How can we address financial issues in a marriage and before marriage? – FUNDamentals

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed a lot of things in the last few years, which has taken a huge toll on everyone. As people mourn the loss of friends and relatives, they have also had to deal with a lot of changes and uncertainties in their lives. So it’s no surprise that the pandemic has put a strain on a lot of relationships and has caused the breakup of a lot of marriages

While the Philippines is one of two countries in the world (along with the Vatican City) that does not have divorce, marriages in the country can still be annulled. But the ending and breaking up of a marriage has a lot of consequences, including financial. In an episode of FUNDamentals on Plus Network, registered financial planner (US-based global certification) Edric Mendoza talks about the cost of the breakup of a marriage while identifying ways for people to avoid this before they can get married. 

To see the breakup of a marriage is what Mendoza considers a financial disaster, as it involves a lot of expenses. However, this is something that has been happening even before the COVID-19 pandemic. Even before the pandemic changed our lives and put a strain on a lot of relationships, the institution of marriage was already under attack. Couples who choose to get their marriage annulled will have to take into account a lot of expenses. 

According to Mendoza, they will have to get a filing fee, legal fee, and psychological evaluation fee, as well as administrative costs. All in all, the annulment cost could range from P300,000 up to P1 million, which still does not include a lot of other fees. The annulment will have an impact on the children, and they may need to change schools because of the trauma of the breakup of the marriage.  

Aside from the fees for the psychological help for the children to help them process what happened, both spouses will also need fees for the therapy that they may need to help them process the events. Other costs include the change in the property and assets of the couple and their children, as well as forming a new family after the breakup of the marriage, which is why it is considered as financially disastrous. 

To avoid experiencing this situation in a marriage, it’s important to be aware of when the marriage is undergoing a cycle. Mendoza says that every marriage goes through a cycle, from the romantic or the honeymoon stage, to the reality stage, which is when couples see things they didn’t see before after they marry their spouse. After a certain point, the reality stage gives way to the retaliation stage, which is when fights between couples happen. Afterward, the couple may go through a retreat stage, which is when both spouses withdraw and disappear and go through their own hobbies and pursue their interests.   

After the retreat stage, some couples will choose to resign, which is disastrous for different reasons. But one solution to address this is that as couples go through this same cycle, they need to go back and have a rebuilding stage. It may be easier said than done, but it’s possible. 

Mendoza adds that marriages can be rebuilt if God is at the center of that marriage. However, for couples who are going through physical abuse, the solution is not to stay with that partner, but for them to physically separate. Furthermore, couples should also consider other practical solutions such as going through therapy, counseling, and having physical security, as well as working with their local church and getting advice if possible. 

For people who are still not yet married and are hoping to avoid this situation, Mendoza quotes the popular saying that an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.” If a person is still single, to prevent the disastrous breakup in their marriage, they need to focus on three Ms:

Master: Who or what is it that I am living for? 

Mission: What will I do as I pursue that master? 

Mate: Who is it that I will marry as I pursue this similar mission with that person towards the same master?

People should be able to answer these questions, and it has to follow that order so that their priorities will be clear. Figure out your master, your mission, then your mate. When you find someone who has that same master, with an identical mission, grab their hand, because that’s the person you wanna marry. 

For more financial tips, you can watch more episodes of FUNDamentals. For more financial tips, visit PLUS Network on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. 

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