TIME Marriage

Why Remarrying Isn’t What it Used To Be

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Fewer people are retying the knot, especially women.

If you’re wondering whether you should get married again, you’re not alone. About 40% of all the two million odd marriages that took place in 2013 were remarriages either for the bride or the groom. About 20% of them were remarriages for both.

Divorce remains a deeply unpleasant process, but not as hard to do as it was. And marriage—for all its flaws—is still a very popular institution. So it makes sense that a lot of people figure they’ll give it another go. The triumph of hope over experience and all that.

But second (and third and so on) marriages are not what they were. According to a new brief written by Wendy Manning for the Council on Contemporary Families, here are some ways retying the knot is changing.

*Remarriage rates are falling. In 1990, 50 out of every 1,000 previously-married men and women got married again. In 2013, it was 28, a 40% drop.

*Much of that drop has been among women. In 1995, 54% of women who divorced before age 45 had remarried within five years. In 2005, only 38% had.

*Men are more likely to remarry. The rate is almost twice as high for men as for women (40 per 1,000 vs. 21 per 1,000)

*There aren’t always just two. Among remarrying couples, 46% already have a child under 18 living in the home. (Then again, 38% of couples who marry for the first time already have a child in the home)

*If there are kids, they’re usually hers. Only 9% of remarried stepmoms are living with their stepkids, while 46% of remarried stepdads have their wife’s kids in the home. The good news is that more people with stepkids report a happier marriage than those who don’t, a switch from prior years.

*Remarriages, which have always had a higher implosion rate than first marriages, have become even less stable over the past 20 years. By 2010, almost a third of remarriages (31%) of women under 45 ended in divorce within five years. In 1995, that figure was 23%. (About 20% of first marriages don’t make it to their fifth anniversary.)

*Finding a new spouse takes a little longer. Half of the folks who remarry do so within four years. In 2002 it was three years.

Some of this is slightly disheartening for those who wish to marry again, but never fear, the decision can pay off. “Remarriages confer at least some of the same health benefits as first marriages,” says the report. And in any case, studies have shown that about 100% of every newly married couple thinks their love is going to last forever.


How to Go to the Movies for $1 This Summer

The LEGO Movie
Warner Bros.—Courtesy Everett Collection The LEGO Movie

Bring the kids for less than the cost of a large popcorn this summer.

The average price of a movie ticket was $8.17 last year. Thanks to bargain-priced kids’ movie programs that get under way around the time the school ends, that same sum could cover admission to 10 films this summer—and leave you with a little left over to pay for a snack.

No fewer than three movie theater brands are hosting special kids’ movie programs this summer. Before getting your hopes up too high, you can forget about seeing just-released films at these super-cheap prices. While the particulars of each are slightly different, they all involve the showing of older, second-run movies like Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Rio 2, and Penguins of Madagascar. The specially priced showings are limited to weekday mornings too.

The tradeoff is that instead of paying $8 or $12 for a first-run movie ticket—or perhaps $6 for a matinee—admission to the kids’ program films is usually just $1 or $2 apiece. That’s the walk-up price. Families also have the option of paying for admission to 10 movies in advance at the bargain-basement price of maybe $5 or $7, depending on theater.

Yes, this is the full movie theater experience, so you should go in expecting your kids to beg for popcorn, soda, and Raisinets. One reason theaters host these programs is to upsell patrons on overpriced extras. That’s how theaters make money, after all. Another reason theaters want to draw in kids on slow weekdays is that this is the perfect target audience for advertising new movies coming out this summer, such as Hotel Transylvania 2—which just so happens to sponsor at least one of the kids’ movie programs, and which will most certainly not be available to see this summer for $1.

All in all, it’s still a pretty great deal. Sure, you could rent the movies they’re showing at Redbox for $1.50, or perhaps even borrow a copy from the local library or stream it on Netflix for free. And yes, there’s a strong likelihood you’ll have to cope with a child begging for candy and a return to the theater to see Hotel Transylvania 2 at full price. These are tradeoffs a parent can live with considering you’re paying only $1 or 50¢ for the thrill of “going to the movies” an icily air-conditioned theater this summer. Here are the particulars:

Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse
Hundreds of Cinemark theaters around the country—41 in California alone—host this 10-week program in which walk-up admission to one kids’ movie per week is just $1. Alternately, families can buy admission to all 10 films in advance for a mere $5, or 50¢ per show. Generally speaking, the programs kick off around the time kids start summer vacation. The specially priced shows are older releases like Rio 2, Mr. Peabody and Sherman, The Nut Job, and Night at the Museum: The Secret Tomb, and they are limited to specific times on weekday mornings—perhaps 10 a.m. on Wednesdays or Thursdays.

Harkins Theatres Summer Movie Fun
Harkins is a small theater chain with 30 locations in five states in the Western U.S., more than half of which are in Arizona. It has run a summer kids movie program for more than three decades. This summer, theaters will show second-run films like Puss in Boots and The Box Trolls over the course of 10 weeks, on weekday mornings starting in late May or early June. Walk-up admission is $2 per movie, or a pass for all 10 movies runs $5 or $7, depending on the location.

Regal Summer Movie Express
The Annie reboot, Madagascar 3, Muppets Most Wanted, The Lego Movie, Penguins of Madagascar, Paddington, and Turbo are among the movies being shown for $1 each over nine weeks this summer at Regal theaters around the country. All showings are 10 a.m., generally on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, starting in mid- or late June.

TIME Family

‘Helicopter Parenting’ Hurts Kids Regardless of Love or Support, Study Says

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Sorry, Tiger Moms

So-called “helicopter parenting” is detrimental to children no matter how loving the parents might be, a new study by professors at Brigham Young University (BYU) finds.

The study, a follow up to 2012 research that suggested children of such controlling parents are less engaged in the classroom, surveyed 483 students from four American universities on their parents’ behavior and their own self-esteem and academics, Science Daily reports. This time, researchers explored whether characteristics such as support and warmth might neutralize the negative effects of helicopter parenting. Not only did the study conclude that they do not, but it also suggested that lack of warmth can take the situation from bad to worse, amplifying low self-esteem and high-risk behaviors such as binge drinking.

For the purposes of the study, researchers defined “helicopter parenting” as including such over-involved habits such as solving children’s problems and making important decisions for them, while warmth was measured in terms of availability to talk and spending quality time.

The study contradicts popular parenting philosophies, such as the one espoused in the 2011 bestseller Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.

“From our past work, we thought there might be something positive about helicopter parenting under certain conditions, but we’re just not finding it,” study author Larry Nelson told Science Daily. Instead, while the data indicated that warmth reduced the negative effects of controlling parenting, it did not nullify them completely. “Overall, stepping in and doing for a child what the child developmentally should be doing for him or herself, is negative,” Nelson said.

[Science Daily]

TIME Education

I Was Homeschooled Through High School and It Turned Out Great

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xoJane.com is where women go to be their unabashed selves, and where their unabashed selves are applauded

While some people think of homeschoolers being sheltered or 'weird,' I actually have an incredibly normal life


Before we start, let me just lay it all out for you to set the stage: I’m a 20-year-old homeschool graduate with 7 younger siblings. No, none of us are adopted or step-siblings, we’re just one rather large biological family all born to the same 2 parents who have been married for 30 years now. I guess you could say that, especially in this day and age, we’re fairly non-traditional.

My parents married when they were 18 and 21, but I wasn’t born until nearly 10 years later. During that time, both of my parents had graduated with a bachelor’s in education and moved out into the work force – my mother as a schoolteacher and my father in the golf business. After I came along my mother went right back to teaching, entrusting me in the care of a sweet elderly friend during the daytime.

“Miss Mary” provided the best childcare they could have asked for – she treated me as if I were her own child and would write out daily reports for my mom about what I did during my stay with her so that she wouldn’t miss any special milestones. To this day, she is a dear family friend with whom we still keep up through letters and visits.

When I was around a year old, my mother decided that she was getting tired of handing over her own kid to someone else while she went off to teach other peoples’ children. She talked it over with my dad and decided to quit teaching in favor of being a stay-at-home mom. They downsized to allow for the reduced income, and wouldn’t you know it, right after she left her job they found out that they were expecting my younger brother.

To my mother, this sort of solidified that being a stay-at-home mom was what she wanted to do. And by the time I was ready to start kindergarten she had decided that, darn it, she really enjoyed being around her kids and just wasn’t ready to send me off into the world yet, so after another discussion my parents decided to try their hand at this thing called homeschooling.

Not forever, you see, but just until maybe the fourth grade or so and then they would send us off to public school. They both felt quite confident that they would be able to handle our educational needs up to at least this point.

Well, as you’ve probably guessed, the fourth grade came and went and suddenly my parents realized that, hey, this homeschooling deal was a pretty sweet gig. Still being in the golf business, my dad sometimes worked odd hours and didn’t get weekends off. Instead his day off was on Monday, and wouldn’t you know it, the principal of our little one-room school (*cough* MOM *cough*) had coincidentally decided that Monday would be our day off too!

Our education seemed to be on track as well – we could count and everything. (I kid, I kid. In reality, we all tested at well above grade level.) In addition, both of my parents had quickly realized the advantages that came with the ability to hand-tailor each child’s education to suit their needs. For example, I started reading lessons at age 5 with no issue, while my brother really struggled until age 7, when he suddenly took off and routinely tested at years above his grade level. Being able to give each child one-on-one attention and work through their individual scholarly roadblocks was a huge benefit.

My parents continued to homeschool me all the way through high school. When my mom found herself stumped by higher-level algebra, she simply ordered a curriculum that included a DVD with a math professor to teach each lesson. During my junior year, my parents granted my request to attend a small local co-op type school. It was a 3 days per week K-12 academy where I was the only junior, along with 2 sophomores and 5 freshmen. This gave me the opportunity to hone my writing skills, take chemistry from a pharmacist, and learn Spanish from a woman who had lived in Argentina for several years. I feel that this experience really helped to prepare me for college and for that reason I suggested that my parents encourage my brother to go during his junior year as well.

I decided not to return for my senior year, however, because I needed only 2 more classes to graduate high school and neither was offered through this venue. I was able to graduate a semester early and begin preparing for college.

Although I feel that being homeschooled was very beneficial in general, as with anything in life, it came with a few cons. For me, the biggest of these was a period of time where I didn’t really have any friends. I played soccer from ages 7-12, but after that age most kids in our small town were playing for the school’s teams, requiring the recreational teams to do extensive traveling for games. My family wasn’t able to keep up with that demand, so I had to drop out.

Additionally, we moved 7 hours away from my old home when I was 13, and it was very hard on me. I was shy and had a lot of difficulty making new friends, and it didn’t help that my family pretty much dropped all extra-curricular activities, including co-op, for a while in the aftermath of the move. Eventually we picked back up on activities and I was able to start making friends again, but it was a very difficult experience for me that led me to really push for my siblings to be involved in plenty of activities.

Overall, I feel that being homeschooled was an incredible opportunity that helped to set me up for success. After graduating from high school, I took the ACT and scored a 32, enabling me to apply to any college I wanted. Currently, I’m an art major at Oklahoma Christian University. I’m on track to graduate a year early in order to become a photographer and have been able to maintain a 4.0 GPA. Having an educational experience that was tailored to my needs and learning style has really helped me to flourish in the college environment, and I’m glad to have had that experience.

Although I know that some people think of homeschoolers in the context of being sheltered or “weird”, I actually have an incredibly normal life. I have an iPhone and a boyfriend, I wear makeup and shorts, I’m in a sorority, and I have short hair. I’m a member of MENSA, I’ve been a competitive cheerleader and gymnast, I run and lift, and I currently coach gymnastics both at a gym at school and one at home during the summer. In short, I’m just an average college girl who happened to have a non-standard education.

And now I’m sure you’re all wondering the same thing: will I do it for my own kids someday? Probably. I think my ideal situation would be to either homeschool while heavily involved in extra-curricular activities, or to have a very small co-op type academy such as the one I briefly attended to send my children to. While I know that I can never be completely certain of where life will take me, I would hope that I could someday offer to my own children the same benefits that my parents were able to offer me. I think my own experience has given me a unique perspective, and I hope to be able to use it when the time comes to give my kids what I had – only a little better.

Madison Hughes wrote this article for xoJane.

TIME Ideas hosts the world's leading voices, providing commentary and expertise on the most compelling events in news, society, and culture. We welcome outside contributions. To submit a piece, email ideas@time.com.

TIME Family

How to Find a Parenting Balance in the 21st Century

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xoJane.com is where women go to be their unabashed selves, and where their unabashed selves are applauded

Nostalgia has its place, but it must also be tempered with a reality check


In “What Would My Mom Do? (Drink Tab and Lock Us Outside),” Jen Hatmaker argues against the “precious” treatment of children in the 21st century and in favor of a more “free-range” style of parenting. Hatmaker discusses the levels of stress that mothers in particular create for ourselves by competing with each other, striving to provide bigger and better experiences for our children’s smallest achievements, and our refusal to let our children have the freedom to explore the world and learn from their own mistakes.

Hatmaker takes accurate and understandable punches at excessive birthday parties, elaborate classroom holiday parties provided by parents, and the provision of expensive video games, summer excursions and “stimulating activities for… brain development.” She argues that we are raising a generation that is discouraged from key skills of problem solving, creative thinking, or having to work for what they want, while also believing that they are the center of the universe whose wants trump all others.

I agree with Hatmaker that children today are catered to excessively, and the “mommy wars” perpetuate unrealistic notions of what we should be doing for and giving to our children, leading to significant stresses put on mothers who aren’t able to provide these things and experiences. Whether for financial or moral reasons, or just not being crafty or interested in devoting the time and effort into such elaborate displays of motherhood martyrdom, not every mother is going to parent the same way.

The cultural currency of shaming mothers who don’t center their children’s wants in everything they do is a significant disservice to both mothers and children. Children of the generation of my now 18-year-old son have certainly grown up feeling entitled to a great deal of individual attention and access to pricey items and experiences that were considered rare treats, if at all possible, when Hatmaker and I were kids.

When I was a child, a trip to Burger King happened maybe once every other month, and it was a big deal. Today children may eat out at fast food restaurants several times a week. Lest we assume this is only poor or lazy mothers who are giving in and judge them, we should recognize how many middle class parents ask their children, “What do you want for dinner?” and then follow the answer of “McDonald’s!” In my childhood we weren’t even asked.

In 2014 we as a nation witnessed numerous examples of police brutality and killings. Excessive police force and violence statistically happen far more frequently to Black and other non-white people, the mentally ill, developmentally disabled, and poor communities. I can’t help wondering about an essay written in 2015 that doesn’t take race and class factors into consideration. Hatmaker writes about parents who, if they are “run[ning] out and backfill[ing] eight antique trunks as a memorial to your third-grader’s life,” are probably solidly middle class, as she is.

In our communities, however, fear for the safety of our children leads us to keep them at home and indoors, even as we reminisce about the days we could wander aimlessly throughout the city. Today we are afraid of other parents, unknown neighbors, strangers, and the police who are supposed to serve and protect. The fears are hardly unfounded, but some people do not personally know the worst of these fears because their community is not the one at highest risk.

Hatmaker refers back to her own childhood to make the point that our generation was raised dramatically differently, with ample outdoor play, lack of supervision that forced us to work through differences with each other, and the opportunity to entertain ourselves in creative ways that challenged our minds and bodies.

I was born in 1974, good readers. It no more occurred to my mom to coddle us Precious Snowflakes than it did to quit drinking a case of Tab a day. If you told my mom to craft a yearly time capsule for each child to store until graduation, she would have cried tears of laughter all the way to Jazzercise.

I too was born in 1974, and had a Tab drinking mother who put us out of the house as much as possible. In fact, because I was a voracious reader and writer, content to sit in a chair by the window in my bedroom for hours at a time, my mom worried about my social skills and need for fresh air. She would regularly take the book out of my hands and tell me that I couldn’t have it back until I spent a few hours outdoors. My mother didn’t lock us out and we were required to tell her exactly where we would be at all times, but the other parents of the neighborhood were like Hatmaker’s mom.

While I agree that we over-coddle our children, cater to their every whim, and create undue competition and stress between mothers, all to our children’s detriment, there are some key pieces that Hatmaker does not seem to have taken into consideration. Specifically, the issues surrounding putting our children outside are fraught with contradictions and risks that impact certain families more than others.

In the early to mid-1980s when Hatmaker and I were growing up, neighborhoods were very different than they are today. My neighborhood was full of homeowners and only a few renters. The renters that were in the neighborhood rented entire family homes rather than smaller apartments and tended to stay for at least a few years. That is to say, I grew up attending elementary through high school with a large number of the same friends over the course of those years.

In such a neighborhood, everyone knew everyone. We knew as children that if we behaved inappropriately or wandered too far outside of the accepted zone, someone else’s mom would call our mom, or even drag us home to explain directly what we had been up to.

For the past 8 years I have lived in that same neighborhood again. The majority of homes are rental properties, and probably half of them have been broken up into 2 or 3 apartments. Most of my neighbors stay for only a year or two. We find it harder to get to know each other, harder to feel comfortable about our children being free-range in the neighborhood of strangers, and are generally less trusting as a society. As a single woman living alone, I don’t even feel secure that I could rely on my neighbors to come to my rescue if something terrible transpired. I don’t blame parents for feeling even less trust in the neighbors to look out for each other’s children.

We grew up in the era of “stranger danger” warnings. We were taught not to speak to strangers, not to take candy or anything else from them, and not to approach cars no matter what the adult in the car claimed, unless we recognized them. I grew up among hushed whispers of my mother and her friends discussing the abduction and brutal murder of Adam Walsh.

No effort was made to warn me that the elderly next-door neighbor whose house I cleaned might harm me. He was a nice old man and no one believes me to this day that he molested me for years.

In a neighborhood where most of us knew each other and parents recognized which house we belonged to, we were taught that if we saw anything amiss we were safe to approach the closest door to seek help. As a pre-teen I took advantage of this more than once to escape grown men who followed me as I walked home from the library or dime store; I would simply go to the door of a neighbor. I have a vivid memory of one friend’s father immediately running outside and threatening with a baseball bat a strange man who had followed me down the street.

Today, the police would pay a visit to my friend’s father following such an altercation and his life would be at risk for having looked out for me. Chances are high that a fellow neighbor would be the one who called 911 on a Black man wielding a bat on his own lawn but wouldn’t have paid any mind to the scared twelve-year-old-girl being followed down the street by a forty-year-old white man.

Today, I would forbid my teen daughter from approaching even a known neighbor if there were no women home. It is not because I would think my daughter is unable to problem-solve, but because I would have taught her about the very real “acquaintance danger” that is so prevalent in our current society.

Today, those of us who experienced trauma we couldn’t name at the hands of neighbors and family friends have grown into alert parents, aware that strangers are not the only danger to our children. We have also grown alert to how racism may result in the wrong person being faulted in a situation, to tragic ends, so we would rather avoid the situation.

We now live in a society in which there are institutional structures in place that underpin parents’ tendency to keep kids indoors and under a watchful eye. Recent stories about children being stopped by police while riding their bikes or accusations of neglect against parents for letting their child walk to the corner store or play in the park unsupervised would never have happened in my generation. In another story that was published the same day as Hatmaker’s essay, Lenore Skenazy shares another mother’s story, which is just one of three incidents the family dealt with in a few short months. This story demonstrates how systems are in place to force parents to become “helicopter” parents who cannot allow their children basic opportunities for play or age-appropriate exploration.

… youngest son (age 6) was accosted by an officer for riding his bicycle on the sidewalk in front of our house (our block is three houses wide — he was riding from one end of the block to the other)… He had apparently received a call from a ‘concerned citizen’ who had seen him riding. In this case, the officer was aggressive and frightened us into thinking we might actually have broken some law. A little research showed that we had done no such thing, but we were shaken.

When I was 6 years old, I was walking to school with my best friend, three blocks from home and across a main street. The idea that your child cannot ride their bicycle on their own sidewalk while you check on them periodically from the window isn’t stemming from over-cautious parenting but excessive systemic meddling. Parents are afraid of losing their children. The neighbors who call authorities out of a supposed concern seem disingenuous. If they are so worried, they could simply approach the parent to let them know of their concerns, or create a network of neighbors watching out for each other’s kids. The fact that the police take such calls seriously enough to scare children and reprimand parents speaks to a larger expectation to keep children penned in.

Hatmaker writes:

We made up games and rode our bikes and choreographed dance routines and drank out of the hose when we got thirsty. I swear, my mom did not know where we actually were half the time. Turned out in the neighborhood all day, someone’s mom would eventually make us bologna sandwiches on white bread and then lock us out, too. We were like a roving pack of wolves, and all the moms took turn feeding and watering us. No one hovered over us like Nervous Nellies.

Hatmaker is right: we had it better. I share her memories of riding bikes miles away from home, walking across town to the larger library with friends, and coming home just in time for dinner. I wish my son shared these memories, but he had a very different experience.

My son was limited to the back yard because of a grandfather who threatened to kidnap him, and my health not allowing me to sit outside to directly supervise his every movement. My son lived in a neighborhood where nosy neighbors called the police when his father came home from work and walked to the back door, claiming there was a “suspicious Black man” wandering up our driveway.

We live in a very different era than when we were kids, and in our nostalgia we also minimize the dangers we lived with then. My son grew up in an era after we discovered that statistically, children are more likely to be harmed by someone close to the family than by a stranger. At the same time, I can’t look back with rose-tinted glasses and forget that these strong neighborhood ties did not extend to my safety when I was being loudly berated, beaten, and abused in my home and going around the neighborhood with the bruises to prove it. Nostalgia has its place, but it must also be tempered with a reality check.

Parents may, in fact, be overprotective but they are reacting to newer cultural expectations and realities. We live in complicated times and solutions will also be complex and varied. We can look back to our childhoods not only in nostalgia but to ask what supports existed then that do not now. Getting familiar with neighbors and bringing back the Neighborhood Watch concept would be a great beginning.

We must also take a realistic look at our changing times and build solutions that are relevant to this new culture. Frank discussions in the neighborhood around issues of community policing, recognition of racial dynamics in policing, cultural exchange and respect, and mental health awareness can prepare neighbors to support each other better and look out for each other. It is possible to create safer neighborhoods for our children so they can get out and play the way we used to.

Aaminah Shakur wrote this article for xoJane.

TIME Ideas hosts the world's leading voices, providing commentary and expertise on the most compelling events in news, society, and culture. We welcome outside contributions. To submit a piece, email ideas@time.com.

MONEY Odd Spending

This Is How Much Summer Will Cost You

To mark the unofficial start of the season, MONEY reveals the results of its summer spending survey. Bottom line: Budgeting for warm-weather fun is no day at the beach.

TIME Careers & Workplace

These Are the Best and Worst U.S. States for Working Moms

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New York state tops the list, while Indiana remains at the bottom

How does your state stack up when it comes to supporting working moms and dads?

A new report out Wednesday from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research rates the 50 states on a Work & Family Composite Index, which factors in access to paid leave, support for dependent and elder care, cost and quality of child care, and the gender gap in labor force participation for parents of young kids.

The best grade in the report went to New York State, with California coming in at No. 2 and Washington, D.C. at No. 3.

On the flip side, Indiana got the IWPR’s worst grade, followed by Utah and Montana.

You can find the full, sortable list of all the states, including grades, scores and rankings here.

Before residents in the high-scoring states get too excited, it’s worth nothing that even New York, the highest-ranked state, only scored a “B” from the IWPR. The group points out that 40 states scored a zero on the Paid Leave Index, meaning workers have no statutory rights to paid family leave, paid medical leave, or paid sick days.

Support of working moms has become increasingly important as their ranks have grown. Now, nearly half of children in the U.S. have a breadwinning mother who either brings in the money entirely on her own or, if she’s married, contributes at least 40% of family earnings, according to the IWPR.

Paid leave and child care are particularly hot-button issues. Not surprising when you consider this stat from the Department of Labor: 62% of mothers who gave birth within the last 12 months are in the workforce.

The work and family report is part of the IWPR’s larger series, Status of Women in the States: 2015.

This article originally appeared on Fortune.com.

MONEY Financial Planning

7 Ways Couples Cheat on Each Other — Financially

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Financial infidelity and the lies we tell

Several years ago, a friend of mine admitted she had a bank account her husband didn’t know about so that she could spend from her secret stash on the sly. And recently, an acquaintance who owns a luxury jewelry store revealed to me that some of her clients purchase the high-end gems with cash in order to keep their spouse in the dark about their indulgences.

These breaches of trust are surprisingly common: According to a recent survey by the National Endowment for Financial Education, one in three adults who have combined their money in a relationship admit to committing financial infidelity against their partner. And 76 percent of those people concede that their deception has affected the relationship.

Why all the fibs about your finances? We dug into the reasons behind some of the biggest fiscal lies couples tell, and the steps you can take to get back on track.

Lie #1: “Yes, I paid that bill.”

Where it Comes From: There are two primary reasons why people hide money moves from their significant other. Number one: “You might feel controlled by your partner, so you act out as a form of rebellion,” says money coach Deborah Price, CEO and founder of the Money Coaching Institute and author of “The Heart of Money.”

If one person is in charge of the purchasing decisions (picking apart every detail of the credit card statement, deciding what their spouse can and can’t buy, imposing a spending limit), while the other doesn’t have much of a say, anger and resentment can build up — which results in deceptive behavior.

Number two: “You feel ashamed about your financial situation, so you try to cover it up, hoping you’ll be able to get a handle on things before your spouse finds out,” says Price. “You’re afraid that your partner won’t be able to cope with the truth.” Maybe you’re in debt, and are worried your husband wouldn’t want to be with you if he discovers what’s really going on. Or perhaps you feel guilty about splurging, and don’t want your partner to judge you.

Break the Habit: The first step is to get to the bottom of the lie. “Most money problems aren’t actually about money — they’re symptoms, and the problems are truly about something else,” says Price, who advises to look into when and why the behavior initially emerged. One method: Write what she calls a “money biography.” Did the fib predate your marriage or start after you wed? How does lying make you feel — guilty for being dishonest, thrilled about getting away with something, or afraid that your partner will learn the truth?

“Most of our money patterns are formed in early childhood and get acted out in our relationships unconsciously,” says Price. “Once you understand your patterns, you have some power over them and can begin taking measures to correct them.

Next, consider what it would feel like to come clean. Ask yourself, if you were sure that your partner wouldn’t freak out, what would you ideally like to happen? Now, how can you start to move toward that? “In order to tell the truth, it’s important that you feel safe in your relationship,” explains Price. “You can’t be worried that your partner will run out the door.” She suggests starting the conversation by saying, “There’s something important I need to talk to you about, but I’m afraid that it will upset you. Before I tell you, will you promise to stay calm and help me work through it?” Yes it will be a tough discussion, but coming forward will ultimately help you build a stronger bond.

Lie #2: “I’m terrible with money — you handle it.”

Where it Comes From: This is an incredibly common phenomenon: People who are perfectly competent mistakenly believe that they are financially inept. “You feel powerless and are fearful that you will make a mistake,” says Price. “Maybe you were told you weren’t smart growing up, or had parents or teachers who made you feel insecure.” She also points out that sometimes there’s a subconscious benefit to not being powerful with money, in that it lets you off the hook about having to be the “responsible one” and sets the stage for you to be rescued by someone more “capable.”

Break the Habit: Is it true that you don’t have a good grasp on finances, or is it a projection based upon your fears that you’ll mess up? To find out, list your fiscal skills: Are you aware of how much you have in your checking and savings accounts? Do you know how much you earn? Are you contributing to a 401(k) or IRA? When you were on your own, did you pay your bills on time and spend within your means? You might realize that you’re more in control of your money than you thought. Or, you will identify what areas where you need need some guidance. (Check out our DIY Financial Planning Guide.)

Even though you haven’t done something in the past, it doesn’t mean you can’t become proficient,” stresses Price. “And while it’s okay for one person to have the role of ‘family CFO,’ both of you should be involved in your finances to some extent.” In the worst-case scenario, if you lose your spouse or get divorced and they have the keys to your fiscal life, you’ll be in a bind — especially if there are kids in the picture. So, no matter who takes the lead with financial decisions, make sure to sit down together at least once a month to discuss where your joint finances stand.

Lie #3: “Sure, we can afford that.”

Where it Comes From: This one might not be an outright lie. Many people simply aren’t connected enough to their daily financial accounting to knowwhether or not they can afford a new car or trip to the Andes. And once you’re married, money cluelessness can get even worse — assuming that your spouse will handle the finances gives you an excuse to grow more out of touch.

Plus, when there are two of you, it’s easy to pass the buck so you won’t be the one at fault for having made an irresponsible decision. “Some people might also avoid telling the truth [that a certain item is out of your price range] in order to avoid a potential fight,” adds Price. (Of course, that backfires: You might end up pointing the finger at each other later on when fiscal remorse sets in.)

Break the Habit: Part of the problem here is that we are hard-wired to want to spend money. “We are largely governed by a part of the mind called the instinctive brain, which is driven by desire and is wholly distinct from the prefrontal cortex, the section that processes rational thought,” explains Price. As a result, money decisions are often guided by emotions, rather than logic. So, before making a major purchase you and your spouse should list all of the positive and negative consequences of the decision. “This slows down your neural processing centers and activates the prefrontal cortex,” says Price. Not only will you be less likely to get carried away in the excitement of the moment, but it also forces you to take a hard look at your financial situation.

Lie #4: “My money is your money.”

Where it Comes From: The survey mentioned earlier found that three in 10 adults with joint finances have hidden a purchase, bank account, statement, bill, or cash from their partner. So what’s with all the covert ops? “Concealing fiscal information is a self-protective response to feeling unsafe in the relationship,” says Kate Levinson, PhD, author of “Emotional Currency.” “Even though you may like the idea of merging your money with your spouse’s on an intellectual level, you ultimately don’t trust that your partner will be there for you.

This sense of insecurity might be triggered by past experiences with someone who abused money (for example, a parent who gambled away the rent or burned through the grocery budget to fund a shopping addiction). It can also be a sign of emotional unrest — if you were betrayed by an ex or had an emotionally unavailable parent, you might have learned that you can’t rely on others. “Money represents an internal need to stay independent, and squirreling it away reassures you that you aren’t overly vulnerable,” says Levinson. Thanks to your cash stash, you feel like you have a way out.

Break the Habit: Begin by investigating the underlying cause of your deception on your own — write about it, talk to a friend or therapist, or meditate until you understand what’s going on underneath. “You need to recognize that your behavior is being driven by elements outside of your awareness,” explains Levinson.

After you gain some insight into the underlying causes, work through the issue with your partner. To begin the discussion, try focusing on the relationship with an opening like: “There’s something that I’ve been afraid to talk to you about. I know you’re going to be mad, but I need you to help me figure out what’s going on because it’s getting in the way of me being close to you.” You may also want to preface the conversation by asking your partner to just listen without interrupting so that you can tell him the story in full. “Keep in mind that the core problem might have nothing to do with money, but rather can shine a light on something that’s missing in your relationship — be it that you need more one-on-one time with him, or want him to help out more around the house,” adds Levinson.

Lie #5: “I’ve had these shoes for years.”

Where it Comes From: Denial of spending is a fear-based reaction. “You’re worried that your partner might judge you for being indulgent, selfish, frivolous or undeserving — and that they won’t love you for it,” says Levinson. Your response might be an accurate reflection of your current bind, say, if your partner is financially controlling, or you have a problem with overspending. Or it might be a byproduct of your upbringing; according to Levinson, you could be modeling behavior that you saw play out in childhood (for example, your mom encouraging you to hide new purchases from your dad.

Break the Habit: Do a realistic assessment of your financial situation: “Clarify your financial goals and priorities and establish a specific budget based on your fixed expenses and discretionary spending,” Levinson recommends. Knowing exactly how much you have to splurge will alleviate any fear that your partner might disapprove. Stick to that budget, and review it monthly or bimonthly to make sure it’s still working for you.

Lie #6: “I don’t have any debt.”

Where it Comes From: Thirteen percent of survey respondents said they’d committed a serious infraction, like lying about the amount of debt that they owe. “This fib stems from shame, feeling overwhelmed, or a fear of being judged by your partner,” says Levinson. You might also be in a state of denial — subconsciously, you feel like if you haven’t told your partner the truth, then the debt doesn’t exist and you won’t have to face the consequences of it.

Break the Habit: It’s time to confront your financial situation head-on. “Own your debt,” urges Levinson. “Talk to someone you trust — a counselor, financial advisor, or family member — to begin figuring out how to get debt-free.” That way, when you come clean to your partner (try using the same conversation technique as before), you’ll have a plan of action in mind, which sends the message that you’re finally taking control of things. “You also might want to consider separating your finances to show that you understand the debt is your responsibility,” adds Levinson.

Lie #7: “I don’t have that much money.”

Where it Comes From: On the flipside, some people claim they make less than they actually do. “You may keep an inheritance or large salary from your partner while you’re dating because you’re concerned about being taken advantage of, or loved only for you money,” says Levinson. “Then you hang onto the lie because you don’t want to rock the boat.” This whopper also unleashes a cascade of tough personal questions: How will I be able to handle having so much more than my spouse? What kind of person will I become if I tap into this money? What will it do to our relationship to go from being financially equal to unequal?

Break the Habit: In this case, Levinson strongly suggests seeing a counselor, because it can be unsettling to have huge wealth discrepancies in a relationship. “Some couples are naturally financially compatible and agree on how to spend and save,” says Levinson. “But for many, it’s difficult. Your spouse might be scared of wealth, judgmental about rich people or afraid that having money will turn them into a different person with different values.

There are also questions about how your dynamic changes: If one of you has a lot more money, does what you say hold more weight? “Issues of feeling better than or less than your partner are very tricky territory to navigate, especially when there’s a sense of betrayal on top of that,” says Levinson. “Just be sure to find a couple’s therapist who’s comfortable talking about money.

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