Reader comments on blending finances in second marriages…

by Rod Smith

“I just read your recommendations on blending finances when two people with children from different marriages decide to re-marry. Transparency makes ethical sense—it would be wrong for either party to enter a marriage without disclosing any serious debt he or she had. However, I totally disagree with the necessity to blend finances, and your advice to walk away if one party disagrees with blending I think is overkill—could even be injurious to a couple planning an otherwise honest, equitable arrangement. Stats show that second marriages are less likely to survive than first ones, and the inequity that could result after a second divorce could be extremely unfair to the person with the most money before marriage, or even the one that makes more during the second marriage, especially if their natural child or children are young. After a first marriage ends, I would advise hiring a financial advisor and attorney to evaluate one’s finances and find out the potential consequences of a second marriage, and divorce, on one’s finances and the financial future of one’s natural children. I have lived long enough to observe some real financial tragedies resulting from divorce and second and third marriages.”

Susan was responding to the following column:

2 Responses to “Reader comments on blending finances in second marriages…”

  1. My husband pays maintenance to his ex-wife even though we have their children living with us. He pays for everything…or should I say, WE pay for everything. I have worked up so much debt to keep the house afloat while my husbands business gets off the ground. He has a judgement against him, thanks to his ex throwing away correspondence which went to his old address..including a summons. He cannot get financing so it has all been my responsibility. Between us we cannot cover our costs. Now his ex is getting re-married and through clever manipulation of the children into keeping it from us so that the maintenance can continue, has put my husband in a no win situation with his children if he stops. They have begged him to continue as she has nothing. The reality is that she works and is living with her fiance. However my husband has told me that he has decided to continue maintenance after she has married for as long as she needs it. I am sooo angry. I feel that he is so full of guilt because of the divorce and that he is being thoughtless towards me and my children. We are battling financially…probably more than her yet he is only thinking about doing the right thing for her. He says that if I can’t see things from his point I know where the door is. I say we are not in a position to continue maintenance and if things should change for us we can consider giving her a settlement so she has something for her future for the years she gave to the marriage. I don’t want my marriage to end because of fighting over maintenance. Am I being unreasonable? Apart from that, my husband is loving and caring.


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