Reality star Teresa Giudice and her husband Joe are facing the reality that they have money problems.  According to OK! Magazine, the Real Housewives of New Jersey couple is planning to sell their personal belongings in a public auction on August 22.  The two filed for bankruptcy last October.  A recent article in the New York Post claims the couple owes nearly $11 million in debts, including over $100,000 in credit cards.

What should you do if money problems are weighing on  your relationship?

Cupid’s Advice:

Relationships can be hard enough without the added stress of financial failure.  In fact, several studies say money is the number one reason couples fight.  While handling this situation is often easier said than done, Cupid has some advice to help ease the burden:

1. Money talks: Money is often a subject couples shy away from.  While we all know the saying “money talks,” it’s important that you and your partner actually talk about it.  Understand the numbers you are dealing with so you can spend responsibly and make financial decisions together.

2. Watch the spending: This step may sound like the most obvious, but it’s often the most difficult.  Make decisions on how much you can allocate each month to daily expenses and towards non-essential spending.  Here are some interesting stats from a 2004 study commissioned by SmartMoney and Redbook to help put things in perspective.

3. Turn to a financial planner: It never hurts to talk to a professional who can lay out your expenses and help set up a spending plan.  Speak to friends and family for references, or contact the Financial Planning Association to find a qualified planner.