The Wife Expecting Her Husband to Spend Money on Valentines Day

by TTMK on February 9, 2015 · 9 comments

Valentine’s Day has practically become a holiday, it would seem.valentines day spending

Much like Halloween, this has gone from being a small seasonal, fun day a generation ago to one that generates a lot of business. People are making money on this day, as Valentine’s Day-themed products are seemingly marketed and merchandised in increasing numbers.

Of course, for people to make money, it would mean that other people need to be spending money. Whether or not many of these people actually should be spending money, from a financial responsibility perspective is debatable.

I thought of this as I was on the train just last week, going into the city (Chicago) from the suburbs. It was just after we had a blizzard here, so while I was having a good day, it appeared that there were some others who were kind of frazzled by the conditions. This included one woman who was sitting in the row in front of me, to the left.

She was sitting next to someone she knew, either a co-worker or a friend. Either way, the two of them basically broke up the relative silence of the train car by chit-chatting much of the way into the city. You couldn’t help but hear what they had to say, even if you were busy (as I was) reading or being otherwise occupied.

The women got to the topic of Valentine’s Day, which at that point was around 2 weeks away. Not something I would be thinking about that far in advance, but obviously my mind works differently than theirs. Anyway, one of the women – we’ll call her Woman #1 – was saying that she and her husband were going to go away for the weekend, and that her parents would be having the kids with them. It sounded like she was looking forward to the weekend, and her friend – we’ll call her Woman #2 – was listening attentively and expressing excitement for her.

Then, Woman #2 began complaining about how she and her husband didn’t even have plans yet, and that he never really surprises her anymore. She was poking fun at him, but kind of doing it in a way that showed a bitter edge to her feelings.

At that point, she said that he was “still unemployed” and stressed about finding a job, so he probably wouldn’t want to spend money to take her out anywhere. But then she expressed that she hoped he would still do so, in order for her to have a “normal” Valentine’s Day.

What really got my attention is when she said that (paraphrased) “he better not even think about spending my money to take me out!” Woman #1 only chuckled after hearing that.

All I could think at that point was “WOW!”

While I would have preferred to have kept reading my book without interruption, I have to admit that this was an interesting discussion to someone like me who’s a personal finance blogger! It was a fascinating reaction by Woman #2, and I wanted to believe that she was just kidding. I didn’t see their facial expressions as I was sitting a row back and trying to read, but it didn’t sound like a joking voice.

It almost seemed like she thought that it was a requirement of her husband to spend money on her on Valentine’s Day, regardless of the circumstances. And if he didn’t, that meant he was cheap and annoying.

Frankly, I didn’t realize there were people who actually talked about this day in such fashion.

You know, I think it’s probably a good idea for a guy to let his wife know he appreciates her. And if Valentine’s Day is something that means a lot to her (for whatever reason), then he should probably make the effort to show her that he cares. Even if he thinks it’s too commercial, not important, or whatever.

However, the issue I have with this situation is that she apparently thought that he had to spend money on her regardless of the circumstances. Again, like it’s an important and expected requirement. Also, the idea that she emphasized her money told me that they don’t share money. It caught my attention, particularly due to the unemployment comment.  And I definitely disagree!

Anyway, it was interesting and thought-provoking.

My Questions for You

Do you think it’s important for couples to spend money on Valentine’s Day?

Do you think this obsession with the day is a little too much, or do you “get” the interest level these two people had.

What are your thoughts on “his” and “her” money for Valentine’s Day?

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Kasia February 10, 2015 at 4:33 am

I think it’s important for couples to spend time together on Valentine’s Day. Money shouldn’t be an issue. A candlelit dinner at home made by hubby can be more special. It’s the effort one puts in that is more important than how much he spends. One of the loveliest Valentine’s Day’s I had was when my partner picked me up after work and we ended up having fish and chips at the beach.
Valentine’s Day is definitely over commercialised but at least it gives people an opportunity to take a step back and remember to appreciate each other. It’s easy to forget when life gets in the way.
As for separate money, well, I can’t agree with it. If you’re married everything is shared regardless of who brings home the bacon.

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TTMK February 12, 2015 at 7:18 pm

Yes, taking the time to step back and appreciate on another doesn’t have to break the bank, I agree. Especially with tough financial circumstances!

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Mike February 10, 2015 at 4:21 pm

Its Valentines Day. Get your wife something special and tell her how much you appreciate what she means to you and makes your life better. If someone is concerned about spending some money on their spouse maybe they should put a couple bucks aside each week for a year so they have some money on Valentines Day to spend without worry. Get cheap on groceries, cable, and video game rentals……not your wife.

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TTMK February 12, 2015 at 7:16 pm

I wholeheartedly agree that one’s wife is not the person to be cheap with. However, if the guy is unemployed and she doesn’t share money, I think the fact that it’s Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean he should be expected to spend – considering his apparently tough circumstances.

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Melissa February 10, 2015 at 4:51 pm

We do spend time together on Valentine’s Day, but we almost never spend money. I guess we’re in the minority. 🙂

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TTMK February 12, 2015 at 7:15 pm

When both people are on the same page, that’s great – whether spending or saving!

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Zee February 10, 2015 at 9:43 pm

I don’t like the idea of valentines day, it’s such a commercial holiday just geared towards getting people to shell out money. Personally I would talk to my significant other and plan something about a week before to avoid reservation issues or raised prices for the sake of V-Day, and then when actual V-Day comes around just watch a movie or something at home.

As for that womans perspective on her husband needing to spend money on her while he was unemployed seems a little cold hearted to me. I mean, why is valentines day about guys doing something super nice for the girl? Can’t it be mutual? Like we both do something nice for each other, and if someone is having a difficult year financially then the other pulls more weight for a while.

I mean, to me, relationships are like a team, it’s you and me together and we help each other because we care for the other. Not, you and me do stuff for each other because it’s now your job to do these things whether you like it or not because I need to tell my facebook friends about the special things that were done for me.

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TTMK February 12, 2015 at 7:14 pm

I wholeheartedly agree that the spend on me despite being unemployed stuff is simply cold hearted. And yes, relationships should be a team!

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Don @ How You Can Find Love February 16, 2015 at 8:10 am

We usually just get each other a card for Valentine’s Day. To us, it’s just a commercial holiday. We show our love to one another throughout the year and doing so on one specific day doesn’t make sense to us.

With that said, the story you write about is crazy. Marriage is a team and you have to both be on the same page. If I was unemployed, I would sit down with my wife and talk about Valentine’s Day with her ahead of time. Explain where I was coming from – not wanting to spend a lot of money since it was tight – and get her input. If she really wanted to celebrate the day, I would find a low cost way of celebrating instead of spending money we didn’t have.

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