Superfrugality Can Hurt Your Relationship

by Kevin on April 3, 2008

Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ice Cream Cone

Patrick over at Cash Money Life put up an article today titled Spend $10. It’s Worth it! Long story short, he bought his wife some flowers and chocolates out of the blue and completely surprised her. Patrick, you are absolutely right.

Don’t let your frugality get in the way of maintaining or furthering your relationship. Yesterday was kind of a blah day for my wife and I both, so after dinner we went to Bruster’s ice cream. Two cones came to around $6 after tax. Unhealthy and unfrugal — not good. But we treated it like a date and it was awesome.

Frugal is good. Relationships are more important. However, that is said with a caveat. Just because your husband wants to buy a $3,000 TV doesn’t mean you should relent just because of the relationship. That’s a dumb decision if you are climbing out of debt. $6 ice cream every so often? I can let that slide.

(Photo: Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ice Cream Cone by Bethany L King.)

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Patrick April 3, 2008 at 10:50 am

I agree 100%. Even if you are the most hard core person when it comes to debt reduction, you need to live life – especially if it means maintaining the most important relationship you have. In the end I could care less about $10.But having a great night with my wife… that’s priceless. 🙂

I’m glad you and your wife had fun on your “date.” Thanks for the mention. 😉

JB April 3, 2008 at 12:20 pm

I’m guilty of this. But I’m getting better. I used to not allow us to eat out at all and hardly do anything fun… but now we eat out every now and then and I think both my fiancee and her daughter find it more fun because we don’t do it every night. We do it maybe once or twice a month… so it’s a real treat and they get real excited about it.

Kevin April 3, 2008 at 12:55 pm

Bottom line: It’s all about balance.

If you tip the scales too much either way, it isn’t good!

“If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”

Jonathan @ MYC April 3, 2008 at 11:33 pm

Sometimes I think I have the opposite problem, i.e. a pathological fear of being perceived as ‘cheap’, as stupid and irrational as that is.

I think it comes from watching too much Seinfeld – I’m scared of looking like George Costanza 🙂

Anon April 4, 2008 at 12:58 am

one can still be frugal and maintain the relationship

by a $7 bouquet of flowers instead of $30 of roses.

by a Lindt chocolate bar instead of See’s Candy…

Kevin April 4, 2008 at 12:47 pm

@Jonathan: Yea that can be a problem. Don’t go over the top, be happy where you’re at. It’s not the money, it’s the thought.

@Anon: There is definitely room to be frugal while also showing he/she you care. No need to buy $50 worth of flowers when $5-10 will do.

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