And Why You Should Too…
I was sitting in a café in the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris when I met Olivier. He was a few tables away from my friend and I, and had been laughing at my friend’s attempt to pick up the waiter with her broken French. I had been doing my best to translate between the two, and convey their mutual interest, but I was failing miserably. Olivier’s laughter made me realize he understood both French and English, so I suggested he come to our end of the café and take over playing matchmaker. So he did.
While my friend and the waiter wandered off together, Olivier and I struck up a conversation and hit it off. He was sweet and charming, and his accent won me over immediately. We dated through the spring, and when I went back to New York City we were determined to make it work. In July I returned to Paris to see the man I had fallen in love with a couple months before, and we picked up where we left off. After a few weeks together in France, he proposed and I accepted. Like any newly engaged bride-to-be, I was ecstatic, on cloud nine, and all the rest of the mushy emotions that go with it.
How My Prenup Came to Be
Once the initial euphoria passed, it was time to think about logistics. Being citizens of different countries, our first decision to tackle was where we were going to live. As a New Yorker, I wasn’t about to give up the city I loved, even if it was for Paris, and Olivier, being a born-and-bred Parisian, wasn’t exactly stoked about moving to the United States. We figured, after little debate, that I’d move to Paris for six months to a year first, then he’d move to NYC for the same amount of time.
Luckily, I was a freelance writer and he was a musician, so a little country-hopping was possible. After that, we’d make some serious decisions as to where we’d settle to start our family.
Once that was out of the way, I went back to planning my wedding and being in love, truly in love, for the first time in my life. I figured the rest would fall into place.
Then one night, while out with the ladies, a friend leaned into me and asked, “You’re getting a prenup, right?” Before I could answer, she continued, “You have to get a prenup.”
At first I was taken aback. It wasn’t a question of it being a distasteful suggestion, but rather justification for what had been going on, quietly, in my head. I never thought I’d get married. Honestly, marriage and kids weren’t in my life plan. If it happened, it happened; if it didn’t, I wasn’t going to cry over it. But as a life-long cynic, I did know that if I did get married, I would want a prenup.
Why? Considering the divorce rate, it was basic logic to protect not just your assets but yourself as a whole, from losing it all. However, now, as a newly engaged woman whose cynicism had been diluted by love, it seemed like such a negative way to look at my future with Olivier.
By definition, a prenup is a contract marrying parties enter into before they make their nuptials legit. In the simplest terms, it protects what’s yours should the marriage come to an end. From making the division of assets concrete, to assuring spousal support, to specific terms regarding the possible forfeit of assets, a prenup legally binds the two parties to the decisions they made when they were of sound mind, in love, and long before divorce even seemed like a possibility.| Print