My Struggles as the Family Finance Manager

I grew up in a house where my dad handled the finances…diligently. I married a man who, for one reason or another, hates the thought of looking money square in the eye. He loves throwing it around and wasting it, but he doesn’t like to face the music and see how much, exactly, he spent. So, naturally – with my father showing me the ropes of budgeting, my degree in finance, and my marriage to someone who doesn’t want anything to do with dollar bills – I am the family finance “manager”, if you will, in our household.

Taking care of the finances for your family is a tough job when there are so many other things to do. These are my struggles. Maybe you can relate.© vladimirfloyd / Dollar Photo Club

Without knowing much more about me, you might think that we have a beautiful budget (I do like beautiful things), our savings is strong, and we have money growing on trees in our front yard.

Even the Queen of England has her own problems.

That’s right, kids, I feel like a real failure as of about 9 months ago. In other words, I can’t keep up with our budget, we have the smallest savings we’ve ever had in our entire marriage, we have the largest house payment we’ve ever had in our marriage, we have two very young children, and my husband is currently trying to start a business. Oh, and in case you didn’t know already, I’m a stay-at-home mom.

I know I’m not the only person out there with problems, but boy do mine seem pretty monumental right now.

You’re right. Money and budgeting aren’t the only things to life.

But they are a pretty major part of living in society in our day and age.

Here’s what happened and why I think our budget has fallen apart.

First, my spouse isn’t concerned or worried at all about it. Support would’ve helped immensely. At the end of the day, he didn’t really hold me accountable. And that’s what I needed most of all.

Second, I was getting more and more lax about it, doing it when I had “the time” and deciding that as long as we weren’t spending tons of money that we would be okay.

Third, I had our second child only 18 months after our first, which is actually really stressful. I just couldn’t find time for anything more than feeding the baby, then feeding the toddler, then diapering the baby, then diapering the  toddler, then cooking, then cleaning, then…and the list goes on.

I blame myself entirely for not getting back on track right after I started veering off. So here I am. Lucky that I haven’t put us on the streets.

Now, I know I’m not the only person on the face of this earth who is dealing with money/budgeting problems right now. I want to change one step at a time and get back on track with our budget. If you are going through a similar situation, please join me in my efforts.

Just because I have knowledge from school about all of this stuff doesn’t mean I actually put it into practice. Right now, today, I am changing that. And I want to be changed at the end of it and never make the same mistakes again.

You might be happy to know that I’ve already taken it into my hands to start a bill paying system. Now that it’s in place, I’m going to see how it goes and hopefully never miss another payment again!

Are you the family finance “manager” of your household?

Linked to: SHINE Blog HopBlogger’s Digest, and Thrifty Thursday

You Need a Bill Pay System
My Struggles as the Family Finance “Manager”
Mistake #1 – Quit budgeting
Mistake #2 – Mixed up wants and needs
Mistake #3 – Used credit cards for things we couldn’t afford
Mistake #4 – Overcomplicated our budget
Mistake #5 – Checked over our accounts less often
Mistake #6 – Saved $0
Mistake #7 – Spent bonuses
Mistake #8 – Bought low-quality appliances

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  1. I’m like your husband…I like to waste money and never worry. It’s completely irresponsible and sometimes catastrophic yet I continue to believe that money is always going to keep coming in and I’m going to have so much more of it that I need not worry. If I worry, if I stress, then that desperation is going to attract the same and my flow will be stagnant. Obviously I need to marry someone like you to set me straight! I’m inspired by your declaration of a new system and applying your knowledge to maximize your financial future.
    Rebecca recently posted…What Being a Parent Actually MeansMy Profile

    • I only wish I could be as brave as both of you! I bet if I didn’t worry about it so much, I really wouldn’t have money “problems.” Haha. Does your husband have the same philosophy of money as you? I truly hope that my efforts are fruitful and at least get us in a better situation than we are right now.

  2. I used to handle all of the money…but then I stopped making the majority of it :-/ We have always struggled with saving too much because we both love to shop and tend to like expensive toys! Anyone for a new computer/ipad/camera? Thankfully most of those types of expenses are able to be written off for work, but STILL!

    We are also hoping to move me from a full time job out of the house to being in charge of our creative projects and helping them to grow (blog, 2-3 podcasts, and a book series between us!).

    Thanks so much for sharing on this week’s #SHINEbloghop!
    Anne Marie recently posted…An Exclusive Look at Dogboy: and a FreebieMy Profile

    • It’s always a perk to find some way to write off your toys, right? What an exciting time! I hope you can find a way to be successful with all your projects. I appreciate you stopping by, Anne Marie!

  3. Charlee, I am finding we have more in common than I realized! I am the family finance manager as well, my husband just quit his full-time job to start his own business, and I have been pretty lax about our finances. It is stressing me out! I am learning to adjust a little at a time, and still try to stay within limits, but it is difficult. And groceries and clothes and gas are not getting less expensive. It is a challenge. Good luck! I will be following along to see how you are doing!
    Elizabeth recently posted…A Letter to My Daughters: Kindergarten Week OneMy Profile

    • Wow, how funny that we both have similar situations right now! I am trying to find every way to stretch our money. Best of luck to your husband with his business, and I hope we can both start keeping up with our family finances better. 🙂

  4. I am the family finance manager as well.

    I don’t really like the job and after reading your post, I thought that maybe the hubs and I need to have a financial meeting sometime soon to take a look at everything and make sure we’re on track.

    Even though my SHINE Blog Hop co-host paid you a visit – I wanted to pop in and read up on this as well. I definitely identify with some of what you’ve shared here.

    Wishing you well as you get back on track!
    Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom recently posted…Extra, Extra, The Deliberate Mom Turns 4!My Profile

  5. Oh my gosh yes! My husband is exactly the same way as your husband. I was doing pretty well as the “manager” for several months and then all of a sudden, I realized how overwhelmed I’d let myself become. For me, it’s a lack of organization and procrastinating opening the mail. I really need to back on track!
    Valerie recently posted…My Dearest AnabelleMy Profile

    • It’s definitely overwhelming, and I think with kids and husbands like ours it makes it even harder. I am going to be posting my plan of action sometime soon, so I hope you can follow along with me and get back on track, Valerie! Thanks for popping by 🙂

  6. Hey! I just ran across your post on Pig and Dac. I’m a new blogger (as of this week) and I enjoyed your post! I manage our finances, too. Just wanted to say hi and I love the giant calculator!

  7. Chels says:

    I wish money grew on trees! ☺

    • Then we wouldn’t have to work! Or, I guess we would because apples grow on trees, and I can’t give 5 apples to a cashier in exchange for some groceries. Oh man, Chels, you made me think!

  8. I do our family finances. After we got married, we created a budget and stuck to it pretty darn well. My husband and I each get a cash allowance for “free” spending, everything else needs to be within the budget to otherwise purchase. It worked well, but the chaos of moving and so many difference expenses related to the overseas move, out budget went out the window. We are starting to get serious this month of September and I feel happy and excited to get our finances back on track. I’m hopeful and encouraged for you. Keep us posted!
    Lauren Tamm recently posted…When Parenting Alone Gets Lonely in Military LifeMy Profile

    • I think I will have to try allowance, for my husband’s sake, once I get our budget back under control. I bet it’s been really hard to even think about staying within a budget during this move! Good for you, Lauren! I’m sure it won’t be long before you are smooth sailing with your budget again.

  9. Oh I understand what you went through after having your second! I couldn’t keep up with our budget after our second was born 19 months after our first. It took me a few months to get back on track too. I love this post, such encouragement! 🙂
    Jessi Fearon (@TheBudgetMama) recently posted…Why Debt-Free?My Profile

    • We’re a lot alike 🙂 Having two kids so close in age really wears you out! Glad to hear you were able to make changes and get back on track.

  10. Charlee,

    I could have written this post. It describes my feelings exactly. I’m trying to do better about communicating with my husband so he can hold me accountable. And, having two busy kids definitely makes it more challenging. I think that just means I need to simplify.

    Thanks for sharing your story and letting me know I’m not alone.

    Raki (Outside the Box Mom) recently posted…Take Some ‘Me Time’ without Sacrificing ‘Mom’ TimeMy Profile

    • Oh, Raki, it really is refreshing to know I’m not alone right now. Thank you for sharing, and I hope you can work towards simplicity. I need to do the same!

  11. I guess you could say I am the manager as well, but we pretty evenly split it. We do seem to be on the same page about money and how it should be spent, so that really is a blessing! ha ha. I handle all of our bills and manage the envelope system each month…My husband doesn’t have a clue as to when anything is due or if it’s even been paid! He must really trust me. 😉 Here’s to hoping you get back on track – it really does happen to us all at one point or another. I’ve been super motivated to stay on track, then I veer, then I get back on, etc.
    Chelsea @ The Contented Wife recently posted…Friday FavoritesMy Profile

    • You really are blessed to have the same goals with your money! I have always thought it strange that he trusts me enough to take care of it ALL! Thank you for the encouragement 🙂


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