AIBU or is he? Money related

(109 Posts)

I am really upset this morning and I genuinely don't know if I am being unreasonable or DH is.

We both work in quite well-paid jobs. However, we are paying off debts (extension to the house) and have a car loan. So we don't have a huge amount of disposable income every month. We are also going to have to go for fertility treatment later this year which will be very expensive. I am saving like mad for that and trying to safeguard cash.

DH has wanted a new watch for ages. He has his heart totally set on a Rolex. A few months ago he found a second-hand one that he really wanted and asked me what I thought. I said, I think we should pay off our debts first and then you could save for the watch and buy it in a year or so. He agreed that was v sensible and was grateful for the advice.

He has had a pay rise recently and so last night came into the bedroom and said "I want you to be supportive, I have found the perfect watch and I am going to buy it". I said, right - but I thought you agreed to pay off the debts on the extension first. He said, yes but I can do that and buy the watch (didn't explain how), and there is never a good time to spend that kind of money, I have worked really hard for 9 years and I have always wanted a nice watch.
I said yes I know, but we have expensive fertility treatment coming up and only last week you said we couldn't afford a holiday this year. So I am not sure how you can now afford the watch, and I am not sure it's the best use of money right now. Can you not wait a bit to buy it?

He shouted at me, said he was shaking with rage and how DARE I tell him how to spend the money he earns. He said it is HIS money, and he will never discuss finances with me again if I am going to try and control how he spends it. And he wanted me to be happy for him and now I have ruined the whole thing.
He slept in a different bedroom and is not talking to me today.

I can't really think straight. In a way, he is right - he can spend his money on whatever he likes and maybe it is not my my place to try and influence it. But at the same time, when it is such a big sum of money that it could impact on big things like affording fertility treatment, I think it is a joint decision? What do you all think, what should I do??

DuelingFanjo Thu 25-Jul-13 10:35:41

I think he is being an idiot. How much will it be?
He basically presented it as a done deal, saying you must support him and then flipped when you wouldn't.
Are there other issues!?

whois Thu 25-Jul-13 10:36:34

Don't know what you could do but sorry you're having a bad time. I think he is U buying a watch over paying off debts, but I don't actually think he is U buying a watch over holiday or fertility treatment as (emotional as that might be for you) is still discretionary spending.

CeliaFate Thu 25-Jul-13 10:37:37

What a spoilt little boy he sounds. He pouts and sulks because you didn't clap your hands with glee that he wants an expensive watch?

EvieanneVolvic Thu 25-Jul-13 10:38:12

Tbh I think I would say 'DH, you work bloody hard, just this once indulge yourself!'

I am less than thrilled with the 'my money I'll spend it how I like' scenario but it seems from what you say that this was said in anger and disappointment and is not his overall policy.

Life is for living now as well as in the future; it sounds to me like you are an incredibly sensible pair. As I say, I would feel inclined to tell him to go for it think of the brownie points you'll earn!!

EldritchCleavage Thu 25-Jul-13 10:38:48

Well, his shouting etc is a guilt reaction because you've spelled out all the reasons why his decision is wrong, and irresponsible, and selfish. Not to mention, goes back on what the two of you previously agreed.
You're right, you can't stop him buying it, but there is no earthly reason why you should pretend it's ok for him to buy it, because it isn't.

TheVermiciousKnid Thu 25-Jul-13 10:39:35

I think YANBU about the money - but then I just can't understand how anybody would want to spend a fortune on a watch. As long as it tells the time reasonably well, does it matter what make it is?

He is definitely unreasonable about shouting at you in a rage. Does that happen often?

Crinkle77 Thu 25-Jul-13 10:40:12

I will never understand why some people want expensive watches and such like. A cheap one will do exactly the same thing. Anyway it depends really how much it is going to cost. Maybe he feels like treating himself which is fine but to say you can't afford a holiday then splash out hundreds on a stupid watch seems a bit unfair.

EllesAngel Thu 25-Jul-13 10:41:19

Exactly what does a Rolex do that other cheaper watches don't? Do the housework? Dance? Provide entertainment? hmm

He sounds like he needs to grow up.

TheVermiciousKnid Thu 25-Jul-13 10:41:51

Maybe it provides sensible financial adivce, EllesAngel?

He doesn't shout very often at all. He doesn't really get angry very often which is why it upsets me like this when he does. I think the last time he got angry like this was about 3 years ago and I can't even remember why.

I think EldritchCleavage has hit it on the head saying he is reacting like this because he feels guilty.

DIYapprentice Thu 25-Jul-13 10:42:20

I think 'I am going to buy it' actually means 'I have already bought it' which is why he is massively pissed off. He knows you're right, but was hoping to get away with it.

You are a couple - unless you are financially well off you can't afford to make large purchases willy nilly. Why should the rest of the family forego a holiday just so he can have a watch?!

ENormaSnob Thu 25-Jul-13 10:42:23

I strongly recommemd you keep seperate money from this petulant manchild.

He sounds irresponsible, immature and selfish.

ImperialBlether Thu 25-Jul-13 10:42:55

Hundreds? It will be thousands!

CajaDeLaMemoria Thu 25-Jul-13 10:43:21

Hmmm...secondhand Rolexes can be quite 'cheap' depending on what model and year. I mean, not cheap, but not thousands.

I can understand that feeling of getting a payrise and wanting to celebrate it with a big purchase, and he's probably cut down his general spending a lot if you are paying off debts and saving for fertility treatment? Sometimes, despite logic saying you should save, you want to treat yourself a little. I think that's fightable most of the time, but if the watch is coming from 'new' pay from his payrise, and therefore wouldn't have been used for the extension or fertility treatment, I can kindof see his point. I see yours, too, though.

His reaction was terrible. I'd be concerned about that. Both shouting and sulking like a child are unacceptable, and I'd make that very clear.

Goldmandra Thu 25-Jul-13 10:44:16

If you were trying to control his spending you would be hiding his bank cards and doling out cash as pocket money for him.

What he actually objects to is you expressing your opinion about how money you own jointly is used.

Is he in full agreement about the money you're planning to spend on IVF?

NatashaBee Thu 25-Jul-13 10:44:24

YANBU, DH is like this. I do try and support him to an extent - he works really hard and most of our money goes on house, bills, etc so he doesn't get fun money very often.

Does he have any unused stuff he can sell to make some of the money he needs for the watch?

quoteunquote Thu 25-Jul-13 10:44:52

You need to have a calm chat and find out if you both have the same, one year, five year and ten year plan. then get the spread sheets out, and both be realistic about what happens next.

It is not a cheap rolex because all the interest you are paying on loans, is added to the cost of it.

but that is not really the point, what is, is how disparities in your partnership are being solved.

really horrid for you, good luck and be kind to yourself.

That's what I want to do, Caja, make it clear that shouting and sulking are not acceptable. But how?

Andro Thu 25-Jul-13 10:45:20

I don't think either of you were/are unreasonable in your thoughts (although I would prioritise existing commitments such as debt and agreed spending, I can see his point about working his butt off and wanting the watch), but is reaction was way ott and suggests to me that he knows he isn't perhaps making the best choice. Purchases which will impact the whole family should be discussed and jointly agreed, spending (of whatever sum) that will not impact the whole family are the individual's choice.

From what you've written it doesn't sound like you were trying to control him, rather that you were reminding him of existing commitments and suggesting a reasonable course of action (especially as he'd recently agreed to said action plan). Leave him to sulk, no good will come of trying to force matters. Discuss the matter calmly when he's calmed down.

BillyGoatintheBuff Thu 25-Jul-13 10:46:37

It's complicated isn't it, it's probably a big status symbol for you dh. I find it so hard to navigate these things because it's like 'lokk how big my watch/penis is'. My dh is annoying with the latest gadgets and showing off all the time. I don't like it but also it's not the end of the world when he does buy the latest annoying phone or what not so I try not to stress about it.

I would be absolutely gutted if it impacted ivf though - I think you both need to be equally as keen on that to be able to do it - its such an emotional whirlpool.

jammiedonut Thu 25-Jul-13 10:47:27

Tbh I probably would've said to treat himself aswell, like pp said, life is for now and each of you should be 'allowed' discretionary spending once in a while. If you are about to embark on having children with this man it really isn't worth having a massive blow out over something like this. I'm sure the shouting etc is because he's done a good job, earned a pay rise and is still not able to reward himself (when he says he'd be able to pay off the other stuff aswell!). If that were me I'd've been pretty upset too

redskyatnight Thu 25-Jul-13 10:47:37

I imagine you didn't repeat the whole conversation but it sounds like you didn't give him any chance to say how much the watch costs or how he saw your finances working out. You just said "no". Which does sound awfully like you are infantalising him.

He asked you to be supportive and I don't think you really gave him a chance tbh.

Apileofballyhoo Thu 25-Jul-13 10:48:06

I think he is U buying a watch over paying off debts, but I don't actually think he is U buying a watch over holiday or fertility treatment as (emotional as that might be for you) is still discretionary spending.

I don't think this is strictly fair as a holiday or fertility treatment is something for both partners whereas the watch is only for the DH. It comes back to whether the money in the relationship is shared equally or not I suppose. It sounds like there are underlying issues in any case.

BillyGoatintheBuff Thu 25-Jul-13 10:49:49

I'm such a slow typer, sorry.

I agree with some others who have said they can understand treating yourself when you work so hard and you feel you can afford a little splash on something.

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