Did you know that fighting about money is one of the top three conflicts that couples face? The other two common points of conflict are sex and communication.

When you think about marriage and money, it’s really not that surprising there would be conflict. After all, money is often considered taboo, which leads to a lack of talking, a.k.a. communication! 

See how that all fits together?

All jokes aside, in order to make sure that fighting about money doesn’t get in the way of your relationship, you need to break the taboo, get uncomfortable and…take a deep breath…talk about your money issues in a relationship! 

I know it can be awkward to bring up, especially if it’s a heated topic. But it’s better to plan a time to have a rational conversation about how to deal with money issues in a relationship and come to an agreement than to blow up at each other next time things get out of hand when fighting about money.

In fact, talking about money with your partner can be extremely enlightening and a huge relief. But, how do you start a positive conversation about money problems in a relationship? Keep reading for our best tips!

Click here to watch a video of a real couple talking about money in therapy.

Fighting About Money? Explore Your Money Personalities

Couple fighting about money while budgeting

One of the best ways to overcome fighting about money, is for you and your partner to find out which of the “money personalities,” fits each of you. Your money personality is how you feel about money and the way you manage it. Your beliefs and habits around money are a product of your upbringing – often starting in childhood – and your life experiences.

The 4 Money Personalities:

  • Hoarder – Save ALL The Money
  • Spender – Spend ALL The Money
  • Avoider – What Money?
  • Monk – Money Is Dirty And The Root Of All Evil

Want a free download that includes an online money personalities quiz? Ya, I thought you might so I created one. Don’t say I never do anything for you 😉

Click the link below to determine your money personality, take an in-depth look at each of the money personalities, and get suggestions on how to improve money issues in a marriage based on your personality.

Click Here To Get Your Free Money Personality Download

How to Stop Fighting About Money? Practice Empathy

Couple fighting about money on a couch

Once you know which money personality you and your partner ascribe to, you can begin to empathize with each other and understand where the other is coming from. 

One important topic to discuss when exploring money problems in a marriage or relationship is how each of your parents talked about and handled money when you were a child. This can lead to a better understanding of where your habits were formed and help you see whether you are following in their footsteps (which may or may not be a good thing!)

A great book that helps you explore your history with and beliefs about money is Secrets of The Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Ecker.

It can be very challenging having a partner with an opposite money personality – and this difference is often at the root of money issues in a relationship. But it is absolutely possible to stop fighting about money and live happily together if you communicate regularly about the topic and come up with a game plan that you are both comfortable with.

Opposite money personalities can actually complement each other. Savers keep spenders out of the poor house, while spenders encourage savers to enjoy the fruits of their labor now and then. Getting to the point where both money personalities contribute to a balanced approach requires compromise and communication but IS definitely possible.

Marriage and Money: Why Fighting About Money Happens

Most couples find that as their relationships get more serious, so do their money problems. And when you get married, fighting about money is even more of an issue, because there are more decisions to be made. 

Will you keep your assets separate, or merge accounts? Will one of you handle the financial decisions in the relationship, or will you both take responsibility? How will you decide what to spend money on, and where to try and save?

One idea that I find works for many couples is to set a spending limit, above which a conversation needs to take place. For example, some couples find that for purchases over $100, they need to consult their partner before buying. 

This approach alone is a great step toward learning how to handle money issues in a relationship. But if these talks still tend to end in fighting about money, it might be time to talk with a skilled couples therapist, who can help you through the rough patches.

Click here to watch a video of a real couple talking about money in therapy.

Online Couples Therapy for Money Issues in a Relationship

Stop fighting about money and improve your relationship

If fighting about money is still a major stressor in your relationship, a couples therapist can help you and your partner get to the root of your money problems in marriage. A therapist can teach you how to deal with money issues in a relationship with more communication and less conflict and can help you explore the foundation of your money personalities.

On the other hand, sometimes a cigar isn’t really a cigar. In other words, sometimes a couple is fighting about money when money isn’t actually the real issue. 

Money is an easy scapegoat, because it’s usually on our minds in some form or another. In these cases, that same skilled therapist can help you get to the bottom of what’s really going on.

If you would like more information on how to talk with your partner about money (and many other issues) and finally stop fighting about money, schedule a free 30 minute consultation with one of our Couples Learn therapists.