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Originally Posted By: OurHouse
I wonder how people really are able to be so disciplined to stick to a budget. I know what I did is a far cry from Mrs. Hold but the smaller things add up and I wonder if I too contributed to our financial state of affairs.


OH, most people don't understand budgeting. We have what I view as a severe lack of fiscal conservatism in this country. After all, some 70+ percent of our GDP is derived from our spending habits (problem).

Most folks associate a budget with the negative connotation of limits, or as you said, discipline. Does budgeting require discipline? Yes and no. Yes in that any plan requires a willingness to stick to the fundamentals of the plan. That said, any well designed budget accounts for both wants and needs - it recognizes that we all have real needs, as GBH said, but we all also have wants - and any budget should reflect both realities. A budget that overstates needs and understates wants will never work long term (though budgets can be altered temporarily to reach certain goals). I've read a TON of financial planning books, mostly because one of my hobbies is the study of economics and finance (my major in college was Securities Analysis/Finance within the Business Admin track). I own precious few of these books as most I don't feel do a good enough job to warrant owning. I can recommend a few books if you're interested. One of the best overall books for budgeting is All Your Worth here:

http://www.amazon.com/All-Your-Worth-Ultimate-Lifetime/dp/0743269888/ref=pd_sim_b_1

The key concept is that every budget has to reflect our being human, and therefore every budget has to have a healthy balance of wants and needs. For instance, if too much of the monthly budget is going toward real needs, then the family members will inevitably feel as though they are missing out on certain aspects of life (wants such as vacations, eating out, toys, games, or whatever else the family in question views as their wants/luxuries). The book I've recommended doesn't just talk about budgeting, it also talks about the human component, and how to achieve a good balance of wants and needs financially.

Ever wonder why one family that makes 75k a year seems to live well and really enjoy life while the family that lives right next door and makes 150k a year always seems to be struggling? It's all about balance. High level, All Your Worth will teach you a model that breaks down as follows: 50% needs, 30% wants, 20% savings. I won't say any more than that as what goes into those categories is what the entire book is all about. Can't recommend it highly enough for those struggling with their finances due to being out of balance.

Last edited by HitchHiker; 12/21/09 01:32 PM.

God Bless,

HitchHiker

All I want to do is learn to think like God thinks. , I want to know Gods thoughts; all the rest are just details. , When the solution is simple, God is answering. - Albert Einstein

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Hope everyone had a great holiday weekend.

After 2 trips to Home Depot, 2 hours with son helping me get the cutout the exact size, and 3 hours of using the dremel tool to widen the punchout in the junction box, Mrs. Hold's new cooktop got installed Saturday. Felt proud since it took me almost 8 hours to finish. But in the end it seems to work fine.

Although will take some getting used to because instead of setting "6" on our old cooktop meaning that the coils were 60% as hot as on "high", for the new cooktop "6" means that the coils are on full blast for 60% of the time (roughly on for 12 seconds then off for 8). Glad I warned Mrs. Hold because I knew it would freak her out when the burner turned itself off while she was cooking. I had trouble judging how long to cook the pancakes Sunday morning (I figured that is the appropriate way to break in a new cooktop). Mrs. Hold had trouble figuring out how long to pan fry the cutlets Sunday night. But I am confident eventually we will get used to how to keep the pan at the appropriate temperature.

Between getting a $1200 cooktop for $300 on Ebay and not paying to have it installed, this was a huge bargain!


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Got to love a bargain. Good work all around, Hold.


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Wow, what a bargain Hold. I love bargains!

HH, thanks for that book recommendation. Son is placing his next term's textbook order on Amazon today and if our library doesn't have this book, I will add it to the order.

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Had a very nice weekend in NYC with Mrs. Hold and the kids. Watching the ball drop from Central Park is much more comfortable than waiting 6 - 8 hours in Times Square. And they do a huge fireworks show in Central Park at midnight (lasted 20 minutes). Amazing to hear the booms bounce back on forth off the tall buildings on both sides of the park.

Took the kids to 2 comedy shows (not standup but humorous). I think they liked being treated like "grown ups".

No sex but that is to be expected given my decisions and behaviors. At least we had good parking Karma - found a free spot Wednesday and a meter spot on Saturday so it only cost $6.50 to park in Manhattan for 4 days!

And the good karma also applied in CT. Got up at 6 am Saturday to drive S15 to 8:00 am basketball practice. We had been complaining for days that the coach scheduled that practice. But thank God he did. I dropped off S15, then went home to get clean socks for Mrs. Hold. House was frigid. Apparently we ran out of oil even though we pay to have them refill monthly. Called the office and they sent someone out right away. Much better to discover the lack of oil at 9:00 am Saturday when everyone is working than at 6:00 pm on Sunday night. Came home to a toasty warm house yesterday afternoon.

Hope everyone had a good weekend and best wishes to all for the New Year.


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Came home to a toasty warm house yesterday afternoon.

Good! Versus busted pipes, right? Whew - smile

Did you stay in a hotel with your family?


Sooly

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"The will of God will never take you where the Grace of God will not protect you."

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Originally Posted By: Soolee
Good! Versus busted pipes, right? Whew - smile


Exactly, thank the Lord for Saturday basketball practice during vacation.

Quote:
Did you stay in a hotel with your family?


Nope. Sis and BIL live in NYC, and they typically spend vacation week in Florida. So we typically crash at their place.

That is why the weekend was so great. No rent. Only $6.50 to park. NYE in Central Park is free. The improv show was $15 pp and the Liar's Show was $12 pp. Even the all you can eat buffet was only $20 pp (my buddy is a member of a private club and they put on an amazing spread and he can invite guests so the 8 of us went). Then both families went to a 3rd family who has an apt in NYC and spent the day together and ordered pizza for dinner. So a fairly reasonably priced weekend in NYC with 3 nights "out on the town". We like to take the kids into the city so they get used to buses and subways and traffic and jammed sidewalks. We don't want to raise "bumpkins" even though we live in the woods on a road with no sidewalks or street lights.


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Parking in NYC: $6.50.

Two shows in NYC: $27 / person.

All-you-can-eat buffet: $20 / person.

Spending NYE with the family and watching the ball drop live from Central Park without maxxing out the credit cards: PRICELESS!!!

Yay for you!


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I love a good deal! But HOLD I feel badly that you are saving money that your wife gets her paws on and spends!

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Bubbles:

I always appreciate your concern for me. Thank you. But I am choosing this. I want to be with my children. We had a great weekend together in NYC. I had a nice chat with D12 on the way home from swimming practice yesterday, and we walked inside together. S15 helped me set up the PS3 so he and I do not have to fight over Call of Duty time. Much more fun than setting it up alone in my separate apt while he plays at his Mom's. This is what I want.

And just think how much less money Mrs. Hold gets to spend than if I were not so depressed and motivated to maximize my earning potential. She too is paying a heavy price for what she gets.


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Hold, I love it when you are the Anti-Eeyore!


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hold, I have known a lot of men who were so discouraged by they wives that they earned so much less money than they could have, and sometimes intentionally, just to punish their wives.

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Originally Posted By: Retread
hold, I have known a lot of men who were so discouraged by they wives that they earned so much less money than they could have, and sometimes intentionally, just to punish their wives.


rotflmao

Too bad they didn't know about MB so they could have fixed their marriage instead of cutting off their nose to spite their face!

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Thanks Jayne. Everything is relative. I understand I am seeking secondary payoffs, which is not healthy. Last night I played Call of Duty until very late. In the kitchen on the new HDTV I got Mrs. Hold for her birthday. Well, at least that is the cover story. We all know I really got it so I could play PS3 on it. wink But Mrs. Hold asked several times for a new tv for the kitchen and the old one made a funny buzzing noise that annoyed her as well as being 30 years old and huge and analog and ugly so she is happy to tell herself I got the tv for her. And I got a combo tv/dvd player so she (who watches hundreds of netflix) can watch her DVDs while cooking for the kids without a separate box and more wires cluttering up the kitchen.

Mrs. Hold spent the evening after the kids went to bed alone in our bedroom. She would prefer me to be there. She would prefer I spend time with her rather than the PS3. She would prefer that I make moves on her when I buy her a present so she can consent to sex and then tell herself she is being a good wife. I prefer that things not be arranged the way she prefers.

So for now I choose PS3 and living in denial to working on myself for a better life and a better marriage. I tell myself there is no possibility for improvement. And I am proved correct. I understand it is unhealthy to take more satisfaction from being "right" about my failure than from trying to be successful. But for now, that is how I choose to behave.

Originally Posted By: nanowritersix
Too bad they didn't know about MB so they could have fixed their marriage instead of cutting off their nose to spite their face!


Not everyone who knows about MB fixes their marriages. I find going through life noseless (or more correctly, with less and less nose as I slice parts off) is less painful than what it was like constantly trying and failing to improve my marriage. If anyone is going to cut slivers off my body on a daily basis, I prefer it be me!


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Hold, it sounds like you are cutting off your nose to spite your face. Your wife may be in the cycle of punishing you for your limiting her spending, or your income; she may be oblivious.

As I said above, and in other threads, I have seen a fair number of marriages destroyed by wives who thought sex 4 or 5 times a year was normal, and acted amazed when their husbands walked out.

If your wife is pleased with the holidays, the weekend, the new stove, went to the bedroom, and wanted you to be there, it sounds like you blew an opportunity to connect with her. You are rejecting her attempt to connect. You must be living in past resentment, rather than the present.

My concurrent response in another thread today:
http://forum.marriagebuilders.com/ubbt/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2299147#Post2299147

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Originally Posted By: Bubbles4U
I agree with what Barbie said. Why not take control and quit giving your wife money? Then force her into treatment. Barbie is right, your wife wants to prance around like "Big Shot Molly"> but it is all fake. Your wife has damaged the family, the kids, and you. And you sit around and take it. I have asked this 100 times from you HOLD. Why not confront your wife and take full control of the finances.


It is because the effort to confront, the will to overcome what trepidation Hold have has to come from "within" himself.

And despite him wanting such changes, he procrastinates and continues to adhere to the "fear" as a validation for staying in the unhealthy and miserable state of his marriage.

It is up to Hold himself to put effort to such changes. Without that, he will be in the same situation as was since 8 years ago?


-- Still JM --

Met `82, Steady May`86, Married Jul`95. D12, S9, D3. MB`ing since Apr`02 to fall back "in love."

05.20.06: "If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right."
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Originally Posted By: Retread
If your wife is pleased with the holidays, the weekend, the new stove, went to the bedroom, and wanted you to be there, it sounds like you blew an opportunity to connect with her. You are rejecting her attempt to connect. You must be living in past resentment, rather than the present.


Yes, exactly. I am living in past resentment. I am comfortable there. I am not comfortable living in the present and trying to connect with her. Too much risk of rejection. She rejected me every night and every morning over the weekend. Maybe she wanted me last night. Maybe not. I don't want to know, because the odds are not in my favor.

If she wanted me last night, most likely it was to lie next to her silent and unmoving. Maybe hold my hand. And then roll over and go to sleep. I do not want that. Without the sex, I find the night together in bed painful rather than pleasant. I am not going to put myself through a painful process just so she can feel connected to me. If she wants me to connect with her, she needs to make that process less painful for me. Which means LOTS more sex. I know it doesn't work that way. I know the SF comes after meeting needs and eliminating love busters. I know I should meet her ENs and hope that motivates her to want to reciprocate. BTDT. Homey don't play that game no mo.

I do not expect my decision to produce a happy marriage or a happy life for me. But it is less painful than back when I was actively trying to meet her needs. I believe that is the best I can hope for. I am aiming to be proved correct. Given all the rejection and failure in my past, I like being able to attain my goals. Even if they are negative ones.


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Originally Posted By: holdingontoit
And just think how much less money Mrs. Hold gets to spend than if I were not so depressed and motivated to maximize my earning potential. She too is paying a heavy price for what she gets.


Isn't that just some passive-aggressiveness on your part. You see the less money you earn as a form of punishment for your wife, instead of you taking absolute control and enforcing boundaries about money and finance?

And as for "depressed and motivated" part, you "let go" of your own free will and control of your happiness based on what your wife does? You put your own happiness 'dependent' on whether you wife meets your needs or not.

I know it's a huge mind hurdle for someone who thinks and values sex as the ultimate validation of love / care / want.


-- Still JM --

Met `82, Steady May`86, Married Jul`95. D12, S9, D3. MB`ing since Apr`02 to fall back "in love."

05.20.06: "If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right."
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Originally Posted By: Still_JM
It is up to Hold himself to put effort to such changes. Without that, he will be in the same situation as was since 8 years ago?


Exactly. I fully expect to be in the same situation 5 years from now. Then we shall see what I choose. I may choose to stay. I may be too old and too tired and too afraid and too set in my ways to summon the effort to change. If so, it will be because I chose this unhealthy and miserable existence. I recognize that. It is on my head.

Originally Posted By: Still_JM
Isn't that just some passive-aggressiveness on your part.


Yes, exactly. I am too wimpy to be overtly aggressive. So I am passive-aggressive instead. Undoubtedly that plays a part in my wife not finding me sexually attractive. Still, knowing that is not enough to motivate me to change.

Originally Posted By: Still_JM
you "let go" of your own free will and control of your happiness based on what your wife does? You put your own happiness 'dependent' on whether you wife meets your needs or not.


Yes, of course I do. I do not want to take responsibility for my life. I would rather put it on her shoulders. Naturally, she resents that, as she should.

Not saying I am mature. I am a mess. And I have given up hope of ever not being a mess. Which pretty much dooms me to continue being a mess. Yikes, look how quickly I fall back to full eeyore mode.


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Originally Posted By: holdingontoit
She rejected me every night and every morning over the weekend. Maybe she wanted me last night. Maybe not. I don't want to know, because the odds are not in my favor.


So you broke your vow to not ask for SF from MrsHold then, six times over the weekend?

I was going to point out that when you invited her (walked past her naked) she loved SF with you. Is that what you meant by she rejected you Friday, Saturday and Sunday, twice a day?

LA

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