Q I earn more than my fiancé and will be contributing more for the wedding. How can I avoid making him feel inadequate?

A: It's not uncommon for a woman to make more money than her fiancÚ. However, it can create a rift in your wedding planningas well as in your relationshipif he doesn't feel like an equal partner. To balance things out and stay on level ground, establish a system now that works for both of you. Consider paying for the wedding out of a joint account to which you both contribute. If you make twice as much as your fianc&eactue;, you'd chip in, say, twice as much to the kitty. That way, the money's no longer yours or his—it's both of yours. And both of you should be equally involved in decision-making no matter who earns more, says Olivia Mellan, a psychotherapist based in Washington, D.C. and author of Money Harmony: Resolving Money Conflicts in Your Life and Relationship. Once you're married, these strategies can work with household expenses as well. If your money disparity is a bigger problem than you can solve on your own, get support. A financial planner can facilitate communication and help you devise good strategies.

See all questions about budget etiquette

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