Manisha Thakor, above, co-authored "Get Financially Naked: How To Talk Money With Your Honey." In the book, she and co-author Sharon Kedar advocate opening a conversation about money -- even if it's difficult. Credit Cards.com: First off, snaps on the title of your book. (chuckles) We had to get people's attention, because it wasn't a topic that they innately want to discuss.
Financial choices have become trickier and talking about them have become taboo, neither of which is conducive to good relationships, or to long term wealth. Manisha Thakor and Sharon Kedar, two certified financial analysts, hope to break the ice and save a few million relationships in the process with "Get Financially Naked: How To Talk Money With Your Honey," their step-by-painful-step guide to talking about the least romantic topic ever. Couples would rather discuss erectile dysfunction than talk about this, honestly. Talking about money really is more intimate than talking about sex.
Credit Cards.com: So we shouldn't be surprised that the subject doesn't come up when dating.
Manisha Thakor: Society doesn't encourage us to consider financial responsibility as one of the elements that we evaluate or incorporate in a relationship. Credit Cards.com: It does seem like kind of a buzz kill.
This notion that you could get married and not know about each other's finances is one we think needs to be exploded. Credit Cards.com: As you point out in the book, marriage historically has been more about money than love. I mean, if love developed a couple hundred years ago, great, nice side benefit, but that wasn't what the institution entailed.
Manisha Thakor: I think it totally depends on the couple.Manisha Thakor: We include in "Get Financially Naked" a financial compatibility quiz.The idea behind the quiz is for each partner to assess their knowledge, interest and behavior with regards to money.If, at the point that you think you've found the one, you disclose to each other any financial blemishes in the same way you might disclose any sexually transmitted diseases, that is the most effective way to make sure that whatever pieces of credit carditis lurk in your history aren't going to blow your relationship to smithereens.If you have one partner who has a history of accruing debt and you don't talk about that until after marriage, you quite literally could end up in a because-of-debt-did-we-part situation.Credit Cards.com: As opposed to the whack-a-mole approach where you deal with your finances piecemeal, whenever one pops up. Manisha Thakor: Oftentimes they don't give correct financial advice. I cannot tell you, in my previous life as a portfolio manager, how many times clients came in with the most cockamamie ideas they had heard on the golf course.Credit Cards.com: Especially if your foursome included Bernie Madoff. Credit Cards.com: How can a couple recognize and capitalize on each others strengths?Credit Cards.com: That's where a certified financial planner can help, right?Manisha Thakor: In certain religions, part of the process of getting married is going through premarital counseling, and a component of that is discussing money.The authors contend that starting a dialog early about money and finance can make relationships stronger and better able to weather the storms of misfortune. It is amazing to me the lengths to which couples will go to avoid discussing what I like to call the pink elephant in the bedroom. Manisha Thakor: The reason I typically give is, we're not educated about personal finance but we're expected to understand it. Credit hooked up with Manisha Thakor for a chat about love -- and the M word.