Couples promise (in their wedding vows, of course!) to stay faithfully together in 'good times and in bad, in sickness and in health...'. Recession has taken care of at least a part of that long-forgotten solemn promise - because the credit crunch is keeping wedded couples together and away from the divorce court!
Dr Matthew Bambling of the Queensland University of Technology has revealed that many couples are parting ways owing to the recent credit crunch, as they face job insecurity, redundancy or worries about making ends meet.
Thus, Bambling has asked families to pull together amid the economic slump, and warned them to trim their financial "dreams."
He says that tough times like these ask for good communication within couples.
"The current economic situation is unprecedented and will affect every aspect of our lives,'' News.com.au quoted him as saying.
He added: "Don't be afraid or too proud to ask for help in a crisis. You might be surprised how much family and friends are prepared to do for you, and community organisations can assist with the basics of life if things are really tough.''
Bambling further added that in such times, couples should rigorously assess their financial positions and emphasis on open communication and shared responsibility.
He said: "Agree on attainable dreams and goals but accept differences in some areas and speak to each other with understanding and respect about differing financial priorities.
"A big house might be a dream, but the dream will soon crash and burn if it can't be paid for. A small house will do just as well.''
Also, he advised couples to carry out a shared financial audit each month to help "reduce surprises and relationship-wounding arguments.''
Partners should stay away from spending on credit where possible and try to save even a small amount each week to ease money worries.
In case things are not working, they should go and see a financial counsellor for advice on winning control over expenditure and servicing debt.
And the biggest mantra to deal with the monetary problem is to share the load, because "if you are both involved in finding solutions ... you are more likely to own the plan and be committed to the goals," said Bambling.
He claimed that doing nothing and worrying about going backwards financially would be more stressful than working as a team to reduce debt.
He said: "It is the quality of our closest relationships that makes us happy and satisfied, not how much money we have.
"There are ways to help ensure that stress created by tight economic times doesn't damage our most important relationships.''