I just read an article that described a couple that thought a major component to keeping their marriage blissful was keeping their finances separate.  I’m hoping the author just misconstrued their point, but I’ve heard many (usually younger) couples echo this sentiment. 

This particular couple has a typical saver/spender dynamic.  One of them (in this case the husband) is a saver.  He’s an excellent saver.  He actually is retired in his 30’s, which is really awesome!  She is the spender and is still working.  They keep their finances separate because of this dynamic and claim that “keeping their finances separate has helped them avoid countless arguments.”  

I’ll tell you what else helps you avoid countless arguments:  eating separate meals, having separate friends, having separate goals, and generally just avoiding each other altogether.  Actually, staying single is probably the best way to avoid countless arguments.  Definitely don’t have kids.

Mounds of anecdotal evidence (which includes my own personal experience and the experiences of dozens of my clients) as well as some data tells me that keeping separate finances once you’re married is folly and a recipe for a failed marriage.  Treating your money as “mine & yours” instead of as “ours” leads to power disparity in the marriage, resentment for spending (TD Bank said that 63% of couples think their significant other overspends), and deceit.  Financial infidelity can ruin a marriage too. Usually separate finances indicate a couple that’s not communicating well and is failing to get on the same page about even more important life issues, which is why it’s such a good indicator of divorce.

Money fights are correlated with divorce.

Jeffrey Dew. Data analysis based on the National Survey of Families and Households.

It can be hard to get on the same page about money in your marriage, but that doesn’t mean that it’s best to never confront the issue.  Go through a personal finance class together, something like Financial Peace University and share your goals with each other.  If you love each other, you’ll be willing to sacrifice for the other.  If there are deeper issues, please seek counseling!  If you’re thinking about getting married then a financial class and pre-marital counseling are musts.  

The Drink: Delilah AKA The White Lady (SAVOY RECIPE)

  • 1.5 oz. London Dry Gin
  • .75 oz. Triple Sec (Cointreau)
  • .75 oz. Lemon Juice

Shake and strain into a coup glass.