Money management in the family

One of the issues raised by some wives at a recent couples’ meeting was that some men are so obsessed with controlling the family money that they refuse to give their wives any cash to spend on what they desire. You find such men doing the grocery shopping instead of just giving the wife the money to go and buy what the family needs.

You will see some of these men pushing trolleys or carrying shopping baskets in supermarkets. I always laugh at them and sometimes I call them Samanyika. Wives cry for periodic generosity to enable them to spoil themselves by buying some of those little but precious items that they desire. These may be ear-rings, bangles or even shoes and blouses.

I know a silly man who will go to the shops to buy sanitary pads for his wife and daughters. Haunyari here? It is quite embarrassing, really. Some men will go to the extent of buying their wives all the underwear they may need. It is shameful. These are the men who are afraid that given the money to buy these items, the wife may end up taking one or two dollars to give to their father or mother or other relative. This lack of trust is an indication that the whole marriage is in serious trouble for lack of accountability.

We have found out that when it comes to buying food and other grocery items for the family, the wife is much better than the man. She has the patience to compare prices before buying anything. She also is very good at calculating the real value of an item considering the cost benefit status.

Men are usually in a rush to buy things and get out of the shop before spending too much money. In the process they actually end up paying far too much for simple items that may be cheaper elsewhere. It is true that women love to shop; some openly say they can shop until they drop dead from exhaustion.

Thank God, we are now using Rands and Obamas, they do not stretch as far as the Zim$ used to stretch. A good husband will, from time to time, give his wife what my family calls “spending money.” This is money that they can spend on anything they like and they do not have to account for it. We have discovered that when the wife is given such money, she tends to spend more than half of it on things that are actually needed by the family and only very little on herself.

A generous husband will always be rewarded. In our family, we have experienced impressive savings as a result of the wife’s efforts at doing her homework before she buys anything. For some reason, she is well informed about good bargains and where they are located. She is also very good at selecting durable items as opposed to cheap and nasty stuff that you find at the market these days.

A wife who is denied any spending money will not bother to save the family any cash. She will also be tempted to buy the most expensive items since none of the money will come to her, anyway. She will feel treated like a child and not like an equal partner with her husband. Come on husbands; be a little generous with your money. Make your wife proud that she can always ask you for money that she does not have to account for. She will be proud of you and love you more that she does when you are stingy.

Post published in: Opinions & Analysis

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