Money may not buy love, but fighting about it will bankrupt your relationship – Michelle Singletary
Money can be a touchy subject in many relationships. In fact, in 2016 the Independent quoted the relationship charity, Relate’s findings, as money being the top reason that UK couples got divorced.
How we do it
I think that myself and Darren have quite a unique take on money in our relationship, but that may be partly due to our circumstances when we first got together. When we first started dating I was only 15 and I was still at school. Therefore, I did not have any of my own money, apart from a few pounds from a paper round! Whereas Darren was working full time, so had an income and some savings.
We decided to start a family when I was still very young so I never got a job, as I was a stay at home mum. We made the decision that whatever money we had, no matter who was earning what, it would all belong to both of us. Therefore we make joint decisions on everything that we spend.
Twenty plus years later and we still have the same philosophy. Even if one of us earns a lot more than the other, it makes no difference as we share our income. It works for us and reduces a lot of potential arguments about money. There is never any debate on who is paying for what as it all comes out of the same pot.
Our way may not be for everyone
I can see that this may not work for others though, especially if when you first meet you both work and have your own money. That does complicate things somewhat while dating. However, I think that no matter what money you each have, if you make the commitment to live together, merging your lives together, then that should also count for money too.
Sharing your income, regardless of who earns what, but having a set amount of personal money each week or month which is allocated to each of you can be a good idea. It is entirely up to the person how they spend their personal money or if they wish to save it in a separate account. That money is guilt-free, with no judgment. It could be spent on personal bills such a gym membership or cinema card, used for going out with friends or spent on endless shoes, it is the individuals choice. The rest of the money that you both have together pays the bills, goes towards savings and then any other spending has to be joint decisions. For example, choosing holidays or home improvements, this is all something which gets discussed and agreed upon together.
The main thing to remember is that you are supposed to be a team, working together and supporting each other, not be in competition with each other.
Love your spouse more than you love your career, hobbies and money. That other stuff can’t love you back. – Dave Willis
This post is part of my blog series: The A-Z of a healthy and happy relationship