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Here's my question: My girlfriend is not exactly financially responsible. I just taught her how to balance a checkbook, but she just keeps piling up the bills. She'll ignore bills that come in the mail and gets calls from creditors all the time demanding money. I just know that one look at her credit report would make me cringe (she doesn't care to see hers).

Is anyone else in a relationship with a financially inept person, and how do you make them see the light?


Dear Mad,

Congrats in working so hard to become debt free. As the previous posters have pointed out, we have many resources here where you can learn (and point out to your girlfriend) about cleaning up debt. I don't know how serious the two of you are, but if marriage is the future, you might get some tips by reading through these articles:

http://www.fool.com/specials/2000/sp000724.htm?ref=SpAg
http://www.fool.com/foolu/askfoolu/2001/askfoolu010502.htm

Here is a really good line to tell her: if she is paying 18% interest on outstanding credit, every dollar paid on the balance returns 18% in real, live cash savings to her, 100% guaranteed. Try getting this kind of deal from the stock market. (Hint: you can't.)

And last but not least, I would be remiss if I didn't recommend the Motley Fool Money Guide. There are some terrific tips and ideas in there. The problem will be getting her to read it, especially if she is apathetic. (THAT I can't help you with, unless you are very creative in giving it, and presenting in a way that piques her interest.) Here's a link for more info:

http://www.foolmart.com/Shopping/Product_View.asp?PRODUCT_ID=MF031_02-02&REF=csbo03105

Foolishly yours,

Karen Kosoy
TMF Karen


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