Couples and Money – The Last Taboo

Most people grow up in families where no one talks about ماكينة عد الفلوس. People may argue about money: He doesn’t make enough or she spends too much. However, there generally is no real education about what role money plays in relationships. Very often children become adults having no idea of how much money their parents have saved or what they earn. Talking about money is taboo and people often become adults carrying irrational attitudes, beliefs and anxieties about money or not knowing how to handle money. When they later enter a coupled relationship, these anxieties generally emerge.

Boys are taught to earn money and serve as providers- – to be the primary breadwinners. Some theorists believe that it is through earning capacity that the husband receives a major portion of his affirmation of success in life and vindicates his existence. For men, aspects of independence, separation, and competition fostered in childhood become assets for future endeavors with corporate America. However, it is possible that these attributes possibly inhibit their emotional development. For many men, financial distress exerts a powerful influence on how they experience their marriage overall and how they interact with their wives because of the importance they place on financial competence and success.

On the other hand, girls are socialized that the earning of money is a personal choice and often view money as a reward, and/or as a haven for emotional security. For women, Money is merely a small piece in the grander scheme of relationships and a medium for purchasing goods and services. While they appear to be more confident in expressing their feelings and concerns about money to their partners, they are more deficit in terms of the competitive component of acquiring money.

So then how is the relationship affected when wives make more money than husbands? Tichenor (1999) examined marital power dynamics when wives earned more money than their husbands, when they worked in higher status occupations. She explored whether they were able to exercise more power when this occurred. She found that they were not related. She concludes that power in relationships is more related to gender than status and income. She then suggests how these couples do gender that reinforce the husband’s power.

Some individuals strive to acquire money in hopes to compensate for its lack in childhood, or remedy a shattered self-image and or substantiate a self-worth that is dependent ion outside validation. If an individual is frugal with earnings, hesitant to share his or her money with his or her mate, it can be a reflection of his or her upbringing. For some, their childhood families could have been deprived of resources and/or necessities. Or perhaps the mother spent too much money and the father hoarded it or visa versa. Partners may feel personally rejected, unloved, unwanted, or taken for granted when spending becomes synonymous with affection and love. It is probably true that a person who is withholding money is likely to be withholding feelings as well. At times money can be used as a means of punishment toward a partner for not fulfilling his or her affection needs.

The misuse of money in marriage can often be the result of observing manipulative power plays between parents around money issues. In turn, as an adult,the learned behavior may be used to manipulate one’s mate.

Research appears to show that economic attainment is correlated with marital satisfaction. Satisfaction with marriage appears to increase with income and its mutual agreement regarding its distribution. This then leads to increased spousal satisfaction. It is possible that when partners are disappointed with the amount of money the couple has, they find their entire relationship less satisfying.

It is reasonable to suggest a correlation between money and power in marriage. Leiter (1991) agrees….” He who has the money has the power…he who controls the purse controls the relationship (p.79). The decision-maker position in a relationship is often determined by the individual who earns the higher income (often the male in heterosexual couples). This affects the balance of power, i.e. control over allocation of personal spending money and access to joint money. The relative income of each spouse can have consequential psychological and pragmatic consequences on a relationship.

It can be said that the ultimate test of a marriage comes when the wife is higher earner. Neither husband nor wife likes to contemplate any change in the balance of power from the traditional. In this case males may experience feelings of bitterness, embarrassment, and jealousy when their mates’ income exceeded their own.

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