Do you know how much your partner earns?

Sunday August 11 2019

 

By Devotha John

On wedding and marital blissful moment’s couples take vows promising to become one, which means they commit themselves not to conceal any secrets from one another.

It said there is some confidential information some couples keep away from each other and some husbands are accused of not revealing financial status to their wives.

Couples who hide their financial status may have some of their secret wealth disclosed when they pass away, thus posing family conflicts to their next of kin.

*Noela Robison, 35, a salonist says it is six years since she got married to her spouse who is a doctor but she never knows how much her husband earns.

“This situation makes us to fight every time because I don’t understand where his money goes. For instance I shoulder the school fees responsibility for our children since a couple of months ago as he claims he doesn’t have money while he goes to work everyday, ” she says.

Noela says when they got married her husband used to be caring, noting that she could see her husband’s transactions and the amount he earns but things turned south and he got more secretive when he landed a job in a government hospital a couple of months ago.

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“I had since failed to understand the amount he rakes in per month. He hides his salary slips and my attempt to ask him about his salary plunges us into family conflicts,” laments Noela who works in a salon.

The situation is different for *Nusrat Mohamed, 30, who is married to an engineer, arguing that her husband provides everything for her and children so she does not have to see the pay slip.

I’ m a housewife and for sure I can’t complain about my husband’s responsibility at home. He provides for us,” she says adding. Nusrat says she wonders what might happen in case her husband passes on because she has been used to him providing everything and is not aware of any wealth outside.

Joseph Midembwa 35, a businessman, says he can never reveal his salary to his wife because women’s demands easily go up and he provides for his family and they are contented.

“I pay my house rent and ensure all bills are are paid. Since women are very demanding , disclosing my salary would be akin to welcoming extravagance.”

Aaron Michael, 39, a banker says that concealing some deals to one’s wife is a thing of the past, explaining that if all the earnings are shared equally the household is likely to make head ways.

“When life continues you will understand your wife is unselfish and this will help one to plan with her,” he says.

Faustina Maurus, 48, says she knows how much her husband earns but she doesn’t have access to his money so long as the man fulfills family responsibilities. Faustina believes that if both of you reveal your financial information, the house will be peaceful and if anything happen you can solve it together as a team.

“I find it hard asking my husband how much he earns and what we have to plan for the future but in fact all earnings were supposed to be put in the open. No one knows what might happen in the future. I would not want to leave my children in abyss in case things get awry,” says Faustina.

According to a Dar es Salaam based psychologist Dr Novelty Rweyendela, many marriages see husbands disclosing to their wives whatever penny they earn, including their spending and plans for investment arguing that it is good sharing common financial awareness as couples.

“Couples should reveal their income to their spouse because privacy has no room in marriage for the two have now been made one,” says the expert.

He says in African traditional setting, it is very rare to see a man revealing his income salary to his wife because of patriarchal system that makes a man dominant and discriminating against the opposite sex

“They used to learn from their fathers who could not disclose anything concerning finances to the mothers and the latter had no audacity to question the men’s income and expenditure,” says the psychologist.

He says husbands do not disclose the amounts they earn to their wives for fear of profligate spending, arguing that in case a wife knows the cash earned by a couple, she will keep on asking for more to but even the unnecessary.

“Women are very likely to develop the culture of consumerism in case they see hefty pockets. They are hardly satisfied by whatever is available,” he says.

The psychologist says if couples put their income on the table it is easy to plan for the better future, expounding that it is from common awareness that the family budget can be realized and implemented. “Secrecy among couples should be condemned at all costs for it never means anything on matters regarding to union,” he says. He says couples who are used to concealing their wealth find their belongings being fought for when they pass on.

According to Johnson Mwamasangula a Sociologist based in Dar es Salaam, most couples live with transparency on their plans and their bodies but not sharing what they make at the end of the month.

“My heart is yours, my body is yours but not my payi slip It is funny saying how people brag and pride themselves about positions they have at work and earnings with their friends at corners of the bar and not their partners at home,” he says.

Mwamasangula says if you ask men why they don’t like to reveal their financial information many claim that in these days women have changed. The moment they know what you earn trouble begins. Shopping the unnecessary and some stealing from their partners. “But the most that most men fear is divorce. That the assumption is when a wife knows what you earn it is easy for her to file divorce and make you a soure of income for child support,” he says.

But also men see that as long as they provide for the family then it’s not the right of the wives to know their salaries.

On the other hand, more women are willing to reveal their financial information. But this whole situation is coming from the majority of societies being under the male control or patriarchy system which subjects women to reveal who they are and what they posses to their male partners. This is how they earn trust of their husbands.

Sharing of financial information may help planning a better saving account for family survival in times life won’t be so favorable.

However However, Pastor John Paulo from Eligible Deliverance Church Dar es salaam says in marriage life couple should reveal their income to each other because there should be no secrets between them and God. “Everyone must understand their partner and plan what they want to do in their lives before wedding,” the pastor says.

Justine Julius , a financial experts from Glocla Financial Services (T) Ltd says couples should first, try to have topic of finances altogether.

He says there is no universal right answer, the process of working out a financial plan tailored to the needs and goals of a couple is because honest communication is the core of both healthy relationships . And third, regardless of the financial plan, life circumstances change, and developing skills revise and implement the plan together may build confidence and resilience.

“So there is need of couples to learn everyday skills of maintaining finances for the future of family and not individual or personal success. There are kids and there is old age, there is retirement and there is bankruptcy,”he says.

*Not real name

Email: Life &style@thecitizen.co.tz

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