You are told that money will make you happy. Maybe, you didn’t have much money growing up, or maybe you had everything. Whatever the case, you don’t want to let money define the relationship.
We live in a country that puts a high value on money. This can leave you feeling like you don’t have enough. You really can’t buy love. Money cannot replace the time you spend with your loved ones. It also can’t take back the past or predict the future.
The truth of the matter, is you need money to survive in this country. It will put a roof over your head, clothes on your back and food on the table. This is something everybody needs. So, why is money the root of all evil? For many, money is power and status. You really need to be careful here. If you idolize people with money, you will not see them for who they really are.
I see a lot of couples in my practice, and a lot of them have issues with money. They have different beliefs about money. This can come from family of origin, society and gender roles. The first order of business is to start to understand your partner’s beliefs about money. Without understanding you won’t understand why money…
At the beginning of a relationship, when everything is new. You can’t imagine you would ever have any kind of a challenge in your relationship. You can’t see your partner’s flaws. The relationship makes you feel wonderful.
But, eventually the honeymoon is over. You start to see your partner as a real human being. With flaws, like the rest of us.
The Gottman’s research has found, that 69% of problems in a relationship are unsolvable. This means, learn to understand your partner and your problems in the relationship. Nothing is as black and white as it seems.
It’s the worst feeling in the world, when you realize your marriage is broken. You never thought this would happen. In the beginning, you felt it would last forever. Of course, you were mesmerized by the newness of the relationship. You did not see any of your partner’s flaws.
All marriages go through highs and lows. But, it feels much worse when it is broken. You wonder if it can ever be fixed? Your heart is breaking. You wonder if you will ever get through this?
There is no magic wand here. I have seen many couples in my practice. By the time they come to see me, they are usually on the brink of divorce. They have lots of questions for me. ‘Can you fix us?’ ‘Is it worth it?’ And, so on. I tell them, I have no magical answers. I know you will need to make an investment in your relationship, again. The truth is some couples make it and some don’t.
When you are stuck in the negative sentiment override, 50% of the time you don’t notice the positive in the relationship. Meaning, even when things are going well the relationship is ridden with the negative sentiment override.
When the relationship is in the positive sentiment override. You know when your husband tells you he’ll be home for dinner he is. Or, if he calls and tells you he’s stuck in traffic you know he is. You aren’t constantly doubting the relationship or thinking negatively of your partner. You also have positive things to say about your partner to your friends and family.
Men and women have been arguing about money since the beginning of time. Maybe, you make a lot of money, maybe you don’t. Whether you do or not, you still have your differences about money. Is your partner more of a saver? Are you more of a spender? You can have your differences about money and still have a happy marriage.
Do you avoid talking about these issues? Do you hide the credit card bill? Do you tell your child not to tell dad what you bought? If you said yes to any of these questions, then there are problems with money in your relationship.
A nurturing and supportive relationship requires honesty and understanding. Your beliefs about money go way back. You learned them from your family of origin. How did your parents communicate about money? Did they argue a lot about money? Did you feel the playing ground was equal, or did one person make all the decisions about spending. Maybe, you grew up in an environment that was chaotic, and decisions were made impulsively about spending.
The first step is sitting down with your partner and having a conversations about where your beliefs came from about money. You need to be gentle in the conversation. Don’t start…