My husband and I were recently discussing our financial affairs with a financial advisor. He asked about life insurance. We have life insurance on David, but not me. We got life insurance on David when I was pregnant with Anna and delayed getting it on me since it would be cheaper to get it when I wasn’t pregnant. Then we forgot about it and I was pregnant again. Then it got put on the back burner and I got cancer — not exactly the ideal time to go asking insurance companies about life insurance.
But now I am two years clear and I started thinking about it again. Especially since I live with a 5-10% chance of the cancer coming back. Our financial advisor looked into the matter and came back with all sorts of detailed questions from insurers: What kind of cancer? What stage? What was the treatment? What was the type of chemo? Did I have radiation? What was the tumor grade?
Ultimately our advisor says that when I am three years in the clear (in May, hopefully!) I can get insurance just like any other person (who hasn’t been marked with the scarlet C).
Yet after all this, my husband claims we don’t need insurance on me. Huh?
I was hurt that he said this. “Is my life worth so little that you don’t even need to insure me?”
“It’s not THAT,” he said. “It’s just that we could get by.”
“What about childcare? House cleaning? Wouldn’t you want some help?”
“I could manage.”
Maybe I should be glad that I am worth more alive than dead, but I was crushed. I mean, apparently if I keel over tomorrow, everything would continue without missing a beat. No one would need time off or help while they cope. David will still be able to go into work every day, manage the kids, help with their homework, put a meal on the table, do the laundry, conference with the teachers, plan the birthday parties, shop for Christmas presents — all quite easily without me.
Which makes me wonder, then why the hell isn’t he already helping with some of that stuff?
But I digress. So, even though he is blissfully unaware of how much his wife and the mother of his children does around here on a daily basis, I will get myself insured whether he likes it or not. If God forbid, something should happen to me, I want to make sure there is enough there that he can be a good dad without worrying about making ends meet. But then again, not so much that he can bring in a hot Swedish au pair either.
For a more realistic look at how much insurance SAHMs should have click here.
Sara Ellington is the author of The Mommy Chronicles: Conversations Sharing the Comedy and Drama of Pregnancy and New Motherhood (Hay House, 2005) and The Must-Have Mom Manual (Ballantine/Random House, April 2009) now available at Target!