Why We Keep Our Finances Separate
First of all, to each their own. If you and your partner prefer a joint account, that's fine. But, if you are like me, you'll find benefits in keeping your finances separate.
It's not about commitment
My partner and I have been together for just over ten years now. We started as roommates, friends, so keeping money separate at that point was obvious. I sent her rent money, and she sent me grocery money, whatever the case.
As our relationship matured, unlike many of our married friends, we decided not to merge our finances. In full disclosure, we are not married, but we've been together through all of life's twists and turns, and are just as committed to one another.
Staying independently focused, together
That said, we have different interests, passions, and aspirations. We are individuals, working toward separate goals. But, we support one another along the way, staying independently focused, together.
For us, personal finances are no different. We maintain separate bank accounts and credit cards, and we split rent and utilities. You've done this before, and I'm sure you get the idea.
I don't explain my purchases, nor do I expect to be consulted before my partner spends any of her money. Why does this work? It may be obvious, given this article, but I have a lot of opinions when it comes to money. And this way, I get to have those opinions about my money, without upsetting my partner.
Finances can put a strain on couples
I have experienced the strain that finances can put on couples. In past relationships, and with my friends. Some couples are better than others. I've personally had it bad.
"Why would you buy that when we need money for this?"
"We need a new car."
"When are you going to get that raise at work?"
Perhaps these were signs of other deeper relationship issues. No doubt they were, but finances quickly became the focal point of arguments.
It may not work for everyone, but it may work for you
Before this turns into relationship advice, which is not my goal, let's talk about when this approach may be appropriate.
Keeping your finances apart is easiest when you are both earning separate incomes. That way, you can both focus on your own earnings and budgets.
In contrast, if you have a partner who is not earning, a stay-at-home parent or otherwise. There may not be an easy way to keep things separate, without perhaps giving them an allowance. That could come with its own issues.
It may not work for everyone, but I have personally seen a lot of benefits from keeping separate finances. If you and your partner are struggling with the strains of a joint account, perhaps this will encourage you to try a different approach.
I would encourage you to provide feedback. What is working for you and your partner?