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Tired of disagreeing over finances? Here are some tips to your money problems go away.

by Niara Eans, LMFT Associate, LPC Associate, NCC



Time to Read: 3 minutes



This blog post serves as the last installment of our six part series featuring the Cornerstones of a Healthy Relationship. You can find the list and links to the blog posts for the rest of the series below.

  1. Self Esteem
  2. Communication
  3. Intimacy 
  4. Commitment
  5. Friendships 
  6. Finances (this post)


Differences in beliefs over how money is handled have frequently quoted as  being one of the biggest reasons that relationships fail. When you love buying expensive things, while she prefers to save, it can cause major issues for a relationship. Not having enough money can also cause significant issues and frustrations to arise within a relationship. Both scenarios are so common. What do you do when this happens?


Introduce financial transparency into your relationship. When there are differences in the way that couples choose to spend their money, they tend to want to separate their finances. This sounds like the perfect idea, but it keeps your partner in the dark about what is going on with your finances. It also keeps you separated. It diminishes the need or desire for conversation in that area, which essentially only allows the two of you to "kick the can further down the road". Be transparent. Let your partner know what your financial situation is and learn to attack this problem together. You are a team after all. There should be no such thing as his money or her money. Everything belongs to both of you.


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Start planning together. Planning is essential when sharing finances. If one person enjoys expensive things, while the other person prefers to save, shopping can be challenging. Establishing a plan together will help the two of you be able to get what is important to you, as well as, the necessities. Budgeting isn't for everyone, but it can be a useful tool for situations like this. It also helps you and your partner manage each other's expectations in regards to where money will be spent on a regular basis.


Appreciate and accept the differences between you and your partner. It is easy to get frustrated and discouraged when considering the differences between you and your partner, especially when the differences seem to impact everything. Finances tend to have the ability to make or break a relationship because you need money for pretty much everything in this society. Remembering that these differences are a part of what makes your partner special and perfect for you will make conversations about finances and financial decisions much less stressful. Learning to accept the things that you cannot change can be a game changer for your relationship.


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Let go of salary differences. Many people fall into the trap of comparing themselves to others. This definitely should not be the case in your relationship. It's likely that, at some point, you and your partner will experience a salary difference among each other. Meaning, someone will make more than the other. This can be problematic to manage when it begins to dictate a power differential between the two of you. Making more money should not equate to having more authority within the relationship. Beginning to view all of the money that comes into the household, as family money, will help you to maintain healthy communication and a healthy relationship.


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