We may agree to marry our spouse for better or for worse, but it seems that when the worst rears it’s ugly head, in the form of money problems, many of us are likely to site this as being the main reason for divorce. The difficulty of the role of money in relationships often arises due to a lack of communication about where money is going and how it is being spent.
This may be because many of us act independently with our money, rather than with our partner as a unit. When we live with someone, sharing bills and expenses, financial matters need to become joint considerations, rather than private ones. Beginning to see money issues in this way can mean that a couple can begin financial planning for their future together, and also to enable them to live within their means in the present.
If you have never discussed money difficulties with your partner before then you can introduce the idea by agreeing with one another to do so each week, while you have problems, and later on as the problems are ironed out to do so on a monthly basis.
Depending on how much financial difficulty you are in together, you may decide that in the first instance you would be wise to meet with a financial adviser. To do so would be in the best interests of your relationship, as well as helping you to get back on your feet financially.
Each couple will have their own way of dealing with money, but once a problem arises this is an indication that whichever method has been employed so far isn’t working. Therefore a new way of dealing with money will need to be established that both parties are happy with.
In some relationships there turns out to be one person who is particularly financially savvy, while the other is not so hot. In such cases it can help if the person who is money minded takes the lead. However, both people need to know what is happening financially, so teamwork is still necessary.
If broaching the subject of money with your partner is difficult then this is a challenge that needs to be faced. Sadly money worries don’t disappear into thin air if you turn the other way. In fact, they have a nasty way of getting worse and then sneaking up behind you when you least expect it if you pay them no heed.
Picking the right time to discuss money matters can help. Bringing up the subject over dinner while the children are at the table or while out shopping will only cause embarrassment or anxiety. Instead, warn your partner gently in advance that you need to chat about money and make an actual appointment with them to do so. This way they will understand that the matter is important, but will be ready rather than taken aback.
Although how money has been spent in the past is important as it may affect your future, try not to make your discussion about who is the bad one in the relationship when it comes to spending as the accused is likely to become defensive. It may be that one of you needs to learn how to handle money in a better way, in which case making plans and setting goals will be a positive way to achieve your goal.