According to a study on European consumer payments, which was performed by the international credit management company Intrum, a third of Lithuanians’ romantic relations see financial matters raise tensions. Psychologists explain this through every individual’s desire for safety, which in the contemporary world is greatly linked to money.
For Lithuanians, in relationships, finances raise tensions significantly more often than for average Europeans. In Europe, problems in relationships arise due to financing for every fourth couple.
“Existing tax commitments, mismatches of financial expectations and capacities, financial troubles experienced by one or both partners can, without a doubt, influence personal relations, raise tensions in them. Due to this, personal and family financial discipline, upholding tax commitments in time, income and expense planning help nurture happy relationships, allow to create welfare for the couple,” director of Baltic Operations at Intrum Baltics Lina Šiumetė says.
Meanwhile, psychotherapist Dainius Jakučionis says that one of the fundamental human needs is security and lacking financial stability. Nowadays, this is hard to secure. Firm romantic relations without security and a feeling of comfort, according to him, are hard to imagine, thus when facing financial troubles, challenges can emerge on the relationship front.
“That said, it must be noted that very often it only seems that disagreements and tensions arise namely due to financing. Often it is due to deeper disagreements, questions of personality traits and principles. In other terms, arguments and complaints to your significant other over finances might be just an expression of existing internal problems. Equally, conflicts may be incited just the same by unwashed dishes or many other domestic matters. This does not, however, necessarily mean that unwashed dishes are the source of the couple’s problems. Of course, it could be that the household or financial problems become the main reason for a faltering relationship,” D. Jakučionis says.
The Intrum European Consumer Payment Report has also revealed that 15% of Lithuanians have avoided ending existing romantic relationships due to financial conditions despite otherwise being inclined to do so. D. Jakučionis says that relationships from necessity cannot be sustainable and can hardly make anyone happy.
“Without a doubt, if there are serious problems in the relationship due to which there is a desire to take different paths, but this is not done due to solely pragmatic reasons, such a relationship could burden both sides, cause psychological discomfort. One can try to suppress existing problems, but they do not go away anywhere on their own and can erupt with even greater strength. Such relationships are typically just torturous for people,” D. Jakučionis notes.
According to the psychotherapist, if one feels that finances are raising tensions in a relationship, it is always best to openly discuss this with one’s partner. Nevertheless, according to the European Payment Report, many Lithuanians avoid doing so. An entire quarter of respondents in the country admitted that they struggle to talk openly about finances with their partner.
“In a stable relationship, the partners support and try to understand one another, resolve problems together. As such, any worrying matters, financial ones included, are best resolved by talking candidly, seeking solutions or compromises together. Of course, talking candidly isn’t always easy – it might be intimidating; one of the partners might think that certain things are inherently understandable. Nevertheless, the number of misunderstandings may rise if you do not talk, hurts can pile up and the relationship might face serious problems. As such, you shouldn’t fear to be a little vulnerable and talk about it openly,” D. Jakučionis says.
The Intrum European Consumer Payment Report was prepared by surveying more than 24 thousand consumers in 24 European countries. The study is performed every year to obtain insights into the financial behaviours of European consumers, the expenses they face and their ability to manage household finances.