An interesting blog post that appeared Monday on the New York Times' Bucks blog takes a personal look at some of the tensions that might come up between husbands and wives when they are talking about money. The blog by certified financial planner Carl Richards, Spousal Chatter and Bankruptcy Terror, examines how men and women talk differently about money and how these differences can lead to issues in a marriage.
Rather than let miscommunication escalate into an argument, the author recommends stepping back from a conversation and recognizing how each side of the couple may be bringing their own baggage from their life experiences into the conversation. For example, Richards writes that when his wife starts talking about a new kitchen remodel done by a friend or another friend's family vacation to Hawaii, he immediately starts feeling tense and doing money calculations in his head.
He says that he is learning to realize that his wife is not necessarily saying she wants to remodel the kitchen or take a vacation, she is just talking about things that interest her and trying to have a fun conversation with her husband. So, rather than respond to her by saying, "We can't afford that," Richards says that he reminds himself that she is just "talking about life" and not about money.
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