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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/it-seems-like-you-want-her-to-track-the-30359863.aspx

Subject:  Re: Bankrupt or try to 'gut it out'? Date:  11/4/2012  11:24 AM
Author:  nomes79 Number:  306339 of 309667

It seems like you want her to track the finances...and think it's something she could do for the family, then you are absolutely going to keep at the same cycle.

You will have an impression of how things seem, she'll have control of the knowledge of how things are, and depending on y'all's patterns, you will keep talking (yelling) past each other.

You should get an online service like Mint.com, set it up to interface with your credit card/bank accounts, and automate it to stay updated. I am sure that is too hands off for many of the people here (it is too hands off for me), but then it will show you at least what you are spending without adding new work/dumping that work on your wife. As to books, go to the library. Invest in a Kindle and make heavy use of Project Guttenberg (there are tons of free e-books out there). For the cost of three new books, you get years and years of free ones.

There is no reason you cannot change your grocery patterns, other than you've expressed no enthusiasm for shopping, and the wife is keeping the family fed. If you want this to change, it may mean that you have to invest yourself more heavily in the kitchen/shopping arenas. I tend to think, btw, that the cost of "like-items" (generic peanut butter vs. Jif, Taste-os vs. Cheerios, etc) is not so great so as to worry about it--especially if there is a notable difference in taste or texture...buying things you don't need, however, might make a difference (it would be a great long-term investment to wean--not force--your kids off soda, for example).

Your marriage issues and your debt issues are intertwined, and though this is not the forum for it, it seems like you aren't communicating with each other. This is your business, of course, but I DO wonder if the pastor-counseling approach is the best way to go. You go, you hear what the pastor says, and each take you