To figure out your relationship with money, look at your relationship with people. They’re probably similar, writes Kate Murphy for the Wall Street Journal.
Money and love are tangled up in our subconscious.
In relationships and money matters, most tilt toward the insecure, from anxiousness to avoidance.
The anxious use money to be loved, appreciated, and to have people around them.
They’re the guy picking up the check, giving expensive gifts, buying new cars, and wearing pricey clothes.
They move money in and out of investments based on market swings.
The avoidant type saves money so they won’t have to rely on others.
Their generosity comes with strings attached and they resent those who take their money.
For investing, they don’t trust financial advisors or market sentiment.
People can be anxious and avoidant in various degrees, with behavior influenced by upbringing, experiences, and cultural influences.
“The way we’re raised is all we know,” says Daniel Crosby, psychologist, and chief behavioral officer at Brinker Capital Investments in Berwyn. “Just like the fish doesn’t know it’s wet, we don’t know we have a specific money attachment style.”
Ask yourself what your parents taught you about money, about your most joyful and painful money experiences and when you last talked about money with your romantic partner.
If money talked to you, it would probably sound like an influential childhood attachment; a parent, grandparent, neighbor, best friend or mentor.
That person may have withheld money and affection or been extravagant, which affects how you feel about people and money today,
Anxious and avoidant attachment styles tend to attract each other, so couples need to talk about why they behave as they do with money, as they consciously explore a different path of behavior.
Read more about love and money at the Wall Street Journal.