Many people say that prevention is better than a cure. If you’re getting ready to marry or already in one, hopefully you and your partner have had the money talk and several times. However, for most of us this talk is uncomfortable and avoided at all costs. Money and love have many challenges and journeys in and of itself. So to assist you with this journey, I’ve comprised a few things to consider when venturing into the Money TALK!!!!! Here are my Six Commandments of Love and Money for the Money TALK!!!
There are many signs to become aware of when pondering and broaching the issues of money but if you’re not having any conversations about money this is a potential red flag and needs to be addressed asap. The following will offer a few things to consider before you have the TALK!!!
1. Never Discussing Money
In many cases at least one partner is concerned or interested in their financial future and how to enhance their future once married. So if this is how you are its time to start talking about your plans, strategies, and hopes for your financial futures. I’m not suggesting that money is the most important thing to discuss/plan about but I am suggesting you need to think about it before you go into a committed relationship or in marriage. This is a vital part of any successful relationship. I’ve seen a plethora of couples go through difficulties in life with arguments, disagreements, and fights because of financial issues. Have THE TALK!!
2. Financial Transparency
This is an important topic pertaining to financial success; especially when it comes to merging financial futures. Bankruptcy, financial obligations such as student loans, child support and back taxes are one of the many reasons couple’s today part ways.
In a relationship, transparency allows honesty, openness, and trust to nurture and enhance the relationship. It’s always a good idea to understand each other’s full story and that includes finances. We live in a world of transparency under the guise of social media, let’s learn to be transparent with our loved ones. I dare you!
Lying never nurtures a relationship. Lying kills most chances of creating trust and intimacy. If you discover your partner has lied about his or her personal finances, in a calm environment sit down and discuss why they are hiding their finances from you. Discuss ways to communicate your financial fears and hopes as well as getting to the root of why lying occurred. Be kind, understanding, and if possible discuss an alternative way to explore other options for handling your finances such as a therapist or a financial strategist to address your current problems, concerns, and future financial plans.
4. Different attitudes about money
Attitudes toward money can cause arguments. If you are a spender and your mate is more responsible with money, arguments more than likely will ensue. This circumstance calls for the TALK, honesty, and choosing whose more capable and versed in handling the finances. Conversations from how we will save, spend, invest, and simply discuss our habit with money and our financial futures should be investigated and eventually facilitated.
I’ve worked with several clients divorcing only to find out their mate had different undisclosed investments, banking accounts, and even jobs. Secrecy and deceit raise many questions and concerns. However, if discussed in the beginning of a relationship committed couples can enhance their level of trust and intimacy within the relationship. Take the time and effort to lay it all out on the table; you’ll be glad you did.
6. Perspectives about Credit
Again, it is important to discuss, reveal, and explore ways to become aware and hopefully yoked in how you view, use, and repay your credit expenses. Credit as we know/use it, is just another version/form of currency. The goal regarding the Six commandments is to be open, honest, respectful, and eventually versed in how we see, spend, save, and invest our money as a couple.
There are so many conversations to be had when deciding to journey life with a loved one. However, money is one of the main reasons couples argue, disconnect, and eventually go separate ways. These six commandments are an excellent way to begin the dialog and journey in a clear, productive, and hopeful direction. Good Luck!!!!
Be Blessed and Be Brilliantly You!!
Until Next Time,
Peace and Love,
Torre Prothro -Wiley PhD, LPC
“Money is not the only answer, but it makes a difference.” Barack Obama