Sometimes Mommy Mondays become Marriage Mondays.
Four of us were at a girls lunch, but only two entered a heated and tense conversation while the other two watched wide-eyed and mostly silent.
The topic was marital bank accounts and the conflict was separate or joint.
One friend - the breadwinner in her family - didn't want to have to "clear" her purchases with her husband, and the hassle of balancing two people's checkbooks together led them to have separate accounts. The other friend - not the breadwinner in her family - found it to be easier and liberating to share a bank account.
As the conversation got more heated, it became clear that they were both right and in fact not even saying anything that different. But their own experience was making them wounded and defensive. As it turned out, the friend with the separate checking account had been told by people she respected that it was a sign her marriage wasn't strong. The friend with the joint account was insulted that someone might think that just because her husband was the breadwinner that she would have to check with him before she purchased anything.
You just don't know what works in one family that would never work in another, and you definitely don't know the reasons behind the decisions and the emotions that people carry even after the decision is made.
An outside observer of the conversation, hearing what they were saying when they couldn't hear each other, made me realize how often I judge without understanding. I'm sure you don't ever do anything like that, right?