How Open Are You About Money?

How Open Are You About Money?

In polite society, money is a taboo topic. You don't ask friends how much they pay for rent, and you're not supposed to discuss how much you earn. However, in recent years, more people are arguing that politeness comes at a cost: namely, we're all really terrible at money because we're afraid to talk about it.

Photo by Katie Tegtmeyer

I'm totally on board with this notion, but I'm also a hypocrite. I don't necessarily like openly discussing how much I make, and I still cringe when someone asks what I pay in rent. When I think about it, I suppose part of it is that I'm worried they will judge or think differently of me, so my gut reaction is that my finances are none of their business. Should they be? And is financial transparency always a good thing?

That's more or less the question I'd like to pose: how open are you about money? Do you feel comfortable openly discussing your salary, how much you charge clients, the cost of your mortgage, and so on? Why or why not? Let's discuss the taboo of money, whether you think it's holding us back, or you think there's a reason for it.


    I've always been open about money. Never really understood what everyone's hangups are about discussing money, it's a key part of life that everyone has to deal with so may as well talk about it.

    I think being open about money in all situations makes it a lot easier for others to judge and compare their own position. When I first started in IT I found it difficult to get people in different positions to tell me an approximate salary for their skill level, so it made it really hard to know what to expect in the future. Now that I'm higher up in the field, I make sure I'm open with the newbies about how they can expect to progress so that they have a real idea of what to expect.

    For my personal things (mortage/rent/house expenses etc.) I don't mind discussing it at all. For work related things, it would really depend on the contract with your workplace and/or clients as I know some have confidentiality clauses.

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