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In a survey of 1,010 couples conducted by Money Magazine (2014), 70% of couples confirmed to have argued about money. Among the issues they argued about were spending, lies and not telling each other about financial decisions. Regardless to say, this sample survey shows a bigger reality – financial decisions and problems are the number one trigger for arguments among couples in the USA. That’s not all; it also plays an important role when it comes to causes of divorce – it ranks among the top three. Many couples have been fighting over money and lying to each other, many parents have been bribing their children in exchange for good behavior, and there are cases of children who have been stealing from their parents. Many families have been losing their priorities and allowing money matters to break them apart. One blames and criticizes the other; those with purchasing power disrespect and humiliates those who depend on them. The lack of communication and understanding makes matters worse each day, and the family that was supposed to work together as a team fights each other as enemies over financial problems.
However, the family is meant to be the haven of a person. Coming home should be like recharging the batteries. Each one regains strength, helps and encourages each other. After all, it is in times of hardship that families ought to be the most united because a united family can conquer and grow.
If you see that your family has been divided and at each other’s throat, do not lose hope. There is a solution. You can change things for the better. It will require your determination and not giving up; and of course, you are not alone.
The first step to take is to understand your priorities; make God the center, the base of your home. That will give you and your family a steady foundation on which to build your lives. Seek His guidance and help, and encourage your loved ones to do the same. A family that prays together stays together.
Money cannot replace you. Material gifts will not be able to replace your love and attention. Do not neglect your family for the sake of work and money. With proper planning and if each member of the family works together and helps each other, you will be able to reach your financial goals without neglecting yourself and your loved ones.
According to the Stress in America TM survey (2014), worries with money were the top cause of stress; 41% said they lost patience in the prior month due to financial problems. However, things don’t have to be this way. Getting angry and disrespecting our family will not solve the problem. It will just make it worse. Instead, focus your energy on solving the real financial problem.
Write down long-term and short-term goals and a plan of how to address the problem you are facing. Create a plan of action, where everyone in the family can participate and help. Also create a budget for your family expenses, making a list of all the income you receive and the bills that need to be paid. Write down amounts dedicated to purchasing items the family needs. If possible, also separate an amount to be saved. Give every dollar a purpose. Budgets are to help you and your family to stay on track and avoid increasing debts and spending what you do not have.
In the same Stress in America survey, 36% said to feel uncomfortable to speak about money. However, money is a part of our everyday life, and if a family is to stay united, they need to talk about it, without making accusations or threats. Your family is on your side; you are part of the same team. Get everyone involved, encourage them and insist on talking things through with respect and understanding. Have regular meetings with your family, distribute tasks to each one according to their age and talents.
Teach your children the basics of financial principles. Explain to them what they can do to make things better for themselves and the family. Give them responsibilities according to their age, encourage them to work for what they want, to save, and to accomplish their goals.
If your spouse does not understand or if your children do not cooperate, then keep self-control and patience and remember that your family members are not the problem. Do not give up; you can overcome any situation through the power of faith. The doors of The Universal Church are open daily, and pastors are available to offer counseling and to pray for you. On Mondays, we have a meeting dedicated to helping you succeed in your financial life, and on Sundays, we pray for the family. Contact us today and visit one of our locations near you to fight for the unity of your family.