What’s the number one thing that most couples fight about? Money. Before I had my first child, both my partner and earned great money at our jobs and contributed equally to the household bills. But that all changed when our baby was born. Because his job provided better benefits, we decided I’d stay home”and working through our financial issues wasn’t easy.
Here are some of the top concerns most couples have about money and how to tackle them:
Inequality: If one person earns more, it only makes sense that he or she contributes a greater share towards bills or other necessities. You’re still equals because both of you are putting in your part. If you’re the main breadwinner, don’t resent your partner for contributing less. And if it’s you that has a lower earning power, make sure you thank your partner for putting in a bit extra here and there.
Power: Some people think that the person with the higher paycheck also has more power in the relationship. Not true. No matter who has a fatter wallet, relationships are partnerships. If you find that your partner holds the power card over you just because he earns more, seek out counseling”or maybe even a new relationship.
Sharing: When I left my job to stay home with a new baby, I didn’t feel that I was contributing to the household because my partner earned all the money, paid all the bills and even covered our entertainment expenses. I felt worthless. Here’s what he told me: Someone needs to take care of the kids. You’re doing more for the household than I am in that respect. So don’t forget”what you do for the household, whether it’s cooking, cleaning or childcare, is a huge contribution.
Resentment: When one person earns and pays for everything, things can get ugly. For some couples, keeping separate bank accounts”either instead of or in addition to a joint one”works wonders.