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Financial Infidelity

Is Financial Infidelity Just as Damaging as a Physical Affair?

Tara Padua Wise is a perpetual shopper who coined the term "fashion espionage" and is the subject of The Wall Street Journal's video profile on "Spouses Who Spend and Pretend." According to Tara, fashion espionage is ripping the tags off a new item and letting it hang in the closet for a month or two, and then coyly telling her spouse that he's seen it before when she finally does wear something new.

About half of you admitted that you've committed financial infidelity. Dr. Bonnie, author of Financial Infidelity says that financial infidelity can be just as damaging as any physical affair. Do you think she's right? Check out Tara and Dr. Bonnie in the video below.

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Join The Conversation
Meike Meike 7 years
It's not as bad but the end result of both infedilities is that you are a liar who can't be trusted.
MindayH MindayH 7 years
Yeah...it also has to do with the lying that you do to cover up what you were doing when you were out spending. A friend of mine's (soon to be ex) husband was gambling, so many times he was "at work" or a friend's or whatever. My friend said she would have rather him cheat because he was lying about where he has, and spending the money that she also was working hard for.
sundrops sundrops 7 years
I can see seal's point that it's not as bad as a physical affair and I agree. However it still creates a HUGE amount of bitterness and resentment that leads to a dysfunctional relationship and in my brother's case it led to divorce. His wife would hide receipts or take deposits but not deposit them and go spend the money. Sometimes she would say she lost money when she spent it. My Dad did the buy the car behind the back scenario and bought a $100,000 porsche 20 years ago. While they're still married it took my Mom 15 years to get over it, and for them to get rid of the debt. My husband tends to spend on electronics, well over $10,000 in the past seven years when we haven't taken a single family vacation, and I have a huge amount of bitterness towards him over that. In any case, if it's being that slyly hidden I'm pretty sure the answers to the questions seal presents would have to be a no otherwise it wouldn't be a point of controversy in the first place, and if they are all yes than there might be other problems if it's still being hidden or even not talked about.
MartiniLush MartiniLush 7 years
Right on looseseal, I totally agree with you. I would much rather come home to a new car in my driveway than a new woman in my bed!
looseseal looseseal 7 years
There's an "it depends" gray area with finances, though. Can you afford it? Is it money you earned yourself? Do you continue to contribute equally to the shared bills? If the answer is yes on all of those, it's not really a big deal. And you can't get an STD from buying new shoes. In the cases where the answer to one of those questions is "no", I can see how that can lead to damage to the relationship. But it's still not as bad as an actual affair. I just don't think it's possible to get as hurt over "bought a car behind your back" (probably the craziest you can go with finances) than "doing someone behind your back". Just think about those two scenarios side by side. which one gives you the more visceral ache-in-your-gut feeling? Hey, I guess this can be a "This or That" poll on Dear Sugar.
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