Money issues in relationships are a familiar source of nasty arguments among many couples. It should not be taken lightly because it has the potential to do permanent damage to a relationship and be a leading cause of divorce.
Typically, each couple has arguments about finances on their own pattern. Each of them usually coming from different life experiences and communities, so the way they perceived and internalized money management was probably very different.
Having different financial values and behaviors can be a real problem. Some of them feel uncomfortable talking about money, they feel embarrassed, they feel like their partner wants to invade their privacy, or even worse, they don’t think there is a reason to talk about it.
All of these excuses, or mindsets can lead to major problems in the relationship. Think of it this way, if both of you are not talking about your financial management or your financial health, assumptions can be made, damaging secrets can be kept, and overspending can’t be controlled.
Sooner or later it will affect your relationship, agree?
How To Deal With Money Issues In a Relationship?
According to the American Household Survey conducted by Ramsey Solutions, couples who are frequently talking about money with their spouse have a great marriage than couples who are less talking about money.
From this survey, we could say that talking about money with your partner is one of the keys to maintaining a healthy relationship. Because when you can verbalize your concern about finances, you will be able to control your expenses, planning your future, and your goal.
It is true that communication about money can be difficult for couples, but it doesn’t mean that you should ignore it. If you are not sure where to start, maybe you can draft your own point of view first before you talk with your partner.
State it clearly what you want to discuss, no blaming, no pointing finger. You just need to share your thought and your worries about your financial management. Once you know how to do this, you will have a better discussion on each other’s finances, habits, goals, and anxieties.
Money can tear your relationship apart, but it is also can be used to heal the relationship. Below are a few more ways on how to manage money issues in relationships.
1# Track and record your monthly statement
Some couples think the best way to avoid money arguments is to keep the money in a joint bank account. Put all the money together and start to look at it as a whole. So you no longer need to split the bills to cover the expenses.
Well, that is a good choice for certain couples. But for me, as long as you track and record your monthly statement properly, you do not even need a joint account. Nowadays, we had a google sheet, so make use of it.
Read Next: How To Not Lose Yourself When Dating
Plan your own ways on how to manage the money, ask your partner to do the same on the same sheet. By doing that, both of you will have a clear picture of the money in and out. You also can use this monthly statement to plan ahead your saving and your goals.
2# Discuss your lifestyle choices together
The first thing you need to realize is, everyone’s perspective about money is different. Chances are, you love working with numbers, but your partner doesn’t care too much about numbers. Or, you might be the saver but your partner love to spend.
These ways of thinking are not a big deal, unless, one of you neglects to hear the other’s input and is not interested in handling the finances together. You both are on the same team, you should use your personality differences to become stronger, not the other way around.
A healthy marriage is all about compromise. If one of you has more expensive taste, consider going to an outlet mall to buy a branded item at an affordable price. Or you can just buy a preloved item from the internet or preloved store.
Because the bottom is, your lifestyle should be in the line with your actual income. Don’t spend your money on something that you can’t afford unless you want yourself to fell down into the rabbit hole.
3# Do not control your partner ‘money’
No one likes to be told of what they can or can’t buy, especially if you talk about the money that they earn from their hard work. Controlling your partner or try to impose limits on what they loved to spend is not gonna help your relationship.
In fact, stopping your partner from buying will only lead to major problems. As an example, if you keep arguing over a purchase, your partner will start hiding a purchase or hiding a purchase price that can lead to financial infidelity.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that both of you can spend the money arbitrarily for an irresponsible purchase. But it is important for you and your partner to allow some leeway. For this purpose, you can try to set some amount of money that each partner can spend with no question asked.
As long as both of you are agreeing to that sum amount of money, then no matter what you both buy, it should be no problem because it is still within your budget.
4# Practice ‘our money’
This is very important, do not let salary differences come between you. For most couples, one of you probably makes more money than the other. It is very rare for both of you to be making the exact same salary.
If your incomes are different, you don’t have to split everything for a 50/50 arrangement. Instead, you should work as a team. It is okay for you to put extra digits for the expenses, you might lose some money, but in terms of happiness, it is much better.
Plus, do not belittle your partner if she is a stay-at-home mom. Some of them already feel guilty to voice out their opinions in terms of money or monthly budget. Your partner and you are on the same team. Both of you have equal say in your money and marriage.
Remember, stay-at-home moms may not provide your household with any extra income. But they might already save your family money in so many ways! Your home might not become a ‘home’ without them, so learn to appreciate them.
5# Set expectations together
There is a quote, “Money can always be made, but hurtful words can never be taken back.” Do not fight over money, it is not worth ruining your relationship.
To avoid money problems in the future, it is important for both of you to set your expectation about money together. Because people can easily feel unsatisfied with their spouse when they expect things to go a certain way but the reality is a bit different.
Do not let your unrealistic expectations about money ruin your relationship. Always discuss with your partner about your money goals, both of you need to know exactly what is your long-term goal and how to achieve that dream.
Money and Relationship Should Go Hand in Hand.
Managing money issues in a relationship is challenging, but with the right attitude and right effort, it can bring you a tremendous result. All you need to do is to learn how to communicate your finances productively with your partner.
Changes your perspective and the way you look at money. Then talk with your partner about how it can affect your relationship with one another. If your partner is unwilling to sort out the problems, then I believe that you should take steps to ensure your own financial security.