Originally Posted by Billy
MJ's not been to Thailand yet...
My guess is he'll be married in less than one week from his arrival date...
MJ, after seeing what surprises Billy has in store for your first meeting, are you sure you guys want to get together?
We want pictures!!
Originally Posted by BunsOfVeal
Nords, now you know I respect your opinion, but I don't think that calling pre-nups "preparing to fail" is fair. As an nuclear engineer, you certainly would not enter into a nuclear submarine knowing that the nuclear sub doesn't have any back up systems and emergency procedures. Why? Do you plan to personally scuttle the sub after 2 week out at sea? The answer obviously would be no, but that doesn't mean that you don't practice the emergency procedures even though U.S. submarines sink at a rate nowhere near 50%.
First, I think I've been quoted out of context. Let's go to the tape:
Originally Posted by Nords
...in the long run the extra effort on preparation is probably a lot cheaper and certainly less painful than it would be to spend the effort on planning for failure.
IOW if you're going to give your marriage your best shot, would you devote more effort to improving spousal relations or to drafting prenup clauses? Which goal is more worthy of your efforts?
Second, a prenup IS
planning to fail, and not only that
, it's planning to fail miserably by presuming that you'll lose all inputs to the process.
For example we carry insurance on fire, liability, & healthcare. In all of those cases I'm planning for failure and, other than normal precautions, I'm not expecting to have much control of or effect on the results. The insurance helps me recover from a casualty that I otherwise couldn't survive.
I think it's worth a prenup to insure prior-relationship kids/family because they don't have a voice in the matter (just like fire, liability, & healthcare). However like a good will, I wonder if that could also be handled just as well by a trust or some other legal maneuver.
But aside from those associated with prior relationships, a couple has inputs to their marriages. They can decide whether or not to marry in the first place, and they certainly have an affect on how that marriage turns out. They can also constructively participate in the divorce process.
IMO a prenup presumes that not only will the marriage eventually fail, but that all attempts to negotiate like reasonable human beings will also be doomed to failure. It projects an entirely unfavorable opinion of how you value your assets in relationship to your spouse. Not only are your assets worth more to you than your spouse is, but also that spouse is assumed from the start to be uncooperative, unfair, and vindictive. Nice impression to make before the nuptials.
It seems to me that a far better impression could be made by participating in premarital counseling, discussions about family planning, agreements on how each others' careers will be supported, and so on. Care & feeding of the marriage seems to be a much better goal than focusing on how to carve up the carcass.
Other than the prior relationships, it seems that prenups arise when one of the couple has a lot more than the other. Spouse and I started our marriage as penniless equals, but if I was going to marry someone despite our inequalities then I'd have to be willing to pool our resources and share fairly. (Otherwise I'd just offer plenty of sex and shared chores.) Anything less than that indicates a lack of commitment to what's intended to be a lifetime relationship. It could even be perceived as selfish.
Please understand that I'm not against other people having prenups. IMO they're potentially poisoning a marriage by raising the topic, and if that's the kind of marriage they want then they're welcome to it. I do think it's worth exploring the logic or motives behind wanting a prenup because many thought processes may be less than clear on the subject.
Spouse has reminded me that we actually do have a form of a prenup. We've agreed that either of us is free to leave our marriage at any time, as long as we take the kid with us!
Nuclear safety & backups-- that's a topic for a separate post.