Couples fight over many different issues, but money seems to be one of the most common breaking points in relationships. People fight about who makes more money, who spends more money and who contributes more money to routine expenses like bills and groceries.
If you and your partner find yourselves fighting over money more than once a month, you need to devise a solution that will resolve your financial problems and put you both at ease. Though every couple is different, here are a few tips that have proven to work in many relationships:
- Open a joint bank account: With a checking account that’s in both of your names, you can each contribute the same amount of money (or the same percentage of your pay check, whatever works best for your relationship) each month. This account can be used to buy household products, pay shared bills and contribute towards other things that are fairly split between the two of you. If you and your partner choose to go this route, make sure you define what expenses can be charged to this card and what items you should pay for out of your personal accounts.
- Find additional sources of income: If your fights generally revolve around a lack of money, you and your partner should brainstorm a few ways to bring additional income into your household. You could ask your bosses for raises, put in more hours at work or pick up side jobs. It’s important that you both make the effort to generate extra revenue and that it doesn’t cause additional problems in your relationship.
- Create a detailed budget and spending plan: Some couples disagree about what they can afford and find themselves arguing over purchases their partner has made. To avoid these types of conflicts, make a monthly budget spreadsheet that outlines your take home pay as well as reoccurring expenses (like bills, groceries, gas, etc.). You can then determine how much each of you has to spend on discretionary purchases and extra spending money. If you and your partner agree on how your money will be spent beforehand, you should be able to drastically reduce the amount of time you spend arguing about where your money is going.
It’s crucial that you’re honest with your partner about any money issues in your relationship. If you make more money than they do but feel they spend more than you do, that’s something you need to have an open discussion about. It may hurt their feelings at first, but by addressing your concerns head on and devising a fair solution, it will save your relationship from money-related arguments.
At the end of the day, both you and your partner should remember that money is just money. As the old adage says, you can’t take it with you when you go. There are far more important things in life to worry over and many ways to better spend the time you have with your partner.