‘Teenage Newlyweds’ Season 1 Episode 5: Empty Bank Accounts & the Bad Birthday Cake

Um....you save??
Um….you save??

Last week on Teenage Newlyweds, the focus was on making babies. This week, those crazy kids will tackle the subject of money: how they don’t have it, how they don’t know how to get it, and how they have no clue how to spend it responsibly.

The episode starts off in California, where Brenda and Travis are anxiously awaiting the results of a pregnancy test that Brenda took on last week’s episode (after Travis skateboarded over to the drug store to pick up an EPT, as you do).

When you're waiting to see if your life is going to be screwed up or not...
When you’re waiting to see if your life is going to be screwed up or not…

As you may recall, the pregnancy test could play a pivotal part in the future of their relationship. While Brenda said she would want to get an abortion if she were pregnant, Travis is strongly against abortion and says he would not agree with that decision, even if it means ditching his new bride.

“I’m just not ready to be a mom right now,” Brenda says. “If I were pregnant, it would just cause chaos in our lives.”

"Break out the brand-name Top Ramen tonight, baby! We're celebrating!"
“Break out the brand-name Top Ramen tonight, baby! We’re celebrating!”

Finally, the pregnancy test results are back….and…. Brenda is NOT pregnant. Phew. Good thing Brenda and Travis didn’t spend the afternoon arguing over a baby that didn’t even exist. Oh…wait…

“Luckily, I guess we got out of this one without having to really deal with the issue,” Travis says.

We find out that both Brenda and Travis go to school, but only Brenda works. Brenda works five hours per week and makes $10 per hour. Travis says he’s not working because he’s taking difficult classes and his GPA is suffering because of it so he needs to focus on school.

"I wonder if we can return that pregnancy test for cash?"
“I wonder if we can return that pregnancy test for cash?”

Wait…what? How do these people afford their apartment and bills? Are they living on student loans? Selling peanuts on the side of the freeway? What the heck?!

Next, we head on over to Utah, where newlyweds Halie and George are celebrating because Halie has gotten a job! She is going to be a personal assistant to executives of a makeup company. She’ll be working 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and making $10 hour and benefits, which, compared to the jobs of the other people on this show, seems like a great gig. (We can’t picture Halie slinging alfalfa over at the Feed ‘n’ Seed!)

Just what every new bride wants to hear from her husband...
Just what every new bride wants to hear from her husband…

Later in the car, Halie and George discuss finances. George says he doesn’t have a savings account and really doesn’t even know how they work. (Um?)  Halie says she has had a savings account in the past, but she’s only ever had $25 in it. George, who may or may not be jobless, looks nervous because he realizes how bad this situation is sounding.

Luckily, Halie’s dad is there to save the day. He’s going to be in town for business, so he’s going to sit them down and give them some financial lessons. (Shouldn’t he have maybe done this before they got married?)

“I don’t really know anything about being an adult, but my dad will teach us all of that,” Halie says.

Before or after you start squirting out the first of those six kids, Halie!?

"No...but we have a coffee can half-full of change in our closet so we should be good!"
“No…but we have a coffee can half-full of change in our closet so we should be good!”

The next day, Halie’s dad, who is a financial adviser, arrives to figure out how crappy of a situation his daughter has gotten herself into. He asks George if they have a budget and George looks baffled.

Dear God…

Halie’s dad asks the kids if they ever make emotional purchases.

"Really, man, Taylor Swift? Come on, bro!"
“Really, man, Taylor Swift? Come on, bro!”

“This one time I was sad and I bought something,” George says.

What was it, you ask? A Taylor Swift CD. Naturally.

Finally, we check in with Joey and Emma in Oregon. They are still trying to decide if they should buy a house. (Well, to be fair, Emma’s trying to decide if they should buy a house, Joey’s trying to decide what kind of Ramen he’ll be stuffing into his gullet next.)

They want their own place, but they are having financial issues.

Joey should be the spokesperson for McDonald's all day breakfast menu...
Joey should be the spokesperson for McDonald’s all day breakfast menu…

“You spend a lot of money on food. You need to learn to make food yourself,” Emma tells Joey.

What is she talking about? We saw Joey shoving five homemade breakfast sandwiches in his mouth on the way to the realtor! What else does she expect?

“I think finances are going to be our biggest challenge because Joey doesn’t seem really on board with it,” Emma says.

Joey meanwhile, yawns in her face. Yeah, we see what you mean, Emma.

“I’m not good with carrying cash,” Joey says.

“You’re not good with having a card either because you can’t keep track of how much you’re spending,” Emma replies.

So, what is Joey good at? Anything?

"I need to learn to sleep with my eyes open."
“I need to learn to sleep with my eyes open.”

While Emma is trying to talk to Joey about ways to save money…he falls asleep. Good luck with that, Emma! Maybe Halie and George will let you come stay in their basement after your marriage goes to hell? They’ll need help babysitting the five or six kids they’ll have by then!

Back in California, Brenda and Travis have budgeted themselves $125 a month of food and…basically everything…for the both of them. (That wouldn’t even cover Joey’s breakfast sandwich allotment for a few days, guys!)

"You know what Brenda would really like for her birthday? Me getting new shoes!"
“You know what Brenda would really like for her birthday? Me getting new shoes!”

Even though he and his wife can barely afford to put some sort of “Helper” on the table for dinner, Travis decides he needs to get some new flashy footwear. He spends $65 on new shoes, and then seems to remember that his wife’s birthday is that weekend. (Perhaps Travis is planning to take pics of his new shoes and wrap them up and give them to Brenda as a birthday gift?)

“You bought yourself shoes on my birthday weekend?” Brenda asks.

“But, I really needed them to skate,” Travis answers.

"But I WANT them!"
“But I WANT them!”

How else will he get to the store to buy pregnancy tests if he can’t skateboard!?!

“We don’t have the money to spending on unnecessary shoes,” Brenda says, adding that ol’ Trav already has three pairs of skate shoes.

Brenda is very upset, but asks Travis if he will at least go shopping with her for her birthday party. Unfortunately for Brenda, spending three hours shopping for paper plates at the Party City doesn’t sound like Travis’ idea of a good time. He wants to stay home and watch football instead. That’s not going to happen, of course, so Travis puts on his new shoes and is dragged to the party store.

They only have $25 to buy supplies for the party, and when they go to check out, they realize that their purchases come to $29.95 so they have to put some stuff back. Sorry Travis—no goodie bag for you!

"At this point, I'd rather slap some icing on Travis' shoes and eat that instead."
“At this point, I’d rather slap some icing on Travis’ shoes and eat that instead.”

Brenda’s family comes over to celebrate her birthday but Brenda’s embarrassed when Travis brings out some weird loaf of cake (that looks like it was first mauled by a bear, then eaten by said bear, and then vomited back up and plated). It may or may not have been found ’round back of their apartment complex but since they don’t have enough money to buy Brenda a real cake, Travis sticks a candle in it and hopes no one will notice.

Back in Utah, we finally find out that George does, indeed, have a job. He works at an electrical supply place and makes around $45,000 per year. He is also attending Salt Lake Community College. As we know, Halie recently got a job and will be starting community college next semester…unless she gets pregnant first, of course.

"We should sell this to Brenda and Travis!"
“We should sell this to Brenda and Travis!”

Later, George comes home with a bunch of food that his mom made. He says his parents are coming over later to eat with them, and Halie is not very happy. She says being around his family makes her sad because it makes her miss her family. She says the reason they moved to Utah is because George was afraid that if they lived near her parents, she would rely on them more than she relied on him. But she says that now she feels like he is doing that by relying heavily on his parents.

George’s parents show up and, George’s dad is rocking another rad fedora. George decides he’s going to surprise Halie with something to cheer her up. Does he get her a new bottle of nail polish? A new T-shirt? A box of condoms? (Just kidding!)

Nope…he decides to surprise her with a trip to Hawaii. The fact that they have no savings, are barely making any money and are living in some family’s basement aren’t going to get in the way of George and Halie hula-ing their hearts out in Hawaii!

"Hawaii? REALLY?!"
“Hawaii? REALLY?!”

The surprise doesn’t go over as well as George had hoped. Halie is less than thrilled, and asks George if he can get a refund on the tickets. (Also, didn’t she just get a job? How is she going to get the time off?) George is bummed out that Halie doesn’t want to go. Take Joey! He’ll plow through the entire roasted pig at the luau!

Speaking of Joey, it’s time for him and Emma to go look for a house. They go look at a few, but all of them are either already sold or way over their Feed ‘n’ Seed price range.

On the next episode, the newlyweds will focus on keeping their friendships alive while being married.

To read our recaps of the previous episode of ‘Teenage Newlyweds,’ click here!

(Photos: FYI)


  1. How does the daughter of a financial advisor reach 18 without having a real savings account with the concept that it must be used?

  2. George makes 45K a year? That’s approximately 15 grand more than I made at my first job out of college. Damn!

  3. My first thought when George announced the tickets was Halie’s new job.. Also, did anyone else noticed all the drinks they got for Brenda’s party??

    1. I know! I am middle management in a state job and barely make that. He also said he makes $13 something an hour. He’d have to work about 67 hours a week to make that much money. Is he really working that much?

  4. I will admit I did not have a CLUE about budgets or money until I had my own apartment at 23, and even then I wasn’t great with it. It wasn’t until I was laid off and had to start a new job that I got serious about savings and spending. I still write down every dollar I spend. It has helped me get my consumer debt down, buy a house, and start a retirement account. I could not have done this without help from my parents and SO. Point being that if it took me years (sadly) to get it together with $$$, I would not expect teenagers to understand it overnight. Especially with the huge stress of being newlyweds thrown in.

    It’s really not how much $$$ you make, it’s how much you save. $$$ is a huge problem in relationships. I loved someone terribly but he was awful with money. He lived way outside his budget but was in denial about it. When he ran up a credit card, he just pretended it didn’t exist until they settled with him in court years later. He would just keep borrowing money or using credit cards. I loved him so much but it drove a wedge between us. It wasn’t the only problem, but it was a big one.

    1. Good for you Diva! Writing down what you spend, having a budget and a plan really helps a lot in life. There are many websites that can help.
      I really like the Dollar Stretcher (has a free “get out of debt” course), money saving and financial tips on Pintrest and anything David Ramsey.

      Not knowing how a savings account works at his age and marital status, men, that is saaad.
      My kids are 3 and 6 and they already have their own savings account, just for the money they receive for their birthday or report cards. They both have more than 25 in it. They can use it later to buy something bigger.

      I really, really wish kids would receive financial education at schools, at all ages. So many people didn’t have a proper financial education at home due to numerous of reasons. It would save society so much money later. Debts, debt help, unpaid bills, medical expenses due to stress, sick days, employees who do not perform 100% because of the stress, it costs a lot. It really makes sense to start early.
      Luckily, our council has granted my wish, the organisation I work for as a volunteer has been asked to go to the schools to educate the kids. My response: halleluja!

      Last week, people were rolling their eyes behind us when my 6 year old payed her father’s birthday present with only 20 cent coins, and something for herself with only 10 cent coins. That’s because we are learning her to save and budget already, she has three different jars and divides her weekly allowance (80 cents) every week between them.
      I don’t give a about the eye rolling and sighs, keep rolling your eyes, maybe you’ll find a brain back there.

  5. I love this recap. All of my thoughts exactly. It seems like Emma’s family is really pushing for them to buy a home, but they really are not ready. What’s the rush?? 8k in savings is going to go pretty quickly after purchasing a home.

    1. Agreed and buying a home at such a young age doesn’t make sense unless you have no plans to change jobs, change schools, etc…why lock down into something so early.

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