Okay, moving on to Alex's question. It says, "How should you handle when partners are at different steps? My husband has always been able to max out his TSP, but I'm stuck on step six. We're deep in the messy middle. We both get pensions too, and I thought that this was interesting." Interesting question. It comes down to just that communication when you're in a relationship. I thought you guys could speak to it. Yeah, I've got a thought on this immediately. This is my bias. I'm going to insert my bias into my answer here. But this is my bias. When my wife and I sit down to do our planning, it's not his planning, her planning, it's our planning. So when we think about Financial Order of Operations
and what step we're on, I don't think, "Oh, well, I'm maxing out my 401(k), but she's not doing that yet." I think about, "Are we collectively maxing out our 401(k)s?" And I think if you're in a relationship where there's a large income disparity and discrepancy, I think it becomes even more important to make sure you have an open line of communication around that. We made the decision a number of years ago for my wife to work from home to be with the kids, and it's been great, but that didn't mean that we stopped thinking about how we were funding her accounts and putting money in her accounts because that was what made the most sense for the whole household. So we approached it as, "Where are we on the financial order of operations? Where is our net worth? What does our overall asset location look like?" And I think that just makes it a whole lot healthier. Now, if you are someone who's going to stay separate, like you're going to keep everything separately, I think you can have separate finances, but you still have to have the same common goals. Yeah, the key word you said there that I want to hone in on is household. I mean, a lot of people when they ask us, "So, where did you come up with this whole saving and investing 25%?" When you talk about emergency reserves, when you talk about how you look at debt, what are you guys basing that off of? Because I'm having trouble figuring it out. It's household, guys, because we want you, when you're talking about the financial order of operations, a lot of times I don't see how you do this if you're not looking at the total household number. It doesn't mean you can't be separate in the structure, but it definitely, from a planning standpoint, needs to be household. Because think about emergency reserves. You do great and have three to six months of your pay, but what if your spouse has zero, and yet they're the ones that lose the job? Your three to six months is not going to cover it. It has to be looked at in what are the household expenses to build the emergency reserves off of. Same thing with savings rate. You're crushing it and saving 30%, but your spouse is only saving 12%. If you do the math on it, you might figure out, "No, we're actually only saving 13% as a household." We're not even, though I'm saving 30%. It just doesn't work out mathematically to be as successful. And the same thing with debt. You can feel all like you're doing things on the right side of things, and your spouse is bringing you down, but and you think you're on step six, but really maybe you ought to be on step three, helping your spouse get out of that 20-plus percent credit card debt because you're basically in quicksand. I mean, how do you get out of that? That's something that I don't love, not looking at things separately, because this is the part where, once again, I get to be the older guy who's got a little experience under my belt, or in my back pocket, however you want to say it. I've been married 25 years, and I will tell you very early on, I learned in our household that the one thing that was never, ever, ever, ever going to be talked about was who made what. I see a lot of marriages where, if you get into what's mine and what is yours, it creates some weird disparity because somebody in the household is going to make more money than the other person. I just see so many couples that get to be where they mind, and that's not the way this thing is supposed to work. That's what I know in my relationship. Never, ever talk about who earns the money or do anything because it just creates weird dynamics. I think the same thing can happen if you're looking at your finances in those unique ways. I'm not saying you can't do separate accounts, but you better be communicating. You better be planning as a household so you can actually be the best versions of yourselves. So you don't create some under-the-surface stuff that totally derails your long-term success. Because I can tell you, 25 years of success, there's some years where it's murky, and you better have good coping and communication skills to even get you through those bumps. That's why I just want to make sure I'm very clear on the communication of that, Alex, so you can live the best version of yourself as well as your couple life, as well as your financial life as a team, and building and maximizing all your financial opportunities.