M stands for marriage and money too!
Many couples can live happily only if the money factor is sorted out. It’s like there are many holes to be closed in a pipe and the leakages are clearly visible. Your spouse might be adamant with a fluttering mind or is not interested in the discussion of managing finances and that can be unsettling.
You need two hands to clap and the non-participation in financial planning is frustrating for both parties. The worst that can happen is by confronting your spouse all the time about money matters. The intention even though is for the good it can ruin your marriage.
So, how do you start and take control of the situation?
The Underlying Problem
To start with, understand the root cause of the money tension. Most people are at fault by not discussing the major aspects like finance that matter the most while working towards converting their relationship into marriage.
In the process of impressing your partner, there is a tendency of moving away from the agenda. Differing ideas about money spending, organizing a budget, and the ways of tackling financial goals are common issues in many marriages. Accusing your spouse on financial issues and highlighting them never works in a relationship.
Take some time off to chat with your partner and try to find out the reluctance in agreeing to a plan. By doing so, it gives a clear understanding of where it is coming from and then you can jointly solve the problem or seek help from a mediator.
Strictly Against Budget Or Plan
After convincing your spouse on the importance of a financial plan, things can get frustrating if he/she doesn’t need one or doesn’t believe in following a budget because it requires a significant investment of time and work.
Getting them onboard is a task altogether. To bring in harmony and financial health into the relationship status, it’s critical to devise a solution that satisfies both of you.
A Basic Plan For Review
Before inviting your spouse for the discussion keep things simple and easy.
Chalk out a basic budget plan that includes rent, utilities, groceries, and gas. Discuss the decisions on choosing the spending of your discretionary income on expenses related to shopping and eating, individual pending, and other expenditures. A cash budget can worry some people as they see cash emptying from their wallet, rather than using a payment app or a debit card. After finalizing the budget, the contribution of the same percentage of each other’s income (it is fair if one of you earns more than the other) towards household expenses is reasonable and sensible.
A recap of the spending at the end of the month will give you a clear picture of the spending and hence eliminate catfights.
Why My Spouse Is Against Combining Finances?
The success of relationships and finances may sometimes depend on past experiences. If your spouse is not paying any attention to combine finances then the reasons may be several. Perhaps, something did not end well while combining with someone in the past and that is their concern being skeptical about how you handle the money. They may not want to reveal the total amount of debt they currently have, and hence keep things separate to safeguard your interests.
There is a way out for addressing all these reasons if you persistently work together towards the household budget. To regain your spouse’s trust it is essential to put your irresponsible nature in the past behind but that will take some time before you exhibit that your ways of handling money are changing.
Traits that help in making your finances work in a marriage are honesty. Reminding your spouse’s past mistakes will not help the cause and he or she might even hide the future ones.
Counseling can give clarity if things are going out of control.
No Blame Game
The past cannot be changed so focus on what best can be done to control the future. Stop blaming your spouse and think of an alternate approach to money matters. Take baby steps and track your progress regularly towards the money goals.
Encourage your spouse to come up with a dependable and justifiable plan that will improve the financial stability for both of you. Complimenting your partner’s strategy will create an air of positivity around your marital relationship.
Displeasure Over Being Bossy
A person can be reluctant but convincing him or she is a possibility but if he or she refuses to get involved then it needs extra efforts to deal with. While combining finances it is important to give equal credits for your spouse for budgeting and planning.
Acknowledgment eliminates dominant behavior and increases active participation from the partner. It is beneficial as it allows you to share some of your financial responsibilities as well.
Respect each other’s decisions and ideas.
Without Action There Is No Reaction
When your spouse believes that things will fall into place on its own then you might face a bigger challenge of creating awareness about participation in a discussion. Many people are flexible in following ideas but very bad at planning. They are extremely hard working and think that slogging will somehow give results. Unfortunately, the truth is, in the absence of a concrete plan financial success is a distant dream.
Concealing Facts From Your Spouse
The more your spouse covers up the truth about your financial aspects with you the faster you drift away from the relationship. Better to accept the mistake with your spouse than being caught red-handed.
Some of the common lies include lying or hiding about:
- Extra debt
- Excess shopping
- Salary information
- Savings accounts
It is good to gather the facts of your spouse about the hidden truth like checking your bank statements as it allows you to give a clear explanation of how it has impacted the current financial situation. The amount of money involved is another indication of the seriousness of the lie.
Forgiving the wrong-doing of your spouse instills a guilt feeling and leads to a confession.
Detailed Discussion Of The Issues
Do not delay the discussion and get down to solving the issues. While you’re calm the clarity is more and avoids unnecessary arguments. The chances of your spouse bringing up more information on debts that you were unaware of or went unnoticed.
Temporary Separating Of Finances
If the discussion goes overboard consider separating finances until your spouse comes out clean. Start by setting up a household budget where each of you contributes the same percentage of income to handle basic household needs.
Let there be transparency in the accounts to monitor the spending habits and confirm the stopping of careless behavior. However, it does not mean giving all the rights to your spouse for signing on behalf of your accounts.
At the end of the day, we are all humans and the reappearance of certain behaviors is controlled by the situations around us. Forgiveness does not mean the checking of your partner’s finances must stop, time heals everything, it may become sparingly. Overdoing the scanning of accounts may hurt your partner’s feelings and can destroy the relationship forever.
By Karthick V.