Any time you are about to make a big financial decision like buying a house or a car, you should always run the idea by your partner first. If you suddenly come home with a brand new car that requires an additional $500 per month expense, that is never okay. This amount of money will mean that the both of you will most likely struggle to pay the bills. Also, if your partner suddenly decides to make a huge financial decision (like buying a new car) the odds are that you will have to make sacrifices in order to satisfy your partner’s desires. Something like this is incredibly selfish, and it is a sign that they never took your thoughts or feelings into consideration first.
Many experts say that in order for a married couple to have a successful financial relationship, they need to have a joint bank account. It is fine to still maintain your independent accounts, but opening the joint bank account is good for a few reasons. You can use it for the mortgage payment, utilities, and other shared expenses. This way, you both have access to the account, and you know that bills are getting paid on time. Everything is transparent. If one partner is in control of everything, and they never let you see the balance, this is an indicator of financial abuse.
Each person can still have their autonomy by maintaining their own personal accounts for their own purchases. In fact, everyone should have their own account that their spouse does not have access to, in case of a divorce. But even with these accounts, it should never be a problem to just pass your phone over to your partner and show them the balance. If your partner has never been willing to show you, it probably means they are hiding something.
In the last entry, we talked about being open and honest with one another about your bank account balances. There are some people out there who even feel comfortable enough to swap username and passwords to each other’s online banking. If you feel comfortable with this, that’s fine. But there is a huge difference between letting someone see how much you have in your account and a partner demanding that they give you the password. Swapping private information should be a choice. And if one person is overly animate about having access to your private accounts, this is a red flag that they may have bad intentions.
Some people are lucky enough to have inherited valuable things from friends and family. Maybe it’s a car, artwork, collectables, or a home. If your partner breaks these items knowing full-well how valuable they truly are, it is very literally destroying one of your assets. Or, maybe they are destroying something like your cell phone, knowing that you now have to spend hundreds of dollars in order to get a replacement. Even if they never lay a finger on you, this is a form of violence. It is often one of the first indicators that the relationship will get progressively worse as time goes on.
When you are working, your partner should have respect for the fact that you need time to get your job done. You need to concentrate on the tasks in front of you, and maintain a professional appearance in front of your boss and co-workers. So if your spouse is frequently calling, texting, or even showing up to your workplace unannounced, this is a form of harassment. In most cases, you will not be able to get your work done if they are constantly distracting you, and it may even lead to you getting fired.
When you first begin dating someone, it might take a while to find out just how much the other person makes. Unfortunately, some people never get over that shyness of asking how much they get paid, what their savings account is like, credit score, etc. Some abusive partners will try to get away with keeping this a secret for a long time. If they are withholding this information, or become very dodgy, it is often a sign that they will be incredibly difficult in other parts of the financial dynamic down the line in the relationship.
Just because you are married to someone does not give them the right to open a credit card in your name. This is still identity theft. Once you are married, it becomes all too easy for your partner to gain access to your personal information like your social security number and address. Since these credit cards are linked to your credit score, it could completely ruin you as an individual. If your partner does this, it is not okay. And if you suspect that it may be happening, check out CreditSesame. They will tell you how many accounts you have open, as well as your credit score.
Some couples choose to divvy out the bills to one another, instead of paying everything from a joint bank account. For example, the husband pays the electric while the wife pays for cable and Internet. An abusive partner will either threaten or make good on the act of not paying the bills. This is especially when they refuse to pay for head and electricity. Or, if they refuse to pay for credit cards, it means that your credit score will begin to go down.