It sucks to admit, but money affects our love lives — sometimes in ways we may not always know. According to a 2015 study of 100,000 adults published in Social Indicators Research, it was found that women were likely to associate money with love. A 2014 study from UK relationship support service, Relate, even found that the biggest cause of stress in a relationship is money trouble.
Needless to say, there are numerous studies showing a connection between money, happiness, and love. Sometimes, personal money troubles may have even kept people from leaving a bad relationship. As a new study found, nearly one in five people have actually stayed in relationships due to financial reasons.
Ziffit, a second-hand trading site, surveyed 5,000 people in the UK on their finances and its effect on their relationships. As the study found, 16 percent of people admitted that they’ve stayed with a partner for financial reasons in the past. Nearly 28 percent of people said they were currently in their relationship for financial security, and over 35 percent said they wouldn’t be able to cover the cost of living without the support from their significant other.
"Our survey suggests that when five couples are sitting around a table at least one person is there purely because of the financial security their partner provides,” eCommerce director at Zifft told The Huffington Post. "It’s a poor reflection on the state of our nation’s finances if people are staying together for the pounds in their pockets and not the love they feel in their hearts."
This news is pretty discouraging. But there are ways to not let money negatively impact your relationship. Here are three easy ways to start communicating about money.
1. Be Honest
Be open and upfront with your partner on your finances and how you like to handle your money. If you have a ton of credit card debt and make a habit out of weekend shopping sprees, it’s important to let your partner know. If you are still working hard to pay off your student loans, that’s important as well. If you’re a huge saver or really value your excellent credit score, it’s important that your partner understands that. Being upfront and nonjudgemental to how you and your partner handles money individually will help shed some light on potential compatibility problems later on.
2. Determine Your Financial Goals As A Couple
Life can get expensive. If you’re looking into living together and finding a new place, you might need to save up for that. If you’re looking to get married in the future, you will definitely need to save up for that. The same goes for if you envision kids in the future, or if you’re looking for a house. It’s important to know where you’re headed as a couple in order to budget and plan accordingly for the future. Once you have a plan, stick to it.
3. Get Creative With What You Do Together
Not everyone can afford to go out to fancy dinners every week or go on an adventurous vacation every holiday. It’s totally OK to have a date night at home. A walk in the park can also be a cheap and easy date. Also, pay attention to what’s happening locally. There are usually tons of different local events that you could attend together that don’t require spending a ton of money. Being realistic about what you can afford to do as a couple will make your relationship that much smoother. When expectations are set, hopefully nobody gets disappointed.
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