Here’s a slap that I’m calling the “I’ve seen it too often” slap. It’s about weddings.
My better half is pretty upset with me because I refuse to go to any more weddings. It doesn’t matter if it’s for family, friends or the children of friends. I’m done.
I’ve been going to weddings since 1972, and to the best of my knowledge, whether they occurred in the last six or seven years or as far back as my early college years, I can’t think of one couple who is still together.
Aside from the extraordinary costs of weddings, which range from $23,000 to $26,000 (I’ve seen much more wasted on these one-day extravaganzas), when marriages fall apart – which they are doing at an increasing rate – the issue of property comes up.
Just a few weeks ago, a friend of mine came to me and asked if I would look at their assets to see if I could help her understand how they should be divided.
It seems her better half got up one day and decided he wasn’t happy and wanted out.
Where have I heard that before?
They had accumulated a great deal of cash, investments and income-producing properties. And the half who had decided he wanted out had also presented her with a list of what he wanted.
I’m sure you’re not going to be surprised by the fact that she considers his demands ridiculous. Forgive me if this is beginning to sound like a story you’ve heard 100 times before.
The point of all of this is that no matter how much money you have when you enter the contractual agreement that we call marriage (don’t kid yourself, marriage is as much a business arrangement as it is a relationship), you need to set some kind of boundaries concerning the assets that you have and will accumulate.
This is better known as a prenup.
When a marriage dissolves, the emotional stress is hard enough. But when you add the feeling of being cheated, which is exactly how it feels when one party appears to be making unreasonable demands, it escalates from one of the most disturbing events you can have in your life to a virtual fistfight.
When you consider that the divorce rate among boomers has doubled since 1990, it only makes sense to look at this thing realistically. Prenups just make sense.
Have I become a calloused, unfeeling, aging baby boomer? I prefer to think of myself as more experienced and realistic. But no matter!
If you’re watching this video, you either are trying to accumulate money and assets or have already done so. In either event, it sounds like a great idea to me to have some kind of plan in place if the divorce trend strikes home.
Considering that from 1990 to 2015 the rate of divorce among adults ages 50 and older increased by 109%, it sounds like a good bet.
And the older we get, the more complex the separation of assets gets, especially when it comes to pensions.
This is for real!
Laws vary from state to state on how marital assets are handled, but a legal arrangement before you commingle assets is something that will benefit both partners emotionally and financially.