Did you know that 66% of second marriages end in divorce? Yikes. One might think people in their second marriage would experience fewer issues because they already stubbed their toes enough the first time! Unfortunately, it may be a little more difficult than that. Old habits die hard, blended families present new challenges, and communication is always a challenge in any marriage. Here are 3 questions to ask before you get married for the second time.
#1 What money commitments do you have?
B. Child Support
Clearly and calmly discuss any commitments either of you have to children under your roof or under the roof of another spouse. We are not just talking about student loans. Explore any commitments to pay for children’s education from his or her previous marriage. This can get tough when you get married for the second time and then your kids have no money going towards their education because of previous commitments to other children.
Kiddos are a great blessing and need our support so this isn’t a time to get huffy or point fingers, just jot down the numbers so everyone knows up front.
#2 What Debt & Savings Do You Have Now?
Debt seems kind of obvious. No one likes money surprises, but uncovering a pile of unknown cash is easier than learning later about a mountain of debt. Debt surprises are the worst! Be honest about both your debt and your savings. We have a couple we have been counseling where the husband went into the marriage with a secret savings stash. The wife was glad they had more money than she thought, but was still hurt knowing he kept an important secret from her. Your relationship deserves honesty. Spit it out now and be wary of any refusal on their part to do the same.
#3 Spending & Saving Habits: Do We Differ?
This is one of the most important questions to ask before you get married for the second time — or any time! There was another couple we counseled who had very different spending habits. She couldn’t imagine going to a restaurant without a coupon, but for him coupons were very embarrassing. He did not want to be seen with a coupon every time they went out. He felt like she didn’t think he could provide. She told us, “I’m just trying to help. I know he works hard.” By the time we met with them, the resentment had escalated way beyond the value of any coupon, for sure! If they had discussed those differences in their savings and spending habits before they got married, they could have saved a lot of tension and misunderstanding.
Don’t let the statistics get you down!
If 66% of second marriages are calling it quits, be the 34% that rocks it!
Taking the time to read this article shows you’re not like everyone else. You are looking for ways to win at love and better communication is a great place to start. You don’t have to tackle all these questions to ask before you get married for the second time all at once. Choose a time where you both can speak freely and feel good about sharing about who you are, how things have gone for you in the past, and how you can approach the future together. Share with us in the comments below!
Taylor & Megan Kovar
The Money Couple