When you marry someone, you share your lives together. This includes sharing your finances and making financial decisions together. But if you disagree on how to manage your finances, you can cause stress in your marriage.

Stress over money can often be a major factor in divorce. Here are a few ways finances can add stress to a marriage:

  • Lack of communication – If you don’t talk about money with your spouse before marriage, you may marry someone who doesn’t share your financial views. This can lead to stress if, for example, you prefer to save money for expenses like houses or cars while your spouse prefers to spend money on vacations and experiences.
  • Debt – Debt can lead to frustration and stress in your marriage. You may feel like you are stuck paying off debt your spouse brought into the marriage. Or you may both have contributed to debt while married. Either way, the debt in your marriage may make you feel trapped and frustrated.
  • Pop-up expenses – Life can happen. You may have to unexpectedly pay for emergency medical care or travel. Your roof might start leaking or your car might break down causing you to pay thousands of dollars for repairs. If you and your spouse don’t agree on how to handle these expenses, you can add conflict to your marriage.
  • Major purchases – Major purchases like houses or cars are expensive and can cause strain on your finances. Conflict can arise if one spouse makes a major purchase without talking to the other spouse.

Dealing with finances on your own can be frustrating. If you’re married, finances can become even more frustrating. Each financial decision you make can affect your spouse. And if the two of you can’t agree on finances, you may find yourself facing divorce.