Some of the negative financial behaviours include constantly asking for money from your partner and being unwilling to contribute the bare minimum even when you earn. Hiding excessive debts or overspending habits also constitute poor financial behaviour when you are in a relationship.
How Money Matters in a Relationship Finances?
Although we like to believe that "love conquers all", in reality, it takes a lot more to make relationships work. Trust and communication are pivotal in a relationship, and it applies to every aspect, including money. Money talks can become awkward and uncomfortable between couples. However, it is also true that major arguments in relationships are triggered by it.
Therefore, it is time to accept how money matters in a relationship and is often a source of all expectations. To gain more insights into finances in relationships, keep reading this article.
Reasons Why Finance Matters in a Relationship
Money can either make or break your relationship. Unfortunately, regardless of the level of love and care you have for each other, money might be a constant topic of disagreement.
Check out some of the common points of conflict and how to deal with money issues in a relationship:
1. Relationships Need to be Realistically Equal
We live in a modern world where we fight for equality in every aspect of life. Relationships are no exception to this concept. However, most people tend to mistake equality for a 50-50 share. Therefore, when their partner is unable or refuses to pay half the share in joint expenses, it leads to disagreement or even contempt.
For instance, you wanted to go on a romantic getaway to a luxurious resort at the beachside. Your partner agrees to it but is unable to afford half the share. However, they pay their share to maintain equality and peace and equality in the relationship. What should you do when this occurs quite frequently, and sometimes your partner fails to pay?
What Should You Do?
Firstly, you must understand that equality does not necessarily mean a 50-50 split of all expenses and bills. It is possible that you and your partner might have a huge difference in income. Therefore, things that seem affordable to you can become a burden for them. However, lower income also does not mean that you should not contribute at all and your partner feels exploited.
In order to avoid these disputes, you must come up with an arrangement that makes sense for you. As long as both of you have equivalent efforts and contributions, it will help you build a strong base of trust and respect with your partner.
2. There Should Not be Any Unexpected Surprises
If you are in a stable relationship for a reasonable amount of time, then you and your partner must have an idea about each other's financial standing.
For instance, often couples may face an unfavourable surprise when they find out that their partner is broke and in constant need to borrow. While you may be happy to support them through challenging phases, such as if they lose their job, should you take the responsibility to carry them forever?
What Should You Do?
To avoid these problematic situations, it is essential that you take out time to understand your partner's goals and values. Then, as a supportive partner, you should help your loved one to overcome financial crises to your ability.
However, understand what their goal is for the future. If your goals match, such as saving up an amount for a specific future need, and you are good to go. On the other hand, you must be aware that you need not finance someone with no aspirations for their future and just wants to eat off you.
3. Your Financial Goals and Priorities Must be Similar
Responsibilities kick in when you and your partner are getting serious in the relationship. In a stable relationship, it is vital that you and your partner have a heart-to-heart discussion about your future dreams and goals. Issues may arise when these goals differ widely from each other.
For instance, one may have been saving up to buy necessary furniture for their new home. But, on the contrary, the other person ends up spending ₹50,000 impulsively on a trivial purchase. A regular occurrence of such mismatch eventually leads to a fight or distress, thereby affecting the relationship. Note that when you and your partner spend more time together, individual activities and habits will always affect the other.
What Should You Do?
In case you face a similar problem with your partner, note that the key to overcoming these situations is trust. For example, if your partner is running a tight budget or overspending in some cases, keep an open mind and trust their judgement if they communicate the reasons to you. Since both are reasonable adults, it is important that you respect their decision instead of monitoring their spending.
However, coming to a common ground is important to avoid regular conflicts. Therefore, you must ensure that both are respectful and communicative about your spending and goals and, more importantly, how much you are equally willing to adjust in terms of savings.
4. Be Prepared to Help and Ask for Help From Your Partner
Every relationship has its ups and downs, and there may come a time when you may unexpectedly have to help your partner financially. Issues arise when couples refrain from sharing their financial standing with their companions. That does not mean you have to have every detail of their bank accounts, but if you are planning for the future, you should know each other's earnings and savings. Additionally, if one of you earns more, it is a general expectation that you pay in case of unexpected situations.
For instance, if your partner loses their job and you are able to afford both of your expenses for a while, you can take on this responsibility. But what if your partner shows no effort to look for a new job and is comfortable using your money?
What Should You Do?
Money plays an integral role in our everyday life and, therefore, will affect any two people who are planning to share their lives. So, in times of a sudden financial crisis, try to support your partners, such as by paying an emergency bill or housing rent. It builds your partner’s trust in you even more and helps you remember that you are a team.
However, you must also respect your own limits and talk it out when the burden is getting heavier. In the same way, do not shy away if you need to borrow money during an unfavourable situation or an emergency.
5. Do Not Compete Over Money
Taking care of little things in a relationship is vital to help it grow stronger. Unfortunately, money often becomes a central topic of a fight between couples. Disagreements can arise from several reasons, such as if there is an inequality in salary, spending, type of spending, and so on. Therefore, couples who do not share a dialogue about their finances often get into an ugly fight about how they spend their money.
For instance, two people with the same salary and completely opposite spending behaviours are in a relationship. One spends more in the relationship, along with saving for their future, while the other spends only on themselves and brings nothing to the common table. What can be done to avoid frustrating the one who is giving more effort and causing friction?
What Should You Do?
The first thing to remember is that any relationship requires respect and trust from both ends. Therefore, competing about who earns or spends more is uncalled for. Therefore, before you point fingers at your partner for having a different lifestyle than yours, understand where they are coming from.
Finally, from the above factors, you can understand how communication plays a crucial role in managing relationships and finances. Moreover, while it is true that money is one of the dominant factors in maintaining a relationship, it is not the only factor. The stability and strength of your relationship ultimately depend on how much effort you want to put in.
While that may sound like a lot of work, it only takes listening, understanding, and communicating from both ends to create a solid and healthy bond.
FAQs on Relationship Finances
No, money plays a central role in every individual's life. However, the ways of managing your money may vary depending on whether you are in companionship or single. For instance, monthly responsibilities such as paying rent, electricity bills, and groceries may get shared when couples live together. On the other hand, if you are single, you can manage expenses at your convenience without having to compromise on your goals and dreams.
Yes, if you are in a relationship for long enough, money-related conflict is bound to happen. Moreover, several surveys show that money is one of the leading causes of divorce. Therefore, monetary issues can lead to a breakup if not managed and communicated well.
Financial expectations in a relationship refers to how much you expect your partner to pay for things you are together in and vice versa. It is a sensitive factor that may often create unnecessary confusion between the two. Therefore, the best way to manage financial expectation with your partner is through honest and clear communication.
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