Is Money Conflict Ruining Your Marriage?

Do you love a good shopping spree, but dispose of the evidence faster than you can say “CSI”?

“This old thing?” you laugh off to your beloved husband when he compliments you on your brand new summer maxi dress. “I’ve had it for ages!” Erm, guilty as charged! Or, did you have a recent windfall and you’re hiding this in a secret savings bank account from your significant other?
money conflict, money woes, relationship advice, dating tips
Conflict over money is a major cause of marital discord, psychologists say. In fact, study after study of married couples’ relationship habits shows serious financial secrets can in fact lead you on a rocky path to divorce.

Related: How To Cope With Sexually Transmitted Debt

So, what’s the key to happy and harmonious monetary matters with your spouse?

Speaking from personal experience, it’s certainly tricky going from being an independent bachelorette with your own bank account, to sharing a joint bank account with a partner, where your every expenditure is open to scrutiny.

Should couples keep their own independent bank accounts, rather than a joint one? Is that a less stressful option for both parties? There’s no easy answer to this – you have to work out what’s best for you and your partner, relationship psychologists say.

And while I personally still struggle to curb my shopaholic tendencies in my marriage, I’ve certainly learnt to be more mindful of my spending thanks to my husband’s more thrifty ways (luckily for our bank accounts). So, why is it so important for couples to be honest with each other about their personal finances?

“All good relationships are based on trust. If someone is dishonest with their partner about their spending it’s highly likely they will be found out and it will be very difficult to regain the trust, putting the relationship at risk,” says my go-to clinical psychologist source.

“The most likely reason a person may have a desire to hide their spending from their partner is due to something they’re ashamed of, or which their partner would disapprove of, such as gambling, an affair, or spending up big on a personal project that doesn’t benefit the partner.”

And if you’re wondering why monetary conflict is such a “red, hot button” in your marriage, it’s because we as a society closely connect our financial situation to our sense of emotional security.

“Everyone likes to feel that there will be enough money available to them for essentials and emergencies,” says the relationships psych. “So, because of the emotional component involved, arguments are bound to arise if partners have different priorities in how to spend their available funds.

“It’s also likely that strong emotions such as fear, anger and anxiety will continually crop up if it seems there won’t be enough money for what each person perceives as important.”

So, should I stop hiding my new clothing price tags in an effort to be more honest and open about my summer maxi dress obsession with my husband? Shhh, don’t ask, don’t tell…

Images via www.pixabay.com.

What do you think? 

Where Should my Savings Go?

From Get That Home Deposit by Peter Cerexhe.No, no, no! If there is one thing I can say to you with absolute passion, with almost violent intensity it is this: don?t leave your savings in your everyday bank account. The money will disappear as though taken by magic.

There are a number of mystical money rules:

  • When you put your car in for repairs the bill will always be more than the quote.
  • When the bank says its fees won?t be going up it will find other ways to charge you.
  • When your son or daughter says ?All I need is $50? it will not be all they need.
  • Junk food costs more than good food and takes longer to get.
  • When a restaurant bill is divided in equal proportions around the table, you will end up paying more than you ate.

And of particular relevance here:

  • Your bank account does not build savings, it devours them.

When I say ?bank? I?m really including most financial institutions, not just banks. And I?m not blaming them. These everyday transaction accounts give you, the customer, great freedom of action while keeping your money safe from robbers or from simply falling down the back of the couch. You can ask for your money at any time. Just go to an automatic teller or the branch; log on at the institution?s website or use phone banking to pay the bills and transfer money. Such freedom of access comes at a cost. I don?t expect an everyday bank account to actually make money for me.

And you can forget about the interest they pay you on your savings – it is almost nothing at present. Placing money in a daily banking account is not ?saving? it. It is the first step towards losing it.

In all probability the money will be spent on worthwhile, even important things like paying household bills or buying the heater you need with winter coming on.

I can see a worthwhile purchase every time I cross a shop floor. Indeed there have been many times when I have bought things at such great discounts that I have saved literally hundreds of dollars through astute shopping. But I?ve nearly gone broke saving money like this. A dollar spent is a dollar gone. Forever.

When I put money into my bank account I know I must get it out and invest it somewhere else fast or it will disappear.

From Get That Home Deposit by Peter Cerexhe ($19.95, Allen & Unwin).

Get That Home Deposit is a practical guide to raising a deposit to buy your own home in 2 years. Your own home. Has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it? Think how great it would be to come home to your own place at the end of the day and know that it’s yours.

If you’re after some sure-fire tips for reducing spending, and more importantly – increasing savings – don’t miss Get That Home Deposit.

Buy this book from the SheSaid Bookshop.