A few years ago I worked with a man who was going through a divorce. He and his soon-to-be ex-wife had a kid, and he was coming to terms with his newly single life, and being independent.
He was also dealing with a much different financial situation. His then wife had spent their kids’ entire college savings on online video games – to the tune of $30,000. Gone, just like that.
I was shocked.
$30,000 on video games, right under his nose? To make matters worse, she became a total recluse, and found an online lover. You can’t make this shit up. Of course he decided to end it and left.
My heart broke for the kid. He could very well be in the same position that I’m in, mired in student loan debt, because his mom spent all his college money on online distractions.
Just last week, I was at a café and overheard a woman venting to her friend. You could tell she was pissed.
“He said he was going to stop, but I found out he spent $10,000 on video games and beer last year!”. Her friend was trying to politely console her.
I kept thinking about financial infidelity, or when your partner actively breaks your trust, hides things from you, and spends your money in a selfish and destructive manner.
How can you get over that? When the money is gone, it’s gone.
We like to think that love transcends money, but money is a key player in our relationships. It’s the number one cause of divorce, and people are scared to talk about it. Money becomes a symbol of power, oppression and privilege. People use it to fuel secret desires, hidden addictions, and foolish hobbies. Money can be the demise of your relationship, because unfortunately, sometimes love isn’t all you need.
Make money a key player in your relationship. Have a ménage a trois with it.
Don’t let financial infidelity happen to you. Be honest with each other. Share your interests and hobbies. Come up with a savings plan. Attack your debt. Think of the big picture, and most importantly think of each other. Actions are not without their consequences. A partnership requires trust, and money is not excluded from that equation. Communicate. Again and again and again. Not all of it is easy or fun. But no one wants to feel like they are being duped or becoming resentful of their partner’s actions.
Have you been financially cheated on? Or know someone who has?