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Thoughts from an old man

  1. Apr 6, 2012 #1
    I've been happily married to my soulmate for nearly 4 decades, so I don't feel like I fit in here. But I do make this one observation after browsing thru these threads. Many seem very trivial to me, but are clearly very serious to the authors. Perhaps the reason for our happiness all these years is that we let the trivial stuff slide. We love each other and we enjoy being together, and we count all else as trivial. She once put me in debt by an amount about equal to a year of my salary doing something I thought was foolish. She thought I would be very angry. I gave her a hug and a kiss and told her that we will get out of this together, and then I took her out to her favorite place for dinner. After that, she managed our budget effectively. I did not take her checkbook and credit cards from her and I let her continue to have full power of attorney over all my affairs. Within a year, everything was paid off and our investment portfolio was nearly a million dollars. But even if we lost everything I would have handled it the same.

    How many relationships fail over money, and even over things less important than money?

    Don't sweat the small stuff.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 6, 2012 #2


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    My wife and I are both frugal and have saved all our lives. We have been together since '74 and married since early '75 and we started with nothing, living in cheap rents and chasing jobs. I followed construction jobs (good pay, but long hours) and she generally could get jobs in shoe-shops or weaving mills, so we got by. Females in my wife's family tend to live into their 90s, so we have managed our investments and savings with that in mind. 30 years of retirement with nothing but a modest SS check leaves little cushion for discretionary spending and unforeseen expenses. You're right. Don't sweat the small stuff.
  4. Apr 23, 2012 #3
    pkruse, can you adopt me? :!!) I think what you did is really amazing. If I were in your situation, I would have been furious. I don't think the money is as important as the trust that I felt she had broke. I still have so much to learn. Congratulations on your almost 4 decades. And thank you for sharing your story. I hope to find someone that can still think of me as a soulmate after 4 decades and be wise enough so he can over look all the stupid things I do :)

    turbo, congrats on your almost 40 years together! My parent is divorce so I find that a big deal :) Wow, 30 years for retirement saving? That's a lot of saving you have to do.
  5. Apr 23, 2012 #4


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    The saving is long since done, and we're just doing our best to shepherd what we have in this environment that is stacked against savers. My career is over and my wife is approaching retirement. I just wish Volcker, Greenspan, and Bernanke hadn't cheated the American public out of any opportunity to earn interest on savings! Kill the Fed.
  6. Apr 24, 2012 #5
    Lemon: I was not always so enlightened. I married her at age 17, and she demonstrated extreme patience for many years while she waited for me to continue to grow up.

    But I am also a Christian mystic. As such, I've learned to look deep into a person's soul, where I always find much more wisdom and beauty than what appears on the outside. Also as such, the term "soulmate" has a much deeper meaning to me than you might think. She is the other half of me' the woman who has always been with me throughout all incarnations, and the one that is always with me even when she is not with me. We currently live in different cities because she has work to do there and I have work to do here. It is 5 hours round trip for us to visit each other. Yet there is no distance at all between us.

    Physical things have a minor importance in my life compared to my relationships with the people in my life.
  7. Apr 24, 2012 #6
    Cool story! Thanks for sharing. I think you're right, these days a lot of people tend to over-complicate relationships with the most trivial stuff (of course as it appears to outsiders), a lot of people laugh at relationship and dating advice from older folk, but it makes more sense than the advice of today. As you've shown, you forgave over a potentially big issue (a year's salary :|) and it turned more than alright in the end.
  8. Apr 28, 2012 #7
    congrats on your almost 40 years together
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