Ah, Valentine’s day! The day when the price for a dozen roses multiplies by 10, and the entire world claims to love romance. This is the time of the year where we throw caution to the wind and spend way more than we should in the name of romance. Unfortunately, debt can often negatively affect even the most sincere and stable of relationships, especially if it has been hidden from their spouse. Many couples fight over debt, and it can be a cause for much frustration, stress, and sleepless nights.
However, even if you’re currently in debt, there are still a number of things you can do to prevent it from becoming a problem in your relationship. If you’re interested in ways to stave off the negative effects of debt encroaching on your relationship, read on. Here are 4 ways you can stop debt from ruining your relationship, and help keep everyone happy.
1. Be honest.
If you have debt and are in a serious relationship, it’s time you fess up. Be honest and forthcoming about how much debt you have and what your spending habits are. It’s far worse to hide your debt from your significant other than to simply reveal the truth. Your partner will resent you for it, and distrust you if you don’t immediately reveal the state of your financial affairs transparently and as soon as it happens. Being open and honest, right from the very start, will foster a greater degree of trust and sincerity in your relationship, and this will help strengthen your relationship in the long run.
2. Do not place blame.
One of the worst things you can do when in debt is blame your spouse for the “mistakes” they have made. Blaming after the fact is simply pointless, and will lead to more harm than good. Sure, you can express your general disappointment and concern in what has happened. But anything more than a quick admonishment is counter-productive and will just lead to more fights and feelings of animosity. Instead, use your debt as a way to come together to overcome the obstacle. If you’re committed to a long-term relationship, then the fact is that you’ll need to face many obstacles in your future together. Working together now to overcome your obstacles will put you in good stead for any future difficulties you may have to face.
3. Communicate about your finances.
Open communication is essential in any successful relationship, and it’s also critical for paying off your debt. So talk about your finances. Should you be pooling your incomes together? Should you use the services of a debt consolidator like Fox Symes from the FSA Group to help you limit the damage? All of these things are important to consider and you should talk about them openly and honestly. Also, do your best not to hide spending from your spouse. Spending money on something that you have not agreed upon, especially if it’s a large purchase, will only harm your relationship. And this will only create a sense of distrust.
4. Stick with your budget.
A great way to pay off your debt, and prevent it from ruining your relationship, is to create and follow a budget together. When you’re both on the same page and working together to accomplish something, it really strengthens your relationship. Even if you have not pooled your finances, making a budget together can help you pay off your debt as soon as possible. Just remember to be honest about how much you’re making, and how much debt you have.
Being in a relationship and in debt at the same time can be a struggle. Try and remember to be honest and refrain from blaming the other. This will do little other than add fuel to the fire. Also, make sure you communicate well with your significant other, and stick to your budget to overcome your debt. Sure, things may be tense at times, but they will pass, and if you can come out the other end not hating each other, your shared experience will no doubt strengthen your relationship.