42% Engage in THIS Kind of InfidelityFully two out of five U.S. couples cheat. And it doesn't involve sex. It involves money. Financial infidelity can create the same emotional and economic consequences and can be just as devastating as sexual infidelity, according to a nationwide survey conducted by Harris Interactive for the National Endowment for Financial Education.
Financial infidelity typically involves secret--and often excessive--credit card spending, as well as hiding receipts and purchased goods.
It can take a while to get caught, but the reckoning comes when a bad credit score surfaces as you're applying for a loan, the credit card is maxed out or a credit card payment is missed.
"When you agree to combine finances in a relationship, you're also agreeing to a certain degree of cooperation and transparency in your money management. It's easier to achieve joint financial goals when your money is pooled and working together. Yet we're seeing the implicit promise of collaboration destroyed by financial game-playing," says Ted Beck, president and CEO of NEFE.
"Financial infidelity hurts regardless of its scale," he adds. "Hiding or lying about small amounts of money can damage a relationship just as effectively as a high-dollar deceit. In fact, in all cases of this deception, people affected say it impacted their relationship in some way--almost always negatively. It causes arguments, erosion of trust, separation or even divorce."
Who are these financial cheaters and how do they cheat?
What can you do to stop financial infidelity in your relationship? The National Endowment for Financial Education advises a three-step solution:
2. Talk regularly about how you are managing your money.
3. Do not keep financial secrets from each other.