had paid of x number of debts at each of these, so even though the salary did not go up, we actually had MORE money in the budget (all those payments that we didn't have anymore). These discussions were a little frustrating for me, because I laid it all out in budget meetings, and he "understood" then, so why not now?!? BUT I think it's important to meet him where he is, so every time he had a concern, we addressed it.And sometime along BS3, when I had paid off every debt we had (except houses) including a HELLOC that we had taken out a year before to add on to the house.... he said something like "Hey, you know what? This thing works! Thanks honey." And climbed aboard... You'd think that that was the end of it.... but it wasn't. I am STILL working on paying off the final house, and he wants to have more fun now.... So it's still working together.I think when the spouse isn't "on board" the tough part isn't that they won't work with you, it's that you have to be totally clear with what you want. And YOU have to be willing to compromise. We have stopped active retirement savings in BS2.... for a very limited time. MUCH less time than I wanted, MUCH more time than spouse wanted. And ONLY because I explained what I wanted to do (Pay off a couple of high interest debts very fast), and listened to his concerns. I think I also agreed to a sliding scale of debt vs. retirement savings. Like when the last debt was paid off (not including houses) we would be saving more than we were at that point so that we could "pay back" these first few months of not saving. I also don't think we ever went below the match. I could not beat a 100% ROI.Some folks say a compromise is where everyone is happy.... I think it's more like where EVERYONE is a bit less than "happy", but they each get some of what they want.And compromise should be your new middle name. Sometimes it will feel as if you are the only one doing it, but this is your thing.And here is where I differ from many. This is YOUR thing. Spouse is happy with things "as is". So YOU are wanting them to do something that they are not really comfortable with, may not even see a need to do, AND you are asking them to change their behavior. IMO, YOU are the one who will make the compromises. I changed the payoff schedule on a few things, because it's NOT DR's plan.... it's OUR plan, and what works for DR may not work for US. And quite frankly, I'm not paying off DR's debt, I'm paying off ours. So whatever we do, has to work for US. Which means that when DH actually made a suggestion and showed a tiny drop of interest, I listened and didn't say.... that's not the DR way! I said, ok, that makes sense, I can do that. I had the SAME discussion about finances with only the numbers changed a LOT in those first two years..... a LOT! I told my DH that I appreciated what he was doing A LOT. I discussed the giving up of things, or not spending $200 at Wal-mart on a whim, the consideration he was giving to the plan, even though he didn't necessarily agree with it.... etc.... and I think that it let him know that I appreciated what he was doing, even if he wasn't always 100% successful.I would explain to your spouse that if they needed $40 for a haircut, that it should have been discussed. By robbing peter to pay paul, they have caused a different budget category to be short, and now you couldn't do what you wanted with the friend coming over. If they had let you know that they needed a haircut, you could have worked it into the budget, and saved all these hurt feelings, and last minute wrangling of the budget... THIS is why it's important to have them at a budget meeting. Their haircut wasn't on your radar, so it didn't make it to the budget. If they had told you, you could have worked it into the budget.For us, the budgets are "written in stone" (it is sandstone, but stone).... if we short one budget category, it stays short. IF however we talk about something and need $40 for a haircut, it comes out of the "snowball" for that month and gets added to future budgets. Sneaking around isn't funny. Lying to your spouse isn't funny. Sabotaging your spouse's plans isn't funny. You are not children, this is not a prank, it isn't funny. To your spouse it's only $40. No big deal. But the impact on your relationship isn't really funny.... lying, trust, sabotage, trust, etc... It's HIGHLY unlikely that your spouse sees it that way... it's only $40... and they will not understand all that impact until you tell them about it.*This is YOUR plan and you are dragging them along. It will benefit both of you later, but for now it is causing BOTH of you to change your behavior, and that is not easy for the one who had nothing to do with it.*Compromise is important. YOU will compromise more than your spouse in the beginning.*Explain the importance of the budget. It can be changed, you are not the mom and have no desire to "control" everything, but you need to know what things you missed (to fix the budget going forward), so "embezzling" from one envelope to pay for a missed item just hurts everyone. And hiding it hurts the relationship.*BLOW MONEY.... I let spouse set this. I also let him know that we could change it if there was too much or too little.*CC - we did NOT cancel all our cards. We didn't USE them, but we had them. We finally cancelled the last one in BS3 when our "limit" was less than our FFEF. (Mostly because we set it that way.)To help....Play DR in the car on trips..... just a littleLeave the books in the bathroom next to the toilet.Stop saying "DR this or that".Stop saying "This is the way everyone does it."DO have a celebration when each debt is paid off... (how you define "celebration" is up to you!)DO mention that in 5 months you have paid off $11,000 in debtDo mention that your "budget" has gone up by $x because of the paid off debt and lack of paying interest.DO appreciate all that they do.Finally.... I saw a bumper sticker once... It said something along the lines of "Try God, if you don't like it the devil will always take you back." I told DH that I wanted to do this for 6 months and then we could decide if we wanted to continue it. BUT I wanted a 100% promise from him.... that he would give it an honest chance. That he would be 100% "on board" with his ACTIONS.... I know he didn't believe in it, but if he gave it 100% and 6 months from now he really didn't like what it was doing, then I would figure out something else. Little secret..... I knew he didn't want to do the plan.... it's very limiting those first months...it's HARD... so I gave him an out. I didn't want him to feel trapped, or thinking that this was how it would be forever. When we paid off the second house he needed a break and I am gently urging him back into paying off the final house, but we've had the break, so we're ready. =0)This plan is YOUR thing. Appreciate it when they show that they are supporting you in your thing. But they didn't get bit by that same bug. It's not their thing. They would like you to be happy and will do what they can to make that happen, but they don't have to be on-board to make this work. It's nice, but not necessary. (As long as they aren't sabotaging you.) It just means that you have to work harder. *L*Here's a little secret.... DR is not always right. *Shhh* It's rarely discussed! But what works for you works. And in this thing.... he's wrong. It can be more difficult, but it's not "likely to fail"... though it may "test your commitment" more than having someone to hold you accountable.I wrote a paragraph on the "spouse" issue and decided to delete it. Please don't be offended, it's not intended. I just truly don't care, and really hiding it just makes it seem more important than it actually is. Not to mention that $40 for a male haircut is ridiculous, whereas $40 for a female haircut is generally accepted. (Taking it out of the grocery envelope without discussion is wrong no matter what.) **This assumes that you do not live in a country where you could be killed for your preference.So..... take this for what it's worth, take what you like, leave the rest.
On 6/29/2017 at 9:44 AM, katrina23 said:
My spouse still is not on board. Even to this day, if I mention "budget" or "Dave Ramsey" I can forget discussing anything else. My husband is fine with setting goals & we pay the goals along with the bills. All other money is free to be spent how we see fit. That's everything from groceries to gas to entertainment to hobbies. To make this work - me not going crazy with him blowing money & him not going crazy with my knitpicking everything - we have separate checking accounts. We each have bills we are responsible for. We divide them up so that the remaining money after bills is equal. Completely against Dave Ramsey's advice - according to him, we should be divorced if we don't share a checkbook. We are each on the others' account. I can see his account online & he can see mine. We have full access, but day to day, he has his, I have mine. Works for us. We've done pretty well financially & in our relationship using this method. Every couple has to find what works for them.
Remember, anything you feel is being crammed down your throat, you will resist. Sometimes, you've got to find a way for them to "buy in" that isn't necessarily sitting through a DR program. Good luck!