February 13, 2020
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In this special Valentine’s Day podcast of Ask Suze Anything, Suze, is once again joined by her Valentine, KT. Together they talk about the importance of trust, love and money.
Suze Orman's Women and Money Podcast is proudly sponsored by America's credit unions. The Perfect Home for Your Money. So, I have to tell you, I am so loving my new theme song, "Rise Above" by Effie. Soon it will be on Spotify. Now, before I begin today's podcast there's something that I want to say, and it is this. You all know I have a new book coming out February 25th called The Ultimate Retirement Guide for 50+: Winning Strategies to Make Your Money Last a Lifetime. And to that end, if you go to www.SuzeOrman.com and you read the information there, you will be eligible to enter a sweepstakes for a one on one makeover with me. You got that right. Obviously, it will be on the phone, but it would be really a great thing for all of you to consider doing because as much as I'm trying to answer all of your emails, it is a little bit difficult just so you know, because there are so many. Wouldn't you like to talk to me one on one? But just know that this offer ends March 3, 2020, so come on, what are you waiting for? Go to www.SuzeOrman.com right now.All right, tomorrow is Valentine's Day, and what's interesting about Valentine's Day is that there are really two things in our lives that we love, we really seem to love, or we're always wanting. We really want a great relationship; we really want to be in love. And we also want money. Have you ever noticed when you go to an astrologer or a psychic or any of those things, I used to all the time, and the two things that I always used to ask for was: Am I ever going to have money? Am I ever going to have somebody in my life that loves me? So today's show, in honor of Valentine's Day, is called Love and Money. Because I'm here to tell you, you can be totally in love with somebody, you can move in with them, everything could be exactly like you want it. And then you start sharing money. You start sharing money and things start to happen, and before you know it, you're ending up not living together. Why? Arguments over money are the number one reason for relationships to split up. So there's nobody better today to talk about love and money than KT. Here's KT.Happy Valentine's Day, Suze.Happy Valentine's Day, KT. For those of you who don't know, KT is my valentine for the past almost 20 years now. And this is KT's third time on the Women and Money podcast, again back by popular demand. So many of you have written in, and you're like, KT has such a soothing voice. You have such a soothing voice, do you, KT? You do, you do! And you want to know things, so you actually ask questions about our relationship, about the love that we have between us, and about what we do about certain things when it comes to money. So today's podcast is the two of us again.You know, you just said something in the opening about people getting together, living together, newlyweds, new relationships and how do they deal with money before those arguments begin. If I look back 20 years ago, we very rarely, if ever, had arguments about how to spend, what to buy, how much money. We never had that, and I think because we both have great pleasure in saving and we both have, well maybe we're at the time in our life where we really don't want anything anymore.No, what we want is more time. More time for us to have. You know, it was interesting. Yesterday I was being interviewed for a magazine that's doing a whole expose on my new book, by the way, that is coming out on February 25th, The Ultimate Retirement Guide.Her best book ever. Wait, I have to tell them, I was with Suze for a week in a recording studio when she did the audiobook. If you don't get the hardcover, which is great because you can keep referencing it, listen to the audiobook. It is unbelievable. She threw away half the script and decided to adlib and just tell you all what you need to know. And it was, it's amusing, it's entertaining, incredibly full of information that you all need.And on February 29th nationwide, you will absolutely be able to see the new PBS special that I've recorded called The Ultimate Retirement Guide. It is something, all of those things are something you should not miss if you care about your retirement. Now, here's what I was going to say to you. Yesterday I was being interviewed about the book, and the woman says to me, why is it that you get such pleasure out of saving? It's like you almost love, remember, this is the Valentine's Day show, so we're going to talk about love. And she said, it almost seems like you love saving more than you do spending. Like, why do you and KT get such joy out of it? And what would you have answered to that?I don't know. I don't know. We just, it's kind of almost like it's like game. I mean, I go shopping and when I go in, I don't even have to look at a price at this point in my life, I have everything I need. And I come out of the grocery store, I think I've told this to all of you many times, and I tell Suze, hey, Suze, look, I saved $60. How'd you do that, KT? I said two for one. And I look for bargains because it's just, it's exciting when you know that you can get something for the best possible price. Or, just saving by not doing things that, you know, spend money frivolously.And I answered that question by saying this. You know, what's interesting is that when you grow up, and both KT and I grew up with not a lot of money around us. And when you grow up with certain values and you grow up really honoring how hard it is to make a dollar, when you still have memories as I do of being called by Bank of America, saying that my account was $632 you know, overdraft, and I needed to bring that in. When way long ago, and I have been saving quarters and nickels and dimes in this water bottle that I had found, you know, in those big five-gallon ones. And I had no money. And I remember taking it into Bank of America and they had, thank God, a coin machine, and it was exactly like $600 that I needed. I'll never forget that. So, you know, as you get older, you tend to remember how hard it was to get to where you are now. So why just spend it just because you can spend it?Do you remember your first paycheck?I remember my first big paycheck and my very first big paycheck was for $10,000 when I was working at Merrill Lynch. And I remember taking a picture of it, and I sent it to my mom. Do you remember when we were going through my mom's stuff after she died?I remember finding that, yeah.And she had saved the copy of that because I'm sure she remembers that there were times that my dad didn't even make $10,000 in a year. So I'm sure she really valued that, and I'll never forget that as long as I live. There are other paychecks that I got that I'll never forget getting, but that were a lot larger than that, and it was like, really? Really? And I took pictures of them as well. So, KT, you have the questions in front of you that people have written in that they want to ask us. So what's one that you like?So the first one that I think we should address it says, hey, Suze, how do you and KT celebrate Valentine's Day without spending money?Well, that's easy, we don't. We don't. Actually, Suze, and I love having our breakfast together, and we have a breakfast tray and we have a very simple breakfast that I usually prepare. And I love putting a little heart, a little note that I make. I don't go by these corny Valentine cards at all. But we make, I make little things, and I'll put it like under her plate or near her coffee cup. And she loves those because she saves everything I've ever given her, that I've made or written or my little notes.And for me, you have to understand that holidays are hard for me, and I've told you all that before. I've told you that Christmas is hard for me because I know that there are so many of you out there that you don't have the money to give Christmas presents to your kids and things like that, and the pain that it can cause. Obviously, it brings a whole lot of joy, but I want to live in a world where joy is joy is for everybody. And it's not pain for some and joy for others. And Valentine's Day kind of reminds me of that as well.No, no, no. It's holidays in general, and you know what it is with you? Suze does not like to be dictated by a calendar. She's a spontaneous person. I mean, I'll just tell you what I think about you. You live in the moment, you live for your feeling at that moment. And you hate being dictated by a calendar because it's a very disruptive thing in your life when you're such a present person.No, KT, actually, that's not it. One of the reasons that I don't like Valentine's Day is that there are so many people out there that wish they had a valentine and they don't, and that brings me back that there's joy for many, and yet for some, there's pain. But another reason is this. I think every day should be Valentine's Day when you have love in your life. That you shouldn't wait for just one day a year to be able to show the love that you have for somebody on that day. It's as if that day dictates your actions, and it should be your actions dictate every day. And that's why KT.What is your favorite action of how we express our love?Really?Yeah. I know what mine is.This is going to sound silly. OK, it is putting the dishes away when I get up in the morning that are in the dishwasher.I love when she does that. Do you know what mine is?What?When you hold my hand.Oh...So simple, right?You know, when I love to hold your hand? Yeah, when we go to sleep.Yeah. All right. What's the next question, my dear KT?OK, this one, this one was funny. I like this one. Dear Suze, I'm recently divorced. I don't have a valentine, and I sure wish I had a KT in my life.Are you sure? Are you all sure?Wait, let me finish. It says I've got some money and I know I can't ever buy love, but what can I do? Any ideas? Sergeant Pepper.Why did they sign it Sergeant Pepper? They've got to be a little bit our age, Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band!Oh, I just got that. I'm a little slow right now.I thought that was kind of cool.So I have an idea for them, and it's if you have a little money and you don't have somebody in your life right now, one of the things that will, in my opinion, bring you the greatest pleasure of all is make tomorrow a day where you go and you share some of your money with those who are less fortunate. I don't care if that means that you go somewhere and you see somebody on the street and go and buy them lunch and bring them back lunch and just put it in front of them. I love doing that. Just do something where you are giving tomorrow.I love that, Suze. It's a day of giving and giving brings you your heart, it fills your heart with so much love and joy. And there are many ways to give besides a typical donation to a charity and those are great. But I think people should think about who and what they want to give to. Like for us, we like to keep our environment clean, and we're very big advocates of clean water and all of those organizations that work for that. So I think that's important.So here's one KT. This person wants to know, all right, we get that you and KT have been together for, "almost 20 years." And they obviously listened to the other two podcasts that you are on. But we still don't know, how did you meet?Oh, boy. Right, alright. This is a... Wait, the second part of the question is, and how did you know that you were right for each other? Because every time I meet somebody and I think they're right for me, after being with them for six months or a year, they're not. And after two divorces, I just don't want to make a mistake again. Signed Anonymous.What? Do you find it funny this person signed it, Anonymous? Well, after two divorces, I would too.So do you want to tell the story of how we met?So, when I was in Hong Kong and I was moving back to America, to San Francisco, a very dear friend of mine said, you've got to meet Suze Orman. I said, who's Suze Orman? Now, you have to remember everyone, Suze was very famous at that time, but I'm living in Hong Kong, and I didn't watch the television shows, or all of the media, or read the books and everything that she had published. So they gave me this name, Suze Orman, and I remember I went to San Francisco, and they wanted me to meet her to take care of my money. Because remember, I was successful in Hong Kong, so I needed some advice going back to America 20 years later. Anyway, I go back to San Francisco, and what happened was, I'm flipping through a Costco magazine and I see this photograph of someone and it says Suze Orman. And I said, oh my God, that's the lady they want me to meet. I cut the page out, looked at, a little Q&A thing, folded it up, and put it in my bedside drawer. Well, that stayed there for at least maybe two years.Yeah because when we started to live together, I happened to open that drawer and I go, what is this, KT?I know, remember that?She was like, oh, my God, Suze.That's when I first saw you. I heard that name, like, two years before I met her. Never pursued it, never noticed anything moving forward. The same friends from Hong Kong came to San Francisco, stayed with me, and we had a dinner party. These are fabulous women. And they said, oh, we're going to invite Suze Orman, you need to meet Suze Orman. And I said, all right. So we had a party, a dinner for about, I guess it was six or seven women. Suze came. She was the last one to come, and she came with great reluctance I found out later because she actually was tired. She had given a speech with Mayor Willie Brown I think that day.Yeah, I had flown in the night before from New York, back to Oakland, which is where we lived at the time. And I was living with my partner of eight years, that really, after being with her for six months, I don't know why I stayed any longer. No, KT's making a face right now. KT, it's true.No, but we always raise a glass to that old girlfriend and thank her. She was the one that wanted to go to dinner because they both knew these women. Suze and her ex-girlfriend both knew these great friends from Hong Kong were. Loved them.So, I flew in from New York, I hadn't been home in four months. I get to the house and I had, you know, spent the night, fine. I get up at, like, 3 a.m. because I have to be in San Francisco at 5 a.m. for interviews and to give three talks that day to 5000 women. Part of the Mayor's Series and Willie Brown was the mayor at the time. And then I came home, I get home at 6 p.m. and the woman that I was living with says to me, come on, we have to go, we're going to dinner in San Francisco. And I said, no, I'm not. I said I have to be on a plane again at 7 a.m. to go back to New York. I am exhausted, I haven't been home in four months, I am not going. And then she yells at me, she says all you ever do Suze Orman is work. Well, yeah, how do you expect to get to be Suze Orman if all you do is not work? So, yeah, I worked all the time and I said, fine, I'll go. And we drive up to her house, KT's house.Wait I have to tell them. When I open the door, and I see Suze and the girlfriend, and I didn't know either one. So when I saw her, I thought she would be this tall Amazon woman, and she was really small, really short.I am 5'5", I'm not that short. You're 5'2".Yeah, you're a little taller than me. So I was excited, and my friends were really happy that she came. And we had a fabulous dinner that night, a fantastic dinner until Suze brought me out on the back porch. I was out. She was out there and I was...Well wait, I have to tell them this part. Before we went in, the woman that I had spent eight years of my life with says to me, can you do me a favor, Suze? Can you just not talk? Because every time you're somewhere, all people want to do is hear what you have to say. So can you just let me get a word in and just not say anything tonight? I'm like, fine, I don't care, I don't even want to be here. All right, go on.So I'm cooking dinner, I'm in the kitchen, everyone's in the living room having a great time. All like a little reunion, getting to know each other. And I'm in the kitchen and Suze comes in and she looks at my refrigerator and on it are all these photographs of my friends in my life and my past, more or less, from Asia. And she looked at me and she said, why did you come here? What brought you back to America? Like why did you come to San Francisco? Yeah. And because I'm looking at all these pictures and KT obviously had a really big life because I knew who these people were in these pictures. All famous, they were all famous, they were all-stars. And I'm like, why is KT back in San Francisco when she should be in Hong Kong, in my opinion? And I'm asking her a few more questions, and she's telling me that her mother lived in Florida, that her father had died. So I go, what brought you back? And KT says to me... Aging parents.And I say to her, all right, if you ever decide you don't want to lie to me, maybe we can talk. And with that, I walk out of the room.I'm standing there holding a glass of wine, thinking, oh, no, my friends are going to be so mad at me. We're about to sit down to dinner, she already doesn't like me, they want her to, you know, help me and like me.And the reason that I knew she had lied to me is that if you came back for your aging parents and you're living in San Francisco, and they're living in Florida, that that that didn't make any sense, just something was radically wrong with that. And so, I knew that she was lying. And the truth is the reason that KT came back. It's all right, KT, you can tell this.I had been in a relationship and the relationship went bad shortly after we got together.This is Valentine's Day, it's OK that we are talking about relationships that don't work.Yeah, it didn't work, and we were both the girlfriend that I had, we were living in Hong Kong, and I had purchased this home in San Francisco. As I told you, I was successful and I needed to invest money, and I bought a home in San Francisco. But I didn't live in it, I had it, maybe for even a year.Yeah, you bought it to send her back to.And I sent her back to San Francisco, um, to live in that home. And while it was being renovated and also to work. In any event, shortly after she left Hong Kong, I got a phone call and she had been diagnosed with stage four ovarian cancer. So what do we do? And this was a person that didn't really have, obviously, had no money and didn't really have a family that could take care of her. So I had left my life in Asia rather suddenly to come back to America to take care of her.And why is it when I asked you that, just out of curiosity that night, how come you didn't just tell me the truth?Because I didn't know you well enough, and I was also a little bit timid about, you know, my lifestyle being gay. And I didn't know you, I didn't know anything about you. So it wasn't something that I was ready to share.Share with me, I get that.Or to share with anyone, as a matter of fact. It was a very, it was a very private and very difficult time in my life.And the woman ended up dying.Yeah, and I was alone, probably for about a year and a half after. And that's when I met Suze.What was interesting is, that night I left, I actually had a good time not saying anything. But I went back, and that morning I left. My assistant, Mary, picked me up and took me to the airport at 5 a.m. And to make a very long story short, KT called to say thank you to the partner I was with to thank us for coming. And then the partner told her that I had already been back in New York and she called me to thank me as well for coming. And what was interesting about that is that then we started to talk, and that's when it all happened, everybody. We talked for quite a few hours and she became honest with me. And it was in that conversation that we had a true connection. It was that moment, KT, it was that phone call that really kind of cinched it for us, don't you think?That was a great call. And I think it was odd because Suze's never, I didn't expect her to answer the phone, and you happened to be in your New York apartment.I just had walked in from the plane.So that was the timing, well almost everything in our life has been perfect timing. But that started an incredible and really, I think it was, a conversation that led to a month, almost a month, of us, emailing and speaking on the phone for hours at night because you were then on a book tour. And you would go to the hotel and call me at 9 p.m. and speak to me.Or I would drive from like Milwaukee to Chicago, I was always in a car, and so after I had given a talk at a book signing and, you know, so I would have two or three hours to go in a car until my next, you know, stop. And, you know, I'd be talking to KT until 2 a.m. or 3 a.m. every single night. And that is how we met. And from there it was just a matter of time until I had the courage to leave the relationship that I should have left a long time ago, that I never had the courage to leave, and KT and I got together, and that was it. So, but to answer the question, how did we know? How did we really, really know that we were right? We couldn't wait to speak to each other. It was like, this incredible connection of, I couldn't get enough of you. And I told you that every morning I would walk on Crissy Field, which is this beautiful like jogging path along the bay in San Francisco that goes under the bridge, and I would walk and when Suze, you know, I don't think that we um... I'm trying to remember, there were very certain times that we could speak to each other. But I would take that walk and have a big smile on my face and butterflies in my stomach, I knew I was falling in love, big time. So, the way that you know, is that from the very start, we were able to talk to each other about anything and everything. I had no hesitation talking to KT, well obviously, about money. And KT had no hesitation talking to me about money. No, loved it.And we had no hesitation talking to each other about what we were afraid about and the mistakes we made and everything. And maybe it was because we were going to be essentially 50 years old when we met. And even though sexually it was fabulous and I don't mind saying that, it was and it still is to this day, sexually, it's fabulous. And it was everything.She calls me a rabbit.You are a little rabbit. You just know. You just know, there were no warning signs. Like, I knew in all my other relationships that something wasn't quite right. Something didn't feel quite right. And I never would pay attention to those feelings because I wanted it to work. I wanted to be in love, I wanted to be in a relationship, and at this point, I really didn't care about being in a relationship. I was actually just waiting for the woman that I was in a relationship with to leave me.But the thing about us, we liked each other. We really, really liked so many things about each other. I liked Suze, everything about her I liked. Her purity and honesty and childlike ways were so refreshing. Also, we had great mutual respect, and I think it had to do more with our age and our experience. There's a lot of respect between. In the very beginning, I never felt less than and she never made herself more than, we were both very equal, weren't we?Yeah, because one of the problems I think with love and money, KT, and relationships, I don't think I know, is that usually, the one who makes more money is the one who has the power. And the one who doesn't make as much money, they feel powerless. And never in our relationship, ever, was that part of the equation. And it really wasn't because we both had money because in many ways, I was the famous one and all the attention was on. And we would go on the red carpet and I'd have all the flashes in front of me, and I'd always be pulling KT on the carpet with me. She hated it, but I always wanted her by my side, and I always wanted her to be the one that had the attention. And what was so great is KT has such an incredible personality and is so, you know, just so magnificent, really, that when she walks in a room, she lights up a room and everybody just normally gravitates to her.We both love life, we're both happy people. I think that has a whole lot to do with the connection. But, you know, many people are going to think, oh, well, they're so happy because they have so much money. Wrong, wrong, wrong. We're happy people, we were happy before we had any money, and we'll be happy far after we're gone without any money. And it's not about the money, and I know you probably think, oh, that's easy to say when you have it, but it's not the money that gives me joy on any level. We were both happy girls when we didn't have it, we were really happy. We had really happy lives. I mean, when I met Suze's friends from her days as a waitress in The Buttercup Bakery, oh my God, the stories and the episodes and the things they did were just so much fun and silly and great and also meaningful.Yeah, and what made me so happy way back then is because I came out as a lesbian, and I was so happy to be proud of the fact that I was gay and that I was out and proud and I loved it. And all the women that were coming out together in those days were just so fabulous because we would all go to this one bar and listen to our friend Woody play songs. It's funny, I'm still friends with Woody today, and I'm friends with all of my friends because we loved each other then, and so we love each other now. You know, KT, I hate to say it, but we're almost at our time limit.Oh my goodness.We didn't answer half of the emails that came in. Do you think we're going to have to do it another time?Maybe if you want me back, write to Suze, bring her back.Bring her back. Here again, is the bottom line. Tomorrow is Valentine's Day, and I know very well that tomorrow is the day that we should celebrate the love of the person that's in our life. But tomorrow I'd like you to think about Valentine's Day in a different way. I'd like tomorrow to be the day that you celebrate how much you love yourself. I would like tomorrow to be a day that you give yourself a gift, a gift of doing something for yourself. And I don't care if that's taking a walk. I don't even care if that's going out and buying something for yourself that you can look at to remind yourself how much you love who you are. And it's not until you really love who you are that you're ever going to be able to find satisfaction in another person because another person can never fill you up. Another person can never make you happy. Another person can never give you a purpose in life. Only you can do that for yourself. So tomorrow, Valentine's Day, I wish you a Happy Valentine's Day. You. And I hope you love yourself more than you have ever loved yourself before. And KT...I love you, Suze.You know what? I know that, and I love myself, KT. Yeah, I love myself a lot, and because of that, you can love me and I can love you. In providing answers neither Suze Orman Media nor Suze Orman is acting as a Certified Financial Planner, advisor, a Certified Financial Analyst, an economist, CPA, accountant, or lawyer. Neither Suze Orman Media nor Suze Orman makes any recommendations as to any specific securities or investments. 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