August 03, 2007
One of the activities that occurs as two people begin to merge their lives is the redistribution of responsibilities. Where before you were responsible for everything, now, suddenly, there is another set of hands to accomplish what needs doing. Sometimes one or the other of you will setup to the mark and say, “I’m going to take care of this or that.” Other times you just start doing that chore or activity and it becomes yours. Perhaps the most difficult thing (at least for me) is to say, “This is something I can’t do well, would you please do it for us?”
In my case the activity is managing finances. It is not something that I’ve ever been good at, and it has led to difficulties in the past. Fortunately Sibylle is good at it and moreover, likes doing it. We spent quite a bit of time this week, culminating in a new spreadsheet last night, working out our long-term strategy and short term tactics to get our spending and debt under control. Sibylle is thorough, organized, and anal about money - exactly what we need. That I can rely upon her to tend this vital aspect of our combined household means a great deal to me. That I was able to confess my inability to do it justice in spite of the real or imagined social and family expectations that I should be able to do it, was a tremendous relief.