It is no surprise that financial issues are stressful, and consequentially may impact mental health, feelings of security, and well-being. A recent study by Ramses Solutions explored to what extent these issues may affect our relationship health and indicated a few key elements for couples to consider.

If you’re starting your marriage in debt, you’re not alone.

Nearly two-thirds of all marriages start in debt. Forty-three percent of couples married more than 25 years started in debt, while 86 percent of couples married five years or less started in the red — twice the number of their older counterparts.

Financial issues may lead to financial infidelity and dishonesty.

One-third of people who say they argued with their spouse about money say they hid a purchase from their spouse because they knew their partner would not approve.

Communicating with your partner about finances creates a sense of security and helps cultivate a “great” marriage.

Ninety-four percent of respondents who say they have a “great” marriage discuss their money dreams with their spouse, compared to only 45 percent of respondents who say their marriage is “okay” or “in crisis.” Eighty-seven percent of respondents who say their marriage is “great” also say they and their spouse work together to set long-term goals for their money.

Debt stresses us out.

Sixty-three percent of those with $50,000 or more in debt feel anxious talking about their finances. Almost half (47 percent) of respondents with consumer debt say their level of debt creates stress and anxiety.

Financial issues have the potential to stress a relationship to the breaking point.

Arguments regarding finances are the second leading cause of divorce, only second to infidelity.

Debt is a common stress for most Americans that can potentially impact our relationships. Nonetheless, communicating with you partner and financial planning can help to alleviate some of this stress. Look out for our next blog post “5 Ways to Cultivate Financial Literacy in Your Marriage” coming out this Friday!

For more information regarding the findings of the study completed by Ramsey Solutions, see the full report here.