It can be very sensitive to open up to your significant other about your finances. It’s no secret that money is closely related to personal vulnerabilities and self-esteem. Money plays an important part in many aspects of day-to-day life, but it may be getting in the way of the things that really matter to you; love and relationships.
Ask yourself the following questions and be honest. If your answer is yes, it’s time to reassess your relationship goals and talk with your partner.
1. Does money come before your partner?
If you make money the top priority, then your relationship is going to take the backseat, no matter how you want to justify or make up for it. What you focus on is what you are going to get. If you spend more time and energy on accumulating wealth and neglect your partner’s wants and needs, your relationship will suffer. Money is there for convenience to enjoy the benefits money ultimately brings… hopefully with your partner. If your life revolves around money, you give money the power to control you and your relationship. Don’t be surprise to see how quickly it will tear you apart.
2. Did you choose your partner for money?
Money can be icing on the cake in a healthy relationships. It can help you pay for a nice vacation together or buy a house to start a family. However, if you decide to be with someone because he or she is financially well-off and able to provide you and your family, forget the true love or having a fulfilling relationship. Little by little, you will end up feeling empty inside and money won’t fill that void for you. No matter how corny it sounds, money can’t buy love. Millions of dollars just can’t make you feel butterflies in your stomach and a desire to commit to someone for life. You want someone to fall in love with you for who you are, not your wallet.
3. Are you in competition with your partner over income?
Your partner is not your competitor. There is no need to claim who earns more money. If you are making more than your partner, but don’t recognize your partner’s hard work, he or she won’t feel appreciated and will become resentful. It doesn’t matter how small his or her contribution is, be supportive and work on the goal to improve each other’s well-being.
4. Are you upset that your partner keeps spending your money?
It’s best to come up with some spending or saving rules as early as possible in the relationship. Otherwise, you risk having a big argument and feeling resentful or angry, which can start a fight, and eventually harm your relationship. When you have different family histories or approaches to using money there can be problems. You tend to expect your partner to handle money by the way money was handled in your home growing up. Try to get an understanding of your partner’s financial upbringing to bridge the gap and come to the solution that serves both of you.
5. Do you fight over money too often?
Have you argued with your partner about something minor or tedious and found it actually has something to do with money problems? If you find yourself lashing out at your partner over things that you truly aren’t angry about because you are harboring secret venom over money issues, deep down you have a money trouble in your relationship and it’s time to talk it out with your partner. Remember while you are having a heated discussion over money to see the bigger picture and what’s more important to you and your partner.
6. Do you keep secrets about your finances?
If you truly want to trust someone, and have them trust you, then you need to be open and transparent with them about most things, especially your finances. It’s important to discuss where you are financially, particularly if you plan to move in together or eventually get married. Not only will simply failing to tell your partner about your financial position potentially cause a lack of trust, but if you wait too long, you may later find out that you and your partner are on completely different paths as far as finances go. This can be devastating to the relationship because money issues can cause feelings of shame, fear and resentment which are sometimes hard to get past.
7. Are you a selfish, money-grubbing, or materialist?
Money can cause greed within us. It is easy to get caught up in the money trap. You can’t do much or get anywhere without money today, and this causes us to be greedy. If you always want to have the best of the best, it starts to change the way you handle relationships and time with your significant other. You are willing to do anything to make more money and keep it to yourself even if it is something you have to sacrifice your relationship. Ironically if you sacrifice your relationship for merely building your wealth, you have a reasonable chance of losing both.
8. Are you the CEO, COO and CFO in your household?
Money decisions should be made together. When only one person takes control of the finances, this can enhance money stress in your relationship. And if you or your partner gets angry or upset when the other person tries to have a say in a discussion, this can come off as controlling. This will surely backfire and damage a relationship at the speed of light. So the best course is to develop a plan where you both stay on the same page in regards to what’s going on with the money and where you are headed financially, together.