Dear Mouthy Housewives,
I got engaged in February, just two weeks before my boyfriend (now husband) got fired from his job. We got quickly court-house married so that he could have health insurance (we’ve been together over three years and still plan to have a wedding ceremony next year so it wasn’t that last-minute).
I’ve become the breadwinner while we slowly drain our house fund/his savings for monthly bills. At this point, I’m drowning in bills I had before we were married, plus the extra cost of all the groceries (we used to go halfsies), insurance and other things (lots of beer).
There is little I can do to make more money or save more money but HOW do I lessen the moment-to-moment terror I feel about my situation? I have heart-wrenching anxiety whenever I look at a receipt or my banking website. Help me.
This is Not Life with Prince Charming
Dear This is Not Life,
First of all, I’m so sorry for your financial problems and anxiety. This sounds like a really rough time for you. Take some deep breaths. (Yes, I promise my advice will get better than just telling you to breathe.)
You are anxious because you feel like you have no control over your financial situation. You need to immediately sit down with your husband and make a budget. Even if you are eating into your savings, it will make you feel better if you know exactly how much you can spend on groceries, gas and yes, even beer (although I do think a cheap bottle of Sauvignon Blanc is a better investment). Now stick to that budget. If you are not of financial mind, find a friend who is good with numbers to help out with this.
Also, allow yourself one hour a week when you focus on your debt. That’s the time that you pay bills, look at your budget, drink wine, cry and stress out. Then do your best to let it go until the following week.
I would also recommend making time in your life for anything that might relieve a bit of your stress… a jog, watching a movie, writing, bubble baths, dancing like a maniac to “She Works Hard for the Money.” Whatever works.
I assume your husband is job hunting. Is there any kind of part time work he can take on temporarily to just bring in some cash? Because you are clearly feeling a heavy financial burden. Try to keep in mind that this is a temporary situation. Your husband will work again. The economy will get better. Life will improve.
But right now, feel free to vent to the Mouthy Housewives because you need to express all of these feelings. And we are the kind of ladies that will always listen.
Good luck and keep us posted.