Studies show that money is the number one source of arguments for couples and those arguments are the best indicator of divorce. It is very important for couples to be able to understand and respect each other around the difficult topic of money. It’s important to be able to talk about money in a calm, healthy way. Money Habitudes cards are a fun, easy way to get people to talk about money within relationship education. They’re used by marriage educators, relationship coaches and marriage mentors because they:
- Are easy to learn and to teach as a marriage educator, relationship coach or marriage mentor — and the cards are simple enough that couples can do them on their own too.
- Show couples that they have legitimate differences in how they view and use money; couples come to see each other’s perspective.
- Appeal to men and women because of their tactile, hands-on format and low-stress game-like feel; people associate cards with fun and being social.
- Provide couples with a common, non-threatening language to talk about money issues rather than resorting to destructive name-calling.
- Give couples a framework in which to share potential slights, miscommunications and money secrets in a constructive way.
- Allow couples to improve their communication and understanding elsewhere in their relationship. After all, fighting about money is often a proxy for other important issues like power, love, control, freedom, status, generosity.
- Are a way to get couples to talk about money and make joint financial decisions, leading them to manage money better. This may mean feeling comfortable to make a budget, share duties like paying the bills or meeting with a financial planner.
- Build trust and understanding in relationships — as well as with marriage educators, relationship coaches and marriage mentors.
- Work across the spectrum of age, income and education.
- Complement other relationship skills programs (e.g., communication, conflict resolution, etc.) and can be used as an icebreaker, integrated module or standalone activity.
How it’s used
- Icebreaker or conversation starter. The cards are easy-to understand and non-threatening so people feel comfortable discussing money. This can be in a counseling, classroom or small-group format. Couples can also do the activity on their own.
- Workshops or relationship education seminars. Money Habitudes cards are a fun, insightful but low-risk way to engage people around the difficult but crucial topic of money. While the class may be a standalone, it is often included within a series that touches on other relationship skills and topics.
- Marriage mentors and marriage sponsors. The cards give marriage mentors a fun, easy way to work with engaged or newlywed couples around the topic of money, making the session more relaxed and interesting.