Jump to content

Menu

What do you think of marrying for security?


Recommended Posts

In modern America, it's not the accepted thing to marry for security. In a way, it's unfortunate. I could use a good man around my house, financial security, and companionship. It's expected that one find someone that you "connect" with and automatically love on a deep level (a love that needs only to be maintained, not developed in the first place). Please note that I'm not saying I want to just marry any man who comes along... just that our culture is different from many before us.

 

I think that if your friend and her man care about each other and can meet one another's needs, then why not?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly, I can understand marrying for companionship, having a relationship based on mutual respect, caring, etc, but not having the twitterpated scenario.

 

That being said, I've also heard it said that those that marry for money earn every cent of it. I'm not capable of being that...Vulcan...about such a decision.

 

The fact that I love Wolf is sometimes the sole reason for not burying him in the yard some days. :tongue_smilie::lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you're 50, and the guy's 70 and financially comfortable, and you generally like the guy, and he's nice and pleasant and all of that, I think there are worse reasons for marrying. I think, especially at those ages, you don't necessarily need to be head-over-heels in love to have a good marriage. (I *am* deeply in love with my husband, but even if I wasn't, he's a good guy, y'know? Being simply his legal companion wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, if that makes sense.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At 70, I would worry that he would have some health problem, have costly and exhausting care and that financially comfortable would disappear. Then you are either drain your resources or going back to work to pay for his care or look like a evil person to divorce a sick person. I guess I would always look at the downside and see if you can handle the downside.

 

I knew a couple where he had a stroke in his mid-50s and for the next 20 years she had to take care of him.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

She's an adult and so I don't think her decisions are strictly anyone less business, unless she asked for your advice of course. If asked for mine I would say that it sounds like a better reason than "we're sooooo in love" which is the popular reason but snuggly feelings alone don't hold relationships together the way a mutually beneficial arrangement between two people who like each other well enough to share resources.

 

 

FWIW, I was totally expecting this to be about younger people, but the answer would still be the same.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not under these circumstances. Mostly because, if I were going to marry an old guy and share marital relations with him for financial security, it would have to be a lot more financial security then I am seeing here.

 

The first problem is that generally men in their 70s are past their high earning years. Mostly they are transitioning to living off their money, and all of that money will come in as his separate propery and, if he is smart, will stay his separate property. In the event of a divorce, it will be his. Upon his death, he can leave it to his kids. So absent a prenup, I don't think she will have what I consider to be "real" security just because he has money. And I think it would be awkward for her to ask.

 

Secondly, I agree with Jean about bow being "comfortable" may not feel like a lot on the face of major medical issues. Apart from the very wealthy, no one can rationally feel financially secure in our current elder care situation.

 

Old age can be hard. I think people who have raised kids together and love each other have forged bonds to, hopefully, carry them through. I personally would not want to spend my 60s caring for a man in his 80s/90s who I didn't have that history with and didn't really love. Maybe it would be ok. But the difference between a 60 year old woman and a man in his 80s might be too much.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At 70, I would worry that he would have some health problem, have costly and exhausting care and that financially comfortable would disappear. Then you are either drain your resources or going back to work to pay for his care or look like a evil person to divorce a sick person. I guess I would always look at the downside and see if you can handle the downside.

 

I knew a couple where he had a stroke in his mid-50s and for the next 20 years she had to take care of him.

 

Good point. Although the chance of him dying at 70 is a lot more likely than at 50.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There must be more than money involved, right? They must already be close to intimate? What are the other pros and cons?

 

Personally I feel a lot more secure NOT being married. The last guy I dated had a pretty obvious desire to get his hands on MY little nest egg that I had earned and saved over the years. Even a rich guy might not be inclined to treat my kids the way I want to treat them. But I'm probably not the best person to ask about this!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you're 50, and the guy's 70 and financially comfortable, and you generally like the guy, and he's nice and pleasant and all of that, I think there are worse reasons for marrying. I think, especially at those ages, you don't necessarily need to be head-over-heels in love to have a good marriage. (I *am* deeply in love with my husband, but even if I wasn't, he's a good guy, y'know? Being simply his legal companion wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, if that makes sense.)

 

They've been dating and she likes him.

 

She's an adult and so I don't think her decisions are strictly anyone less business, unless she asked for your advice of course.

 

She asked my advice.

 

My big red flag in the situation is that the first reason she brought up for marrying him is the fact that she is having financial problems (underemployed). She also brought up him being wonderful but that wasn't the number one thing she said, you know?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In modern America, it's not the accepted thing to marry for security. In a way, it's unfortunate. I could use a good man around my house, financial security, and companionship. It's expected that one find someone that you "connect" with and automatically love on a deep level (a love that needs only to be maintained, not developed in the first place). Please note that I'm not saying I want to just marry any man who comes along... just that our culture is different from many before us.

 

I think that if your friend and her man care about each other and can meet one another's needs, then why not?

 

This.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Call me a romantic but no, I would not marry for financial reasons. I have no objections to anyone else doing so.

 

Personally however, I see marriage as too precious for money to be the main reason. Money, as the last few years have underscored, is not permanent. Marriage should ideally be. If unable to actually mean the vows- richer for poorer, better or for worse, in sickness and in health, I wouldn't marry. I feel you shouldn't marry anyone you would not be willing to go through very rough times with. If you marry for money you can hardly actually mean that even if it all falls apart/goes south that you would still be there and still be able to find some peace and happiness in all that. While it takes more than love, it requires love to nurse someone through illness and count pennies for bread or whatever while staying sane and healthy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In modern America, it's not the accepted thing to marry for security.

 

How is it not accepted? We have not had any flak about it. Now then, marrying a man without a college degree, that I've gotten flack over. Hubby (the one who got married for security) has been asked "how did you do it?" by other men. They seem to look at the situation with longing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you're 50, and the guy's 70 and financially comfortable, and you generally like the guy, and he's nice and pleasant and all of that, I think there are worse reasons for marrying. I think, especially at those ages, you don't necessarily need to be head-over-heels in love to have a good marriage. (I *am* deeply in love with my husband, but even if I wasn't, he's a good guy, y'know? Being simply his legal companion wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, if that makes sense.)

:iagree:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Given the specific scenario the op has outlined, it wouldn't bother me. *shrug*

 

We have such a skewed idea of love in western culture, though. We're all raised on Disney movies and think that either you're madly, passionately in love and can't keep your hands off the person, or else you're not in love at all and anything else just doesn't count. If you're going to make a marriage work, mutual caring and respect, along with a strong sense of commitment, are going to be a heck of a lot more important than having the endorphin-and-hormone-fueled rush of love and lust when you walk down the aisle. That tends to wear off pretty quickly once you've spent countless hours of your life washing your significant other's stinky drawers. :glare:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Given the specific scenario the op has outlined, it wouldn't bother me. *shrug*

 

We have such a skewed idea of love in western culture, though. We're all raised on Disney movies and think that either you're madly, passionately in love and can't keep your hands off the person, or else you're not in love at all and anything else just doesn't count. If you're going to make a marriage work, mutual caring and respect, along with a strong sense of commitment, are going to be a heck of a lot more important than having the endorphin-and-hormone-fueled rush of love and lust when you walk down the aisle. That tends to wear off pretty quickly once you've spent countless hours of your life washing your significant other's stinky drawers. :glare:

:iagree:

 

I also don't think the fact that she is having some finacial issues would automatically make me say it is a bad thing. I think a lot of people struggle and it is just a lot easier in many cases to run a household with two people. That is really one of the reasons for forming households together.

 

On the other hand, sometimes finacial hardship might make someone take a step prematurly or without considering carefully any cons. So I might mention to my friend to be careful about that.

 

I'd also say in that situation both people should be careful to have the financial arrangements made clear. I'm sure she doesn't want to be left with nothing after he passes away, and he doesn't want to have his heirs, if he has any, left without anything either.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My big red flag in the situation is that the first reason she brought up for marrying him is the fact that she is having financial problems (underemployed). She also brought up him being wonderful but that wasn't the number one thing she said, you know?

 

If he is on pension and she would come under his medical insurance as his wife why not. They could both enjoy each other's companionship at that age.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Given the specific scenario the op has outlined, it wouldn't bother me. *shrug*

 

We have such a skewed idea of love in western culture, though. We're all raised on Disney movies and think that either you're madly, passionately in love and can't keep your hands off the person, or else you're not in love at all and anything else just doesn't count. If you're going to make a marriage work, mutual caring and respect, along with a strong sense of commitment, are going to be a heck of a lot more important than having the endorphin-and-hormone-fueled rush of love and lust when you walk down the aisle. That tends to wear off pretty quickly once you've spent countless hours of your life washing your significant other's stinky drawers. :glare:

 

:iagree: If it works for them, why not?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They've been dating and she likes him.

 

 

 

She asked my advice.

 

My big red flag in the situation is that the first reason she brought up for marrying him is the fact that she is having financial problems (underemployed). She also brought up him being wonderful but that wasn't the number one thing she said, you know?

 

Well, as long as he's wonderful, there are worse things than companionship and financial security. He gains someone to help look after him as he ages and she gains peace of mind she wouldn't know otherwise. I think it's a fair trade.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it's okay. People marry for all sorts of reasons -- many times love is one of them, but not always. Of course, most don't admit it publicly before they get married.

 

I see nothing wrong with people who marry for financial security and companionship, if that is what both parties want. If they really enjoy each other's company and have warm feelings toward one another, I'd call that love.

 

I taught my children not to marry just because they are in love. Make sure they have more reasons than that to marry the person, and to get married. There are plenty of fish in the sea, and there are plenty of people to love -- not just one special person for each individual. For most of us Prince Charming doesn't exist, and neither do his female counterparts.

Edited by RoughCollie
Link to comment
Share on other sites

They've been dating and she likes him.

 

 

 

She asked my advice.

 

My big red flag in the situation is that the first reason she brought up for marrying him is the fact that she is having financial problems (underemployed). She also brought up him being wonderful but that wasn't the number one thing she said, you know?

 

If he has already asked, then I think she should ask him for more time to date him and get to know him better (assuming they've been dating for less than 6 - 12 months or so). Tell him she's attracted but unsure yet and needs more time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If she likes him enough otherwise I don't see a problem with it. How many people stay married for reasons of financial security? An awful lot.

 

However she may not find the security she anticipates, unless he has a substantial amount of money, there's no prenup excluding her from the wealth, and she knows what his will says.

 

I have a friend whose father married a wealthy woman (not for her money). She repeatedly told him she would change her will so that he could have their place of residence when she passed away. She died unexpectedly and he was basically left homeless because the home went to her children.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don' t think marrying for security is bad. However, in the situation described I don't think the woman will get the security she's after. He's reaching an age where his health could rapidly decline and he could need significant care. That can quickly drain assets. Secondl, it's not clear she would inherit wat assets he does own upon his death.

 

I think if she does marry the man she should keep working even if she is underemployed. Perhaps she can save all the money she is earning now and live on the man's assets. That way she will have something for her retirement after he passes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would marry for security IF I liked the man as a person and would truly enjoy his companionship. I no longer feel the need to a passionate relationship the way I did when I was younger. I do believe that you can develop a love for that person, and that you do not have to marry for love etc. If however I generally did not like the person and was ONLY marrying him for the money that would be very wrong imo. Generally though I fina marrying for security to be quite practical.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I could never do it. I have a career I can fall back on and I worked for years. I would feel like I was "selling myself" if I weren't in love. That may sound harsh, but that is how *I* would feel marrying and sleeping with a man just for his financial security.

 

Dawn

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to be honest and say that I when I got divorced (after 26 years) I thought I might re-marry for security if I found someone I could trust that I also liked and respected.

 

Turns out I ended up marrying a man younger than me and we are madly in love.

 

And security is a myth. Things have a way of disappearing over night.

 

All that said, I have no problem with a woman marrying for security as ONE of the reasons. Not the only reason.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At 70, I would worry that he would have some health problem, have costly and exhausting care and that financially comfortable would disappear. Then you are either drain your resources or going back to work to pay for his care or look like a evil person to divorce a sick person. I guess I would always look at the downside and see if you can handle the downside.

 

I knew a couple where he had a stroke in his mid-50s and for the next 20 years she had to take care of him.

 

:iagree:

 

My great aunt married for the first time when she was in her fourties. He was a widow and more than 20 years her senior. She resigned when he retired and they had a few great years enjoying his retirement and travelling together, but as he got older his energy levels and then his health deteriorated and she ended up stuck at home being his full-time carer.

 

She was about the same age as his children and as she was there, they stood back and left his care to her. If he had been on his own they would probably have shared his care or arranged for a home. It was not something she had properly anticipated or planned for.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well when I think of the people marrying, "because he's hot" (well of course they LOVE him, but this is listed as his first attribute) it doesn't sound awful. That's how most of the world worked not too long ago.

 

The idea of marrying for fleeting infatuation is how much of society runs these days.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The American view that marriage must be for romantic love is just one way to look at marriage. My opinion is that as long as both partners treat each other with respect, they can and should marry for just about any reason. We have good friends from India whose marriage was arranged and they are very happy.

 

I think part of the reason our divorce rate is so high here is because we expect marriage to be a constant romantic fairytale and also that we are taught that individual happiness and fulfillment are more important than collective group benefit.

 

(All the standard disclaimers about abuse and the like and how I'm not talking about you and your specific situation but the broader cultural context.)

 

Tara

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, if she's trying to marry for financial security, she's doing it wrong. She needs to find a guy in his late 80s with A LOT more money...and no heirs. :D

 

:iagree::iagree:

 

And security is a myth. Things have a way of disappearing over night.

 

 

This would be my concern. At 70 he's not ancient. 50 is not that old, but boy security would feel good. My question would be how much security. One illness at his age could wipe it out. Is she willing to provide nursing for him if necessary? My parents are mid 70s and still do everything they've always done, I don't see them slowing down for another few years anyway, so 70 is necessarily ready for the assisted living facility. However, he could live a long time. We have several family members that are in their 90s or lived that long. Does the prospect of spending the next 20 years with this person appeal to her?

 

Is she thinking about this as current security? Or long-term security, such as life insurance etc.

 

If something happened to my dh, I could see marrying again for security and companionship and not necessarily love.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that as long as nobody is fooling the other, it can totally work. She may be marrying him for security & its OK if he knows this & doesn't mind. He may be marrying her for security & its OK if she knows this & doesn't mind. Its when they don't realize until after their security is needed that this falls apart.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The American view that marriage must be for romantic love is just one way to look at marriage. My opinion is that as long as both partners treat each other with respect, they can and should marry for just about any reason. We have good friends from India whose marriage was arranged and they are very happy.

 

I think part of the reason our divorce rate is so high here is because we expect marriage to be a constant romantic fairytale and also that we are taught that individual happiness and fulfillment are more important than collective group benefit.

 

(All the standard disclaimers about abuse and the like and how I'm not talking about you and your specific situation but the broader cultural context.)

 

Tara

:iagree:

Well said.

 

My aunt once told me that it was better to marry for money than for no reason at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm jaded. ;)

 

I'm not automatically against marrying for security. I'm not of the mind that marriage is the exclusive property of the madly in love.

 

When I was marrying Adrian (or thinking about it), my Dad encouraged me to. He grew up a child of a single mom. His Dad died when he was 18 months, and she never remarried. She never "felt" the same way about a man, and she didn't want to marry. *His* perception is that she struggled financially the entire time after her husband's death and until she died. He wasn't upset about his childhood, but that she struggled; he was upset for her.

 

Years later, that translated into him wanting ME to have some help and support. Adrian was not at all "financially secure" or "comfortable" but he was support, help, and an income. (It obviously went a different way).

 

I've married for love and had "security. It was a nightmare. I've married for love and had life turn in a direction that was unexpected and the oppositive of security.

 

I'll never marry again, but if I did; "love" would not be my criteria.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

(All the standard disclaimers about abuse and the like and how I'm not talking about you and your specific situation but the broader cultural context.)

 

 

 

The reason I haven't said much on this thread is because I'd rather look at this in the broader context. I will respond to this friend but I want my response to be a broader more objective response that doesn't actually tell her what I think she should do, because honestly, that ultimately is between her and God and this man.

 

But (and this isn't just to Tara but to everyone) I am reading everyone's responses and they are proving to be thoughtful and helpful.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think this man is wealthy - just financially comfortable.

 

I know someone who did this exact scenario. I think there was a great deal of mutual respect, but I don't think there was a lot of romantic love before they were married.

 

She is pretty unhappy now, about 10 years into the marriage.

 

She works a great deal at a stressful job to maintain their comfort. He is unwilling to budge on some things he likes to do in the community so that they can spend time together, go on vacations, etc. He expects her to come straight home after work to make him dinner (a generational expectation?), when she might want to go to the gym or take an evening enrichment class once in a while. And dealing with existing adult children hasn't been a picnic for either side.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The American view that marriage must be for romantic love is just one way to look at marriage. My opinion is that as long as both partners treat each other with respect, they can and should marry for just about any reason. We have good friends from India whose marriage was arranged and they are very happy.

 

I think part of the reason our divorce rate is so high here is because we expect marriage to be a constant romantic fairytale and also that we are taught that individual happiness and fulfillment are more important than collective group benefit.

 

(All the standard disclaimers about abuse and the like and how I'm not talking about you and your specific situation but the broader cultural context.)

 

Tara

 

:iagree:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...