Too Much Stuff Going On

Ross has a spouse who is reluctant to start a Total Money Makeover. He's begged her to help him with the money, but she refuses. After hearing Ross's story, Dave tells Ross he has a marriage problem.

QUESTION: Ross in Kansas has a spouse who is reluctant to start a Total Money Makeover. He’s begged her to help him with the money, but she refuses. After hearing Ross’s story, Dave tells Ross he has a marriage problem.

ANSWER: I don’t think this is a money problem. I think this is a serious marriage problem. She doesn’t help you with squat, Bubba. Why did you think she was going to help about the money?

I think you guys have marriage issues. You’ve got to go see a good pastor or a good marriage counselor, and you guys are going to have to enter into learning how to be married. Apparently, she thinks she just gets to do whatever the flip she wants to do until somebody finally blows up and yells at her.Quit using my name. You’re going to turn me into a cuss word.

She doesn’t see anything the way you see it. That’s what you told me a minute ago. This not doing the money thing together is just like not doing the kid thing together—not doing anything together, not doing the housework together. You carry the whole deal. You’re the only grownup in the house apparently. That’s the way you’re describing it. It doesn’t paint a very pretty picture of your wife. Maybe there’s something else going on here that I can’t see. That’s very possible actually.

It sounds like you two have got too much in your life, and you need to crank down a little bit. You have to back off on the overtime, and somebody’s going to have to not go to school. We’re going to have to have a life in here somewhere. You guys have two separate lives and never see each other except at 2 a.m. It’s a little tough to have a quality marriage doing that. There’s no date night mixed into that. There’s no courting going on anymore. You can do that for a short period of time if you’re both in agreement to it to hit some certain goals, but you’re not in agreement on anything. You’re just off doing your own things. You’re two ships in the night.

I really think you’re in a danger zone deeper than you realize you are, and I think you need to sit down with a good marriage counselor or a pastor or somebody to help you guys unpack this, and you’re probably going to have to amputate some stuff from your life. It sounds like your calendar’s too full. Every time Sharon and I do that, we start fighting like two hillbillies. We have to back off and reset the calendar because we aren’t spending enough T-I-M-E with each other. Every time we do that, it costs us. We’ve been married 30 years, and we go through different cycles. We have to back off and spend time with each other.