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How to Plan for a Housewife's Worse Nightmare
It won't happen to me.....
The obvious definition of a housewife is a wife who stays at the house. The domestic engineer of the family and the brains of the outfit. While some of us live in the lap of luxury while our husbands make six figure or higher incomes, most of us are plain old folks who have budgets and expenses. For us, our husbands' incomes are what keep our family going and we sometimes fail to face the realization that his income may stop. The obvious reasons such as job loss (especially in today's economy) or decrease in hours worked and/or pay have caused us to pause and plan. But what about the loss of our husband's all together? It is a terrible subject to focus on but we must realize the possibility is there and make sure we have a plan in place if it does happen.
First, we must consider the two main things that can separate us from our husbands; death and divorce. For me death would be the worse of the two but divorce is right up there in the top three of things I never want to go through in life. After all, death is inevitable at some point for all of us. In the event of the unfortunate death of our husbands, most of us feel secure in knowing that we have an insurance policy in place. Many of us feel that security because the policy is usually quite large and we don't really plan on collecting it any time soon. We must consider though, exactly how much is the policy and how much would I get. We then need to consider how much our monthly expenses are and consider things such as our children, special events and holidays. Money that is only being subtracted and never being added to is unlikely to last as long as we think. One option is to consider finding work, but we all know how hard that is, especially if you haven't been out there for some time. Another option would be to consider investing a portion of the money into something that will generate you a steady income. For example, perhaps in real estate such as rent houses or apartments or maybe into a franchise business that only requires a small amount of initial investment. Whatever the case may be, we housewives need to spend some of our spare time learning about money markets and opportunites that we may need tap into someday. It never hurts to get smarter anyway, right?
Also, in the event of an unexpected death we need to make sure we are prepared to handle that situation emotionally. I can't imagine losing my husband, although the fact that he is in a war zone as we speak makes the situation a bit more real for me, if I did lose him the pain would be almost unbearable. I know, however, that we have three children who would still need mommy to help them through a tough time. Although no one can "prepare" for the shock of death, a simple acknowledgment to yourself that it could happen to me is a start.
And I'm telling you...you ain't going nowhere!
DIVORCE. The word just sounds ugly doesn't it? None of us plan on going through one. I can't even see the possibility of it happening in my marriage, but that doesn't mean that it won't. Why it happens can be any number of reasons; will it happen is a coin toss. You can work and work and do the right thing and love him with all your being and there is no guarantee that he will stay "til death do us part". Love is all about taking chances and when we said "I do" we placed a huge bet and laid all our cards on the table. I wish I could say things were like they were in the old days when men and women stuck it out no matter how miserable they were, but the ugly truth is that was then and this is now. If our husband's leave us or vice versa we need to know where would we go from there.
Alimony, child support those things are for a judge to decided and even if you are awarded some money, unless they're super rich (in which case this entire hub doesn't apply to you) we are going to be placed into a completely different financial and emotional position. The number one thing we must realize is that we are going to need a J.O.B. We need to have a plan for our children. Is there someone who can watch them for us while we work to eliminate high day care and after school care cost? What hours are going to be available and what are the best job opportunities in my area? What are my special skills and how can I improve them to get me ready for the work force? How about taking a few night or online course to get certified or even an associates degree in something? Having a plan in place for the "what-ifs" is what separates the smart from the wise.
The road called life is full of unexpected twists and turns. All I'm saying is, if your breaks go out to be sure that your air bag is working and seat belt is fastened, otherwise you might end up in critical condition. Just something to think about.....