I was reading another blog and came across this in the comments section. I tried to contact the author to have her contribute here, but there was no attached blog or email. If anyone knows this Stacey who commented on a BabyCenter Blog, inform me.
I found her comments to be incredibly insightful for us stay-at-home moms, but the concept can also be applied to working moms, single people, and dual-income families.
Here’s what she had to say:
“Being out of debt sounds good to me, but not good enough to really motivate me to be frugal (frivolous is much more fun). I am not frugal by nature, but I have found something that DOES motivate me to be careful with the cash (and credit, of course): honoring my husband. It has taken me way too long, but I have finally realized that my husband is totally honoring ME by working his tushy off so I can stay home and take care of our kiddos. He is very generous and is not a penny-pincer, and I see how hard he works to provide for us. I have realized that when I waste money that he works so hard to earn, I am really disregarding his sacrifice. It would be like me working hard to clean house and make good meals while he shows up with mud all over his shoes and a Big Mac every night… that just wouldn’t work for me. Over the past few years, I have tried to think of merchandise in terms of how many hours (or minutes) of hubby’s hard work it will take to buy it, not just whether or not we can afford it. Though I still occasionally fail miserably and buy useless crap (hey, I’m susceptible to good marketing tactics), I am getting much better. Also, staying home allows me to cut cost in some ways that really makes my hubby happy… I make healthy homemade breads and cereals instead of paying five times as much at the store. I make my some of my own household cleaners at 1/5 of the cost and cut my kids’ hair instead of paying for it too be done (poor kids). Not only does it help with debt, my husband feels loved and honored, and thinks I am his personal goddess of homemaking. It’s a good trade. I’m not “there” yet, but working on it… Wish me luck!”
As I said, the concept of honoring your husband’s work applies most to stay-at-homers, but the idea of how many working hours does it take to afford such-and-such applies to anyone.
And if you’re just beginning your financial journey, perhaps still living with Mom and Dad, consider how much they provide for you. Are you being responsible with your own money to honor them and their efforts to support you?
I think this concept of honoring those who make your existence worthwhile is vital. How much then does this, once again, come back to a spiritual matter?
Are you honoring God, who makes all things possible, by being responsible with his blessings? If you’re a regular reader, you know this has been the turning point for me. As Stacey said, being debt-free sounds nice, but not good enough to keep me on track. The financial wisdom isn’t enough motivation to avoid frivolity. But the conviction to honor those we love, including God, is a powerful motivator.
What’s your motivation for financial responsibility?