How Do You Rate on the Money Conflict Scale?

When it comes to money and marriage, do you and your honey talk through issues? Or scream about them? Or just ignore them? Communicating clearly about money is critical, so take this quiz to see how you score on the money conflict scale.

Quiz Instructions

  1. Write the numbers 1 through 10 on a sheet of paper.
  2. Record your answer (A, B or C) for each question
  3. See SCORING at the bottom of this quiz

1. When you go shopping together for household items, you:
a. stick to the list you created before you left home.
b. have a “heated discussion” over luxuries you each want.
c. don’t go shopping together-for good reason.
2. You’ve had yet another fight about money. This happens:
a. occasionally
b. about once a month
c. at least a couple of times a week
3. When there’s a pile of unpaid bills, you and your honey:
a. sit down together at a set time and calmly take care of business.
b. fight about who’s supposed to pay what and when.
c. avoid them until the collection calls start coming in.
4. When the conversation turns to money, you:
a. have an open, honest discussion.
b. discover that at least one of you doesn’t know what the other is spending.
c. try, often unsuccessfully, to avoid raising your voice.
5. Responsibility for household budgeting is:
a. divided in a way that works for both of you.
b. a burden on either you or your partner.
c. a source of constant disagreement.
6. You make the decision to go out for a nice meal in a restaurant because:
a. you’ve budgeted a certain amount each week for “date night.”
b. you were both too tired to cook.
c. you both find it too hard to plan ahead.
7. When choosing a vacation, you:
a. decide on a destination that fits within your budget that your partner will enjoy.
b. have conflicting goals and settle for second best because you can’t seem to find the right location.
c. plan separate trips.
8. If you find a letter from a collection agency in the mail, you are upset because:
a. you don’t know why you got the letter when you are paying all of your bills on time.
b. you wonder if there is something your partner hasn’t told you
c. you can’t believe that your partner has run up bills without telling you again.
9. When you receive a small inheritance check in the mail that your partner doesn’t know about, you:
a. call your sweetie immediately with the good news.
b. decide how you are going to spend it and then tell your partner your plans.
c. put it in your secret account.
10. Your financial future as a couple is:
a. so bright, you’ve got to wear shades.
b. a bit disorganized, but rosy overall.
c. Future? What future?


Count the number of answers of each type:

A.   ______

B.   ______

C.   ______


If you answered mostly A:

You and your partner have a high degree of healthy communication about money. You are generally content with your level of financial communication. Keep up the good work by continuing to share the good news as well as the bad in an open, honest, and direct way.

If you answered mostly B:

Money is definitely a source of conflict between you and your sweetie. Be sure that you are creating problems by anticipating them. Present information to your partner in a non-confrontational, factual manner. Try to make allowances for your partner’s concerns and hot buttons. If you can’t seem to make any headway, contact a third-party, such as a financial planner or a credit counselor to help you build healthy money habits and resolve any long-standing sources of tension.

If you answered mostly C:

You and your partner have a high degree of dysfunctional communication. You either argue constantly about money, or are silent on important matters, which simply communicates that one or both of you is tired of discussing it. Maintaining a joint financial life requires that you work together with your partner to achieve your goals. Ask a caring outsider to help you improve your communication skills with your partner and to mediate on issues where communication has completely broken down.

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