Financial Infidelity: The Downfall Of Too Many Marriages


pocket hide cash man suit
Plus: five classic mistakes that trigger financial dishonesty.

What's at stake is not the money — it's our relationships. Whether it is small sums or massive amounts, financial infidelity is a relationship killer. More than 70 percent of divorced couples in America cite "money" as the number one cause of their split. Money affects every day of our lives, and how we view money shapes our decisions and how we handle it. Add another person's views on money to the equation and we've got a hot-rod headed for a crash.

Understanding and communication is key but certain situations create an especially fertile environment for financial infidelity. Steer clear of these five, main triggers for financial infidelity:

1. Separate accounts. Many couples think if they keep their money separate they can avoid any tension about money. There may be certain times when separate accounts work for a couple, e.g. business account and personal account, education account or surprise gift account — monies you temporarily use to treat the other without them knowing right away. Frankly, you can have 15 different accounts if you're transparent with each other about every one. But maintaining entirely separate accounts usually leads to entirely separate lives.

2. Overspending and debt. In March 2013, reported, "Disposable income, or the money left over after taxes, dropped 4 percent after adjusting for inflation, the biggest plunge since monthly records began in 1959," yet consumer spending for the same timeframe rose.

We work hard. Sometimes we feel we need a tangible reward for that hard work and we're optimistic we can pay it off later. Then other expenses pop up and our debt grows. That's when the secrets start; we start lying about spending, hiding receipts and borrowing to cover our money mistakes. It's a vicious cycle.

3. Poor planning. Kids grow up fast, some small businesses never turn the corner and somehow retirement age gets closer every year! The desperation of little-to-no retirement or college funds or even a rainy day fund leads people in relationships to point fingers and take drastic measures, often in isolation. Avoid the blame game and the temptation to fix it on your own. Work together or your lack of funds won't be the only hurdle you face in retirement. Keep reading ...

Article contributed by

Scott And Bethany Palmer The Money Couple

YourTango Expert Partner

The Money Couple, Scott & Bethany Palmer are authors, regulars on national TV, radio and speak internationally about “Love and Money”. With 40 years of combined financial planning experience they launched The Money Couple and have dedicated their lives to helping couples bring their love and money together. Scott and Bethany enjoy an active lifestyle living in Colorado with their two young sons, Cole and Cade.

Take our FREE Money Personality Quiz

Check for Financial Infidelity with our FREE Money Relationship Index

Sign up to receive the FREE Money Couple Minute!  click here

See our NEW BOOK, The 5 Money Personalities™: Speaking the Same Love and Money Language

Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Credentials: Other
Other Articles/News by Scott and Bethany Palmer The Money Couple:

What Your Kid's Halloween Candy "Skills" Say About Their Future


"Trick or Treat!"—going door-to-door in scratchy costumes, picking through huge bowls of goodies, cramming as much sugar as possible into a pillowcase. Then, racing home to dump the spoils of the night out on the living room floor. This is when the real "business" of Halloween, yes? (Do you remember what comes next?) ... Halloween ... Read more

I Love To Spend Money. So Why Do I Hate Myself When I Do?


If you love to spend money, but hate yourself when you do, you are not crazy. Many of us love to shop, buy gifts or conquer a great sale. But afterwards we feel that gnawing in our stomach. That doubt. That guilt. We often get questions from readers about this feeling. For instance, Brooke, a participant at one of our events, told us this story:  I ... Read more

Getting An F In Marriage? 3 Assignments To Help You Pass


School may be over for most kids, but for some parents in Oklahoma, it's only beginning. Oklahoma lawmakers signed a bill this month requiring divorcing couples with children under the age of 18 to complete a mandatory educational program. We guess parents are not going to be thrilled about this forced enlightenment and yet compatibility with your ... Read more

See More

Latest Expert Videos
Most Popular