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sopa
Casual Contributor

How to help a partner manage money?

Hello, I’m seeking some advice for how to support my partner to manage his money.

 

My partner has bipolar and is quite impulsive with his spending, even when he’s not experiencing mania. He has steady employment and regular income. But from a combination of high living costs, impulsivity, and alcohol use, he’ll go through a whole paycheck in three days. Then for the next ten I’m getting us coffees and dinner, sending him $20 here and there, buying him a six-pack, etc.

It’s tough not to resent him for this and I want to be better with my boundaries around sending cash and covering costs. I also want to know how to help him be more organised and less impulsive with his spending — but how to do this in a way where he won’t feel judged or attacked? 

Would really appreciate and advice or similar experiences. Thank you! 

4 REPLIES 4

Re: How to help a partner manage money?

Hey @sopa ,

 

It sounds tough that he cannot manage his money. At the same time, does he want to be able to manage his money?

 

There are financial wellness counsellors he can see who can probably guide him a little (if he's up for it).

 

Another option may be with his paycheck, part goes into one bank account that harder to access i.e. he doesn't activate the bank card, and then have another account for spending where he does have a card.

 

That way, what he can't see, he can't use.

 

For me, my pay is divided into several bank accounts e.g. mortgage, savings, spending. This is done automatically with HR do I don't need to do anything else.

 

Do you think any of these suggestions might work?

Re: How to help a partner manage money?

Managing finances can be challenging, especially with bipolar disorder involved. It's understandable to feel frustrated sometimes. Setting clear boundaries around money could be helpful, like agreeing on a budget together or discussing expenses beforehand. Approach the topic gently, focusing on support rather than judgment. Maybe suggest organizing finances together or seeking advice from a financial counselor who understands mental health challenges. Many others have navigated similar situations, so you're not alone. Take care!

Re: How to help a partner manage money?

Hi @sopa 

 

Money can be a tough topic to discuss with anyone, but it sounds like its a conversation you need to have with your partner. Its good that you have recognised the need for boundaries around your money too.

 

As @tyme mentioned is there any ability to split your partners money so they only have access to a certain amount for their personal spending and some is reserved for other things like bills/ groceries/general life expenses?

 

Not trying to plug the book here but The Barefoot Inverstor was really helpful for me when I realised I needed to manage my money better.  It might be worth a read/listen for you both.  Every pay I now split my money into multiple accounts and have 2 cards - one for general expenses like groceries and fuel, the other for more fun stuff like going out for a meal or going to a movie etc, and the rest is in another account where all my direct debits come out from.  Its like I give myself an "allowance" each pay and when its gone it gone!

 

Warm regards

SkySeeker22

Re: How to help a partner manage money?

Hey @sopa ,

 

How's it all going with your partner managing money? Any changes?

 

Hope you are okay.

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