This past weekend I conducted a random, unscientific survey. I approached and asked total strangers to share with me the first thing that came to mind when they thought about love + money.
Thankfully, the people I approached were all quite open to my experiment…and surprisingly very candid!
I plan to share a few of the responses on this week’s free webinar – Money, A Menage a Trois. (If you haven’t registered and you want tips + strategies on how to make this love triangle work, and you’re also curious about the responses from my guerilla-style survey, click here.)
Do men + women approach money differently?
I wasn’t necessarily surprised by any of the survey responses, but I was caught off-guard by my reaction to a few of them. An answer I would have expected from a woman was given to me by a man; likewise, an answer I would have expected from a man was given to me by a woman.
This topic is my ballywag and I’ve worked with clients (straight/gay; married/unmarried) in all sorts of situations – but I had to come face-to-face with the reality that gender biases and stereotypes (even my own) are slow to fade away.
When you reflect on how you manage the whole love + money thing, what do you notice about your ideas of gender roles and responsibilities? Is there synergy between your ideas and your reality? Or, are things completely out of whack with what you expect/ed?
Do you find yourself subscribing to what real, scientific research confirms (even in the 21st century) about our perception on how men and women view money:
Do you believe the common perception that men are hierarchical, competitive, and when it comes to money think in terms of big-picture and are long-term oriented. Whereas, women are perceived as being cooperative and democratic and more focused on day-to-day finances?
(By the way, there’s data to suggest the total opposite, as well!)
Either way, how have these perceptions played out in your life and/or in your selection of your mate?
First you talk…then what?
I may not have been too surprised by the responses to my survey, but I was intrigued by one woman’s response. So much so, I wish we could have gone for a cup of coffee and chatted more. To my query, she said…
“We don’t talk about it and we keep everything separate….I don’t want to talk about it because then I’d feel like I have to do something.”
Wow! This correlation that she drew – that the act of talking implies taking action (and presumably to do something you don’t want) – totally fascinated me. Yet, as serendipity would have it, a client sent me an email with a link to this New York Times article within hours of my brief exchange with this stranger. And wouldn’t you know…the woman in the couple profiled revealed the exact same sentiment as this stranger. The stranger was not alone in her apprehension.
And is it just me, or do you, too, find it interesting that in this very small sampling, it is two women who express the desire to avoid talking about money?
So you know I have to ask…
What conversations, if any, are you are avoiding because you believe if you talk about it (whatever it may be), you’ll have to follow-up and take action? And, that the action you’ll need to take will be something unpleasant?
The Rona Barrett nature in me totally wanted to ask a follow-up question to this stranger, but I got the sense that in answering my question, she felt she had already revealed more than she intended. So, I respected the boundary.
If I had the chance, though, here’s what I would have asked:
What would it take for you to initiate the conversation anyway?
You see, you must be willing to ask (and be asked) those awkward, uncomfortable questions in order to “reconcile your different money philosophies,” choices and behaviors. Having a system helps. That is why I’m hosting a free webinar on May 2nd – Money a Menage a Trois.
I believe that at the end of the day being able to talk about money – to have the “right” conversations that include recognizing and acknowledging gender biases, stereotypes and differences is absolutely necessary if you want this whole love + money thing to work…well.
If you want to create the space for love + money to show up as best it possibly can in your life, you need to talk about this (inevitable) intersection and then give yourself permission to envision the best possible outcome!
I have a system that can help you achieve this result, and it will have a profound impact on your emotional and financial security. I’m sharing this 3-phase/5-step system during the upcoming webinar. Hope you’ll join me on May 2nd.
p.s. in case you’re wondering – yes, this webinar is for single, unattached folks, too 🙂
p.p.s. enrollment in my new program – Master the Language of Love + Money – is coming soon!