Do you tell your friends and family how much you make?

Do you talk openly with your friends and family members about how much you make? For example, if you get a new job or a big promotion, do you tell people who are close to you what your new salary is? I’m asking because a recent letter writer started earning big bucks after years of being broke. She was proud (and rightfully so!) of her newfound prosperity, so she told everyone how much she was making.…e-about-being-fired/

The problem is, now that everyone knows she’s making money, they’re constantly asking her to pay for things. Now, she wishes she had never told them in the first place. As a fellow blabbermouth, I totally relate to her conundrum.

The letter writer asked if she could tell everyone that her work situation imploded and that she’s back to broke again. I don’t think that would be wise. It’s not just about lying — it seems like it would be really tough to keep up this guise. I think the letter writer needs to learn to live like the successful lady that she is, and that will require setting boundaries.

Is it a mistake to tell your friends and family members your salary? I feel like when you put an exact dollar amount on it, you’re probably inviting trouble. But over time, unless you live way below your means, people are going to figure out that you’re doing well if they see you buying a nice house or car, taking expensive vacations, etc.

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I talk about it pretty generally, but it’s usually to make a point. I work in Human Services in Housing. When I am around people (outside of work) who talk about ‘welfare fraud’, thinking I will commiserate since I work in the field, I may talk with them about my income, and how I qualify for welfare, even with my education and professional career. People often think they are talking about the elusive ‘them’ but its often about all of us.

Since I deal a lot with money- that’s much of what I do with my clients as a Housing Counselor and Financial Social Worker- people talk pretty openly with me about it, and I may share a bit with them as well. If I can make it on this income, then there’s hope for you as well!

And for a few years, I had someone I budgeted with and we shared finances to encourage and hold each other accountable. So I believe there is a time and place to share income information. I would not just broadcast my salary, not even to my parents. But as you say, people are going to make assumptions based on your lifestyle. And that’s just fine. ?


i talk about it to my children, so they don’t worry about me making enough to keep my bills up to date, i want to not ask my children for help


Holdover from my upbringing: Parents never talked about money…not just MY parents, but typical for my generation. I’m in my 70s. I don’t discuss income with anyone except my partner, and when I find it necessary to share financial life experiences as examples for my children, toddler to adult.

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After retiring 20 months ago, there was a big shake up among the remaining workers in my field all about money. The new entries into the field were being paid as much as or more than those with years of professional experience. Of course someone blabbed and the the problem was wide open. Eventually the regulation of salaries came down on the manager who was getting kick-backs to keep the hourly rates low, until it went above her head to HR… Now she’s nearly out of the management structure. Pay rates are better, I did share what I made after I retired with co-workers so they could get an idea of what their skills are worth. The company also got (in writing) what equivalent companies were offering.


My children know, but it’s not discussed with anyone else. Too much fraud in the world to have that info leak out.


It depends. Family members who I feel like I do about budgeting and saving, spending in general, I share some of it, big picture stuff. That’s actually 1 family member, and we love discussing finances. Family members who would always have their hand out, I share minimally. Friends, not so much.

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Friends, never, they have absolutely no need to know. Family (non partner) only when you are getting your will ready. If others think you have money they will want you to gift them some.

I am not excluding teaching children about what it costs to run a household. That they need to learn along with that the parents/guardian is saving money for goals or retirement.


Friends? Only select people. But for family members, definitely not because it can cause conflict and create unwanted expectations.

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Yes if and when they ask, Here I make my life easy, I grossed $60,000 last year is what I tell them. I have nothing to hide and everything to gain.

Never reveal:


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