Relationship Tips for a Happy Marriage Part 45: Financial Woes
The writing is on the wall, financial woes increase the risk of divorce. In fact, Studies show that nearly 80 percent of divorces among married couples under the age of 30 are a result of financial woes.
Also, couples that argue about money at least once a week are 30 percent more likely to divorce. This is because when couples experience money problems, frustration builds and tempers to flare resulting in an unhealthy situation for all parties involved.
What is it about money that causes marriage problems?
Contrary to popular belief, the lack of money isn’t the only thing causes relationship problems. Granted it can be stressful to live on a tight budget but what really destroys marriages is the financial roller coaster. Many people have a difficult time dealing with sudden changes in their financial status. That’s why marriages seem to do much better when family incomes are stable.
However, no amount of stability can stop a married couple from divorcing if they are financial mismatch or have different values when it comes to money. If a spender marries a saver, one would expect that the saver’s favorable habits will rub off on their spouse. Unfortunately, what ends up happening is that the couple grows to resent each other’s relationship with money.
Similarly, if one of the parties is a gambler, the other partner will most likely pull the plug in an effort to avoid total financial ruin. The only way to avoid this is for the affected partner to seek counseling sooner than later.
Married couples should remain in control of their finances at all times. This doesn’t mean that the person who earns the money should exert total control over the family finances. Both parties should discuss their finances and come up with a financial plan for their family.
This plan should also include decisions regarding debt. Nothing kills a marriage faster than debt, especially when it is not the result of mutual financial decisions. It is stressful and breeds resentment because frankly no one wants to spend their life struggling to pay off loans.
Managing financial woes in your marriage
The only way to fix any relationship that is faced by financial woes is through communication. It helps the couple get to the root cause of their financial woes so that they can better protect themselves in the future.
Communication also allows the couple to come up with a plan for dealing with the remaining cash flow. Such decisions are difficult enough and should never be left to one person.
Also, please leave your children out of it. Only bring them in when the financial situation affects them such as when they need to change schools. In this case, explain to your children that you are having financial problems but also assure them that you are going to get through it as a family. This way they will understand why the changes are happening and won’t panic.
If you feel you do not have the capacity to rectify your financial woes on your own, seek professional help. This might mean seeing a financial consultant or credit counselor for married couples. Arrest the problem before it gets out of hand and save yourself the agony of relationship problems.