A Widow’s Lack of Financial Experience

Widows face multiple challenges when it comes to money: In general, they live longer, earn less, and take more breaks from the workforce to care for children, which contributes to lower lifetime earnings. They even pay higher interest rates on credit cards, and higher prices for personal-care items, such as haircuts.

A widow’s lack of financial know how, does become a problem as she grows older. Among marriages that don’t end in divorce, three-quarters end in widowhood, and the average length of widowhood is nine years. That’s a long time to manage money on one’s own.

Women who experience widowhood earlier than expected could suffer because they were not prepared to take over the family finances. Widows who don’t feel equipped to manage their money can ask for the support of an adult child or Financial planner, but some financial knowledge will protect them from scams or bad Financial planners.

A widow with insufficient financial knowledge may find herself without a firm understanding of how much she can afford to spend, what her holdings are, or how quickly her money may go.  It’s a sad future when the money runs out before the end of the month.  Take control of your money and learn how to read your bank statements, investment statements and how to set up a budget so your money will last your lifetime.

You never want to be in the situation where you find yourself saying, “I just don’t know where all the money goes”.

2 Responses

  1. Kaye Peterson

    Thanks for the advice. I am selling the remaining cattle and equipment in a few weeks and am seeing my tax preparer tomorrow. I’m afraid taxes could eat me alive but I want to prepare for the future. Had a good cry but might as well suck it up.
    Saw my sisters and brothers today for Daddy’s birthday. Told them that I was planning to go to Las Vegas by myself for Christmas. You’d thought I going to Mars by their reactions. from “You can’t go by there by yourself” to “You’ll have to face Christmas sometime.” I doubt if I go as far as Vegas, but, by golly, I do so much by myself anyway, I’ll go where I damn well please.
    Then there’s the lonliness. Got a kitten for company and that has helped. Taking a good look at the eligible men out there and have decided that there are none. Friend of mine calls it the “Goldilocks syndrome” – some are too hot, too cold, none just right. Want to get used to being alone beofer I go in that direction.
    Have done some grief counseling and it has helped. Found I wasn’t as bad off as some – they are really hurting and I feel for them. Time has helped.
    Thanks for letting me vent.

  2. Mary Francis

    Hi Kaye – I love venting:-) It’s what we need and don’t ever let anyone tell you what you should or should not do. It sounds like you understand that time helps but the bottom line is that we are in control not our family. They love us but they don’t always understand the lonliness especially during the holidays. Dating is another part of the journey and I’m also trying to find what I want or even if I want to. It’s hard to get rebalanced but other widows do understand and I hope you find that balance. There are some blogs I’ve posted on dating that you may find interesting. Take care, Mary Francis

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