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Overcoming financial infidelity: When 'hiding is dividing'

Utah Are you acting shady when it comes to spending? If so, you’re not alone. A new Bankrate study shows 42% of people are keeping financial secrets from their partner.

Known as financial infidelity, the term only applies to married or couples living together.

“It’s an attempt to deceive with your dollars and cents. It’s not that people mean to do it, but often it’s an inferiority they have or concern about having control of some of their own money,” explained financial expert Derrick Kinney. “But it leads to distrust, and it can really break solid relationships over purchases.”

By The Numbers

  • 37% said privacy and/or control over their finances was their motivation
  • 33% said the topic never came up and/or they never felt the need to share
  • 28% said the were too embarrassed to share it with their partners
  • 17% said they wanted to be prepared in the the event the relationship ends poorly 
  • 14% said they don't trust their partner with money

Signs of Financial Infidelity

  • If your spouse races to the mailbox every day. “That’s where all the evidence – the credit card statements, the bills – all of the statement they’re trying to hide lie,” said Kinney.
  • Discovering a secret savings account, an undisclosed checking account or bill your spouse didn’t tell you about.


“The key is to talk about money. Sometimes money is lumped in with sex and religion. We don't talk about money and relationships crumble because of it. Instead, have a monthly money date. It's the first step to rebuilding trust. Just talk to each other about your money and goals. That way, money is a part of the marriage, not an enemy of the marriage," said Kinney. "When you're hiding, you're dividing."  




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