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11 Ways Men and Women Manage Money Differently

Are women socialized to save money, and do men make riskier financial investments? Yes, according to Lois Frankel’s ways men and women manage money differently!

Knowing how males and females view money can help you achieve your financial goals as a couple — especially if you’re husband and wife.

“What gets women in trouble when it comes to getting and keeping the job they want or accumulating the portfolio they need to live financially independent lives is the tendency to act like the “nice girls” they were taught to be in childhood, as opposed to acting like intelligent, capable, deserving adult women,” writes Lois Frankel in Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich: 75 Avoidable Mistakes Women Make With Money.

Women act differently than men when it comes to personal financial and professional success. To learn more about women and money management, read Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich: 75 Avoidable Mistakes Women Make with Money — it’s empowering and informative book! And here are Frankel’s 11 ways men and women manage money differently…

How Men and Women Manage Money Differently

In childhood, girls receive significantly different messages about money than boys do. This affects a woman’s relationship with money – and also affects whether she’ll achieve financial goals as part of a couple or as an individual.

What Girls Hear About Money:

  • “It’s better to do good than be rich.”
  • “Girls just aren’t good at math.”
  • “Men know more about money than you do.”
  • “It’s just as easy to marry rich as it is to marry poor.”
  • “Money doesn’t buy you happiness.”

Financial guru Suze Orman totally disagrees with that last statement! She says money may not buy happiness in the traditional sense, but it does give you the freedom and security to take better care of yourself, take risks, and not worry about paying the bills. If that isn’t a component of happiness, I don’t know what is.

“Women need to develop a healthy, honest relationship with our money,” she says. “And we have to see this relationship as a reflection of our relationship with ourselves.”

Part of developing a healthy, honest relationship with money involves figuring out your money personality. Learning where you developed your money beliefs and how they affect your spending and saving habits can change how you manage money, regardless of whether you’re a man or a woman.

But still, there are certain money management habits that are directly related to your gender…


The rest of this article has been moved to my new site, “Quips and Tips for Love and Relationships.”

Please click 11 Differences in the Way Husbands and Wives Handle Money  to continue reading!



Or, you might enjoy reading Money and the Law of Attraction – 4 Ways to Attract Wealth.


If you have any thoughts or questions about the ways men and women manage money differently, I welcome your comments below…

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7 thoughts on “11 Ways Men and Women Manage Money Differently”

  1. Thanks for your insights, Public School Teacher! I taught grade 8 for three years, at an American school in Africa. Not a public school…but not a school with alot of money.

    Regarding how men and women manage money differently: I’m definitely a saver, and my husband loves to invest and move it around. That’s fine with me – he’s not a huge risk-taker so we don’t lose lots – but I’m happy just to leave it in a money market fund.

    I don’t think sending money to support your hubby’s family in Mexico counts as “investment.” That’s an amazingly kind thing to do….does it cause problems in your marriage? If I knew the family members I was supporting and what they actually spent the money on, it’d definitely be easier.

    It seems like you agree with most of Orman’s statements about men and money! I think I’ll rewrite this article into “true” or “false” questions, so we can actually tally scores and see how many are actually true for us.

  2. Public School Teacher

    I do not agree with quite a few of the views, either. I think in my case(and I’m sure for many other women), alot of these “views” about money are reversed… #1 and #2 I somewhat agree with, however… #3- I think men buy what they want and women buy what they need (at least that is how it is in my marriage!,
    #4- it is men who spend to create the lifestyle they want now (can you say motorcycle and corvette, anyone?!), #5- investing? what’s that? Does sending money to support your husband’s family in Mexico count?!? #6 – 8 I somewhat agree with, #9- I don’t expect other to know more than I do- if that’s the case, then it’s my job to find out what I need to know! #10- helping profession/ low pay- yep, that’s me! I’m a public school teacher! #11- I have to say that is true for women most of the time- advocating fairness, whereas men can be more selfish when it comes to money- they are out for numero uno!!!

  3. I think the best thing to take from this article is that differences exist but that doesn’t make one person better than the other. I think that each person can learn from the other half of their partnership. To me, the biggest financial mistake any couple can make is to NOT talk about it before making a commitment. Learning about a person’s financial situation and habits after the fact often makes for rough sailing after the initial excitement has faded.

  4. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Thanks for your comment on the list, Samantha — it’s great to hear from you.

    I’m afraid there’s nothing you can do to change the way your boyfriend spends money. So many girlfriends marry their boyfriends or move in with them, thinking things will change — and they don’t. Money matters can get worse, because kids and mortgages and health care expenses can be a huge financial drain.

    It must be hard to respect a guy who can’t take care of himself financially – he sounds a bit like a teenager in how he spends his money. Whether he was taught money sense or not, there comes a time in any adult’s life to take care of him or her self — and put what they want second to taking care of the necessities.

    The only person you can change in your relationship is yourself. If he’s not willing to listen and compromise — to respect your wishes and feelings — then there’s nothing you can do! You can talk ’til you’re blue in the face, but if he doesn’t care…then he doesn’t care.

    You need to decide what you want for your future. Then, you need to be strong and brave enough to make the changes necessary to achieve your goals.

    Best wishes, and you’re welcome to come back anytime and update me! I’d love to know how you are.


  5. I did not agree with most of what I just read.

    I found this site trying to look for how I can help my boyfriend manage his money better, and found that in #’s 1, 3, 4, 5, and 9, the roles should be reversed in our case.

    Hmmm… I do agree strongly with #6 though.

    Do you know of any ways I could help my situation? My boyfriend gets paid, gives me the necessary amount for rent/bills, and then is broke the same night. We both smoke, so I end up supporting his habit as well as my own for the next 2 wks, also doling out money for bus fare and change for other random items, buying him lunch, etc. I’m sick to death of it and whenever I try to talk to him about it he shrugs it off like its not important. He’s already decided he’s buying a new guitar with his next check, which will leave him broke … AGAIN… AAAHH


  6. Thanks for your comments, Max – you’ve made some really interesting points! My short response revolves around the fact that people – both men and women – are complicated, which means they often act in contradictory ways. So yes, I think a woman can buy what they want AND buy things to take care of others. I don’t think #2 and #6 are inconsistent with #3.

    I actually don’t believe any one of Orman’s points about women and money are universally correct or incorrect. I think it’s different for each woman — and it can be different for the same woman at different stages in her life.

    My career goal is to support myself financially, not just fulfillment, and I don’t believe “women care much less about money” than men, as you state in your last comment. I care more than I should about money.

    But, I do agree that how women handle money is wrapped up in their gender roles – that’s a good point.

    I’m glad you commented, Max – it’s always great to hear a different perspective!

  7. I’d like to point out the obvious inconsistencies in this article. #5 is inconsistent with the theme presented that women look for ways to use money that yield quick rewards without consideration of the future. #2 and #6 seem to be fairly contrary to the (well supported) stereotype of the shopping girl which is also presented in #3 (buy what they want). I believe you may be mistaking a modern woman’s role in the house hold for her spending habits outside of the social standard. While #10 is correct I also would have to say that it has less to do with the difference in views of money but rather the roles that are presented as important in there lives. In a post woman’s rights movement society women are being told that it isn’t there job to raise a family, in fact in schools the house wife is often portrayed as a failure. Instead they are told to get a career, but with no goal other than fulfillment through success. This leads to a difference in gender opinions of the role of employment. Men still want to achieve success economically primarily to support a family or, in a more modern sence, to get the money it takes to get the ladies. Women care much less about money as neither of those reasons apply to them, the only goal of a career is fulfillment.