Tough times will always show you who your friends are and this was definitely the case about ten years ago when Flex Alexander and his wife, Shanice hit a financial rough patch. In an interview with Black Love, the Harlem actor recalled having to borrow $350 from fellow actor and friend, Chris Spencer, to take his wife out for their anniversary.
“[It was] our anniversary and I couldn’t do anything for you,” Flex said before wiping away tears. “And Chris, he gave me $350 so that I can take you out.”
Chris, who was also overcome with emotion as a result of the retelling, wiped away tears before saying, “You weren’t supposed to tell her.”
“He went to The Comedy Store and he texts me the check they gave him at the Comedy Store was the exact amount,” Flex continued.
Shanice was completely unaware of the situation until Flex made the revelation during the interview.
“Wow, this is my first time hearing this,” she said. “Thank you, Chris.”
Flex went on to explain that the gesture meant a lot to him and it truly showed him who was in his corner.
“I just say that because you really find out who your real friends are when things are bad. When things are great, everybody loves you,” said Flex. “I appreciate you, man. I love you man. I had to say that. I just wanted to tell you.”
Thankfully, the pair has rebounded financially since then. In retrospect, Flex shared that despite his success, poor money management skills learned from his family proved to be his downfall.
“By the time I started to make money, I was already set in my ways. I saw my mother and my grandmother work check to check and I thought that’s how you lived,” he told Yahoo Finance in 2014. “I’m not blaming them but I thought, if I work for it, I can get what I want. I was making $25,000 a week but I wasn’t thinking about taxes. I was spending it like it was $25,000, but it was really more like $17,500.”
Once his popular UPN show “One on One” ended, their finances took a hit.
“My show had finished and the money had stopped but the expenses stayed there. Our mortgage was $4,000 to $5,000 a month,” he said. “We had cars, credit card bills. We refinanced our mortgage to pull money out to keep pushing along.”
“If we can’t pay cash for it, we just have to wait on it. We use a debit card as opposed to a credit card,” said Shaniece. “We spend as if we don’t have money now and as if it’s not always going to be there next week. We are constantly working on ways to build our income.”