I’m sure you have heard that money is the number one cause of relationships going bad. We all have our own special relationship with money. We all view it differently and use it differently. But, once we get into a serious relationship, money becomes an issue between us and our partner, not just an ‘us’ issue. Therefore, you need to communicate about and find common ground when it comes to money. You may think that your beliefs towards and habits with money are all very innocent or won’t be destructive to your relationship, but there are some money mistakes that can drive your partner away. Following are 10 of them.
1. Fighting About Not Having Enough Money
You may see the lack of money in your life and feel like you need to remind your partner of how little money there is at every step. He wants to eat out, so you start an argument about how much he spends on food. She wants to get her hair done, you start an argument about how much she spends on beauty. While the fighting is not doing either of you any good, it is also pointing out one big fact – you don’t have the kind of money you want. If you did, you wouldn’t need to fight about money because you wouldn’t feel any stress about the subject.
Therefore, the more you start arguments about money, the more you point out what you are both already feeling bad about. That doesn’t just make you feel bad about your financial situation. It can make you feel bad about each other. Your partner can criticize you and your spending and earning habits, and you can do the same. Painting each other in a negative light like that can eventually cause one of you to feel as if you had enough.
In other words, if you are always starting the fights or engaging in the fights, then there is a good chance that you can drive your partner away. You are not fixing anything by fighting, you are just pointing out the bad, and that’s not good for a relationship.
While some of the following points can help you stop fighting about not having enough money, it’s also important just to pick your battles. If your partner really wants something, don’t try to make him or feel horrible about it. A better thing to do is get on the same page financially and then you won’t have to tell them they are spending too much money or criticize them for how much money they earn.
2. Not Working Through Feelings Towards Your Partner’s Income
Does your partner make more money than you? Or do they make way less than you? Either way, you can end up with feelings of jealousy or anger, and that can cause you to make your partner feel bad in one way or the other. You may tell them your feelings, show them your feelings through your behavior, or let your feelings affect how you feel about them and treat them. All of these things have the potential to drive away your partner.
If your partner is making more than you, then gaining the right perspective is the key. Celebrating their success is important. Their success is your success, and you shouldn’t be jealous of it at all. You also shouldn’t be threatened.
I know an old lady who found out that her daughter was making more than her husband. This old lady was terrified that her daughter’s husband was going to leave her for making more money because it should be the man who makes more money, not the woman. If the husband had this fearful and sexist view, then there is a good chance it would be a money mistake that drove his wife away.
If your partner is making less than you, then you need to consider a few things. Are they doing something they hate? Yes? Then instead of pointing out how little they are making and contributing, try to help them find a job they are passionate about. By doing that, you are supporting their passion which will likely end up earning them much more than whatever they are doing now. And, if they are doing something they love, then is forcing them to do something different really in their best interest? Might there be better ways to handle the financial situation?
Obviously, if their income is having a very negative effect on you, such as making your work more than you should or causing you to go into debt, then it may be time to sit down and talk about how to bring in more money. But feeling angry with them will only make you treat them with disrespect and cause problems that could end up in driving your partner away.
3. Not Wanting To Create And Stick To A Budget
Don’t ignore this point! This is one of the big money mistakes that can drive your partner away.
A budget is necessary. It doesn’t matter if you make $1,500 a month or $15,000 a month. A budget helps you clearly see what your income is, what your bills are, and what you are left with after bills. Once you can clearly see those things, you can adjust your budget to help you live a comfortable life and grow your wealth in the process.
If you don’t want to create or stick to a budget, then you are not only doing yourself a disservice, you are doing your partner a disservice. Bills can get missed. Savings can be non-existent. You can become ignorant to what is going on in your own house, which can cause excessive spending. And, your ability to grow your wealth so that you can become rich one day will go out the window. You simply can’t understand how to pay off debt and grow your wealth unless you have a budget and stick to it.
Get on board with a budget and then get on board with sticking with it. Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to your financial life in your relationship. Knowing what is happening will give you the power to keep things under control, avoid fights, and create excitement for the future in the relationship.
4. Not Wanting To Talk About Money
If you are in a relationship, you have to talk about money. It doesn’t matter if you are just getting serious or have been together for years. Money is a relationship issue, so it’s important. It’s not a taboo subject that should be ignored.
It’s fine if one person takes care of the numbers and the other person just follows along. But, it’s not alright for one person to avoid talking about money concerns and problems when they are in a relationship. When that happens, it is very likely that the other person will leave the relationship because they will feel as though such an important part of the relationship is completely neglected.
5. Not Disclosing Your Debt
Do you have debt your partner doesn’t know about? Unexpected debt is not something any wants to deal with. Especially if they are feeling good about themselves and their financial status. Finding out that debt is a part of their life can throw them off balance and make them feel a wide range of negative emotions, caused by you. Then, having to rework what they thought their life was like can be stressful to the point of making them want to avoid it altogether. They can resent you, lose trust in you, and even lose respect for you. Does that sound like a great way to keep someone around?
You may not want to disclose the debt that you came into the relationship with or got into during the relationship for fear of a fight. But, the longer you avoid approaching the subject, the more likely you are to have a major issue that could result in much more than a fight.
6. Spending Secretively
You may not want your partner to know that you have a shopping addiction, or you just may not want to have to disclose everything you spend your money on. I understand that. But, your purchases are something you need to talk about with your partner. When you start spending secretively, and money goes disappearing and excuses start being made, trust levels are going to dip very quickly. Eventually, your partner may lose so much trust that they decide the relationship is no longer worth it.
7. Putting Money First
One of the biggest money mistakes that can drive your partner away is putting your money first. Money is just money. It is a piece of paper that you can earn and acquire through a variety of different ways. While it’s nice to have around, it shouldn’t come before your relationship’s happiness.
Money is not more important than the person that you love. Without it, you could survive. But without your partner, you wouldn’t have a support system, someone to talk to, someone to love, someone to love you, and someone to share your life with.
Love trumps money every time. Don’t put money first. Don’t make it a priority over your partner’s happiness or self-respect. If you do, there is a good chance that you will drive your partner away because they will always feel second best, and nobody wants to feel like that in an intimate relationship.
8. Not Having Patience For Change And Kindness Towards Your Partner As You Wait
You may want your partner to create a budget with you, but they might be fighting you every step of the way. If your spouse won’t listen to you, then things can get ugly. You may know you need a budget, but your spouse may not see things that way yet, and the fights that can ensue can be huge and frustrating.
Trying to force your partner to see things your way won’t work. You need to have patience and show kindness towards them in order to make a change. Your love will help them see things your way. Your anger will not. All your anger will do is make them feel less connected to you, which could cause them to leave the relationship altogether.
9. Focusing Too Much On This Moment
I am a huge believer in living in the moment, but when it comes to financial matters, it is very important to focus on the future too. If you are unable to do so, you can ruin your chances of living the life you always wanted to live. Why? Wealth isn’t built in a day. It requires foresight and planning, and if you are too focused on the now with your money, then you will never be able to build the type of wealth that we all want.
People who focus on the now with their money don’t think about saving. Some of them spend outside of their means and rack up a lot of debt. But some just spend exactly the amount of money they earn and leave no room for savings or emergencies.
If you have an ‘I want it now’ attitude, then you are financially immature. If you are financially immature, then your partner may not want to invest in you because they will realize that their investment is going to keep them stuck where they are for the rest of the time they choose to spend with you. Depending on your relationship and what their dreams and hopes are for the future, that might be too much to risk!
10. Being Too Strict With Your Money
While we need to save and invest in our future, there are some times that spending money is a good or important thing. For instance, buying the beautiful bouquet of flowers instead of taking the cheap (and dying) flowers can be worth it, depending on who you are giving the flowers to. Buying gifts for your loved ones can make them happy and, in turn, make you both happy. Helping someone out who needs it can be something that makes both you and your partner feel great. And, going on a vacation that you both desperately need can be the very thing that helps you reconnect and get back on the same page.
If you are too strict with your money, then there is a good chance that you will forgo the generosity, charity, and pleasures in life just to save a few bucks. That a money mistake that can drive your partner away. Nobody wants to be with a cheap person who is unwilling to let loose once in a while and have some fun.
Yes, the future is important, but it’s also important to be giving and do things that bring your relationship closer together. Often, for that to happen, money is required! So set a budget, and make sure you have some play, gift, and donation money. Not everything needs to go to savings.