Saving Your Marriage from Money Madness
The COVID-19 pandemic plunged countless couples into financial uncertainty. Job losses, income instability, unforeseen bills, and market volatility created major money stressors.
Unfortunately, financial strain is often cited as the #1 cause of divorce. Managing finances poorly can destroy even the strongest relationships.
But it doesn't have to be that way! According to marriage experts Steven and Kori, you can absolutely get through rocky financial times together and come out stronger. Here are their top tips:
Bring up money issues early and often. Share your concerns, goals, and ideas for fixing problems. Listen without judgment. Seek understanding first before making joint decisions. Silence and secrecy breed anxiety and conflict.
Attack money issues as a team. Make budgeting, saving, and spending choices together. Compromise on your different money habits and styles. Agree on financial priorities and plans going forward.
Seek Outside Help
If you're deadlocked, get counseling or meet with a financial advisor. Their outside perspective can provide "tie-breaking" recommendations. Don't let pride prevent you from getting the expertise needed.
Make a Money Date Night
Schedule time each month to chat finances. Check in on progress made, challenges popping up, and upcoming needs. Adjust your budget and goals accordingly. Regular money talks prevent surprises and promote unity.
Total transparency is essential - no hidden accounts, debts, purchases, income, inheritances, etc. Secrecy erodes trust fast. Honesty and full disclosure repairs it.
Set Money Values
Determine what money means to each of you based on upbringing and experiences. Discuss how those values currently help or hurt your relationship. Use that insight to get on the same page.
Establish a Emergency Fund
Make it a priority to build up rainy day savings as a safety net. Follow the 3-6 month expenses rule. Having this cushion reduces day-to-day money stress substantially.
The pandemic dealt heavy financial blows, but many couples discovered a renewed sense of "us against the problem" afterward. With some work, money struggles can actually bring you closer together. There is hope!
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