When you love someone, you shouldn’t need to pay for his or her affections by spending money on expensive gifts. Nevertheless, it happens; maybe you want to shower money on your partner, or maybe your partner has expensive tastes and expects you to cater for them. Sooner or later, you will reach a point where you need to draw the line. However, that doesn’t mean you have to choose between your finances and your partner; at least, not if you follow some basic tips.
Be honest about your financial situation
When you want to impress someone, you may be tempted to suggest that you have more money than you really do. In this situation, your partner may not realise that you can’t buy everything that he wants. The situation may also arise that although your partner has a job, he doesn’t see any need to save any of it, believing that you can cover any expenses that may arise, as well as all the luxuries. From early on in the relationship, you should be honest about your financial situation and ask your partner to be the same. Then you will both have a clearer idea of expectations.
Share budgeting responsibilities
Bills need to be paid every month. It doesn’t really matter whether you make the decision to pay them all, or whether they are shared between the two of you; you should both be aware of the amount of incomings and outgoings. If your partner doesn’t work, he will still need money to buy household supplies and other necessities. Sit down together and draw up a budget so you both have a good idea of where all the money goes. If necessary, give your partner an allowance so that he knows exactly how much money he can spend without draining your finances.
Have an emergency fund
It isn’t usually a good idea to hold secrets from the one you love, but if you are finding it difficult to prevent your partner from overspending, make sure that you have a secret emergency fund. Put some money aside in an account your partner isn’t aware of. Then, if there are any financial emergencies, you know that you have a sum of money to which you can turn. It will hopefully only be used in a real emergency, but it could prevent you from getting too stressed about your financial situation and taking it out on your partner.
Find out what the problem is
If you or your partner tend to have a problem with spending too much money, it is worth taking a step back and trying to find out what the problem is. Overspending is often linked to feeling unloved or a fear that the person in question won’t be popular if he doesn’t have the right clothes, jewellery or cars. It may be that you are unconsciously neglecting your partner, or that he has emotional problems you are unaware of. Trying to tackle the problem head-on will hopefully help resolve the issue and will bring you both closer together at the same time.
Decide on the way ahead
Once you have taken the time to discuss your finances with your partner, you will need to come up with a plan to follow in the months to come. That will obviously include budgeting together, but there are other options to consider. For example, you could have separate bank accounts and agree to hold each other accountable. You may also need to remind each other that you are together because you are in love, and not because one supports the other financially. Be prepared to make changes and compromise because that is all part of being a couple.
Finances are often a major reason for domestic disputes. However, you really don’t need to let them get in the way of your relationship. Deal with the issue head-on rather than sweeping it under the carpet. Otherwise, you run the risk of a major explosion somewhere down the line, and that may just lead to the end of your relationship.