By Marli Naidoo
Constantly being cooped up together and financial pressures caused by Covid-19 and the lockdown regulations have resulted in many marriages falling apart and an increase in the divorce rate.
In some cases, couples found that their financial challenges have led to a deepening of their relationship and stronger marital ties. However, this applies mostly to couples in the higher and middle-income groups. Families in the lower income group who are experiencing serious financial pressures during this time find it much harder to focus on preserving their marriage.
However, it is possible to come out of this stronger and even more committed. Research has shown that regardless of the couple’s socio-economic status, practising relationship maintenance behaviours during stressful times result in happy marriages. These couples respect each other, they are there for one another, and they show love and affection for one another despite the difficult times.
It is a time to stand together and work as a team to find solutions. By blaming each other for financial difficulties will only drive a wedge between you. Your partner is not your enemy; he or she is your ally. Couples can get through difficult times more easily if they change their perspective.
Two individuals in a relationship can sometimes approach the management of their money completely differently. These differences in perspective can sometimes seem like an insurmountable obstacle. The best way to overcome these differences is to enlist the help of an outsider. A financial advisor can help you to compromise and to meet each other somewhere in the middle.
However, we should never underestimate the power of communication. Money can be an uncomfortable topic to discuss, but it is necessary to talk to each other. Your partner cannot guess what is going on in your head. You can put your heads together and decide together which expenses are not essential right now and work out how to keep your head above water.
Use the stress you experience as a catalyst to make positive changes in your marriage. It can be an opportunity to grow closer together instead of drifting apart.
Science Daily: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/04/200421090533.htm
For Your Marriage: https://www.foryourmarriage.org/how-financial-difficulties-affect-marriage/
BBC News: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-55146909