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More Money Can Break Your Marriage

Will more money make your marriage better? Maybe or maybe not. Many couples discover that a financial windfall can rock their relationship just as much as any hardship. According to recent research, big changes in finances often shake the foundations of a relationship. But it isn’t just the loss of money that provides a test. Both gaining and losing money can hurt a marriage. But, surprisingly, competing visions for how to use a windfall can be more harmful than financial hardships.

A marriage counselor told journalists about working with a couple who came into a windfall from the husband’s splashy new job. However, working together to decide how to spend the money revealed enormous gaps in their communication. The counselor said, “All the joy and the excitement got wiped out, they were so focused on what the windfall will buy from a materialistic standpoint, and not focusing on the accomplishment. That really rocked their marriage.”

So, all the new research suggests big financial swings in either direction can shake couples much the same way. Both scenarios can expose fault lines in the marriage that had previously been withstood or ignored.

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