For the most part my husband and I speak open and honestly about our finances and since we can both log on to our bank accounts, request free credit reports and view the details of our credit cards I like to think that we can’t hide much information from one another. Being equally responsible for our finances certainly helps us remain accountable.
Every once in awhile my husband leaves out a few details about something he plans to purchase or a project he plans to complete. Last year he told me a landscaping project would cost $600, but forgot to include the additional costs of moving dirt and buying plants, which more than doubled the final price. We prioritized this project quite differently, so it’s certainly possible that he purposely left out this information so I would agree to spend money on it. Of course, it’s equally possible that he just didn’t think about the additional costs when we first discussed it.
I don’t hide purchases, but I certainly don’t point out every new outfit or toy I buy for my son. I figure my husband will eventually see my son playing with something new or dressed in something cute. Plus, he journals the credit card transactions and is free to ask me about any of the purchases I make. In other words even if I don’t tell him, he still sees exactly where the money goes.
I would like to believe that we discuss our financial concerns with one another and that neither of us feels like anything is off the table. When I worried about losing my job, (I was eventually laid off), we talked about it often. And since my husband owns his own company we often talk about contracts and employees. When he’s worried about losing work we usually talk about that too.
Over the past two weeks I’ve written a lot about unequal financial gifts from parents and during that time I’ve noticed a definite trend among the comments and emails I received. It seems that most people simply do not talk to one another about money matters.
I can certainly understand why it would be difficult to talk with a sibling about perceived inequalities and that a child might not want to discuss their hurt feelings with parents who provide unequal gifts, but sometimes just talking through these things helps clear the air.
I wonder how many people discuss money matters with their family members. Do you talk with your loved ones about your financial concerns? If not, why don’t you talk about money with the people you love? Is it because you don’t feel like it’s any of their business or that their details aren’t any of yours?
If you feared job loss would you tell your significant other? If not, why not? Is it because you don’t want to worry them unnecessarily? Why would you choose to keep financial details to yourself, especially if they were matters that weighed on your soul?