When I was a single girl I never had a problem keeping control of my bills. I tracked them online, opened the letters as soon as I received them and paid them on time (there were a few slips here and there, but I didn't make a habit of it). I had complete control over everything, I knew my account numbers off the top of my head, and even though I was terrible at saving money, I made sure I took care of my bills.
Since getting married and having kids, I have been slacking, hardcore. I have been letting the hubby take care of all of this, and to be honest, it stressed me out.
I never knew the bank balance, still don't know ALL of our account information (scary I know) and had no idea what bills were paid and what ones weren't (so many damn LATE FEES). The hubby finally asked me to start doing the budget and I agreed. He joked that I was going to get to know all of our financial information and then leave him, but I assured him that it wasn't going to happen I just like knowing what's going on.
The reason I don't want to feel helpless is, I had an old co-worker whose husband took care of EVERYTHING! Bills, car payments, even filling the car with gas. As a 40 year old woman, she had no idea how to pump gas into her car. We all expressed concern over this, but she assured us that it was nothing to worry about. I really hope she knows what she is doing, or she is screwed!
I started doing the budgeting last week and am still getting used to it. There are so many factors in America that I have to get used to, like -getting bills from the hospital or doctor-. I never had to deal with that before so it's a little stressful, you never know when, or who you will be getting a bill from, and then you have to remember what you even got a treatment for. We have great insurance, but I still dread opening those bills..
Then I had to start using a program. Before I used Quicken (which I liked, and still do like to this day), but Hubby suggested I use YNAB (you need a budget). I use it, but I am still not sure what it's purpose is, or if I'm even using it correctly. I need to sign up for one of their webinars.
I'm hoping eventually I will have a complete handle on what each and every bill that comes in is for, as well as knowing how much we have coming in and going out. For now, I am the keeper of receipts and bank balances, and I am becoming a hardass when we start talking about buying things (Hubby has to be the hardass when it comes to going out for dinner, I love going to restaurants....).
Hubby has become obsessed with coupons, he watched a few couponing shows, and instead of making fun of the extreme couponers, now he gets tips and tricks from them. He was so excited when he got dental floss for free because he had a coupon, I told him this was "the start of it all". Maybe we will become as good as those people on the show, with the exception of buying stuff we don't need in mass quantities.
For now, a tip for all of you Ladies out there (single or not), get to know your bills, accounts, and start budgeting, you will be happy you did.