Money Matters in Relationships

From An Anonymous “Woman On The Fence”

Have you ever wondered what goes on behind other peoples’ closed doors?  Certainly, we all speculate on the nature of someone else’s marriage or relationship.  It’s human nature to look at others and try to get a sense of what their world is like. We’re all guilty of it to some degree from time to time.  For the most part we wonder whether or not they’re suitable and/or compatible partners, whether they share a mutual love, whether it’s the real deal or whether or not they entered into the union with an agenda.  Regardless, I often wonder about something else entirely.  Finances.  Yes, the verbal or not so verbal financial arrangement between husbands and wives vis a vis their daily lives.

money matters

Now, for the everyday middle class working couple who shares a joint account & equally pays for a variety of expenses, I suppose the currency contract is less of an issue, but even there I’m not so sure.  Marriage of course, like anything else, breaks down into areas or sections.  And I have often been curious about the economic exchange that takes place between couples for both working and non working women.

For those that aren’t currently employed, do you get a salary?  Forgive me – an allowance?  A stipend for the week?  Does he leave it on the kitchen counter?  The night table the morning AFTER? Once a week? Whenever you ask? Or do you withdraw it yourself whenever you want, as much as you want?  Although that one has to be accompanied by at the very least, a heated discussion from time to time.  Regardless of the distribution of funds I further wonder about the strings attached.  Do they come with built in control techniques?  Are you influenced in terms of how/when you spend and process it?

money talk

My curiosity isn’t limited to those in the non working environment.  I often speculate as to how my working peers communicate and execute cash flow issues with minimal complications.  Do they have joint accounts that they both pay bills from?  Or separate accounts whereby each one pays a variety of bills? And when one is involved in the latter set up as I am, how do they navigate the murky “who pays what” waters?   Sound complicated?  It is… all the time in my experience.

Now I know this is always a difficult discussion and I’d almost sooner jump off a bridge than have this dreadful conversation. Every so often I take a long deep breath, roll my eyes and venture into the room where my significant other awaits with the hope that perhaps this time we won’t argue, but rather resolve everything easily and peacefully.  This little widget in the marriage is a tough nut to crack. And I can tell you, I haven’t cracked it yet.

couples fighting over money

Amongst ourselves as women, we rarely discuss it.  And I’m not referring to the minutia in terms of the details but rather the overall, the macro.  It’s as if we don’t want anyone, not even our closest friends to know the varying  aspects regarding our marital revenue & expenses system.  Regardless, I know that I continue to grapple with this and am a work in progress in terms of trying to figure out what the secret is to seamless, happy monetary chat.

But I continue to speculate about others…I wonder what Tiger’s wife Elin Nordegren does…well she has other problems I suppose.

An Anonymous Woman On The Fence

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So ladies, I am sure many of you women have the same financial questions. Feel free to post anonymously, but can you share how you handle finances in your relationship with your partner? Knowledge is power.

xoxEDxox

11 Comments
  1. Hi. I often wonder the exact same thing. Financial pressures in a marriage can take a toll. For us, it’s always a touchy topic and I dread the money talk. My husband is generous with money, but we have fallen under hard times. It has placed a strain on us for sure. I totally relate to what you say.
    Paula

  2. Love your Blog.
    Money is difficult to navigate even when you make a lot of it. Looking forward to reading how woman do this. I find the most important issue is partnership and honesty and respecting both spouses needs and wants regardless of the earnings.
    I read tons of blogs everyday but this is my most enjoyed read of the day.

  3. It took my husband and me a year and a half after we were married before we sat down and combined accounts. For me, this was a HUGE step because it was officially no longer “my” money and “his” money…Rather, it was “our” money. We came to an agreement though…Even though I make more money than my husband, we each keep about $150-$200 out of every pay check that does not go into the joint account. I’ve found that this prevents us from fighting a lot because I can still use “my” money to buy shoes, and he can’t complain about it. At the same time he can use “his” money to buy video games. So far…It’s working for us!

  4. My husband and I have a joint account but I am the one that manages all of the money. This is especially hard right now because money is tight. It is an ongoing up hill battle with us right now. I am contantly saying how we cant spend ANY money and he is contantly asking me why we are so broke. When I ask him to sit down and go over everything he says he doesnt want too.

    Its unfortunate because I love my husband very much but we are growing apart because of the money. There is no time for he and I alone, there are no date nights because we dont want to spend the money to go out or spend the money on the babysitter. We didnt celebrate our anniversary this year and the holidays were deperessing as well.

    Its so gut renching to experience this. We are trying everything and both working very hard but it seems like this problem could bring our marriage to an end and there is no stopping it. I wish I knew how other couples are making it work inspite of financial hardship.

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