37 Percent of People Keep This a Secret From Their Partner, Study Shows
There's a good chance your spouse could be hiding this from you.
Lying is one of the most common reasons people break up, but it's also one of the hardest habits to break. A 2013 study published in Communication Studies found that people lie to their romantic partners about five times a week. And even if your partner isn't lying to you directly, they could still be hiding things from you. In another more recent study, 37 percent of people said they've been guilty of keeping this one thing secret from their partners. Read on to find out what your significant other may be holding back.
More than a third of people have hid finances from their partner.
The National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) has been collecting data on financial infidelity for over a decade. In 2018, NEFE published the results from a biennial study conducted by the Harris Poll on behalf of the organization. According to the study, 37 percent of the 2,000 adults surveyed admitted to having hid a purchase, bank account, bank statement, bill, and/or cash from a partner or spouse. The majority (21 percent) hid cash, while 20 percent hid a minor purchase, and 12 percent hid a statement or bill. In terms of major secrets, 6 percent admitted to hiding an entire bank account and 5 percent said they've hid a major purchase.
Nearly 1 in 5 people have lied to a partner about their finances.
Of course, some people will just come clean if they are confronted by their significant others. But others won't give it up, especially when it comes to money. According to the study, 18 percent of the participants said they had actively lied to a partner or spouse about their earned finances or debt. Around 13 percent said their lie pertained to their finances, while 7 percent said they lied about how much debt they either owe or are owed. Worse still, 5 percent said they had lied to a spouse or partner about how much money they earn.
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People keep financial secrets from their partners for several different reasons.
Not everyone has the same reasons for keeping certain aspects of their finances hidden from their significant other. According to the study, 36 percent said they "believe some aspects of their finances should remain private, even from their spouse or partner." Around 26 percent said they've discussed overall finances with their significant other before and know they'd disapprove, and 16 percent said that while they've haven't spoken to their partner about finances before, they still thought they'd disapprove. Perhaps unsurprisingly, nearly 1 in 5 people said they are simply just embarrassed or fearful of their own finances, and don't want their partner to find out.
Keeping your finances hidden from a significant other can affect your relationship.
While many people do it, keeping financial secrets from your partner could seriously harm your relationship. In fact, 75 percent of the respondents said that financial deception had affected their current or past relationships in some way. Around 44 percent said it caused an argument, and 35 percent said it caused less trust in the relationship. Even worse, 13 percent said these secrets ultimately resulted in divorce and 10 percent said it led to separation as a couple.
"In essence, a healthy relationship generally supports a fully transparent relationship between partners," Carla Marie Manly, PhD, a clinical psychologist based in Sonoma County, California, told HuffPost. "If a relationship is built on a strong foundation of mutual trust and respect, there is generally no need to ever hide money or finances."