Navigating through the Rough Waters of Money and Love: A Book Review

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Money and Love: an Intelligent Roadmap for Life’s Biggest Decisions by Myra Strober and Abby Davisson

Book Review by Denise Marsh

There was a point in time where I was a voracious reader but as the saying goes: “life got in the way”.   I felt   like the only books that I have been  reading were  the ones that I  read to my first graders.  Then, all of that changed when I was given the opportunity to read a book that was different from my traditional fiction genre and so glad that I did!  Let’s dive right into the review…

Money And Love  is not your typical self-help kind of book but rather a counseling book and guide for people that need to make life changes but  lack the required   “ammunition” to  handle this challenging task.

Money and Love introduces us to an organized framework for our decision making called the “5 C’s” early in the book.  This includes the following:

Step One: Clarify What’s important to you

Step Two: Communicate

Step Three: Consider a Broad Range of Choices

Step Four: Check in with Friends, Family, and Other resources

Step Five: Explore Likely Consequences

I don’t want to give away too much detail and spoil the book for you; however, each step will be more in depth and also revert back to the anecdotal experiences.  For me, Step Two has been essential in many areas in my life; lack of communication results in negative outcomes quickly.  I appreciated having this “advice” for my own personal experiences and the connection was very clear and accurate in the book.  

I have always encountered challenges in the financial realm and wish I actually had read this book when I was married or through some of my  personal relationships.  Although I am not a fan of a lot of data and statistics, I hovered more over the parts where the authors gave personal stories and anecdotes that highlighted focal points in the book.  There was one particular  anecdote about how a couple had different ideas about where they would work  and how everything had changed once they brought children into the equation; they realized that they would have to make sacrifices for adequate child care. 

Strober and Davisson provided workbook pages that  were  extremely beneficial   and reminded me of journal writing.  In addition, each chapter was equipped with   pertinent questions to ask yourself on the way to making big decisions (reminded me of Scaffolding in teaching). The ten chapters cover everything from Dating to Marriage, Having children, Caring for elders and relationship challenges – I never realized how decisions about finances are so intertwined in ALL of these areas.  I also didn’t realize that even one minor change in mindset could change your future for the better. 

Money and Love was effective in achieving its goal of getting the reader to do “careful planning” versus hasty decision making.  As a single mom, I would have liked to see more anecdotes on non-traditional family planning; how single parents can make better decisions with love and money being that this is becoming more of the norm.

I am grateful for a new perspective and insight that makes me realize that achieving a healthy balance between the two is mandatory.  Money and Love deserves to be on a” recommended list” for “planning a successful future.” If anything, I think it is a great book for couples of all genders, denominations, or affiliations to read together to help make informed decisions that will affect the rest of their lives.