Difficult questions

It took a while to find a notary who was comfortable working with an international couple on a pre-nup that should be respected in courts in both the US and Europe, but I managed to find one a while ago. They sent us some brochures, and we will go visit them in August to get the pre-nup written down and registered.

I was surprised by the responses I got from the few who I asked for advice in my search – quite some responses along the lines of  ‘ if you have to get a pre-nup, you’d better not even get married’. I don’t get it. I’m by far the less well-off partner, and I was the one to bring it up (I hope he would have if I hadn’t. I should ask him). Oh well, we’re getting one. My student debts are mine!

Beloved is across the ocean right now, doing some important stuff in an extremely well-secured compound. I had promised to find a list of questions we could answer to come up with the general contents for the pre-nup. We should make sure we know what is reasonable and fair before meeting with the notary. Still, answering those questions is scary. It brings to the fore that I feel a little.. hm.. insecure because me and my career aren’t as succesfull (read: well-earning) are as he is. For my field, I get a decent salary and I’ve been self-sufficient for quite some time, while managing to save. To prove this: by the end of this year I expect to pay down half of my student loans, two years and three months after graduation (my total student loans equal about 60% of my gross income per year).  So yeah. I’m not poor or dependent on Beloved, but still. Together, we have a lifestyle I could not sustain by myself. I feel a little bad for it.

We face a move to a place where he’ll have a job waiting for him. I won’t. For all I know, I may not be able to find a job at all. I’ll work, somehow. I don’t feel too good to make Venti Cafe Mochas or do customer support, but I have no idea what my earning potential may be (suffice to say I’ve heard about this cliche of burger flipping English majors. Scary, even though I’m not really an English major – it’s close enough). Who out there in that massive country could be waiting for me, eh?

What I should keep in mind is that we’re not just answering questions to protect Beloved’s retirement savings. We’re also answering them to protect me. From being left in a country that isn’t my own, without a job or a way to get back home. From being very hungry because flipping burgers may not mean being able to afford burgers.

I know what I need to do (be fair, think about what I need). I know what I’m inclined to do (focus on protecting what is his, conveniently forgetting me). I know what I’m scared of (adhering to the dreaded stereotype of the woman having designs on a man’s money, being inferior, Beloved resenting me), I know what I should be scared of (being homeless and hungry), I know what I shouldn’t do (let unproductive fears get in the way of what is the business side of this marriage, not being as invested in my interests as in his), but the feeling stays. I’ll need to grow some ovaries, get over the fact that sharing a life with someone means it’s not just me who spends money on him and accept that this time I cannot ask for a part that’s smaller than would be fair.

Maybe I’ll go get a drink. Pfff.

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