When you find yourself in a life transition, do you tend to think optimistically or pessimistically? A lot depends on the particular situation, and sometimes your thoughts may not pair with the expected response.
Consider the case of a dating couple who decides to move in together. Normally this would be a happy occasion, but there may be anxiety about combining household expenses, fear about disclosing private information such as debt amounts or credit histories, or excitement about the new opportunities.
Here are some potential thoughts disguised as feelings that might arise when a couple is combining finances. Click the arrow to reveal the thoughts, possible feelings and what you might really want.
I feel distrusted when you ask to see my credit card statement.
- I think you don’t trust me.
- I feel hurt and disappointed.
- I want to feel free to make my own money decisions without fear that you will judge me.
I feel motivated when you talk about decorating our place together.
- I think you value my input.
- I feel inspired.
- I want us to participate together on major decisions.
I feel taken for granted when I am the one who always pays the bills.
- I think you don’t appreciate my effort to pay the bills.
- I feel overwhelmed and tired.
- I want you to notice my efforts and to help out in other ways (e.g., cook dinner) while I’m doing the bills.
I feel secure in our relationship.
- I think you and I are in the same place in our relationship.
- I feel committed.
- I want to know that you are as committed to the relationship as I am.
I feel betrayed when you spend money without asking me.
- I think you have betrayed me.
- I feel suspicious and worried.
- I want you to tell me if you need to spend more than we had budgeted so I am not caught off guard.