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For Women: Why it’s important to be financially independent before marriage

Why it's important to be financially independent before marriage

It's OK to marry a man who can provide. It's better to be able to do so for yourself.

When you, as a woman, think of marriage, it is important to think of financial independence before and in the marriage; and not just to think in lines of the best ways to live in peace and harmony with your man, or how to be a great mum to your kids, if you choose to have them.

Getting married in our society largely necessitates respect, good family values, and a lot of other great virtues for women, things which have long been thought to be very important if a woman is to stay married.

But not enough is said about financial independence; the need to have a financial standing of your own, to have the mental capacity to generate and manage your own funds from long before you begin to consider marriage.

In a traditional sense, this can be excused away with the idea of men being required to provide everything for their families, and taking away the woman's need to work and make money. But this is 2018 and long gone are the days when people were cool with this kind of arrangement.

In the modern marriage, it has become important for women to be just as financially independent and prepared for marriage just as men are, even though men are still largely under the obligation to provide for their wives and kids. So this is not about excusing men from their responsibility as we've always known it to be.

To still be out of tune with this idea is to be far behind times; and to have thoughts of getting married before becoming financially capable of taking care of, at least, yourself is quite absurd.

Expert opinion

That's the point Joro Olumofin tried to make with a recent post on his relationships-themed Instagram page. The bearded Instagram relationship guru says here that:

“If you're a single lady and you're not earning at least N150,000 a month you shouldn't be thinking about marriage yet. This is for your own security & sanity in marriage.

“Based on hundreds of mails I receive daily from posters. I've noticed a trend in behavior: commitment before finances. Most ladies go into marriage with the hopes that the man will take care of everything."

"A lot of married women are unhappy in their homes but can't leave because they are not independent, some don't even have transport money to go back to their parents house. Secure the bag first."

Although many will fault the figure he pegs the financial requirement on, and that's not surprising, it still does not take away from the unerring validity of the point he was trying to make.

Why financial independence is important for women

Maybe you do not need to make #150k before you marry, maybe you think you need to make more than that in income before you tie the knot; the point remains that you need to have something going for you, apart from what your husband decides to give you for upkeep. [If he chooses to.]

You absolutely have to. As the love doctor says above, it is for your "sanity and security."

Having your money enables you make necessary moves if the need arises. Of course no one hopes to marry a partner who will become a monster down the line, but these things happen. And having your own money to draw from could be the difference between getting out of a harmful marriage fast and becoming another fatality stat in the domestic violence madness.

Another reason why it is important to make your own money is because it is simply in tune with the times. It is trendy and respectable.

More young men and women are subscribing to the idea of wives bringing more to the table than sex and kids and house keeping skills. Just as it is no longer enough for husband to go to work and not pitch in with housekeeping work. There has to be more.

As I wrote in another article:

"…the modern relationship and marriage is certainly not in the same mold as the ones of old.

"Money, bills, finances, holidays, gifts and basically how money is generally spent in a [marriage] is now more joint, and the idea of marriage as a partnership has never been more seriously taken.

"Couples in serious relationships now make plans before marriage on how much each partner contributes of their monthly income, they discuss joint accounts, and how bills are settled; and really, this is the advisable model, except one partner is super rich and can afford to handle all of the bills and finances."

Times have changed now and it is better to be the wife who marries and stays married on her own terms, and not because she has no other option but to be.

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