How soon do you discuss attitudes towards money?

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Money is one of the taboos that couples often avoid discussing. But money comes into play earlier than we realise it - from the very first date, e.g. who should pay, whether to eat at a coffee shop or restaurant, where to go (I need to pay to get into some places).

I often find myself sharing one or two of thoughts on retirement, saving, spending habits (e.g. branded goods, gambling), attitudes towards borrowing money and paying off loans, ambitions within the first 5 meetings (not necessarily dates). I may ask the question indirectly, e.g. "What do you think of graduating students borrowing money from their parents to go on tours before they find jobs?"

I do question the validity of the information they provide if they are too eager to share information about their financial standing - owning properties and shares, and earning high salaries. However, I don't see why anyone should be evasive. It's not like I ask them how much they earn or their net worth. If their spending habits are not good, they can be changed, e.g. some people spend a great deal of money buying every new tech device on the market.

Everyone will always have something that they spend the largest portion of their money on, e.g. cars, watches, bags, shoes, golf, etc. For me, it is on traveling. I think it is foolish to spend money on watches and bags while some people might think I am foolish to spend my money on traveling. They think buying objects are better because everyone can see and touch what they bought, whereas what I bought is an experience. Some people might buy cars because it's the lifestyle that they want or they dislike spending time commuting. Whatever their reasons are for spending their money, it is their choice. And it's my choice to accept or reject a man after considering his spending habits.

Differences in attitudes towards money can cause strain in relationships. I don't wish to change a man. I prefer to be with a man who already has similar attitudes towards money as mine.


Related posts:
[Inappropriate questions for the first date?]
[My dream guy]
[Frugality is a dirty word]
[The desire for designer goods and gadgets]

4 comments:

Rock Hard said...

I am always not very good with money matters until recent years.
Yes, it's true money is a very sensitive subject among friends, relatives and spouses.
Usually from what I observed, it's always one party doing the giving and the other party taking. Like in a couple relationship, a man works and earn money, his wife spends it on luxuries like manicure, hairstyling, facial, spa, shopping for fashion goods etc..
In my case, you already knew my background, I happen to be very lucky. That's all.
Or should I say I am smart to hang out with people who are money wise?

David said...

Yu-Kym,

Great post!

Before I was engaged to my wife, we started discussing finances/ Once engaged we started merging finances and set priorities.

Now married for 20+ years money matters are discussed, and then an agreed plan set in place.

We have avoided many arguments with this area of mutual agreement.

David

I think that most Christians would be better pleased if the Lord
did not inquire into their personal affairs too closely. They
want Him to save them, to keep them happy, and to take them off
to heaven at last, but not to be too inquisitive about their
conduct or services.

-- A. W. Tozer

Yu-Kym said...

Rock Hard, I think you are smart to hang out with people who are money wise AND very lucky to meet them!

David, how did you broach the subject?

David said...

Yu-Kym,

Let's see how well I can remember back 22 years.

Okay I am not sure, but I do believe my not yet fiancée mentioned money. She was asking about how I saved and budgeted for things like car payments and insurance.

Making our first financial plan was fun!

David

Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow.

-- Helen Keller