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The number one fast track to divorce

December 3, 2012

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Is it sex?  Infidelity?  Arguments over the kids?  No.

Fights over money are the biggest predictor of divorce, according to new research.

A study by Jeffrey Dew at Utah State University found that the more often couples argued about money, the more likely they were to split.

Psychology Today author Leon F Seltzer theorises that this is because arguments about money usually boil down to two irreconciliable positions: the spender vs. the saver.  How can you avoid these damaging battles?

In discussing money issues with your partner, it’s critical that you keep an open mind. Remember, this isn’t about winning a mortal battle, or endlessly debating whose “talking points” are superior. No, it’s about recognizing that your partner’s outlook on money (unless, that is, it’s flagrantly illogical or self-contradictory) may have just as much validity as your own. And, additionally, may be held with just as much pride, conviction, and commitment. Consider also that the two of you may possess different inborn tendencies, temperaments, and experiential histories—and in growing up  have received from your caretakers extremely disparate messages about money. Viewing your marital money problems in such a greatly expanded light may well help you realize that what earlier struck you as simply wrong-headed about your spouse now makes a lot more sense, is more warranted and legitimate.

And of course, the golden rule for any point of difference that threatens to lead to an argument: look for the common ground between you in finding a way forward.

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