Don’t Wait for Your Wake-Up Call!

What you don’t know about your finances can hurt you.

Are you dependent on your spouse or the government to support you financially? You’re not alone.

“Women are more likely to rely on Social Security because they have fewer alternative sources of income, often outlive their husbands, and are more likely to be left to rear children when their husbands die or become disabled,” states The Institute for Women’s Policy Research. “Moreover, due to the recession many women have lost home equity and savings to failing markets, leaving them more economically vulnerable and dependent on Social Security benefits.”

This is not good news. So many women rely on others for their financial well-being. Then, something happens, and they realize they have no knowledge of what’s going on with their money or how to avoid financial ruin.

Don’t think it will happen to you? Well, maybe some of these wake-up calls sound familiar…


You’ve heard it before. The husband runs off with his young secretary, leaving a 20-year marriage in the dust and a stunned wife who doesn’t know what to do without any kind of financial education whatsoever.

But according to a study done by Dmitry Tumin and Zhenchao Qian at Ohio State University for the American Sociological Association, the new scenario seems to be staying in a rocky marriage due to money. "Those with young children may find it difficult to support themselves and their children if they divorce,” says Qian. “Divorce may not protect them because their spouse may be unwilling or unable to provide financial support.”

I can’t imagine being married to someone that you really don’t want to be married to. It would be Hell. But it’s happening. A lot of people are not getting divorced because it’s too expensive. And unfortunately, Qian also states that, “tough economic times are likely to make these trends continue.”

A Job Layoff

Today, many people are dealing with job lay-offs, and this is affecting the roles men and women play in America. After many years of being stay-at-home Moms and full-time housewives, women are entering the workforce again just to put food on the table for their families and pay the bills. If the man is the only “breadwinner” in the family, and he suddenly loses his job, this can be a major, wake-up call for the entire family.

An Illness

A major illness with parents, in-laws and other family-members can strike when you least expect it. You may have no choice but to stop working in order to be a caregiver. Funds can run out quickly, and with no income and increasing medical costs (in addition to all of your regular bills), you can find yourself in a bad, financial situation — fast.

Starting to worry? Well don’t…

Women, this is your Rising Time, because this is a time for women to step up.

You may be facing a wake-up call right now with workforce issues, rocky marriages due to money problems, husbands losing their jobs, and more. If not, it may be just a matter of time before one strikes.

Many of us were taught to depend on someone else for our financial well-being. But this has to stop.
Now is the time to really take a lead, step up and do what it takes. And many women are already doing just that.

According to Hanna Rosin, author of “The End of Men and the Rise of Women,” it’s because of our families and our drive. “Women are the ones with the children at home and they’ve got to make things work so they make them work,” states Rosin. “Also, women have been marginalized and are still, to some extent, marginalized and paid less, so they have the hustle and drive of being marginalized. The good news is that there is more opportunity for women.”

Don’t wait for your wake-up call. Take action now.

Money can enslave a woman, and money can set a woman free, and I want all women to be free. What it does to a woman’s self-esteem to be dependent on someone else for money, in my world, is not a pretty picture. I want to encourage women to step up and do what it takes.

If you want to avoid having a wake-up call, start looking at your finances now. Do you know where you are financially today? If not, look at your bank accounts and your invoices and figure out your assets and liabilities. If you don’t know how to do that, ask a friend, look up the information online and start your financial education.

Do not be a statistic.
Do not be in dire straights.

The whole purpose of being financially-educated is to be prepared for whatever happens in life. And in this economy, financial education is more important than ever. It’s up to you to take control of your financial life because no one is going to do it for you.

Stop waiting to make money a priority. Wake up, women!

What are you going to do today to increase your financial literacy?

Get more information with our free, financial education community here.

Original publish date: November 30, 2012