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Why does your husband spend money like it's going out of style? Why does he accuse you of nagging when all you're trying to do is lessen what feels like the national debt?

Two woman are commiserating: "He's a great guy," the one says, "and I love him dearly, but I swear, he not only thinks money grows on trees, he thinks he's got a whole orchard!" "Tell me about it," the other replies, "Mine pounces on every new credit card, completely ignoring all the ones we've already maxed out." "So what do ya do?" the one asks. "I'm tired of nagging him, he's tired of me nagging, and it doesn't do any good anyway." "I know," the other says, "but we gotta do something. At this rate we'll be bankrupt before the kids get out of pre-school."

And wouldn't that be a shame. Especially since there are ways to work with your husband's love of spending. Like creating a separate household expenses account that you each contribute to, and that can be transferred automatically from your personal accounts the minute that paycheck hits, so at least the basics are always covered.

Sit down with your husband on a regular basis and pay the bills together – so he gets a better feel for why his spending habits matter. Make an agreement that you won't have any new credit cards until the old ones are paid down. Be creative! Don't nag – instead, brainstorm together and surprise yourself with the results.

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