Are You Married To A Gambler?

Money, gambling, finances, future, retirement, savingAre you married to a gambler? Is your significant other living a lie, acting as if there is nothing wrong? Is your “better half” single-handedly burning away your future with their addictive ways?

The tragedy some people must bare is painful to watch. Recently, I learned of a couple that is losing everything. Their house is in foreclosure. They have already sold their new cars in an effort to limit the debt load. Personal items are both sold or given away in an effort to reduce the workload of the pending move. Their good-byes are being said yet they have no place to go.

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Like 15 million of our friends and family, the trigger that put them over the ledge was a job loss.

While the job loss is seen as the straw that broke the camel’s back, their full pain was building over years of bad habits, poor choices and failing to saving seriously. With separate and joint finances, only as their finances spiraled out of control did they both learn of their situation. Each had incurred additional debt without advising the other. As a result they were both surprised by unexpected debt.

Could you have a gambling spouse and not realize it?

With the wonders of the internet and modern communication your Honey can stay at home and still gamble. Pudding may not know how to play Texas Hold-em, Five-Card Stud or Blackjack. Not knowing how to play does not mean they are not gambling. Of course, I am not suggesting you will find your sweetie in the basement with your neighbors rolling dice either.

Too many spouses are gambling away their future by default, and you may be along for the ride.

There are some men that simply do not believe they are capable of handling their finances. Their refusal to accept responsibility means they are gambling with their future, by default.

Some women never learned about financial management because it was too boring. Her lack of interest, or even willingness makes her a gambler too.

Forgive me for butchering a really important quote, this is really a case of “United we stand, divided we fall.” Both parties must be engaged in the relationships finances and understand how their behaviors affect the well-being of all. Ultimately your future relies on the success of both parties.

The array of excuses all comes back on some level to denial. In the end, spouses refuse to take responsibility or participate in their families fiscal activities. They blindly gamble with their future, failing to engage in their finances they continue to work at odds to the good of the family, spending recklessly, ignoring due dates and costing the family through their inefficiency and ignorance.

By refusing to be involved they are placing your financial future in the hands of lady luck. “It will all work out.” she might say. “Let’s just steal from Peter to pay Paul.” he suggests; “We will figure a way out eventually.”

Lady Luck will not always pay the bills for you, she is not one to hang around often or for very long. Survival in this modern world of consumerism, relies on effective personal finance; it is not an option, it is a necessity.

If your spouse is a gambler, it is time to stop rolling the dice.

Readers: Is your significant other a gambler? Is your significant other actively engaged with you in managing your financial affairs? Has this always been the case and if not, what did it take to get them involved?

Here is my story about my wife finally getting involved. It was all due to the book that changed my world.

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9 comments to Are You Married To A Gambler?

  • My wife loves numbers and really does well with the finances but we BOTH manage them. We both check up on them and we both make all the financial decisions. When we first got married my wife made some gambles and lost. (work at home scam) It wasn’t that much money but it sure hurt her confidence in herself and in the world. I have done the same thing. Now we talk about every decision, big or small.

    On the other hand, my sister-in-law is now filing bankruptcy because her and her husband both turned a blind eye to their finances and after only a few years, it’s coming to bite them in the butt. There isn’t even a job loss in the situation, they both work, but they can no longer keep up with their ever expanding lifestyle..
    .-= Jesse´s last blog ..Linkworthy: Simplicity, Ignorance, and Stay at home Moms =-.

  • My wife readily tells me if she ever started gambling, she would probably be a compulsive gambler. Fortunately, that has not been an issue for us, but I respect her for knowing her possible weaknesses and sharing them with me.

    I do know many people (some family members) who fit in what I would call your “passive gambling” category: they just refuse to accept responsibility, which means they are gambling with their futures by default.
    .-= Joe Plemon´s last blog ..What is “Strategic Default” and Should You Consider It? =-.

  • I know one person with a gambling/lying spouse–unfortunately once the gambler is caught if he/she doesn’t quit, lying is also part of the picture. It’s definitely tragic. I’d probably divorce over that, frankly. Am I judgmental? Maybe so.

    I also have a woman friend whose husband was so in control of their finances that she had no idea what was going on, where their money was, what their budget was etc. When they were dating, she didn’t seem to mind him being in charge, but she eventually snapped out of it and made a huge stink until she was an equal partner in the finances. But I don’t think it’s always the woman. I think it has to to with relative expertise and will. My husband, for example, would probably not be sad to turn over more financial responsibility to me.

    The thing is, if both people don’t know what’s going on and something happens to one partner, then the other one can really struggle to catch up with the finances!
    .-= Simple in France´s last blog ..Your Favorite DIY’s-frugal? entertaining? both? =-.

  • I play backyard poker ever now and then, but nothing big. My wife is more frugal than I am, so no problems on that front. 🙂
    .-= Money Reasons´s last blog ..BP Oil Spill, Selling On Bad News =-.

  • I used to play a ton of poker. But, I realized its addictive aspects, and I stopped. I never bet too much, but it was enough for me not to feel good when I lost money.

    Now I focus on other more productive things. Instead of once a week, it’s now maybe once every two months.

    Cheers, Sam
    .-= Financial Samurai´s last blog ..Pretend You Have Arrived So You Can Become =-.

  • The LeanLifeCoach

    Forgive me for the belated replies…

    @Jesse – You have the best of all worlds, a partner in your financial journey. You are a lucky man… and yes, you must share this comment with your wife. She needs to know that you have it good!

    @Joe – For my first three decades I was one of those gamblers. Why are so many of us so blind?

    @Simple in France – Luckily it was only for a few years, but I am also guilty of being a passive participant in family finances. My first marriage was a financial catastrophe. I’m with you on divorce unless the spouse took action to stop.

    @Money Reasons – If we are talking actual gambling, like anything else… if you have money to lose, have a blast. Same as actively being engaged, if you can’t control your finances you must seek education or help.

    @Samurai-san – I don’t get that, it is like people who can smoke a cigarette every few months and then walk away. If I gambled a little, I would want to gamble a lot. Good thing I know I’m a bad gambler!

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