marriage: recent publications

How Financial Insecurity Growing Up Impacts Later Relationships

When we think of the most common topics that lead to arguments amongst married couples, it should come as no surprise that near the top of the list is money. How we spend it, how we save it, how we earn it and how we manage it are critical facets of the basic functioning of any household. So what happens when there is a distinct difference in how partners approach finances and in particular if one of the parties involved has a history of financial trauma from childhood? This is precisely the dynamic that exists within my marriage and I’m here to tell you that it can be extremely challenging, not just in general, but in particular when a global pandemic threatens not only your lives, but your livelihood.

Growing up my husband lived in a solidly middle class neighborhood with two parents who had decent jobs. They were comfortable and never wanting for anything, at least not from a financial security perspective. This gave him an underlying sense that no matter what happens, everything will be OK. His motto is “We can always make more money.”

I grew up with a single mom who struggled with undiagnosed and unmanaged mental health issues and a deadbeat dad who scarcely paid child support and had nothing to do with me after my parents divorced. My childhood was punctuated with several moves due to my mom not being able to pay the rent resulting in eviction, collections agencies hounding our phone at all times of the day and night, several bankruptcies, frequent bouts of unemployment due to my mothers unreliability, eating foods that were inexpensive to make or buy and a general sense of anxiety about money. I overheard countless conversations between my mother and grandmother about how they couldn’t pay XYZ bill and

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marriage: Readers Choice

When we think of the most common topics that lead to arguments amongst married couples, it should come as no surprise that near the top of the list is money. How we spend it, how we save it, how we earn it and how we manage it are critical facets of the basic functioning of any household. So what happens when there is a distinct difference in how partners approach finances and in particular if one of the parties involved has a history of financial trauma from childhood? This is precisely the dynamic that exists within my marriage and I’m here to tell you that it can be extremely challenging, not just in general, but in particular when a global pandemic threatens not only your lives, but your livelihood.
We all know the big flashing red signs, that our marriage has problems and is headed down a critical path. Maybe even headed for divorce. But do we know the more subtle signs that many often miss?

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