Handcuffed by the Money Taboo

“The silence about money within the family keeps young people from developing financial skills.”

US NEWS 2016

I remember as a young adult in High School Economics (Economics!) getting a Xerox of a check and needing to know how to fill it out. It confused the daylights out of me (as well as the rest of the class (Guns & Butter!?) and I lost complete interest in finances until my mid-thirties when I pulled the reins up and got it together. How much more effective could I have been with my money had we been discusisng it more as someone in my 20s, or heck, even younger 30s? Planning with it, seeing how it can be a means to fullfil a dream. Now, I’m almost shocked at how simple it is once your in control, can discuss it with others and live the journey in your own way. There is so much information available to learn – all you need to know, is that you need to know it. Parents: Talk to your kids! Financial literacy can be scaled just like mathematics in school – start with the basics.

“Even though money, in one form or another, plays such an inextricable role in our lives, it’s still a taboo subject for many adults. And therein lies the point. The reason so many people struggle when it comes to managing and dealing with money is because no one’s talking about it.”

Gary Klaben February 2019

I’m personally fascinated by all of the organizational techniques, methods and tools available to help manage finances. Not everyone is, for sure. I came across the now cliche Dave Ramsey (say what you will) nearly 10 years ago (I have a whole other post brewing about why its important NOT to follow his baby steps), though he did give me SOMETHING to chew on, which at that point in my journey, was critical. He gave me my first financial “to-do” list. A check list, if you will, for those like me who were in over their heads in “all this finance stuff”. I applaud him at least for talking about and simplying a subject usually reserved for pundits, critics and those on the other end of the spectrum.

“In fact, only 35% of Americans talk about money with their friends and peers…by banning money-related discussions, we put ourselves in a position where we’re not privy to each other’s successes and struggles, and as such, can’t learn from them.”

The Motley Fool January 2019

Saying this another way, 65% of Americans DON’T talk about money with their friends and peers. I challenge us to move the needle on this statistic at every opportunity. Let’s be a little more transparent each day, and enjoy the bidirectional flow of advice, ideas, and experiences. Building up walls doesn’t tend to work in corporations or countries. It probably won’t work for us either.

“According to data from Fidelity Investments, 43 percent of Americans don’t know how much money their spouses make.”

New York Times 2018

From what I’m given to understand, communication on finances can make or break an otherwise amazing relationship. I’d be curious if this is you – is there a reason that money is a taboo subject in your marriage? Does this put a strain or relief on your relationship?

Here’s the beautiful thing — it’s becoming less and less taboo to talk about this stuff.

Wallet Hacks 2015

Silence on any topic can be a tool of oppression. To help combat this oppressive silence, I’m learning ways to share my journey, and talk about money. I am showing my real numbers, real budget categories and exposing my processes and I learn and grow.

Let’s do this! What reservations do you, or do you not have when discussing money?

Is it specific topic (like salary, income, spending, prices), is it a feeling associated with it (guilt, pride, gauche, rudenss, humbleness, excitement) or something else all together? There are some great articles available with a quick Google Search on how to get started talking about money.

Leave your answers in the comments below, or jump on Instagram and join the conversation.


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