>So yesterday I was a potty-mouth and had the audacity to mention the dreaded “P” word…prenup! But let’s get past the stigma of prenuptial agreements- as the majority of the U.S. has gotten past the stigma of divorce (latest stats prove this point). I ran across the website divorcerate.org that cited, “50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce, according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri.”
Now after reading those startling figures, can we get back to the topic at hand?
A prenup basically removes the money from the equation- the money you would be shelling out to lawyers who are going to rake up enough hours that they can buy one or more homes; and the money that you will be fighting to keep your spouse from feeling entitled to collect; it allows you to truly focus on what is supposed to be the most important thing in your relationship and pending marriage…the two of you! It keeps a couple who started out lovey dovey and inseparable from turning into Michael Douglass and Kathleen Turner in the 1989 movie “The War of the Roses”! It leaves one less thing to focus on or argue about.
How many of us gasped loudly at the amounts in divorce settlements where both men and women are walking away with millions of dollars? Although people always think of prenups as benefitting men, ladies, they can protect you also. How many of you worked hard to push your way up the career ladder, earned or are earning your position and title ethically, have or intend to own a home? How devastated would you be if the man you love filed for divorce and said, “oh and by the way I want half of everything you own“? Funny how things quickly go from “ours” back to “mine”. A prenup allows you to determine and designate how ‘mine’, ‘ours’, and ‘theirs’ is distributed and maintained.
Prenups aren’t for everyone- they are however my preferred tool to cut through the ‘bull’ in a relationship. I did have issues with an ex who refused to enter a prenuptial agreement with me- and the crazy thing is he made considerably more money than I did, but was insulted that I wanted a prenup. He argued that “…you’re not the type of woman who would go after my money, so why would I want a prenup to protect it? What’s mine is yours. You helped me get to where I am in my career….” Yes, he was right about the type of woman I am, just as he was right that I helped in building his career- but I still knew the realities that money somehow always becomes an issue in relationships, and I didn’t want that to be one of our issues.
Funny thing, money didn’t cause me to call off our engagement- his wandering eye and loose zipper did…but can you see how a prenup would have spared an emotional roller coaster had we married and he got busted cheating?
So are your shoulders still smashed up to your ears? Are your nostrils still flared? Are you still trying to find my email or phone number to give me a piece of your mind? I want you to think of the celebrities, public and private figures who have had or are going through ugly divorces all because they are fighting over money and property- couples fighting over custody of children and pets- then ask yourself would you want to be in their shoes?
Am I still crazy for wanting a prenup? If I am, then I embrace my craziness. Heaven forbid I ever marry and it fails, but while everyone else is stewing through a nasty divorce, I would have peace of mind as I sipped on an icy drink during a cruise- knowing that everything my husband and I agreed upon on day one was honored, and we respectfully and lovingly went our separate ways.
Just like I said in my Breaking Bread With Natasha blog the other day, “do everything in love“.
Well that’s my two cents on marriage, premarital considerations, divorce, and the dreaded “P” word. That is the end of this series. As promised, I did not subject you to a long, drawn-out analysis or reflection- and hopefully this series will spark some insightful and interesting dialogue amongst us. I look forward to your thoughts, reactions, comments, and respectful rantings!
Natasha L. Foreman
Copyright 2010. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.