Are You Comfortable Talking About Money?

Message StonesDiscussing finances came up as a topic on Linked In last week. I was astonished at the number, passion, and variety of responses.

Some people brought up never discussing salary with co-workers. Others wrote of being extremely comfortable within their families and with spouses as if to say, isn’t that what everyone does? And yet others admitted dread at the mention because no one ever talked about money in their families growing up.

I contend that money, sadly, is the last taboo. People will talk about sex, their affairs, their mothers, even death but will zip the lip when it comes to the almighty buck.

Like all things, a discussion of money needs to be appropriate, i.e., not bragging about your Mercedes purchase or the new wing you just added to your mini mansion. Not in today’s economy.

An aversion to any discussion of money can, perhaps, be the result of fear and shame (being judged), questioning self-worth (feeling like you don’t measure up), and lack of knowledge (feeling uneducated in these matters). But the truth is, we use money everyday and breaking the taboo can be freeing and expanding, if you are willing.

A healthy discussion of money is paramount because how else will you learn? We need money to live.

A few trusted friends or a group can help. I am a grateful member of a wonderful Debtor’s Anonymous (DA) group. I get to be part of an amazing circle that meets weekly to discuss the money relationship. It can be a touchy subject but we manage it in the confines of the 12 steps.

There’s a lot to say on this topic. Check out my colleague Barbara Stanny’s site and comment about the money taboo here.

What do you think?