Updated: Oct 20
Money is one of the essential topics in a relationship, but it's often the most uncomfortable to talk about. When you are in financial difficulty, it can be hard to share those struggles with your partner because of fear that they'll judge you for not having enough money or shame you for whatever mistakes led you there in the first place. But this is precisely why we need to start talking about money more openly with our partners: It's healthier for our relationships and could even save them from falling apart completely.
Money is a very sensitive subject for many people, and it can be incredibly challenging to discuss in a romantic relationship. But the importance o open communication around money cannot be overstated. According to Lisa Shin, author of "The Anti-anxiety Guide to Money," one of the most common reasons couples break up is financial issues. 50% of divorces cite financial stress or debt as one of the leading causes for their split! If you don't discuss your financial situation with your partner early on in your relationship, you could put yourself at risk of an unhappy ending. You must be honest about your financial goals and priorities before getting serious about each other, especially since there are some basic guidelines every couple should follow regarding finances.
Regarding money management and financial infidelity, couples must be honest about their spending habits. According to research, couples who discuss their finances regularly tend to be more financially secure than those who avoid these discussions or keep secrets from their partners. Financial infidelity is harmful because it's a violation of trust, just like cheating on your spouse would be—so it can put your entire relationship at risk. That's why couples need to have open conversations about money management and financial planning early in their relationships.
It's important to note that the problem isn't necessarily in your partner's finances. It may be more about their perception of themselves and their feelings in the relationship. For example, if you don't have a lot of money, but your partner does, they might think that you'll never really be satisfied in the relationship because there will always be an issue about having enough money. That can cause resentment that leads to conflict or even break up. Part of the problem is that financial stability and security often play into a person's self-worth, so it's not easy to open up about money troubles. If you find yourself struggling with this type of communication gap with your partner: Have open conversations about money from the beginning when relationships are still new (before things get serious) Be aware of how finances affect trust and commitment levels in relationships.
Examples of financial habits that may seem harmless but can cause stress: You're always asking for money. You frequently make big purchases without consulting your partner first. Examples of harmless financial habits: Your spouse takes the kids to dinner weekly, or you take them out for lunch together once a month. This shows that he values spending time with his family and wants to make sure they have fun together as much as possible, and it's ultimately a good thing.
When your partner doesn't tell you about financial decisions or expenses that affect your shared finances, they're keeping something from you, in this case, their spending habits and financial status. This can lead to resentment and anger if you find out later that they've been lying about their finances (and once again, if they were hiding information from you that could have helped with budgeting). Financial infidelity should never be taken lightly; it's one thing to disagree on how much money to spend on groceries or whether or not there should be housemates in the apartment (which could affect utility bills). It's another thing when someone isn't open about how much money is coming in and going out of the household accounts.
I hope you found this post useful tips on discussing financial issues with your partner. It can seem daunting, but it's essential to be open and honest about how you manage money. If there are any questions or concerns, please reach out! We'd love to hear from you and help you in any way we can