Or is DH being controlling?

(81 Posts)

Me. Again. DH, normally lovely (bit flawed, has problems thinking things through, but true of most people?), & has been pretty good this weekend as I'm quite ill (on the mend a bit now). BUT:

It's half term, so no playgroups, pre school & other activities. Just 1 half hour swimming lesson. DD 3 & DS10 months old. Weather to be crap & soft play will be rammed, not a great deal else to do around here. I can fill a coue of days with baking biscuits, painting g, food shopping etc but decided it would be good to catch up with a close old friend who has a DS 3. Kids can play, we can chat & she lives at seaside (approx 45 miles away) so we can do bracing beach walk/shivery ice cream thing. I told DH & he went a bit cat bum mouth. I ignored it at first but then he said 'I know it's nice for you to see your friends, but...I'm thinking of the petrol'

My response was to explain how long a week with no planned activities can be in crap weather & that if he wanted to entertain 2 DCs (bearing in mind I have bronchitis & am getting 3/4 hours sleep in 24 due to cough), he could be my guest. He said, hmm, I think we need to talk about it, but not now (as it was bedtime).

I'm a SAHM. DH has good job, so although o.n one income it's a decent (although not massive) one. We (well him really) budget & whilst thi gs are tight (we think before we spend anything, have meagrely personal money & I sell anything that's not nailed down we no longer use, on eBay.

So aibu to do a 90 mile round trip as described or is he being a tight arse? Also for the first time in 11 years, feel he's being a little controlling.

My gut instinct is to say, I'm sorry you don't think it's important, perhaps you have some suggestions for what we could do? Then maybe you could have both DCs one Saturday whilst I take the train to visit x?

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 11-Feb-13 00:43:10

If you can afford it yanbu

If you can't afford it yabu

But considering he does the budget you will probably never know which it is.

SirBoobAlot Mon 11-Feb-13 00:43:41

I don't drive, so don't know exactly how much petrol would cost you for this... But yes, does seem a bit unreasonable for him. It's not a huge journey, not like you're heading off to the South of France.

I would say he was being controlling if he said you couldn't go. He didn't. He is worried about the money and you say that money is an issue. Maybe if you take a little more ownership of the budget, you would agree. It is always difficult if one partner leaves the budget to the other.

I think a bigger issue is you having no free time, no sleep, a cough, no activities and horrible weather. Some of which he could help out with (sleep, weekend activities) some of which he can't.

DumSpiroSpero Mon 11-Feb-13 00:45:45

Perhaps he's thinking that as well as the petrol you are likely to spending more money going out etc while you're there?

TBH I think getting all the bits and bobs to do decent crafty/cookery stuff with them can sometime be more expensive than going out.

Have a look on Google maps - you can get an estimated petrol cost then perhaps compare it with the cost of going by train if that's practical.

I don't think he's necessarily being controlling, but probably a bit thoughtless.

ComposHat Mon 11-Feb-13 00:47:52

why not take more responsibility for. overseeing the finances and then you can make a decision together?

DumSpiroSpero Mon 11-Feb-13 00:48:18

Have just had a look on Google at a 45 mile journey - you're looking at £16-£18 there and back.

Does it sound reasonable that he's objecting to that or not?

cantspel Mon 11-Feb-13 00:48:50

If money is tight then his concern is valid and not controlling.

Plus if you are not well and only getting 3/4 hours sleep is it wise to do a long day out with a fairly longish drive with 2 young children?
Can you not just have a lazy week with a few at home activities and a bit of cbbc.

NatashaBee Mon 11-Feb-13 00:50:25

Why are you not jointly responsible for the budget? That is a bit odd. If you were involved in financial planning then you'd have a better idea of whether your spending money on petrol for a nonessential trip was reasonable.

Ok he does the budget as he loves spreadsheets & I don't. But we do discuss it & I do know how much we have in every 'pot' we can afford it. He does take DCs swimming every few weekends & does 45 mile round trip to go to the nicer pool (we live 5 mins walk from a perfectly good one, but other one is a bit nicer).

I think he thinks that longer journeys are for us all to do together, but he moans about meeting my old uni friends as we met after uni. I actually thought he'd prefer this suggestion.

We are not jointly responsible for the cooking or cleaning or shopping as I'm a SAHM is that odd?

ComposHat Mon 11-Feb-13 00:56:33

I guess YABU if you don't/won't take on the responsibility for managing your joint money and then be huffy when the person who manages the budget does just that and says you can't do something.

Unless of course he stops you accessing joint accounts then you have a very different and far more serious problem.

FGS I have access to the money. I know how much there is. I am jointly responsible. That's the point, we are jointly responsible but on this occasion don't agree.

When I say he does the budget, I mean he tracks it, moves moneyfiddles rubs hands with glee when numbers get bigger then we discuss it, plans savings mortgage budget for car, food etc (can't afford commas though)

Sorry, should've been clearer

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 11-Feb-13 01:02:17

Is 45 miles considered a long journey?

Well not really, but normal activities with kids are 5/6 miles away, this is out of the ordinary for me; for a day trip.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:07:33

Does he have reason to be concerned about petrol i.e. are you on a tight budget?

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:11:12

Sorry, you have already answered that. If you were struggling on a budget then maybe it would be Ok for him to bring it up and worry about the cost of fuel etc. in a discussing the family finances way. Otherwise it sounds like he is being a controlling arse.

Perhaps suggest he takes the time off his saving the world work and looks after the children (because please remind yourself, they are not just YOUR kids, they are his too) and you can sit around dishing out the requirements for entertainment.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:12:42

I thoroughly despair at the sheer numbers of men that are enabled to behave this way.

cantspel Mon 11-Feb-13 01:13:38

You said in your op that money is tight and you have to think before you spend. Ebay and have little personal money.

Now you want to spend without thinking as you want to visit your friend.

He doesn't sound controlling and is probably just worried about money. Winter is an expensive time if money is tight. The cost of heating is going through the roof. petrol costs are high, food prices rising and wages not.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:16:18

It would appear from the tone of the OP that she is the only person selling her belongings on ebay to make some extra cash.

ukatlast Mon 11-Feb-13 01:17:24

YANBU if you can afford it, you should be free to go, it's not really a case of asking more telling surely?
Are you sure the real reason isn't that he doesn't trust your driving with kids over a longer journey on busier roads or doesn't want to get his own meal (if that would be the case).

If you do go, I am sure you will enjoy catching up with your friend. SAHMs need adult friends in same boat i.m.e.
I suppose your friend might be climbing walls herself and might be happy to drive over to you instead?

Basically we have a weekly budget (well about 3 on top of bills payments, petrol, food & other)whatever we do t spend gets carried over or saved. For a couple of weeks we didn't spend that much, so DH got all excited & started forecasting accruals (he is nice, really!) and discussing what we could spend this on (like paying off an extra bit of mortgage). I made it clear that whilst that is great, I think we need to realise that those were light weeks & in any case, we need to live a little, we're already pretty austere (it's his upbringing, whole other thread). The mortgage gets paid every month and a large chunk of lump sum every year. We are only 32!

Like his dad he gets off on likes seeing growing numbers in the bank. I like being comfortable & planning I love a bargain & hate waste, but see no point in being miserable when you have all bases adequately covered it swim.

Whoops late night tired eyes bloody iPhone fail. Op should've said whilst things *aren't^.tight, I sell things (all sorts, mainly old kid's stuff/furniture.

Apologies to all who took time to reply based on faulty op. most of it still stands.

This is going to keep coming back to bite me if this thread continues isn't it?

Oh dear.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:27:37

Your latest post doesn't seem to indicate that he is a a candidate for LTB but I really think you need to step up a bit. If your SAHM status is new, ie. it is your first baby, then now is the time. If you sit back and slip into the role of being complacent and letting him dictate then it will only become more difficult in the future with further children.

The child/children are not yours alone. You are providing free childcare. Without you providing that free childcare he would be unable to continue his career without consideration for HIS child/children. You are not sitting at home drinking martini and shagging the window cleaner (unless you are!).

I wouldn't stand for it, but I am a harsh misery :-)

GO and do your thing, and do not look over your shoulder for one second. You are not his housekeeper nor the nanny. Unless you have reason to be budgeting to the penny then there is no reason to restrain yourself. You are hardly proposing a weekend in New York.

And uk don't think it's about driving. Friend could come here, he did suggest that, but where we live its be a drive to do anything fun with DCs & same issue re choice of activities. But friend lives by lovely beach. My kids love the beach, as, I suspect, do most!

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:32:11

Where are you in the country OP?

No martini or extra curricular shagging! smile

2 DCs, been off work for 3 1/2 years(ish), I think you're right thyme, it's been a gradual thing. He is exhibiting fil traits. Whilst this may sound flippant, I assure you it is not. Fil is a selfish, judgy, controlling nightmare. DH thinks this too.

He is def not a ltb, but I do think I am taken for granted. He's had the kids more as I've been poorly as he spent most of this evening telling about quirkily irritating character traits that I am more than aware of! Yet he does spend a lot of time telling me I need to be more patient. No shit!? But let him do it!

SW- Somerset

MarjorieAntrobus Mon 11-Feb-13 01:39:24

My take on it is that he doesn't want you to go, and the petrol cost is the excuse he is giving. A one-off 90 mile roundtrip is really not a big deal. Yes, it'll be about £15-£20 pounds, but you might well spend that and more on the extra activities you'll have to dream up in half-term week anyway.

I think he is being controlling, actually.

MarjorieAntrobus Mon 11-Feb-13 01:42:43

telling about quirkily irritating character traits

Was he telling you about YOUR irritating traits? shock

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 01:44:21

They often talk about how much they wont become their FIL or their own fathers, and then they do the exact same. Please be atuned to this.

Don't become that woman who says, ohhh he's a good man, a good father. Remember, a good father doesn't treat the mother of his children like the paid help. He wouldn't want his sons or daughters growing up thinking that women are slaves or servants. A good man would want his daughters to grow up knowing they were independent people who needed nobody to further their lives and knowing his sons were sufficient young men who wanted a female (or male) in their lives for love not domestic convenience.

If money is not tight you need to have a different kind of chat. What about a generous 'child activities' budget which you decide how to spend? If it doesn't all get spent it goes into an education fund. That way, you are motivated to be frugal and he has it in the budget therefore minimising the stress on him.

I regularly have 'don't turn into your personality disordered father' conversations with DH. He knows he doesn't want to. He also reminds me not to turn into my bossy mother.

* marjorie* no adorable dd's traits.

mrstp the kids activity budget does currently get lumped in with the 'other' one which I think does diminish it's importance. The little blightes have quite enough in their education funds though! Well, I suppose more couldn't hurt. Thsats not a bad idea. Normally I am extremely frugal & do more play dates/lunch swap v cheap aggro up things. This is unusual, but like I said, half term.

MarjorieAntrobus Mon 11-Feb-13 01:54:43

Following on from what MrsTerry said about a child activities budget, your DH needs to realise that this is going to be a recurring issue every half-term and holiday, ie that there will be extra expenses at those times.

MarjorieAntrobus Mon 11-Feb-13 01:55:40

Gosh, I'm glad he wasn't talking about you!

As for turning into our parents...I could do worse. DH could not! In fact that is what is so odd about this, it's so reminiscent of things he hated about his own childhood.

Anyway, hacking cough appears to have abated. Time for some sleep. Will check back tomorrow & update on what happens.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 02:05:59

OP I certainly wasn't being nasty when I said about turning into the parents.

I would just hate for you to end up like so so many of us women here, if you are picking up on things early on then you have an excellent chance of changing things for the better. OR.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 02:06:53

Do NOT ignore those red flags that pop up early on. They become huge giant flags later on.

MarjorieAntrobus Mon 11-Feb-13 02:07:32

And they already have education funds do they? Wow, that is quite far-sighted. Impressive too, and not something we ever managed to do.

My hunch is that he is very anxious about money all the time, even when there are healthy balances in all the pots. He is planning ahead to pay off more mortgage, save for the children's education etc. All very laudable up to a point.

MammaTJ Mon 11-Feb-13 05:05:48

Babies, I am now wondering where in Som you live and whether you are planning on visiting the seaside town I live in!! I may well bump in to you, if so. I have a friend visiting from Bridgwater today (not 45 miles from me) and will probably at some point go and visit the seafront, even if we don't make it on to the beach.

My DM however does live a long way from me and we do have to think carefully if we go and visit her, but we manage it sometimes.

The same bus journey would cost £7 for me, not sure about the DC. First bus do a daily adult ticket, which will take you all over Somerset all day for that. Worth a thought and your DC may enjoy that too.

MammaTJ Mon 11-Feb-13 05:07:44

Just realised your DC would not have to pay, so you may be able to get to your friends and back for £7.

Hi mamma thank you. Not far from your friend but my friend is in Devon and if I got the bus there would sadly be two changes & it would take approximately 3 hours with the timetable. The train is an idea, but the car is so much easier for nap time & DS is VERY grumpy otherwise.

Re education pots, we just chuck all the child benefit (or whatever it's called now, used to be family allowance) into an account t for each of them.

It's pils ESP fil who have made him anxious about money. Living at or to your means is a cause for failure (my poor parents are definitely patronised, something they deal with beautifully by the way, lots of 'I'm sure you didn't mean to be so rude' type comments from DM, I actually checked she wasn't on MN!)! He has grown up with this & whilst he declares their judginess wrong, he feels the need for intense caution at every turn I. Order to avoid the shameful situation of having no savings. Ridiculous I know. Btw DH does NOT judge people like pils do.

Whilst I do enjoy the security of this approach, and I do, I have been raised in a much more seize the day kind of way. My parents are, IMO too careless & I'm worried about what will happen when dad retires. DH & I try to find the middle ground, I just need to hit reset with him every so often.

On dwelling on pondering on this, he mentioned yesterday that we have very nearly enough to pay off the maximum we are allowed to off our mortgage in one year. I would just think, nearly? That's good. But he is genuinely a bit OCD about round numbers & in this situation it would give him great satisfaction to roundup rather than down. By my calculation, the reality is that we need to fi d a extra £400 by June but will have very little affect on our monthly repayments. I appreciate the thought, but ill be returning got employ intel years we have a long, long time until retirement (health permitting) so I'd rather not struggle quite as much now when we don't have to. That is what we agreed, but I wonder if he'll find the money from somewhere.

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 06:15:00

Yes he's controlling and re-read your OP as you make a lot of excuses for him.

Buddhastic Mon 11-Feb-13 06:28:37

Sit down with him and talk about this after you get back from the beach. He doesn't sound bad but I think you're hearing warning bells and need to sort it out. Finding an extra £400 might not have any affect on your monthly payments but may make a significant difference on how many years of mortgage you have to pay. It sounds like you need to tweak your budget to include day trips and extras. I do agree that you need to have fun but the worlds in such a mess with so many people in financial trouble its worth trying to reach a compromise. You sound calm and sensible about it all so talk sooner rather than later, if I bottle it up I get screechy and that's not conducive to an agreement blush.

Apologies for garbling am on phone!

Montybojangles Mon 11-Feb-13 06:46:19

Just tell him your going. You want to see your friend and let the kids have a nice day by the seaside. As soon as he mentions petrol remind him of the other swimming pool he likes so much.
If he still goes on tell him very calmly that in future you will set a school holiday budget of xxamount per day, as kids need some fun on their hols. Show him a few prices for amusement parks etc and tell him that that's the alternative (so petrol and entrance fees).

Inertia Mon 11-Feb-13 06:57:44

The thing that strikes me is that it's easy to find petrol money for a 45 mile trip when it's for something he has chosen to do, ie taking the children swimming at the pool he prefers.

It's all very well saving for the future, but he has to accept that you need to spend some money. Child benefit was originally set up so that mothers would have access to money to pay for essentials for the children if the father would not share his wages - why isn't cb paying for what the children need now ?

Yanbu. He is being controlling.

LeaveIt Mon 11-Feb-13 07:17:30

What Monty said - very good suggestions.

Euphemia Mon 11-Feb-13 07:23:39

My DH was obsessed with paying off the mortgage. We had no foreign holidays, the cheapest cars, and did nothing to the house for ten years because of his obsession.

We paid off the mortgage just before we turned 40. This allowed me to leave the job I hated to retrain, and bring in next to no money for a few years. We moved house last year and paid cash for the house.

We have no debts, and loads of savings. But we had a pretty miserable 10 years to get here.

It's about choices: how you want to live now, and the effect that will have on the future.

Jambonfrites Mon 11-Feb-13 09:40:13

I definitely think you should go and stay with your friend. It's a great idea for you and the kids to have a good (and relatively inexpensive) time over half term. Stick to your guns, YANBU.

Longer term, you guys obviously need a chat about priorities for money. DH and I have similar calm conversations heated arguments about money and tbh haven't really reached satisfactory agreement yet. IMO paying off extra chunks of mortgage is a 'nice to have', but should only be considered after normal every day living costs (inc. activities for kids) are covered.

whitby36 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:55:49

Yanbu. I think he is being controlling too. I have to put up with this kind of crap too. Eg dh happy to spend over £1000 a year on his hobbies (dc sometimes are involved) but got shirty about me taking dc away with my family in holidays. (Only needed spending money). I went so do go. It can't be about petrol money as he travels that far to swimming pool.

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 11:29:43

It sounds thoroughly miserable to be so obsessed or married to someone who's obsessed about saving every single penny to pay off the mortgage.

There's more to life than money! You want to create memories for your children and of course these don't have to cost a fortune but remember the OP is being questioned about spending less than £20 on petrol when they can afford it! That's just wrong.

I simply can't imagine being with anyone like this.

What happens when the mortgage gets paid off? No doubt there'll be some new goal of how much you can accrue in savings?

numberlock that is precisely what I'm worried about, but I would NEVER throw away what we have (Ian otherwise great, loving relationship of 11 years) over this. I wants perspective on whether I WBU before I initiated 'the talk'

aldiwhore Mon 11-Feb-13 11:43:16

Sometimes I object to DH's plans that may cost money because I'm so aware of money, I am not always reasonable.

I will give your DH the benefit of the doubt. Give him a PRICE of the whole day rather than the plan, the plan sounds more expensive than the actual cost. I can't see it costing more than soft play?!

Your DH is BU, but that doesn't make him a controlling bastard. I think you also need to become a little more active in his spreadsheet obsession...

valiumredhead Mon 11-Feb-13 11:45:24

I bet if he was at home for a week with the kids he'd spend more than 45 miles worth of petrol wink

A day at the beach with friends sounds lovely - remind him that this really isn't unreasonable.

Pandemoniaa Mon 11-Feb-13 12:00:29

It sounds as if he's completely lost sight of the need to live for the day occasionally. It's just as important to give your children happy memories of good times than it is to save for the sheer point of saving.

A 45 mile journey is nothing (admittedly I travel a fair bit in the US where that'd be merely a trip downtown in some cities!) but the cost of petrol is minimal given that you are clearly not on the breadline.

I have a friend like this. She is so obsessed by the need to build up savings that she denies herself all sorts of harmless pleasures and as she gets older it is ever sadder to see.

So I don't know whether your dh is actually controlling you but I do know that his control and concerns over money border on the unreasonable.

glastocat Mon 11-Feb-13 12:07:32

Blimey, mums net is always a revelation in how other people live. I would hate to live like this, saving every available penny. Life is for living, you are a long time dead etc. it's not like you are planning a last minute trip to Bali, it's a trip to the seaside! You need to have a cht with your husband I think he is being way over the top.

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 12:09:55

But I can't understand why you're even entering into discussion with him about your day out? Unless you mean you want to instigate a talk about the whole issue of finances?

Do you have access to money or do you rely on him to give you money for the week/month?

Hullygully Mon 11-Feb-13 12:11:03

he sounds a bit mad

any "normal" person would think it a great idea for you and the dc to go and have a couple of days away.

the life he wants sounds a bit grim

he would really get on my nerves

Bogeyface Mon 11-Feb-13 12:11:39

What are the savings for?

You pay off the mortgage, great, but then what? What does he plan to spend all these savings on once you have them? My grandparents were obsessed with saving, every spare penny went into the bank. They died leaving every penny behind them, because they couldnt ever bring themselves to spend any of it. I dont see the point in being short in life to be rich in death.

Pandemoniaa Mon 11-Feb-13 12:17:28

I dont see the point in being short in life to be rich in death.

This is what I've tactfully tried to say to my savings obsessed friend. Sadly and rather ironically, she has no partner or dcs to leave her money to either. She's paid her mortgage off, has a good job and an index linked occupational pension as well as thousands and thousands in the bank. But it doesn't stop her continuing to save money. It's wonderful to be so responsible with money but she's lost sight of the need to live for now.

I have access to money. I mean to talk to him about his attitude to this day, what others have said, you're a long time dead etc. I'd hate to be like my mum, scrabbling around to pay bills, not so secretly crying over how to make ends meet. But, there is a happy medium, we often manage it, but every so often things like this happen & I have to 'hit reset' do a reality check.

We have a good relationship & can both talk like grown ups smile but I am quite bossy/determined in a lot of ways & need to check in re financial attitudes every so,often. MN is great for this as I don't like discussing financial things IRL.

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 12:22:25

Just to clarify, are you going for the day to your friend's or planning to stay overnight?

FeistyLass Mon 11-Feb-13 12:23:46

YANBU and he is being controlling. If he makes a weekly trip to the swimming that costs the same then I don't think he can see your planned trip as something out of the ordinary and overly expensive. I'd be worried it's about him stopping you from seeing your friend.
Myself and my dh have very different attitudes to money so we came up with a solution that works for us - we have separate accounts. We share the household expenses (taking into account our different salaries) and have comparable disposable income each month. You're going to keep having conversations about money unless you find a process that works for you both. By being less involved with the finances, you're feeding a perception that you're not good with money and that may let your dh feel that he is in a position to question your spending and priorities. Remind him you're equally responsible.

FeistyLass Mon 11-Feb-13 12:24:11

And enjoy the beach smile

NettleTea Mon 11-Feb-13 12:26:51

maybe if you could stay the night and extend it to 2 days then it halves the spend for the trip effectively, as its now a £20 petrol for 2 days thing.

he would, of course, have to get himself dinner that night though!

bogey he wants the savings so that if we need a new car, we can get one. Redundancy has factored in both our upbringings in a big way, so he wants to create a decent buffer for that.

I think he is prone to saving as a habit due to ASD dad, who sees it as a virtue. BUT dh repeatedly telling his parents to spend their money, they can't take it with them etc. our life IS NOT miserable, we still have nice food, niceish clothes, wine, family days, nice house, regular trips to see my family in NI,. His parent's life is miserable, really, really miserable. I can't begin to explain how much they scrimp. It's a constant source of discussion for me & dh who hates it. They have approx £350k in savings & property as well as owning their £250k house. They tell us this. A lot. Cause they're sooooo great for it. They argue with each other (in a very pa way) about it too.

Like I say dh is so cross & wishes they'd live a little or give us the cash now so normally calling him fils name in an annoying pa way is enough to shake himup. It's worse since ds was born, I think he feels pressure being sole breadwinner. Before, I earned a little more than him & he was much more relaxed.

Feisty I don't wok, so that wouldn't wok for us. We have equal spending money. I feel I am involved as I need to be in finances. I am aware & consulted on every change. I prefer a 'work to your strengths' approach to household management.

I will enjoy the beach, but can't stay over. Friend has TINY house.

Also his swimming trip is half he distance, not the same.

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 12:34:20

We're talking about £20 ffs!!!!!!!!!

Wok smile work of course.

It is £20, that's why I AM going. I think I need o remind him of the principle

Numberlock Mon 11-Feb-13 12:57:29

Go mad and have a flake in your ice creams. wink

Pandemoniaa Mon 11-Feb-13 12:58:15

Go madder. Have two scoops and two Flakes!
Have a lovely day out.

Hmm, yes. May even a double scoop because I'm a greedy cow

grin

Mimishimi Mon 11-Feb-13 13:10:53

You want to and visit your friend when you have bronchitis? That's pretty unreasonable.

Bogeyface Mon 11-Feb-13 13:37:06

Why is that U Mimi?

The OP has said that she is on the mend, and presumably has had treatment.

Had anti-b, they've worked. Can take up to 2 months to get over. Shall I join a closed religious order? Hate ridiculous thread tangents.

Tulahoob Mon 11-Feb-13 13:54:03

I think he is being controlling. Your whole situation and his attitude sounds remarkably like the situation a friend of mine is in. I do actually think her DH is financially abusing her. Not saying this is the case with you BTW as obviously I know a lot more about my friend's situation than I do about yours, but at first glance they sound similar.

I think with your DH it's ok to spend money when it suits him. There seems to be a lot of mentioning of what he wants. He wants to pay off the mortgage. He wants to make provision for redundancy. He wants money in the bank. Which to be fair are all sensible aims, however it's unfair and controlling that he is trying to deny you any fun/spending at all due to his issues.

I would to go see your friend. Stand up to him and do what makes you happy and what you will enjoy. £20 on petrol is not a fortune and it sounds as though you can afford it easily. Please don't get into the situation that my friend is in, where she never stood up to her DH and now she isn't even 'allowed' £2 to go to toddler group some weeks, and she's not had any new clothes or underwear in 2 years.

NicknameTaken Mon 11-Feb-13 14:35:21

He doesn't immediately sound controlling to me. The test is really what will happen if ou make the visit anyway. It's a grown-up thing to discuss the cost of a day out - if you can say, "listen, I think we're looking at an all-in cost of £30 for the day, which we can afford", and he accepts that, then I don't see there is any problem at all.

A bit of cat's bum mouth isn't the end of the world, assuming he gets over it soon enough. Obviously an extended strop/sulk indicates that you have more a problem on your hands.

CecilyP Mon 11-Feb-13 14:41:53

I think he is being controlling. I didn't think so at the start of the thread, as I know how difficult it can be with only one wage coming in and I thought your might be really hard up. But the more you have said about your true circumstances, the worse his attitude seems.

It is perfectly normal to want to go and meet an old friend, especially one that only lives 45 miles away, and the fact that she also has a DC and lives by the sea makes it extra special. The petrol cost is nothing - just 2 trips to his preferred swimming baths. Normally, a DH would be pleased for you to be able to do this, unless you are living in penury, which you are obviously not.

I think he is becoming like his parents. Obviously keeping up your mortgage repayments is an absolute priority but also paying off the maximum extra allowed is not. Especially with only one wage coming in. This might be something to aim for when your DCs are older and you are back at work, but not now - that is ridiculous extra pressure.

FeistyLass Mon 11-Feb-13 14:53:48

babies we used the different accounts when I was a SAHM too. We decided how much of our monthly income I needed for shopping, household, dc stuff and then that was transferred into my account. It suited both of our neurosis - dh wanting to control finances and my hatred of being in a position where I felt I might have to explain my spending decisions grin I'm actually fairly careful with money too but dh and I would prioritise differently sometimes - I'm a two scoops of ice cream girl whilst he isn't wink

lottiegarbanzo Mon 11-Feb-13 16:22:10

Hmm, well read this earlier and quick thoughts, though I'm sure it's all been covered by now are:

He doesn't want you to go. You should probably ask him why. (From what you've said I'd blithely guess that he thinks daily childcare is easy if you're organised, certainly easier than his job and this is a frivolous extra, primarily for your benefit and he's a bit jealous of your freedom).

You're going to do a 90 mile round trip once, in half term, he adds a 'nice but uneccessary' 39 miles to every weekly swimming trip. Why is it your mileage being questioned? If you have a joint aim to avoid unecessary expenditure on fuel, you both know where the low-hanging fruit is.

Your very different attitiudes to money must create tension as, however much you both strive for a middle ground, there must be a tendency to think that the other will naturally stray in the opposite direction, so he has a built in assumption that you'll carelessly overspend if he doesn't keep you in check. Similarly (though your evidence for this sounds convincing), you assume he'll get obsessed with saving if you don't remind him that money is for the life you have now, as well as for an unpredictable future.

I think what you need to talk about is him doing a bit more with the dcs at the weekend, especially while you're ill and to give you a little break when you're better and can enjoy it. He needs to understand better what looking after them day after day entails, it sounds as though he doesn't. (I wouldn't be at all surprised, if, left alone with them for a week, they spent Friday out a succession of paid entertainments, amounting to gazillions of pounds, because he'd be exhausted and at the end of tether by then - but I hope recognise the lesson, not make excuses about how it's all right for you because you're used to it.)

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