Studies of people’s financial behavior show that initiating important financial discussions is key to achieving and securing financial well-being, especially for women. Whether talking with their spouses or partners, or with their parents or children, women who take the lead in talking about sensitive financial issues are better prepared to deal with the hurdles that may occur on the pathway of life. They are also less afraid of what the future might bring.
Discussions with Spouse or Partner
Surveys reveal that a majority of women are willing to talk with their spouses or partners about issues related to aging, but many do not start the conversation. When it comes to discussing, researching, and selecting financial solutions for dealing with the possibilities of failing health or complications around mortality, less than half of women are “proactive; they are willing to be involved but unlikely to initiate the discussion. Some women, even if they know it would be prudent, will only talk about these subjects if actually pressured to do so.
Discussions with Older Parents
Many women are or will be assisting aging parents. Yet an overwhelming percentage of women have not talked in-depth with their parents about their financial needs and arrangements as they grow older. Many say that they have not done so because their parents are sensitive about financial issues. And some women truly feel that their parents’ financial affairs are” none of their business. Chances are strong, however, that many women will eventually have to deal in some way with their parents’ business matters. The better prepared they are, the easier it will be.
Discussions with Grown Children
Women also seem reluctant to have substantive financial dialogue with their grown children. With regard to their later life needs, a small number of women may have explained provisions for their retirement income or long-term care to their children. A significant number of them, however, have not discussed their will or estate plans with their offspring. Experience demonstrates the wisdom of having these conversations sooner rather than later.
The fact is that money remains a difficult topic within many families. Oftentimes, individuals, and women in particular, will wait for someone else to launch the subject, all the while losing precious time for planning. In view of that, we at OpenCircle stress the importance of women taking the lead in initiating financial conversations with their loved ones. We can help. Give us a call at 203-985-0448.