42
43

DISCUSSIONHow prepared are you to be alone? (self.RedPillWomen)

submitted by [deleted]

I know, I know, we typically don't "believe" in divorce, but sometimes it's not up to us. Sometimes he goes through a midlife crisis and there's nothing you did or said wrong, per se. After 20 years, it's just... over. Sometimes you're 24, with three boys under five and you get a text message that he's leaving and your only real mistake was marrying before the two of you were old enough to know who you were and what you wanted. Sometimes, it's just bad vetting.

Sadly, sometimes he texts to say he'll be home in a few and two officers show up instead. You loved him and he loved you and you both worked hard at your marriage and now he's gone and you're alone.

So, to elaborate on a recently posted question, how prepared are you to find yourself alone at this point in your life? What steps did you take or would you like to take? What would you recommend to a SAHM or any woman, about preparing herself for the worst? Is it somehow disloyal to make such preparations?


[–]VigilantRedRoosterModerator 12 points13 points  (2 children)

I see this a lot in women who lose their husband in their 40s-60s after being NOTHING but a kept housewife for decades. Cases where the man made ALL of the decisions and handled ALL of the finances. Then he passes away, and his widow struggles for YEARS to get back near some baseline of normal daily functioning. I've seen women 1,2,3 years out, still struggling day to day with basic finances, zero marketable job skills, and no sense of identity beyond "wife of my now-dead husband." I know of at least two households that are now rat warrens of toxic codependency, with adult children and widow alike hooked on prescription drugs.

Statistically, women outlive men. It's not some manner of unfaithful, or "planning to fail, learning and maintaining ALL of the life skills needed to thrive alone, within a healthy C/FM relationship.

It's not a pretty sight and I've seen it play out over and over. One can be a good, faithful, First Mate of a wife and still build sufficient life skills to thrive on her own in the unfortunate event she is widowed.

[–][deleted] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I see this in both men and women at work. Women come in and don't only not know the password to the online bank account, but have never even used a computer, which makes them damn near unemployable. It's a long road to normalcy from there.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (0 children)

This is very true. Unfortunately.

While it's a good thing to have the captain-first mate dynamic, it isn't good to be "illiterate" in basic life skills. This is true for men and women.

[–][deleted] 9 points10 points  (2 children)

Divorced at 23, grad school left me with a lot of loans and I didn't really know where my money was going. I started budgeting, consolidated my loans, and worked two jobs until I could get full time in my field. Fortunately for me, Public Service Loan Forgiveness will take care of the bulk of my loans in 2024.

Now that I'm married, my husband and I are working hard to get rid of all of my debt, before we have kids. My job is secure and pays well. When we buy a home, we plan to make sure it's not on too much land to manage and it's within our means, financially. We're planning on Catholic school for our kids, so we'll likely take out a large life insurance policy for both of us.

I'd recommend any woman keep a loving and supportive group of friends, going through similar life stages at similar times, but also those who've weathered the storm and can provide advice and insight. It's important to make sure they're building you up and encouraging you, so you don't take on their shrewlike mentality, of course. In a divorce, someone usually gets specific friends. Make sure you know who you'd get and that they'd make you a better person. In the case of widowhood, you'll need all the family and friends you have, so maintain those ties. If nothing else, healthy relationships make you a healthier woman, just as fitness and style give you a sense of self.

I adore my husband and I hope we grow old together, but I also understand that may be out of my hands. I don't consider it disloyal to prepare for the worst, as long as I don't cross the line into hoping for it or fantasizing about it.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I heard an add on the radio from a company that buys up your student loans and/or consolidates other higher interest rate loans which they pay off for you and in turn charge you a lower interest rate and a single monthly you may want to look into it to see if this is available in your area.

Also, more land is usually better because there's more room to do things and more room for added value or adding value in the future.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There is usually a pretty big catch to those consolidation ads. Regardless, I'll pay a fraction of the loans, maybe never even touch the principle, under PSLF, so I'm not especially worried about it. It's just a matter of time. Seven more years in public library is all I need.

More land means more land to care for and most women I've met who are widowed end up moving to a smaller property. I'd rather not have to do that were I dealing with the death of my husband. He wants cattle, though, so I'm not sure I can avoid owning a lot of land.

[–]violetpiecrisis 6 points7 points  (1 child)

I. Am. Not. I can admit to that, I'm SO not ready. I'm a mostly SAHM with two kids and a part time job. My husband handles the "big" things. He handled the negotiations for our mortgage, he handles the car maintainence, and he handles most of the personal finances. I just happily handed all of it over, because he very much prefers to have control.

If he were to pass away suddenly or leave me, I would be okay financially and practically. (Between my good family support structure and comfortable savings.) But, I would be emotionally distraught. I don't know how I would build a normal. I would probably become one of those moms that builds their life around their children, at least for a while. :(

[–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Your self-awareness is actually pretty refreshing. I hope you never have to go through this.

[–]PinkFloweryBranches 5 points6 points  (12 children)

Well, I'm currently single so if I were to be alone for the rest of my life, I'd have to learn to be content with that.
 
I'm still following my plan of finishing my bachelor's (next May), starting career in HR, paying off debt, and saving for down payment on house. I'd like to get married someone in there, but if it doesn't happen, then I'll have to learn to be content with that. I say "learn to be content" because right now, I do have the desire to get married and have kids.
 
 
In reference to those who are already married, I can only hope that you picked a good guy. If you want to be a SAHM, then I encourage that you to be debt-free except the mortgage before kids, take out a large (i.e. $1 million) life insurance policy on him, as well as short term AND long term disability insurance.
 
Is it disloyal to have a separate bank account that he has no idea about? I say yes.

[–][deleted]  (10 children)

[deleted]

    [–]PinkFloweryBranches 1 point2 points  (9 children)

    As someone that spoke to many divorced women, I learned the common theme was that they knew that they shouldn't have married him in the first place, but did so anyway due to fear of embarrassment, getting too old to have kids, spent a lot of time together and didn't want to date again. Many ignore the red flags (heavy drinker, can't hold down a job, total jerk, etc.).
     
    Just curious, how would you feel if you found out that your husband had $50,000 sitting in an account that you had no idea about?

    [–][deleted]  (8 children)

    [deleted]

      [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (7 children)

      To be clear, I said financial transparency, even if you have separate finances. I don't think everyone needs the same financial model. Some people need to have a joint financial plan and others thrive separately, but I think honest communication about said finances is essential. If you found out your husband had no savings or $50,000 worth of debt, the day he's diagnosed with cancer, you'd be screwed.

      [–][deleted]  (6 children)

      [deleted]

        [–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (4 children)

        Ah. I apologize. I forgot you mentioned the joint account to cover emergencies or tragedies. I'm glad your situation works for you, but it does seem unique. I don't think it would work for me. I simply feel we should share these things if we share a life together. Agree to disagree.

        [–][deleted]  (3 children)

        [deleted]

          [–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (2 children)

          I have actually never heard of anyone doing this, myself. It could be cultural/regional.

          [–]jm51 0 points1 point  (1 child)

          That how it used to be in the north of England when most women were SAHMs. Every payday, her husband would give her 'the housekeeping' and she'd pay all the bills. Whatever she managed to save was hers. Whatever wages he had left after giving her the housekeeping was his.

          [–]tempintheeastbayEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          Wow, how unusual! My family has always done the exact opposite - if we're a family, literally everything belongs to everyone, shared. Obviously it's not like all my siblings and I have shared bank accounts, but we share loads of real estate, etc. and are super open about all financial info. I fully expect to completely merge assets with future husband. To each their own!

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          I say "learn to be content" because right now, I do have the desire to get married and have kids.

          I felt the same way. I turn 30 this year and I'm not struggling with it, but I think it would've been really hard for me, were I single. I'm self-aware enough to know that it would've been difficult for me to find true contentment solo.

          Is it disloyal to have a separate bank account that he has no idea about? I say yes.

          I'd certainly agree with that. I think financial transparency, whether you have separate finances or not, is essential to a healthy marriage, since the other person's credit score is at stake.

          [–][deleted]  (4 children)

          [deleted]

          [–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (3 children)

          When it comes to divorce, I think you can only be so prepared without being disloyal. Of course, there are things you can do to maintain a happy marriage that would also put you in a better position in the case of divorce, such as having your own hobbies and friends, staying physically fit and dressing well, and maintaining mental and emotional health. Evaluating the dating pool, however, or considering your assets as a divorcee or emotionally preparing yourself for divorce, crosses a line. I know we're big on taking responsibility here and the cases where someone truly does nothing to cause a divorce are rare, but they do happen. I've met a few people, men and women, who have been completely blindsided.

          [–]PinkFloweryBranches 2 points3 points  (2 children)

          Well, I just read about divorce insurance... Safeguard Guaranty - Divorce Insurance

          [–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

          Wow! I'd say that one borders on disloyalty. A prenup is one thing, but actually planning for a divorce? I don't think I'd be okay with that. I'd be interested to see how they avoid fraud.

          [–]Landry86 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          This is crazy.

          [–]Landry86 2 points3 points  (6 children)

          Good post. I'm already alone and have been for a while and I think I quite enjoy it. I'm not sure I'll ever get married. I might move out into the country and get a bunch of farm animals.

          And while I'm sure the married women on here are very happy with their lives, I think they don't realize that I don't know what I'm missing, and what I don't know or can't experience won't hurt me.

          I'm interested in reading what others will have to say about your post.

          [–]TX_Peach 2 points3 points  (2 children)

          I married my best friend and man of my dreams when i was 26, he was 29. After a very short 3 1/2 years he died one night. We had just built a new home and were trying to start a family. I was devastated. I had lived on my own for a few years before meeting him, managed my finances, bought a car, house, etc. so i could live by myself again. I too was not prepared for the emotional loss. Deep scars remain. Its very important for women to have good, supportive girlfriends.

          I read RPW because it is truth. And i enjoy the topics. I was widowed 27 years ago. I recently bought a small farm in the country and have a wonderful life. I do miss having a man to cook for and go on adventures and share life with. Maybe I'll meet someone again who tickles my fancy.

          I also encourage young women to learn the skills and resiliency necessary for when life turns up side down. Persevere. And never stop laughing, even through the tears.

          [–]TX_Peach 2 points3 points  (1 child)

          Edit. I found it very difficult to grieve the loss of our dreams most of all. Plan for tomorrow, but live in today!

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

          I enjoyed being single. It wasn't what I wanted long term, but I'm glad I had those years. Now that I'm married, I see what I was missing and I wouldn't want to be alone. I do think that it's a valid choice, though. It's not always by default. Some people enjoy the single life.

          [–]Landry86 2 points3 points  (1 child)

          This is going to sound a little sad but I don't like the idea of "having someone". Because of the possibility of losing them. Marriage scares me. I do wonder if I have just a slight bit of a commitmentphobia. The idea of being in love is nice, but I really can't deal with a lot of the drama a relationship brings: the jealousy, the expectations, the responsibility.

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          I wouldn't say my husband and I have ever had jealousy issues. We actually have a running joke about my affair with Raul. We have no reason for jealously, because we have no trust issues. It's very low drama... now that the wedding is over. Lol.

          [–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor 2 points3 points  (2 children)

          My wife suffers from clinical depression and general anxiety disorder (among other things). Thus, most of everything inside and outside the house falls on my shoulders to one degree or another, depending on how bad things are for her. There's very little that is solely taken care of by her and I can always learn those things.

          Therefore I must conclude that I'll be perfectly fine if I end up alone. Sure, it'll be sad whether it's divorce or death, it'll take adjusting, but I'm certain that I'll manage just fine.

          [–]g_e_m_anscombe 1 point2 points  (1 child)

          Does she have a plan for if something happens to you? Do you think she would manage?

          [–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          I'm sure people from our network of friends and family would help her manage if she was suddenly left alone, however, I don't think she'd manage very well on her own because of her mental state.

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

          I view this much the same as preparing for anything else in life. When you go camping you don't bring a first aid kit hoping to use it. But if you need it, boy will you be grateful. Disloyalty is camping in the hospital because you're planning on getting someone injured and also justifying your choice to be there or smoke screening about it.

          [–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

          When my husband and I first started discussing marriage, he was surprised to learn that I had no problem with the idea of a prenup. His parents have a thriving cattle ranch and he owns 1% of the business and will receive 1/3 when they pass. It was important to him to protect that. Personally, I have a good career and I make good money. I don't want his money if we divorce and I'm not so idealistic to think we can guarantee against it.

          [–]anothergoodbook 1 point2 points  (1 child)

          I'm mostly a SAHM, but work a couple days a week. In the case of a death, we have life insurance. We don't carry any debt except the house so I would pay that off. I would invest the remainder so I old supplement whatever income I make being a massage therapist.

          I've honestly not thought about the idea of what would happen with a divorce because I just don't think that way I guess...

          [–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

          Paying off my mortgage would be my first move in the event of death, as well. I think, after that, I could probably keep myself and a few children happy on my own income, particularly with the supplement of life insurance.

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          After 17 years I divorced an addict who refused to get help. When he almost died he blamed me. I asked for a divorce (he filed) and walked away with nothing but my job and 50/50 custody. It took losing me for him tonget help so he didnt lose his kid too. I walked with no furniture, no electronics, no retirement, no home equity. All the debt. No support, no alimony. I didn't divorce rape him. 2 years later and he is still trying to ruin my life to the point I have to use legal action to get him to leave me alone. Divorce sucks. Even when you are self sufficient. I always thought I would rather be alone than unhappy. Well it took 3 years of misery for me to choose to be alone. I took a year to heal and now have found someone who is the polar opposite of my ex and we make one.another very happy. Kid adjusted very well, is even flourishing now that she has stress free homes and her dad is actually participating in her life.

          [–]Paddington_Fear 1 point2 points  (1 child)

          I married the love of my life at 21 and he bailed by the time I was 32. I am still single and will be 48 in January. Life sometimes kicks you in the nuts hard and doesn't turn out at all how you'd expected it to.

          [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          I'm so sorry. It really doesn't.

          [–]scallopkidEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          I think for these situations a good support system is by far the most important asset you can cultivate. Having people you can lean on is valuable for all kinds of difficult situations, we humans are mostly not meant to be alone.

          [–][deleted]  (3 children)

          [deleted]

          [–][deleted] 8 points9 points  (2 children)

          When people say they'd never divorce, I can't help but roll my eyes. If you catch your husband touching your daughter inappropriately, you're divorcing. If you get herpes, because of his business trip, you're divorcing. If he leaves you and you don't get a say, you're divorcing. No one plans it and it still happens.

          [–][deleted]  (1 child)

          [deleted]

            [–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

            Definitely. I hope none of those things happen to any of those people, of course.

            [–]Xtinamina 0 points1 point  (2 children)

            I think about this ALL THE TIME. As a SAHM with 2 young children, I'm looking for advice on this!

            [–]anothergoodbook 1 point2 points  (1 child)

            Make sure you have life insurance! Please, please look into it. If you are young-ish and healthy, term life insurance isn't too expensive. And even though you don't work, someone would need to take your place in caring for the kids or allowing your husband to take time away from work. And if you aren't, being debt free is a good place to be in to feel secure (we did Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University ).

            [–]Xtinamina 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            Thank you !

            [–]asteadyheart 0 points1 point  (1 child)

            DH and I discussed this. Not divorcing, but if he just.... doesn't come home. A car accident. Something happened at work. Who knows.

            I told him that I would probably sell all of our possessions, donate his clothes, give things to his relatives as they want. Save all photos and items of sentiment, give plenty to his mother. I would probably never come back to visit his family. (I would definitely keep in touch with his parents, especially his mother who is a mother to me.) The main reason is that my husband is an identical twin, and I don't think I could ever look at his brother and not burst into tears. While I can tell the difference, quite easily, he just looks too much like him. His brother is also married, and I wouldn't be surprised if his brother's wife felt the same way. I wouldn't blame her.

            My job is 100% remote, so if I can just access the Internet and have a phone, I am fine. I will travel a lot, just live in different parts of the world for a stretch at a time. Do enough work to keep me afloat until I find a place, somewhere far away from here, to take root.

            I would probably throw myself into a big career in marketing, that along with traveling and taking a lot of music classes. Join a symphony one day (a life long dream).

            I would want to live enough for the both of us. Do all the things we said we would do together. Also, just keep myself busy so I don't notice (too much) that he's gone. I don't think I could stay in one place for very long, because it will eventually settle and I can see that there is a huge part of my life missing.

            As for legal and financial stuff, as someone in the legal profession, I have that all taken care of. I know his family and my family will step in to take care of any loose-ends, so I don't need to worry about it.

            EDIT: I also actually handle most of the finances (we have a shared account). He's very much the big picture guy and he doesn't have time to sit on the phone and wait to speak to someone. He can't really cut out his working hours for negotiating anything or setting anything up. Since I work from home, I have the time to put into it.

            [–]g_e_m_anscombe 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            Yeah, we both worked out this type of plan. (And a different plan for if/when we have kids.)

            If he died, I'd get a roommate to help compensate for the lack of income. But I lived with roommates before and managed life alright after college on my own, so I'm not too worried about managing everything. I'd just save less for retirement than I am now. If we had kids, I'd prob pack up and move back in with my parents for more help with child care. I could persuade my current bosses to let me work remotely. I don't really see myself having any desire to marry again. Even with kids, I have enough of a community around me that I think any sons would have good father figures.

            If I died, he would ask his mom to move in to help care for him (theoretically if we had kids, but probably if we didn't have kids as well). He feels a stronger urge to remarry because he thinks children need a mother.

            [–]RainbowKitty77 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            Financially I'd be fine. Emotionally I'm not so sure.

            [–]Rivkariver2 Star 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            I'm not. I've been unmarried a while after calling off a wedding. I'm sick and don't earn enough to have my own place. It makes it hard to understand why I'm dating people.

            [–]Spazzy19 0 points1 point  (1 child)

            I got divorced last year after 10 years of marriage through no fault of my own. It was such an upheaval overall, but thankfully we didn't have kids and I've always been fairly independent.

            I opted to rent for awhile and hold on to my equity. I set up my finances and bills and sorted out insurance which my ex used to do.

            In May I bought a condo on my own and have spent the last several weeks renovating it with the help of friends. I move next week. It's been an empowering experience and it's helped me focus since a breakup with my bf at the beginning of April. It's a complete fresh start and I'm getting excited about it. This is the first time I've truly been alone since I was 17 (33 now), so it's still an emotional adjustment.

            While I believe it's important to need and value your partner, I also think it's important to be self sufficient. Maybe he does the finances primarily, but files can be organized and notes with account access can be in each one in case there's a death or you just need access. Have a support system in place with good friends and family. Have wills drawn up already because you never know what life will throw your way. If there's something you let your partner handle because you just don't like it or he prefers to do it, still make the effort to make sure you know how to do it too.

            [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

            I agree. It's often a downside of traditionalism. We value the individual strengths of each gender so much, that we don't always stress the importance of being able, to live alone and care for yourself. I'm glad you've risen to the challenge.

            [–][deleted] -1 points0 points  (0 children)

            So you are basically saying "I am making bad choices but its not my fault, its social pressure". No one really cares what you choose to eat. It's banter.