My mentor is at it again. He had called me and asked that I make some purchases on his behalf. Something worth about a hundred and twenty thousand. I made the purchase in Lagos and sent it all the way to the city where he lives. Upon delivery, I got a call from Mummy (his wife) – she was very upset with the purchase. Worse still, I purchased the products in the black market, at a rate far more expensive. She herself used to be a top distributor of the products and so she knew the pros and cons.
“You should have at least told me before you made this purchase for Dad. The family needs money for so many things at this time that we can’t spend that much on products that aren’t so urgent. One or two of the products would suffice.” She insisted that a large chunk of the products will have to be returned and the money retrieved.
What touched me was that her husband submitted to the entire process which ordinarily on the surface appears humiliating. He was right on the seat there while Mum called and demanded a return of the products – a clear affront (before someone who looks up to him) on his discretion . Mind you, that money was transferred to me from “his own” account. He actually personally earned that money. Yes, the products were returned and the money retrieved and Daddy never mentioned the issue to me once thereafter perhaps to redeem his image. Not once. It was total submission to the will of his wife.
This up there is what it means to have a joint account. It doesn’t necessarily mean a single account. What it means is that even though the couple may have separate account details, they have equal access and voting right over what’s in any of the accounts, who earned it notwithstanding. There is nothing like, “I have given you your monthly pocket money, I can do whatever I like with the rest.” Or, “my husband’s money is our money but my money is my money.” All of these ideas are traceable to the Genesis 3 marriage. It is incongruent with the perfect will of God for marriage which is oneness in everything.
But we must admit it that joint account or financial oneness (the two actually mean the same thing) is tough and very unattractive to several couples because it requires submission. And submission isn’t easy for anyone. The natural man prefers to be independent and not have to get clearance from anyone before doing anything.
Men will prefer to impress their wives with a so called “monthly salary” as long as they can spend the rest of their money the way they like without the inputs of their wives. I remember Iyebiye was once very excited about this idea until I showed her that financial oneness is more beneficial to her. Which is better? To give you some money every month as your salary for all you do as my wife which may represent less than 10 percent of my earnings – you won’t even know my total earnings if we aren’t running financial oneness- and keep the rest away. But with financial oneness, you don’t need to be given a monthly salary when the whole of the 100 percent is as much yours as it is mine and you have unfettered access to it.
Several women will like the idea of financial oneness as long as it is their husband that is earning the big money but wait until they begin earning big, they are reluctant to submit the money to their husband for joint administration. The implication is that they can afford to go ahead and sponsor even a project that their husband does not approve of since they have the money that is independently administered. If they table a matter and their husband does not agree with them, they simply call his bluff and go ahead nevertheless after all, “it is my money I will use not yours. How can you be dictating how I use my money.”
For several homes therefore, money in the hands of the wife being independently administered is a basis for insubordination. This is what explains why several husbands want to suppress the financial growths of their wives. Why they won’t rejoice at the news of a salary increment. It’s because more money in her hand means more independence and of course more insubordination.
Money in the hands of the husband being independently administered can be a basis of oppression. He can be using the money to settle scores. When the wife offends him, he starves her of money to teach her a lesson. If I can speak to men, please never use money to settle scores. It is a bad strategy if you desire oneness. What that does is it provokes the woman to go all out to get her own money so as to break your backbone since money is the leverage you’re using. This will give birth to strife and strife gives birth to hatred and bitterness.
If you’ve ever tried to understand the ugly phenomenon of couples envying each other and trying to block each other’s progress, this is it right here. If your money is a basis for insubordination to your husband and independence from him, he will hate that money and the job or business that is producing it. Conversely, if your money is a basis for oppressing and punishing your wife, she may go as far as wishing you’ll completely lose the job while she gets a well paying job in your place so that at least the tables can turn.
In our own relationship, we don’t use money to settle scores. It’s a rule. And it will be an everlasting rule. There had been times in the past where shortly after Iyebiye requested she needed some money, there was a big fight. In the midst of the fight, I’ll ensure to send the money. In short, if I wanted to wait two days before sending it earlier, I will jettison that plan and send it immediately. This is the reason: I don’t ever want her to have to apologise when she doesn’t believe she is wrong just because of fear I won’t send the money anymore. God forbid. That’s the definition of oppression. I don’t want her to have a reason to cry to the Lord saying, “Lord, when will you give me my own money so that this man will lose his hold of oppression and manipulation over me.” If God answers this prayer on this basis, that is the beginning of disunity in that home.
Yes, I admit that the cost of financial oneness is huge but let me reiterate to you the likely outcome of independent accounts:
1. Insurbodination which may turn your husband into someone you never married. He could become a monster in the process of trying to stamp his authority over the insurbodinate you. Without submission, no woman can truly enjoy her husband. You won’t just get his best. Even if he is a gentle man who allows you to have your way, be sure you’re not enjoying his best. Try submission and watch the difference.
2. Oppression and it’s counter reaction.
3. The couple will grow more and more independent of each other which is another way of saying they will grow apart. Marriage is marrying two lives into one. Independence gradually weakens the angle of interpenetration of the couple until they are completely unmarried though still “married”. Divorce or separation can be the ultimate outcome of this.
4. Envy, strife, and bitterness which can be very vicious leading to even physical abuse and domestic violence.
But with financial oneness, couples will happily route for their partner’s promotion and upliftment because whatever increase comes to either of the parties is fully accessible by the other. Financial oneness will lead to closer couples who are always having to discuss together on their visions and projects since each person needs the agreement of the other to take money for the execution of any of these. Financial oneness precipitates a sense of total ownership of one another and this increases the bond and joy of marriage.
Now let me ask you, which one is more costly between running a joint account and running independent accounts?
Of course having a joint account (financial oneness) doesn’t stop you from doing secret savings to buy a gift for your partner for the fun and romance of it. You will still likely have a personal account that you personally run eventhough in principle, jointly owned.
And please financial oneness doesn’t mean you should not show gratitude to the vessel God flowed through into the family at any particular time whether it’s your wife or your husband. That’s quite important so the vessel can look forward to being used the next time.
Thank you for your time.
Next week will be the last episode of this series. Don’t miss it.
Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye.
©Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye| firstname.lastname@example.org