STBXH angst about money, is rubbing off on the children

(7 Posts)
Doughnut123 Thu 27-Feb-14 23:12:02

Hi, I'm hoping for some practical advice please. My 11 year old daughter has a Kindle Fire. She had the month's free trial with Prime. Now that the month is up, my STBXH has not allowed her to get any books. He says it's too expensive to have a yearly subscription to Prime. He wants her to get the Kindle books from the library.
I don't know much about Kindles, but I know that you have to buy the books. Does anyone know what the most economical way to get books on a Kindle is please? My husband is extremely penny pinching. Pleads poverty, although he earns £123,000 PA, as well as receiving a £5,000 bonus.
He has loads in savings. He's always been penny pinching, but since we are now getting divorced, he's become obsessive.

I know it's a hard thing to adjust to. He has to move out of the house. He has to rent a flat and pay maintenance. But, the way he's behaving is ridiculous. He got really cross because I rented 2 pay per view films for the children last week ( as a Friday night treat). The grand total spent was £5.98! Now, for him, that's nothing. He probably spends more than that on his lunch each day. And the next day, he took his precious mountain bike to be overhauled at the bike shop. You can bet that he'll have spent more than a fiver on it! ( he has 3 expensive bikes altogether ).
I know this seems a bit off the parenting point, but the way he behaves is affecting the children.
My daughter, who's 11, makes comments when I take her food shopping that worry me. She'll ask if she can have something ( treat like usually, but she's no way a demanding child). I usually say yes. It worries me that she then gets quite anxious though and says things like, 'I feel bad, Mummy, like I should pay you. I feel guilty.'
I know that she says this because when she shops with her dad, he constantly harps on about the money being 'tight,' so if she wants something, the general response from him will be 'no.'
He's like it with all 3 of my girls. My 11 year old even started talking about mortgages the other night at tea time. She said that her dad can't get a big mortgage and that the 'money is tight.'

I feel really angry with him. How dare he cause the children to have anxieties about money, when he's actually loaded!

It's not that I don't agree with them learning the value of money at all. I think it's important. I'm always careful to try to instil in them an attitude that does not take things for granted. We always do bake sales for Comic Relief and Children In Need, I am a firm believer in recycling/ up cycling , I get lots of clothes and homeware from charity shops. I encourage them to really think, to not waste food. To think about others who are not so fortunate and help them whenever we can.
So, I would very much value your opinion. I haven't talked to him yet, but I know I need to.
What really worries me is that he's causing the children extra anxiety in what is already a very difficult situation for them.
Ok, even if he really did have money problems, it's unfair to burden the children with them

Guardianto2 Fri 28-Feb-14 03:18:21

Does anyone know what the most economical way to get books on a Kindle is please?

stick to public domain stuff.

KatyN Fri 28-Feb-14 07:26:02

You can get kindle books from the library. My library has loads of instructions on how to do it. It's very easy,

I think it's a nice idea for her to be aware of money and that it isn't a limitless resource but your ex does sound a bit tight. Maybe he's really worried how he'll cope living on his own.. No more snazzy bikes for starters!!

Could your daughter get pocket money so she doesn't worry about treats etc?

bibliomania Fri 28-Feb-14 11:54:38

My dad was a bit like this about money (although he is a nice person and a good father - just goes back to his own childhood poverty). I do remember being anxious about money at around your dd's age. I think if anything it's been beneficial as I've grown up, so I wouldn't worry too much.

When your dd talks about mortgages etc, I would say firmly "It's the adults' responsibility to worry about that, not yours". My dad did tell me something along those lines, and I remember the sense of relief that it wasn't my job to worry about it.

Not sure about how your financial set-up works, and why it has to be your STBX who decides about get a Prime subscription rather than you. Presumably he's still in the house and due to move out soon? This is a self-limiting situation to some extent - once your financial affairs are separate, he won't know that you've spent �6 on a Friday evening.

From the sound of it, he'll probably stay mean and controlling in relation to money, so don't expect anything different. But when the legal settlement is in place, you'll have much more control over your own financial affairs and it will be easier.

waterrat Sat 01-Mar-14 18:32:18

You can buy kindle books through amazon on any computer and they will be sent automatically to yor kindle - so you don't need prime or whatever in order to do it.

Lots of kindle books are very cheap - could she work to a monthly budget - normally children would not be allowed to keep buying themselves new books whenever try wanted them. But if you have money yourself you could buy them rather than rely on him

Have you tried mediation or just asking him to stop?

AcaciaBeez Sat 01-Mar-14 19:00:05

I know this isn't just about the kindle books but you can get lots for free ( see top100 free here and all free kindle books ). I would vet them first as some are quite raunchy

UniS Sun 02-Mar-14 18:58:45

project Gutenberg has a ton of free e-books.

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