How to Handle Money Problems in Marriage

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Issues related to household finances account for one of the nine "symptoms" of divorce, divorce lawyer Wendy Jaffe explains in an AOL article with that title. She says lack of money isn't the problem --- it's the way the couple chooses to manage the money that causes issues. At the first sign of money problems in a marriage, take action to start resolving the situation. You may find that proactively tackling the issue could help make the marriage even stronger.

Instructions

    • 1

      Seek the advice of a financial or personal budgeting adviser immediately. This neutral party can help you and your spouse put the money situation into the proper perspective so that you can both move toward a solution.

    • 2

      Discuss the money issue in plain language with your spouse in a sit-down meeting. Take a business-style approach to the situation and leave personal matters and emotions out of the equation. Think of this as an official business meeting to embark on a new project for your "organization" (the marriage). Set realistic, actionable and measurable financial management goals that you both can reasonably achieve. For instance, a goal would be to pay off your debt by a certain date or save at least $2,000 over the next year.

    • 3

      Agree to abide by your new financial goals, keeping the specific advice you received from your financial adviser in mind. If necessary, sign a written agreement regarding your commitment to resolving the money problem.

    • 4

      Create a firm budget for you and your spouse. You can create a budget in a standard spreadsheet program and update as needed (but only with the consent of both you and your spouse).

    • 5

      Adjust your family lifestyle according to your new budget. For instance, instead of shopping at expensive boutiques, start getting necessary clothing for the family from discount stores and thrift shops.

    • 6

      Consult with a marriage counselor regularly to help you manage the stresses of the money issue and understand each other as you make these adjustments to your life and budget.

Tips & Warnings

  • These suggestions should not substitute for the advice of a professional counselor or financial manager.

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