Can money affect your relationship? There are a few money taboos when it comes to dating. Who should pay for the first date? Does it mean the end if your partner faces bankruptcy?
I think in the past it was expected that men would pay for dates because men were expected to do the asking. A more modern attitude from women today means the ‘old rules’ are thrown out the window and expectations are blurred. Shepherds Friendly created a really interesting infographic on how money impacts relationships and I was surprised by some of the results.
I personally think everything should be roughly 50/50, especially in the early days when you’re probably both carefree and employed. I think there’s unlikely to be a massive gap in earnings when you’re both young and haven’t got kids, so it’s only fair that dating gets split down the middle.
When the relationship takes the path of the two of you sharing a life together, I do think there tends to be a bit of an earning disparity, especially if kids are involved and career breaks are taken. Both partners should make a financial contribution to the life you share, but if one person earns a lot less, then it makes sense their contribution is a lot less. I also think that if one partner chooses not to go back to work so that they can care for the children, it needs to be a decision both people in the relationship are happy with.
Can Money Affect Your Relationship?
I was surprised that the infographic by Sherperds Friendly showed so many people of both sexes saying that earnings should be secret from partners. The percentage is relatively low, but sill higher than I would have expected. I can’t understand how these people manage to budget or makes plans for the future when they’re so secretive! I can imagine these relationships might be quite short lived!
Among my friends, money affects relationships differently. In my own relationship, we’ve always been on pretty equal footing, or taken it in turns to be the breadwinner while the other does something important (like getting a degree or giving birth), but some of my friends have a different story to tell.
Some of my friends have kept their finances separate and secretive, believing their earnings are their own and what’s left over after the bills have been split is their’s to spend as they wish. It’s none of my business, but I don’t think this is the best way to go about things. I’ve seen friends get jealous because their partner can afford more nights out than they can, or makes the decision to upgrade their car without consulting their partner.
Ultimately, I think the only thing about money that matters in a relationship is that you talk about it with your partner. If you don’t earn as much as they do, they won’t mind if they love you. If you have debt or bad credit, they will support you while you work on it (emotionally, probably not financially). All you really need to do to stop money being an issue in a relationship is to talk about it.
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