Financial InfidelityYour sweetheart may be keeping a secret from you, and it's not that there's some other guy or gal, or that you really do look fat in those pants. It's the truth about their money.

According to new online poll from the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, 24% of respondents would not tell their spouse if they were experiencing financial difficulties.

Why would a spouse keep mum over something so significant? The NFCC data showed that 9% said they would keep silent because knowing about the issue would worry their partner, 7% said they'd keep it secret because telling would damage their relationship, while 8% said, with a certain circular logic, that they wouldn't tell their spouse because their spouse had no idea about the debt.

The results surprised Gail Cunningham, spokeswoman for the NFCC -- but perhaps not in the way you'd expect. "I was most surprised that more people did not hide debt from their spouses," she told DailyFinance. Still, she finds the percentage of those who would hide a money problem troubling, she says.

The silver lining is the 76% who would share the information with their spouse. Two heads are better than one when it comes to solving financial issues.

Those who stay quiet though, should realize that silence is not golden and in fact can be a clue, that all is not well in marriage-land. "A reluctance to share financial information in a marriage could not lead to anything positive, and is possibly a sign of a deeper underlying problem in the marriage itself," says Cunningham.

If you're having trouble starting a tough money talk with your honey, the NFCC offers these tips:
  • Don't approach the subject in the heat of battle. Instead, set aside a time that is convenient and non-threatening for both parties.
  • Do make it a casual conversation about a serious subject, respecting the fact that each person has valid opinions and concerns.
  • Do be honest about your current financial situation. If things have gone south, continuing the same lifestyle that was possible before the change in income is simply unrealistic.
  • Do be open to adjusting your lifestyle. If spending cutbacks or second jobs are necessary, resist whining. It's likely that your situation will be temporary, and you could end up regretting the pity party you hosted.
  • Don't hide income or debt. This is known as financial infidelity. Instead, bring financial documents, including a recent credit report, pay stubs, bank statements, insurance policies, debts and investments to the table.
  • Don't point the finger of blame. That's a real conversation stopper.
  • Do probe to understand long-held financial attitudes, often present since childhood and ingrained by observing how parents addressed money issues.
  • Do acknowledge that one may be a saver and one a spender, understanding that there are benefits to both mindsets and agreeing to learn from each other's tendencies.

Financial stress is one of the main causes of divorce, warns Cunningham. "Taking action now could prevent a disaster later."

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redrubberball3

One month ago, my wife and I separated after 16 years. She repeatedly demonstrated an inability to manage any amount of money. I repeatedly bailed her out to no avail. I'll retire in 14 months. Retirement has been diminished considerably but the beauty of the situation is that my half of the chips are safe from her. I wouldn't give you 2 cents for 90% of all women today

October 20 2011 at 11:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Hytjtj

My best friend ,she just has announced her wedding with a millionaire old man Ronald who is the CEO of a MNC ! They met via ----SeekSugarDad.CОM---.- ..it is the largest and best club for rich man date with young and beautiful woman and their admirers to chat online. …you don’t have to be rich there ,but you may meet one ,maybe you wanna check it out or tell your friends !
What surprises me most in the article is how many people actually have the common sense to hide a financial problem - since financial issues are the #1 relationship killer. My advice? If the money issue is not so large it can't be easily rectified by one person in say, under a year, keep it to yourself.

October 08 2011 at 3:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
tsimpson2333

A prime example of how different today's couples are as compared to the older generation. I am mariied 43 years (yes, same wife) and we never had separate bank accounts (no her money, his money), we shared everything. We were joined at the hip. Of course my wife was a stay home mom for most of our marriage, but today since I have been retired for 25 yrs. she is the bread winner (I am 69). In fact I am quite proud of her, she is earning a very good salary, has earned her own pension (and vested) and has her own 401(k). I think the only true way to accumulate some sort of wealth is to work together. By working together as partners, I think it kept us married. We raised two children and sent them to college. I guess times changed and there are too many distractions.

October 05 2011 at 11:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Andy

I'd cheat with the blonde in the back ground of the picture............um....financially........yep

October 05 2011 at 7:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
WMEY

What surprises me most in the article is how many people actually have the common sense to hide a financial problem - since financial issues are the #1 relationship killer. My advice? If the money issue is not so large it can't be easily rectified by one person in say, under a year, keep it to yourself.

October 05 2011 at 5:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Greg and Mel

Megan200naud, I agree people with no common sense can ruin marriages, but going to collage and earning a degree does not have anything what so ever to do with it. Trust and honesty.....yes, is a must! Communication is important as well. Having a degree has never hurt anybody and is a very good thing.

October 05 2011 at 4:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
star1220

Well thank goodness I dont have that problem if Im scraped so is my hubby on the other hand , my hubby does not share the same sentiment as I
do but he better get on board or start swimming lol

October 05 2011 at 3:59 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
megan200naud

I get so tired of phyco babble. My mother always put alittle (coupon) money away. She paid cash for my fathers first boat. She also paid for my fathers Imperial with silver dollars that she had put away (If I had all those silver dollars today). She always told us " Put alittle money away, forget about it- keep adding to it - then when you really neeed something you will not have to barrow from the bank." She was right. They were married for 50+ years untill death do part. My father always said "Momma always finds a way to surprise us when needed". It is people with degrees and no common sence that is ruining marriages. Trust and honesty makes a marriage good, but stashing away alittle for good use one day works too!

October 05 2011 at 2:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
chiefofsmoke37

FINANCES R MAJOR CAUSE OF DIVORCE-ONE WILL ALWAYS SPEND AND THE OTHER A JEALOUS MISER TRYING TO HOLD THINGS TOGETHER-LOVE IS LIKE MAYONAISSE- IF U LEAVE IT OUT IT GOES BAD AND SEPARATES

October 05 2011 at 2:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Garbage

Hell my ex did that to me 15 years ago, lied, 15k in credit card bills while we had the money in the bank to pay them off. Then she cashed out her pension without my knowledge. Bitch is gone and still fvcked in the head. Good riddance.

October 05 2011 at 1:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply