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This recent Marketwatcharticle gotme wondering: how do you folks handle the delicate business of talking aboutmoney and investing with your better half?
I’m a lucky man for many reasons, particularly in this area.My wife Courtney and I are both very comfortable with frank talk about money –always have been, in fact. We both grew up in families where our parents feltit was important to tell us (and showus) how money, budgeting and investing worked, from a very young age. It stillmakes me smile to recall the trip to the store with my Dad to buy thestereo system I had saved up for with my neighborhood lawn-mowing earnings – Iwas 14 years old then. By talking honestly about money in our house, we demystifiedit – which proved smart for multiple reasons. It was easy to discuss the subjectbecause it was so naturally educational. My understanding of money and financesdeepened as my access to money increased. As we all know, more money equalsgreater complication – but I always felt well-prepared to learn whatever Ineeded to next to support my financial goals. Courtney’s experiences growing upwere very similar. So it didn’t take much to get us talking and in sync as acouple.
Still, I get that it’s difficult to broach these subjects ifyou weren’t raised to feel comfortable with it. Our friends include a lot offinancial-services types, so as a group they probably skew unusuallycomfortable with talking turkey about investing. But even so, I have severalfriends who get the willies approaching the topic with their aging parents,say. I also know a few folks where one person in the couple controls thefinances so completely, the other seems clearly in the dark. That situation canget ugly later, particularly if they split up – and as we all know, money isthe #1 reason marriages go south.
What tips have you found helpful to keep lines ofcommunication open about money with your loved ones?
CEO, TradeKing Group
[image: couple by Graham Fletcher on Flickr]
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