Mark’s story really upset me!

Mark’s story really upset me but there will be a happy ending!

Post by David Wright

21 Sep 2013

Mark’s Story

I met with one of my mentors yesterday and we were talking about what is the driving force behind my new push to add helping people to get more out of their relationships to the topic of helping people with their family finances (that I have been passionately working at for almost 18 years now).

I told him a story about Mark, a young teenager from the small country town of Mundubbera on the Burnett River in southern central Qld. I was a teacher there in 1984-6 and Mark was a bright, happy and helpful young lad when he came to me in year 8, his first year in high school.

I taught him Wood Work and Metal Work and he was always well behaved, gifted with his hands, a pleasure to teach and often would stay back after class and help clean up the workshop. You could not have asked for a better student.

Then one day in Year 9 all that changed. Overnight he became unmanageable, the quality of his work dropped dramatically and he would deliberately trash the workshop.

I held him back after class one day to find out why but he refused to talk. His poor attitude continued, he got in with the wrong crowd and before long he was in lots of trouble both inside and outside of school.

I was devastated! What had caused this sudden switch in personality?

Then I found out his parents had split up and suddenly it all made sense to me. He had idolised his dad, but now dad had moved in with another woman!

I explained to my mentor how in the years after that first broken home ‘awakening’ for me I found that so many of the kids who were going off the rails came from broken homes or homes where life was too busy for quality family time.

I saw first-hand how pressure on couples that became too much to bear had led to a huge negative outcome, not only for Mum and Dad, but for the kids as well. In many cases the pressures began with finances and then spread to slowly eat away at other areas of the relationship until they snapped and then the negative outcomes were far reaching.

I was holding back the tears as I was relaying this to my mentor. Not just because of Mark, but for all the kids over the years who I came in contact with who were hurting because their parents didn’t make it through tough times.

Of course not all parents who part company do so in a destructive way but I certainly saw the negative side of the ones that did.

Why am I telling you this?

When I discovered the secret to mastering the household budget 20 years ago I not only saw it as an opportunity to maybe start my own business, but also as an opportunity to help fix people’s lives because I could see the far reaching impact money problems had on couples and families.

My latest initiative to help Mums and Dad’s with their revenue AND their relationship is because I have come to see how intimately entwined the two are. What triggered this right now was a chance meeting at a school re-union a few months back with John Catling, a fellow ex-school teacher who is now a marriage celebrant on the Gold Coast. John and his wife Patti are absolutely passionate about creating vibrant strong relationships and strengthening or rescuing existing ones.

We agreed that if we combined our passions we could make a massive difference in not only the current generation, but those to come as well.

I have been supporting School Chaplaincy for some years now to try to support hurting kids. However, in a way that is putting a band-aid on the problem. I want to tackle the root of the problem!

Regardless of where you are at, what pressure you are under and how well you are coping, your finances and your relationship NEED a tune-up from time to time. You and your family deserve it!

John and Patti are part of the ‘team’ at the upcoming Simply Budgets ‘Love and Money Long Week-end’ at Noosa’.

If you have identified with what I have been saying above or if you have gotten into a ‘ho-hum’ routine with your relationship and your finances why not come along and have a relaxing, romantic long week-end and the team I have put together for you will add a spark to your relationship and your financial direction.

The whole week-end is about getting on top of any neglected areas in your financial affairs, finding out what else might be possible there and giving your relationship a recharge.

I was on the phone the other afternoon talking to a woman who wanted information about dealing with debt not far out from retirement age and I suggested coming along to this week-end with a view to looking at what might be possible financially and to enjoy some romance as well. Her response was that there was no romance and had not been for many years.

It’s true; when debt comes in the door, love goes out the window!

So, if finances are ruining your relationship don’t let them!

If you want more we can help you have it.

For more information or to make a booking please visit