Secrets within a marriage are never a good thing. When one spouse is secretly spending money that the other is unaware of, the matter can lead to serious marital trouble, including divorce. A poll in 2013 found that among those who hide purchases, nearly a third do so in order to prevent their partner from becoming angry. An additional third lied because they knew that their partner would disapprove.
Only about half of respondents purchased things that would be considered frivolous. The other half used credit cards to pay for necessities, such as rent, utilities and other living expenses. The survey found that women were as much as 60 percent more likely to hide spending than men. However, when men have hidden spending, the amount spent was higher, on average. This isn’t a gender problem; it is a trust problem.
A study conducted in July 2013 suggests that arguments about money are among the top predictors of divorce. For those couples who harbor secret spending, this can be a serious combination. Not only does secret spending degrade the trust between partners, it can also seriously undermine the family’s financial stability. So, it might be good idea to start an open dialogue about hidden spending if divorce is something you are trying to avoid.
For spouses who suspect that their partner may be hiding his or her spending habits, it is important to get to the bottom of the issue right away. If divorce is the end result, spouses should be aware that a partner who would hide their spending could also hide assets during a divorce proceeding which could lead to even more distrust during the court process. This makes it crucial to proceed with caution and attention to the financial aspects of divorce, in order to achieve a fair and favorable settlement.