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I should disclose that I thought my husband was insane for spending nearly $1,000 on the bike he bought me. So, clearly, I lean toward your fiancée’s point of view. We just don’t get the bike thing. (For that matter, I don’t get the fancy car thing either.)

Part of being a couple is acknowledging that there are things you’ll never really understand and accepting those differences. You weren’t wrong to want to use your potential windfall to buy a really cool bike. Your fiancée wasn’t wrong to suggest buying a still-very-cool bike and deploying the rest elsewhere. UPS solved this impasse for you, but you’ll have many other opportunities to wrestle with your financial differences in the years to come.

Because most of the time, there is no “one right way.” It’s a balancing act. You need to save and invest some of your money for the future, but you also need to enjoy your life today. You need to compromise, of course, but not endlessly. A lot of the time you do have to meet halfway, but if something is important enough to you (or to her), you can figure out a way to make it happen. As my husband says, “Sometimes it’s not who’s right. It’s who wants it more.”

About the author

Liz Weston is one of the most-read personal finance columnists on the Internet. Her columns appear on MSN Money and in newspapers across the country, including the Los Angeles Times and Stars & Stripes.

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