Some say it’s a big no-no for couples to argue about money – or anything – in front of the kids. But my wife and I do it from time to time. And we think it’s just fine. Maybe you should too.
My wife and I approach money from different “default mode” perspectives. I like to spend it. She likes to save it.
To be honest, I’d be very happy to save more money – IF we had just a little more of it. And my wife would be very happy to spend more money – IF we had just a little more of it, too.
So when we sit down from time to time to review our finances and work on our money goals we often have very lively discussions.
One time, one of our teenage sons asked, “Why are you guys arguing about money so much?”
I looked at him with furrowed eyebrows and said, “What do you mean we’re arguing about money? We’re not arguing. We’re just having a conversation.”
He seemed to think that because we debated each other quite a bit and got a little frustrated with each other…that we were arguing.
But no, we weren’t really arguing. Just debating. Having a conversation. Sometimes eventually agreeing. And sometimes agreeing to disagree.
And we lived to tell about it. Because we love each other and are committed to each other, no matter what.
There’s a big difference between arguing and fighting
And we want our kids to see that couples can have serious disagreements and debates about money or other issues without fighting, yelling, screaming, walking away, or slamming doors.
After 25+ years of marriage, we’ve discovered that over time, things change. The times we live in certainly change. And sometimes our views on money and other issues change, and our expectations change too.
But we’re committed to navigating those changes together – in love. And we’re committed to equipping our kids to be able to do the same so they’ll know what a healthy marriage looks like.
So that’s why we talk about – and sometimes maybe even “argue” about – money in front of the kids from time to time.
And why we hug and kiss each other when those conversations are over, and thank each other for the discussion. And why I brag about my wife in front of the kids and remind them how blessed I am to have her as my wife, and how blessed they are to have her as a mom.
And why sometimes…sometimes…our money discussions or “arguments” even end up in a little romance, too. Because my wife thinks that budgets are sexy.
What about you? Do you think budgets are sexy? Um, I mean, do you ever talk about – or maybe even argue about – money in front of your kids?
This article was originally published on January 5, 2013, and updated on February 19, 2019.