Money Issues in Marriage

Jeff and I have been married for 7 1/2 years, together for 9 1/2. At first, we didn’t have much money to argue over. We paid bills and got necessities and we were broke again until next payday. Now that he has a good job and we have 4 kids, that’s all changed. Yes, some pay periods we pay bills, get necessities and are broke again…but then there’s the times that he works overtime and we have extra money to play with.

We’ve had our fair share of arguments about money. How to spend it, when to save it, who got to spend it…and who knows what other things we would argue about when it came to money. Over time it’s become easier for me to take care of paying all the bills. I keep track of the checking account and he makes the money that’s deposited in it. Once I get all the bills paid and find out what’s left, we take care of gas and food plus whatever the kids may need that has popped up. I always try to keep some money in our checking for when things come up between paychecks too. We do like to do stuff as a family, so when money allows it we splurge and go out to eat as a family and enjoy ourselves.

We still argue here and there about money, but it’s nothing talking it out can’t settle. Usually after the argument, one of us apologizes and it’s over. I found a great article about How to Talk About Money With Your Spouse and I plan on doing some of their suggestions. Here are the main points, but go read the full article to understand more about each point:

  1. Set a spending threshold. (We really need to set budget, it’s just hard when his work goes up and down)
  2. Talk about education for your kids. (This is one Jeff and I disagree on)
  3. Decide where to live. (This was a no brainer for us. I loved where I grew up and he ended up liking it and now he can’t imagine living anywhere else! I’m lucky that way.)
  4. Talk about vacations.
  5. Review your retirement expectations.

The article mentions ways to start talking about it, like set a certain time and place to talk about it. Jeff usually just randomly asks me how much we have and what he can spend and I’m caught off guard because I don’t keep a running tally in my head and have to check the account.

One thing we do need to start thinking about is retirement, Jeff has a 401k at work but I highly doubt that’ll be enough to retire on…he’ll probably be working until the day he dies the way we’re going now.

Do you and your spouse talk easily about money?

This post was made possible by Genworth Financial. All opinions are my own and not influenced by anyone or anything.

4 Comments

  1. Rhonda Grisham /

    Having quit work 4 years ago..I know all about money “discussions” While we don’t argue, we do talk about it. My husband is honestly more frugal than I am. Our most recent issue is insurance. I say stay with our current provider while he wants to look for a cheaper one.
    One day maybe we will all have anough money so we don’t have to have these “discussions” :)

  2. My husband and I get along for the most part and we don’t usually argue about money. That is, until we don’t have much extra and we don’t right now. I’ve been stressing about it and he is nonchalant. Drives me batty. I’ll have to check out the link to gather more info and hopefully my husband and I can start to agree on money issues.

  3. I think it’s important to get the numbers down on paper, a spreadsheet, or some method so both partners can see the numbers even if one person is the one writing and paying the bills. It provides both people with a way to “see” what money is coming in and where the money goes. I use an excel sheet and it has worked wonders for opening up conversations over money, spending, savings, etc. When we get away from it we tend to have more issues.

  4. We’re the same way! It’ll be nice when we don’t have anymore worries!