You work hard for the money you make. At least, most of the time. Yes?
Maybe you’re getting married. Or you are married. Or you’re thinking about it. But you want to keep your finances separate.
After all, what you make is yours and what your partner makes is theirs. Yes?
Plus, you want the freedom to buy what you want. Who wants to “ask” their spouse if they can buy something. Are we all 13 again??
Actually – we’ve realized that attitude sets the stage for more harm than good. And from how we see it – there are far more pros than cons when it comes to merging your finances in marriage.
Is there a learning curve to merging? You bet!
[Next week, Justin’s going to blog about how it works for us and how he gets over his hate for budgeting–ha!]
How Sharing Bank Accounts Makes Our Marriage Stronger:
Sharing Finances Aligns Our Direction as a Couple
You’ve got dreams. Your spouse has dreams. You’ve got goals. Your spouse has goals. Where do you see yourself in a year, 5 years, 10 years? Or next month?
Yes, life happens, plans change and we can’t always see what’s ahead. But – whether we are intentional about it or not – we are headed somewhere. Where do you want to be heading? What will you need to get you there, finance-wise?
Maybe you want to start a business one day. Maybe you are anticipating a career change. Or hoping for parenthood. Maybe you want to stay at home with kids one day. Or maybe you don’t want kids at all. Maybe you want to see more of the world or go back to school.
Whatever your dreams and goals are as individuals, marriage merges them and makes you a team.
Without intentionally aligning your financial direction as a couple around shared goals and dreams, you become competitors, not teammates.
Sharing Finances Unites Your Values
You want a new truck. She wants to redo the kitchen. You want a new spring wardrobe. He wants a family vacation. You want Heinz ketchup. She wants no-name. You want to donate your tax return to a worthy cause. He wants to put it against the mortgage.
The scenarios are literally endless.
You and your spouse are different. That’s probably why you love him or her! Your differences will be reflected in your spending habits.
And when you’re married, differences causes tension. And it should, because not all tension is bad. Good tension holds things together and propels things forwards.
Sharing your finances causes you to bring your differences to the table and have a conversation about what you are going to value as a couple.
Bottom line, you can’t value everything, and you’re going to have to make some compromises, but the continuous conversation will keep you united.
Sharing Finances is at the Heart of Sharing Your Lives
This might sound a bit blunt… But when you marry someone, you commit to uniting your life with theirs. Until you die. Literally.
Why would you want to be united in every way but financially? Jesus actually said something incredibly insightful about money and our hearts.
“Where your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” – Matt 6:21
You don’t have to be a Jesus follower in order to see the truth there. Where our resources are is where our heart will be.
Our heart follows our resources.
Our bank account (and schedule – topic for another day!) reflect what we value. And what you value reflects who you are. So – what does your bank account say about who you are?
If you’re married, sharing your finances is at the heart of sharing your lives.
In our next post, we’ll share how this looks for us… from budget nights to spending habits.
We don’t always get it right, sometimes budgeting is the last thing we want to do.
Sometimes we overspend.
Sometimes we disagree.
But we keep coming back to the table again and again because we want our lives to be united and aligned. We’re a team. We’re in this together.
We want our bank account to reflect our hearts.
How has does money impact your relationships? We’d love to know. Leave a comment.