Daily Mirror - moral money question

ended 23. November 2021

A journalist at the Mirror is looking for a personal finance expert to give their opinion on the following 'moral money' question...

'I'm in thousands of pounds of debt but my partner doesn't know - should I tell them?'

The journalist needs just a few lines on email asap for publication later today. 

Go go go!

5 responses from the Newspage community

If you keep everything separate, perhaps not. If you are thinking of buying a house or making another large commitment jointly then you absolutely should. It'll probably come out in the wash anyway. It works the other way as well though. I recently asked what several large transactions were in a husband's bank statements. He sheepishly told me they were crypto currency purchases though it was evident his wife was unaware of them. He suggested I ask any further questions privately. I expect he's having to upgrade this years Christmas present.
Yes, tell them. It’ll come out at some point anyway and the best bet is always honesty. Here’s the thing, it’s only money. Don’t be scared of it.
"Yes! That is on the assumption that you love your partner and want to have an honest relationship with them. How would they feel if they found out that you were hiding it from them? Once you have opened up to them, you can work together to find a solution to clearing your debt."
Putting aside the moral issues, you should tell your partner. Secrets have a habit of coming out eventually. So you are probably best to tell them sooner rather than later. Hopefully, they will be supportive. There's also a practical planning need to tell them. This is because, assuming you are planning to be together forever, your partner's retirement planning will no doubt assume you are at least able to support yourself in retirement. However, if you have a debt issue then your own, and therefore their, retirement planning could be affected. It wouldn't be fair for them to only find this out on the eve of their retirement.
There is an old saying a problem aired is a problem shared and never is this more true when it comes to finances. Whatever the circumstances behind a debt the impact can be felt as much by others as the person in debt. Talking things through with your partner and together agreeing a way forward can hopefully strengthen your finances and your relationship.