NEW articles daily! Subscribe below to receive daily updates with our new articles!
“My friend says she owes her husband a lot of money from when she bought a ticket to visit her family in the Philippines.” my wife stated. I looked at her with a confused look and replied, “Is that even possible?” My wife and I share the opinion that when a man and woman get married they become one financial entity. As soon as my wife got a US Social Security Number, I put her name on all my bank accounts. My accounts became our accounts. My money became our money. I thought that was standard for married people, apparently, it is not. We knew a couple here in the USA where the man was American and his wife was Filipina. She complained to my wife that her husband did not give her enough allowance. I thought allowance was for children and in this case, the lady was actually a few months older than her husband.
My intent is not to tell anyone how to live their lives. If you are reading this and you pay your wife an allowance and it works for you and her, then so be it. I just personally don’t get it. I have heard some of the arguments. If I give my wife access to my money then she will give it all to her family. In my case, if I felt that way about my wife, then I would not have married her. For my wife and me when we got married our first loyalty became to each other. We really don’t argue much about money.
Marriage is a partnership between two people. Different cultures and different individuals see it in different ways. Different is not necessarily bad. There are cultures and traditions where one partner is considered to be dependent and one partner dominate. There are cultures where the wife is seen as dependent and submissive to the husband and there are marriages even in cultures where that is not the norm that the couple agrees to this type of arrangement.
In the cases where the husband is controlling the money by having his money and giving his wife an allowance that is the case in my opinion. From what I have gathered this is not the norm in Filipino culture and yet it seems very common in marriages between foreign men and Filipinas. For me, this type of marriage is not a union of equals and not what I aspired to gain when I decided to get married. I see the potential for problems in this type of marriage especially if the dependent agreed to the marriage for the potential of economic gain. Again if this is the type of marriage you are in and it works for you and your spouse then that is great! I just do not see how the marriage is a marriage of equals.
In the modern Western world, I think the marriage of two independent people has become common. In the independent marriage, two people both making sufficient money to make a living on their own come together and they maintain their separate accounts. Sure if one falls into trouble where they need money interest-free loans are made, but the loaner is expecting repayment in some form or another. There is sharing on some level, but in other areas, there is not. When good fortune occurs to one member of the union then the other may see some benefit, but that is not necessarily the case. Decisions are made by a consensus of the two partners. This is a marriage of equals, but for me, it is not the ideal type of marriage and not what I aspire to personally.
This is a type of marriage where when the two people get married to a large degree they become one entity. This is what I a man born and raised in the Southern USA and my wife a woman born and raised in the Provincial Philippines, both believed was what marriage should be like. We share in each other’s fortunes and misfortunes. If I or my wife do something stupid it cost us both our money, not my money or her allowance. We have an equal stake in each other’s success or failure. We make decisions as one or if one of us makes a decision the other backs it up. The only drawback for me is that I feel it impossible to actually give my wife anything material since really I have no mine it is all ours.
I write blog articles more to learn than to teach. I think in most marriages in most parts of the world including the Philippines allowance is not commonly given to a spouse. I understand that in a marriage between a foreigner and a Filipina the foreigner usually enters the relationship with considerably more material things like money. I just do not get how the whole allowance situation comes to pass. In my situation, I was never asked for an allowance and when I put my wife’s name on what was my accounts neither I nor my Filipina wife thought it strange. So I am posing questions in hopes of gaining a better understanding of myself and anyone else who is reading and wants greater understanding.
- Do you pay your wife an allowance and if so why?
- How would you describe your marriage: Dependent, Independent, Interdependent or something else?
- Has anyone suggested you pay your wife an allowance and why?
- Do you feel like you and your wife are equals?
- Who is your closest relative?