How to Deal with Financial Infidelity in Marriage

When your spouse lies about debts, spending, risky investments, credits, and other expenditures, it can jeopardize not only your financial future, but it can destroy your marriage. Nearly 30% of divorced couples in the USA cite that financial infidelity ended their once happy union. Here’s how to save yours.

1. Know the red flags

couple having an argument

Two in five Americans admit that they lie to their spouse about finances. While some of these lies involve small sums of money, like buying slightly expensive clothes, it can escalate to more damaging behavior in the future. The next thing you know, you might be saddled with debt that you don’t recognize.

Sure, there are a lot of debt solutions in Sudbury, but you can’t solve a problem if it’s hidden. You need to look out for warning signs so that you can confirm if your spouse is guilty and act on it the situation before it becomes a significant problem. Watch out for change in your partner’s irrational behavior around money.

These can include taking out large withdrawals, showering you with lavishing gifts, and shopping a lot of new stuff. It should also ring the alarm if your spouse gets extremely defensive with your simple inquiry about unaccounted cash. Other tip-offs involve missing bank statements and bills in the mail, hidden income, doctored reports, and secret purchases.

2. Find the root cause

Your spouse’s betrayal can leave you devastated, angry, and resentful. However, blame and anger will not solve the problem. You also need to remember that financial infidelity can be a symptom of an issue somewhere else in your relationship. Your spouse might hide purchases because you are too controlling. Maybe you have different financial goals and spending expectations. Or perhaps, your husband is battling with a hidden addiction like gambling.

Knowing that his behavior is irresponsible, he’ll feel guilty and embarrassed; hence he might try to cover it up. Thus, you need to talk in a non-accusatory standpoint, so you can uncover the problems that triggered the infidelity. Do your best to see things through your partner’s lenses and reach a mutual decision on how to address personal and financial difficulties. Work on a recovery plan. This can include steps on how to repay the debt, create a budget, work with debt consolidation agency, or seek counseling.

3. Have a regular money talk

Most couples shy away from discussing financial infidelity until there are drastic consequences. Learn from your experience and protect your relationship by having early and regular communication about financial matters. Reinforce transparency by reviewing bills and bank statements together. Work out an agreement on what is and what isn’t acceptable. Acknowledge that you have differing views about saving versus spending and try to meet in the middle. Agree on joint financial goals and revise your spending expectations.

Recreating trust and honesty after the betrayal is a slow process. Healing and quitting bad behavior doesn’t happen overnight. You need time to learn to trust your spouse again, just as he needs time to change his practices. Patience is indeed a virtue that you both need if you want to save your marriage.

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