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DEAR HARRIETTE: I’ve been engaged for almost two years now, but my fiance and I have different views about how we should celebrate our wedding. While he wants a grand celebration, I would prefer to have a simple ceremony at the courthouse and an intimate party later. My fiance is used to a lavish lifestyle, and although he’s good at saving money, I grew up in a middle-class family and believe in careful planning and not wasting money. I feel that spending a lot of money on a wedding is wasteful and that the money would be better used toward buying a home. I’m not sure if I should compromise and give in to his wishes or try to convince him that saving money would be a better investment for our future. Please help! — Conflicts of Love
DEAR CONFLICTS OF LOVE: Many people dream about their wedding celebration starting from childhood. Because the images are often deeply rooted, it can be hard to consider alternative ways of approaching the actual event when it comes. You and your fiance dream differently. This is just one of many things that you will have to talk through and negotiate in your marriage. Compromise is key. You want such different things for your big day, you will both need to concede something. Talk through your goals and dreams for your life together. Back into the wedding costs by talking about the big picture first. What type of house do you want? Create a timeline for when you would like to buy it. Decide on how much money you will save monthly toward that purchase. What types of vacations will you want to take, and how often? Discuss values and goals.
When it comes to the wedding, be willing to consider the middle ground, perhaps a small ceremony at a nice venue, not the courthouse.
Perhaps a small reception could be your compromise, or a larger, more casual party in the summer. Talk it out and agree to create a shared vision for your launch into married life.
DEAR HARRIETTE: I’m a recent college graduate, and I’m feeling pretty lost about my future. In college, I was dead set on getting into corporate finance because, well, I wanted the financial security it promised. With the way inflation’s going, I’m grateful for the income, but the truth is, I’m really not enjoying my job at the bank. I find myself dreading going into the office. I chose this path because I didn’t want to end up in a low-paying field, but I’ve come to realize that money alone isn’t making me happy. The work I’m doing feels empty and pointless, and I need some guidance on how to figure out what I really want to do and how to make it happen. It feels so daunting making a career switch. Will I have to go back to college? Will I have to take a pay cut? — Time for Change
DEAR TIME FOR CHANGE: If it’s not the right fit, you shouldn’t stay. Do some research to determine what you want to do and what is required to do it. Find out if you know anyone in the field you’re thinking of who can help you get an audience with a potential employer. Save your money now in case you do have to take a pay cut soon. Create a timeline for making your move, and go for it.