Saturday, February 17, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Fiance in finance wants prenup to minimize marriage risks

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Fiance in finance wants prenup to minimize marriage risks

Q: After seven years of dating (since my junior year of college) and one year of being engaged, my fiance just brought up a prenup. Both of us have advanced degrees, but he's in finance and I work in public interest law. I am significantly less financially secure than he is and will make significantly less in my career.

But we've always functioned like a team. We've both made moves and career decisions for each other. He's my best friend. I'm really hurt.

Our wedding is only a month and a half out and this feels very rushed to me. We both have said we would never get divorced (and after eight happy years together, I truly believe we'll make it), but his phrasing is that he analyzes risk for a living and just wants to be extra secure that in the unlikely event of divorce, he is prepared.

I think that even having a prenup opens the door to divorce and don't understand why, if he says he doesn't believe in divorce, he'd request one. This feels like the biggest breach in our relationship ever. Advice? Am I being ridiculous? Is he?

Prenup or not?

Carolyn: Prenups are wise and necessary in some (very narrowly defined) cases, and I can see why this request for one rubs you the wrong way. In the event of a divorce, a decent person won't expect a nickel more than what's fair from the other person. So he's essentially saying that, should you and he divorce, he doesn't trust you to be that fair player. In other words, he needs to be "extra secure" to protect himself from you. If that's the case, then why is he marrying you? And, alternately, why wouldn't he want you to get your fair share?

If that's an accurate reflection of the way you feel, then please articulate that for him.

Side notes: Just because you both say so doesn't mean you won't ever divorce. Also, it's not unusual for people who don't "believe in" divorce to become believers courtesy of an unexpected twist.

Anonymous: I have to absolutely disagree. Prenups are smart. It's always smart to be prepared for the worst. You wear a seat belt not because you're counting on getting in an accident, but just because. Prenups are the same thing.

Carolyn: That's a false equivalency, car accident to divorce. Divorce behavior is all choice.

I maintain, a decent person won't take a soon-to-be ex to the cleaners, nor will a decent person try to deny a soon-to-be ex the financial settlement to which s/he is entitled. If you think your intended has the capacity to behave outside the bounds of decency in the event of a divorce, then don't marry him or her.

I think a prenup is smart if you have financial entanglements that go beyond what is yours alone — for example, family interests to protect or children from a prior marriage. In this case, they're talking about income each would bring to the marriage while married. How is he arguing against fair distribution of that in the event of a split?

Tuesday: More on prenups, but only if you sign here first.

Comments

Tell Me About It: Vacation opens dialogue about money

Vacation opens dialogue about moneyQ: My girlfriend and I just went on our first vacation together. I thought it went well, but after we were home she told me she felt I had been cheap because I wanted to split all costs 50-50.I think cheap would be ...
Published: 02/16/18
Dance Moms star Chloe Lukasiak to appear at Florida State Fair on Saturday

Dance Moms star Chloe Lukasiak to appear at Florida State Fair on Saturday

TAMPA — Chloe Lukasiak will take on a different role than she is accustomed when she stops by the Florida State Fair this weekend.After all, the 16-year-old Pennsylvania-native and resident rose to fame on Seasons 1 through 4 of Lifetime’s reality te...
Published: 02/15/18

Tell Me About It: Past eating disorder affects food choices

Q: My wife refuses to change her diet and grocery shopping to accommodate my health needs and those of our kids. Everything she gets is processed grains and sugar. My doctor recently recommended losing weight, and exercise won’t cut it. But because s...
Published: 02/15/18
Top things to do this weekend: Florida State Fair, Mutt Derby at Derby Lane

Top things to do this weekend: Florida State Fair, Mutt Derby at Derby Lane

GO, DOG, GO: Mutt DerbyOne of the most hilarious days at the races is Sunday, when ordinary house pets get a chance to run on the Derby Lane greyhound track. Mutt Derby registration begins at 11 a.m., but you can register in advance at greyhoundpets...
Published: 02/14/18
This week’s best concerts: Mary J. Blige, Kelsea Ballerini, Wyclef Jean and more

This week’s best concerts: Mary J. Blige, Kelsea Ballerini, Wyclef Jean and more

LEGEND IN THE MAKING: Kelsea BalleriniComing off a debut with three No. 1 singles — Love Me Like You Mean It, Dibs and Peter Pan — it’s no surprise Kelsea Ballerini was feeling the pressure before dropping her sophomore album Unapologetically last fa...
Published: 02/14/18
5 things to do under $5: Apple's Steve Wozniak, mini golf in the library, Clearwater street parties

5 things to do under $5: Apple's Steve Wozniak, mini golf in the library, Clearwater street parties

1 Steve Wozniak: The Apple co-founder, above, will give a free talk on Tuesday, Feb. 20 as part of USF Muma College of Business’ new Thought Leader series. The college’s dean will conduct a discussion about everything from the need for en...
Published: 02/14/18

Tell Me About It: Girlfriend’s directness often comes off rude

My brother is getting married soon. My serious, but fairly new, girlfriend thinks she’s not been invited because we’re lesbians, but actually I’ve hidden the invite because I don’t want to take her.Thing is, I adore almost everything about her! She’s...
Published: 02/14/18
Why ‘Black Panther’ is revolutionary — and an excellent movie

Why ‘Black Panther’ is revolutionary — and an excellent movie

Like its real-life radical namesakes, Black Panther is revolutionary and Afrocentric, a black cultural fantasy made real in a medium taking too long. Children of any color except white haven’t seen blockbuster movie superheroes that look like them.No...
Published: 02/13/18
Updated: 02/14/18
‘Early Man’ is a throwback in both story and Aardman Studios claymation style

‘Early Man’ is a throwback in both story and Aardman Studios claymation style

Nick Park’s stop-motion clay animation made famous with Wallace & Gromit seems prehistoric in a digital age. That makes it perfectly suited for Early Man, a throwback in both story and Aardman Studios style. Early Man is Park’s first...
Published: 02/13/18

Tell Me About It: Couple should talk rather than assume

Q: My wife has been a freelance consultant whose work has dried up. I have a good-paying job and I figured with her work having dried up, she’d take care of the house, bills, paperwork, etc., with her time. Instead, I don’t know what she does, but th...
Published: 02/13/18