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money and marraige

(39 Posts)
schooldays Tue 04-Dec-12 10:14:31

I am tearing my hair out over my DH. This is the situation and would love an objective opinion.

He works but like alot of people is not really earning very much (construction work) - he works very hard a long hours etc - He also has alot of savings - and i know he is very keen to keep these for the future but im not exactly sure what he intends using them for. Up to recently i presumed he was keeping them for our future / rainy day but now i think he will never want to spend it on his famiy

Anyway i am out of work at the mo so am geting 270 eur per wk sw and DH gives me 350eur per wk, i get 420 c. benefit. We have 3 children and the amount of 350 per wek he "gives me" is all he will contribute. This has to pay the mortgage (300 per week), childcare, all bills, all clothes, all food, health insurance, house insurance etc etc, It just isn't enough and i am alwayas short and always worrying about money.

So prob is whenever iask him for a cheque for a specfic thing he wont giveit or gives it with such a song a dance and huffing and puffing it is humiliating for me. When i ask for something - straight away he starts with 'am i not giving you enough already', how much exacty do you get every week", you never leave me alone etc etc.

Am very upset because we had seperated last year over alot of this stuff and in general his selfishness but now here i am again.

So question is; is 350 enough for his to be contributing each week? Should i not have access to his savings? Am i being unreasonable? I dont think i am but if im not what do i do to sort this out. Am on sick leave from work but think the company is going to close next year so am very anxious about being dependant on this man - dont feel at all comfortable

Fairylea Tue 04-Dec-12 11:14:45

For me personally I believe both spouses should have equal spending money... ie just for yourselves, this is a good starting point to judge whether you are both ending up with the same standard of living. And yes you should have access to his savings in my opinion.

Me and dh have 3 joint bank accounts... one for household, one for spending and one for savings. We both have cards etc to each. We transfer a set amount to house acc and keep some in our spending and split it between us. We transfer some to savings. I am a sahm and my husband's wage is the family money, it belongs to all of us- it isn't his to allocate.

NamingOfParts Tue 04-Dec-12 12:52:04

Agree with Fairylea, I'm the out of home worker, DH works part-time and looks after the household. Both our salaries are joint money. The savings we have resulted from my redundancy but they are our savings not mine.

Schooldays, your DH sounds more like a lodger than a partner.

If you were in the UK if I understand it correctly these savings would be assets of the marriage not 'his' savings. What is the situation where you are?

Knowledge is power and all that so I would suggest it is time to get some knowledge and empower yourself.

amverytired Tue 04-Dec-12 13:40:10

Objectively, you should both have the same amount of 'spending money' each month. Mortgage, childcare, food are obviously not in this category, neither are children's clothes or insurance.
Spending money is coffees, impulse buys - stuff that is not absolutely necessary.
It's not right that he is controlling the money this way.
But unless you believe this yourself, you are not going to be able to argue with him as you will just back down.
You need a joint back account, or complete access to his with a spare card for example.
Sit down and work out what your incomings and outgoings are, then you will know how much spare there is left over - you can allocate a certain amount to savings and divide the rest between both of you.

schooldays Tue 04-Dec-12 17:24:36

still really upset over this. asked for money last night - hes at work all day he would usually phone during the day but nothing today - he is obviously not talking to me now. he honestly believes that i am trying to bleed him dry of money. he has always been really mean with money and i was always fairly independent so it didnt really bother me but as the kids get older and need more stuff and as i am off work sick - his contribution is all the more important.

just so worried that i have made a huge mistake taking him back - he obviously stil has issues with money - with equality and respect. i am not looking forward to him coming home this evening - he will be all moody and asking if im not talking to him etc etc -

he often gave me his bank card beofre but he always takes it back again under the guise of some excuse like he cant find his own or he needs it for some reason - so i end up having to ask for it back which is just too much work so i dont bother anymore. anyway his financial life is so complicated i used to never know if there was any money in it anyway -

is this marraige??

ThereGoesTheYear Tue 04-Dec-12 17:46:15

What a greedy and controlling man. Why don't you research what you'd be entitled to if you divorced? Might find out that you'd be better off...

Xales Tue 04-Dec-12 17:57:04

Have you done a spreadsheet and shown him exactly in black and white how much it all adds up to?

If you have and he refuses to change you need to work out if you have made a mistake taking him back and if you would be better off financially without him.

If there are bills that are specifically his and your children are going with out as a result you are better off with out him.

If not perhaps he really does not have a clue how much costs are.

schooldays Tue 04-Dec-12 18:16:59

oh he knows alright - i have done loads of different budgets over the years - most recently for the bank to get some leeway with the mortgage. he just refuses to believe it for some reason. its like its not important to him.
he thinks his contribution to the bills and to his children is a gift that i am to be grateful for.
about a month ago we had a huge argument of this and i said i wanted out that i wasnt going to pretend this was a marriage anymore. i was really upset but glad i took the stand. anyway next day he had a fall at work and injured himself so could hardly work for about 3 weeks. so instead of sorting anything out i ended up nursing him and he said that from now on i would have compete access to any money he had and that he never wanted us aruging about money like that again

well that didnt last long did it????

weird thing though - he went out for a few drink sunday and when he came in he said he would give me a cheq for our dd's swimming (its the one thing he doesn't make an issue out of) so while he was at it i told him of another bill and if he would give me a cheque. due to the alcohol he signed a blank cheque for me to use (bill was about 80euro).
so next morning i got up and one of the cheques had disappeared - the blank signed one - i freaked out thinking someone had stolen it (no sign of a break in) - he didnt seem at all bothered - so i told him he better cancel it etc. now i am wondering if he took the cheque himself - if i had a signed blank cheque missing i wouldn't be so calm about it - would you?? especially since he is so tight and obsessed with money. did he take it back and is now lying to me do ye think??????

amverytired Tue 04-Dec-12 18:19:04

Well, if he's not worried I'd assume that he knows where it is wouldn't you?

HollyBerryBush Wed 05-Dec-12 05:27:32

I never understand, in marriage, why money isn't joint (unless one partner is a profligte, untrustworthy, spendthrift/gambler/alcoholic etc).

Try flipping the situation. make him responsible for all the bills and you just hand over a portion of your wages, keeping back for yourself. You'll soon find he knows how much it costs to run a household!

My personal view is that joint accounts are best. It's all matrimonial property at the end of the day: families are a unit, and family finances should therefore be run as a unit. However, I can see why for past reasons you have kept separate accounts.

If you've run up budgets and he STILL won't listen, he's clearly not being reasonable. Perhaps you should pay such bills as you can afford and simply refuse to pay others to force him to listen.

I think you also should have access to his savings. If they have been accumulated from his earnings during your relationship, how is it fair for him to keep them all to himself?

FWIW my partner and I only have joint accounts. We agree on a budget at the start of each year and review the accounts monthly (more or less). Like all couples we occasionally quarrel about money: when separate accounts were mooted, my solution was to split bills proportionally to income earned, with any collective overspend saving split 50/50.

foolonthehill Wed 05-Dec-12 10:05:51

Since he remains unreasonable about money here is a link

www.lovemoney.com/news/debt/debt/14905/why-financial-abuse-is-domestic-violence

I would say that the blank cheque missing is because he has taken it and he is not saying so because he is gaslighting (pretending to you and himself that it either never existed or that it has "gone missing"). This is quite a common method of control where there is an inequality between partners (and he clearly does not think that you are his equal)

Reading your initial and later posts I wonder if he may be controlling about things other than money??

I am also suspicious about this^^ next day he had a fall at work and injured himself so could hardly work for about 3 weeks^^ since he got you back exactly where he wants you.

The advice from other posters is sage and reasonable, but you have been there and he has not changed. This is because HE is not reasonable and does not want to change his attitude to you over money.

*Here is a definition of financial abuse*:
Preventing you from getting or keeping a job
Making you ask for money
Making you account for every penny you spend by showing receipts
Not allowing you to spend money on yourself or your children
Controlling your bank account
Stealing, taking or demanding money from you
Taking control of any welfare benefits that you receive
Insisting that all the utility bills or any credit is in your name
Placing debts in your name

and here is a link to Refug's leaflet on it Refugge leaflet on finances

foolonthehill Wed 05-Dec-12 10:06:48

Refug/refugge= REFUGE (duh)

fiventhree Wed 05-Dec-12 21:25:39

"Am very upset because we had separated last year over alot of this stuff and in general his selfishness but now here i am again. So question is;"

The real question is, how long will you let this go on for.

I really really know how tricky it is to be in that last chance saloon where you have a major fall out and split or nearly split, and after a lot of crap from him, and then make up, and a year later it all begins to side.

When this started happening to me again in the summer after a history of infidelity (admittedly over the smaller of our previous issues, mainly undermining me with the kids, and a bit of manipulation and bull shit), I told him that if there was ANY evidence of that in our lives by Christmas, I was leaving him- and NO doubt.

You simply cannot take crap, and then more, and then leave and return, and then take even more.

Because it tells him you are a total walk over. And it tells you that he doesnt think you are important enough to change for, or that he is too lazy, or too messed up, to change for anyone.

It isnt his money, if you are married.

This book helped me, and I think it may help you. It will certainly answer yur question about the money.

www.amazon.com/Boundaries-When-Take-Control-Your/dp/0310247454

fiventhree Wed 05-Dec-12 21:26:34

slide, not side

Fairenuff Wed 05-Dec-12 22:13:41

The system you have at the moment is clearly not working. You need a new system. If he won't work with you on this and be reasonable it's probably not worth trying to make it work. Your problem is not really financial, it's communication, equality and respect.

Fwiw all our earnings go into a joint account. All our savings are in a joint account. We have a joint mortgage. We see a marriage as a partnership.

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 10:10:19

still have nothing sorted with my problem - am really upset over it all

the cheque dh refused to give me the monday nite (it was for something for our dd by the way) has not been mentioned since. the cheque that mysteriously disappeared has not been mentioned since (so i have had to ask my brother for two cheques). dh said he was in terrible pain last nite after hurting himself at work - he keeps hurting himself - im sure hes not pretending but its like he uses it to distract from any issues that come up - like he thinks everything can be swept under the carpet just cause hes in pain - am so sick of it.

also had a hospital appt yesterday (that dh knew full well about) and he didnt even wish me luck/ask how i got on. a year ago i would have thought he just forgot - that he is a selfish pr*t but now i think he is kind of deliberately not asking - sounds weird - but as a type of game. this man was very verbally and emotionally abusive in the past thats why i am freaking out so much. i think he is reverting back to the way he used to be. i am terrified i have made a huge mistake letting him move back home. it took me years to get rid of him and now i am scared the cycle is starting all over again.

another thing - i had to meet my boss last week - have been of sick for months and this was the first time i met her since i left. again he knew full well that i was meeting her - but it took him two days to ask me how the meeting went. in fact she told me i would probably be made redundant so its not like it wasnt' important - wouldn't you think he would be interested. would it be too much to be able to tell your husband that you basically just lost your job? i know i could have brought it up myself but i feel if he cant be bothered to ask why should i?

anyway health wise i have chronic fatigue and doc thinks i should go on anti-depressents to lift my mood - am thinking my mood would be alot better if he wasnt here playing games with me.

am i over-reacting?

TranceDaemon Thu 06-Dec-12 10:32:38

You're not overreacting. This is financial abuse, and if he has been previously verbally and emotionally abusive, this sounds like him re-establishing the power and control again.

You don't have to put up with this shit and would probably be much better off financially if you left.

foolonthehill Thu 06-Dec-12 11:04:41

You are NOT over-reacting

Right now you sound worn out, frustrated and as if you don't quite believe what you are seeing in you NSDH (not so dear husband).

This is because you would NEVER behave as he does so you keep making excuses for him.

He uses his minor injuries to keep you in caring mode....your health issues which sound much more debilitating are ignored completely.

he uses finances to control you

he uses disinterest to make sure you know how important you are not.

_am thinking my mood would be a lot better if he wasn't here playing games with me_. Yes, yes yes to this.

Make a plan, leave, embrace the rest of your life because he will not change.

dequoisagitil Thu 06-Dec-12 11:23:26

I suspect your health & mental health would both improve without him in your life.

It is seriously screwed up that you are asking your brother for money while your husband has a lot of savings he withholds.

You need to bite the bullet and split up - he's still abusing you.

Fairenuff Thu 06-Dec-12 20:00:32

Yes this is abuse. Why on earth did you get back with him? You need to break up again but before you do, go to a solicitor and find out how much you are entitled to financially.

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 20:48:27

thanks for posts.
am so confused and upset. have no clue now why i let him - only clue is that i am a complete fool. went for counseling this evening and she put it very well that i trusted him again without my needs being met. i did. i trusted him that he had changed. hes not obviously abusive now but my god he is really messing with my head. he asked me this eve why i am not talking to him. its like going round and round in circles.
then this evening as i am going xmas shopping tomorrow, he asked if i needed money. i said yes and he wrote me a chequ for 1K. WTF. not a word about the money i needed earlier in the week. he thinks he is great now for giving me this money but what good is it.
counsellor (bit of an idiot i think) said i need to work around him as confronting him head on doesnt work. she said if he gives me a cheque put it away straight away so it cant go missing - like the last one. she said if he wants to go to pub fri - sun nites then i should arrange something on mondays or tuesday - not very helpful i thought myself. what sort of way is that to live.
she did say though that i need to do a pros and cons of what living together and apart would bring me and make a decision based on that. dont feel strong enough to go through trying to get him out again. police were involved last time so believe me it wast easy.
we were supposed to get back for a trial period but he - cute as a fox - went and rented out the house he was living in while we were seperated - he never for one minute thought of this as a trial.
why was i such an idiot to give up the control i had back so easily

foolonthehill Thu 06-Dec-12 21:22:58

schoodays I'm sorry but your counsellor is an idiot: you're already working your way round him..that's what's got your head in a mess to start with...and part of the reason you're seeing her IMO

"he's not obviously abusive now but my god he is really messing with my head": that is what emotional abuse does...over on the support thread we call it "spaghetti head/brain". it's like away from him you can sort of work out what a normal reaction/discussion should be but once he's there in front of you you can't do right for doing wrong and NO STRATEGIES WORK.

"why was i such an idiot to give up the control i had back so easily?" a triumph of love and trust over judgement, because you really want to believe that underneath it all is a normal loving human being, because you have been conditioned to do what he wants, because these abusive men pick us out from the start as people who will work hard to preserve a relationship, care and look after everyone else ahead of ourselves and who have poor personal boundary setting/keeping.

There is no point beating yourself up about the past...(leave that to him he's the expert!!) Try to detach and to think of the future, what you want, how you will get there, baby steps along the way.

many have been there before you, let's try to make sure our daughters and son's don't follow us into this nightmare.

Ask for help and people will rally round with advice and care (and the one's that don't you can leave to their own devices for a while).

best wishes Op

foolonthehill Thu 06-Dec-12 21:23:47

PS no room for you to be the "complete fool", for that is me!!!

CharlotteCollinsislost Thu 06-Dec-12 21:28:45

I don't suppose you were an idiot at all, schooldays. I expect he was very persuasive and convinced you he'd changed. You'll see through the act more easily this time.

While you're getting your head around whether you can leave him or get him out again, how about this plan: get the bank card from him once more. Go through the hassle. When he asks for it back, write him a cheque. Say that you can't give up your card (you'll have to keep it safely hidden - bra? grin), as you know that in the past it's dd who's had to suffer when the money isn't available when it's needed...

You are married and therefore you should be equal partners. That includes having equal access to money. "All I have I share with you" I believe the wording is in the version of the marriage ceremony I'm familiar with.

Viviennemary Thu 06-Dec-12 21:29:41

This is awfully confusing OP. How much money is coming into your house and how much is going out. That is what you need to work out first and then see how much is left or what the shortfall is. Both of you need to be quite sure about how much money it takes to run your household. You both sound very stressed out indeed.

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 21:40:20

thanks for all the support.
you see i cant ascertain what he is earning because he plays cloaks and daggers and will never tell me. he just says he hasnt enough and he wont be able to keep this up and that im always nagging him, i never have enough etc etc. its not like he has the type of job that he gets a payslip that i can see - he gets cheques from various different building jobs so i have no way of knowing. also he has different bank acs so there is literally no point in asking him again how much he earns.
ps just checked my own bank ac and the usual amount he 'gives me' my standing order didn't go into my a/c - the plot thickens - so really the 1k he gave me for 'shopping' isnt for shopping at all really IYKWIM.

foolonthehill Thu 06-Dec-12 21:46:26

Financial abuse is still abuse, even without anything else. To some people it just sounds ridiculous not to be able to sort it out with a talk. If you have never been in a marriage/relationship where the control lies with one very "unusual" individual in the so-called partnership it would be hard to know that someone would DELIBERATELY make their partner suffer.

he does not have to hit you to be abusive.

CharlotteCollinsislost Thu 06-Dec-12 21:56:41

I sympathise, schooldays, my h's finances are similarly shrouded in mystery. The point is, though, that he is controlling your finances, which should be joint finances. He says he hasn't enough. He should say we haven't enough! It's a hugely significant difference. He is treating you like a child - and you will feel the effects of that psychological abuse over time. You say he's not obviously abusive at the moment - THAT's the danger of it. It's harder to see, and harder to heal from.

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 22:01:41

you are so right. i remember when i told my family before we separated last time what had been going on - the initial reaction from my mam was that we "need our heads banging together" when my sister wanted us to "sit down with her and trash it all out with her" i had a hard job convincing them that i literally couldn't do another thing to makes things better. i tried doing everything perfect in the house, i tried not going out with my friends,i tried talking to his family, i tried writing him letters, i tried to forgive him when he cheated, i tried managing all the bills on my own, i tried couples counselling, i tried leaving with the kids, i tried leaving myself for a night without the kids, i tried losing weight,i tried to be funner, more understanding, getting up with our ds during the night for month on end without complaining, i tried not complaining about him going out to the pub every weekend night, I TRIED EVERYTHING. People who have not been in an abusive relationship could never understand what its like. Oddly the only people who believed me without hesitation were the police and a judge. Only because they had seen it all before, even the judge told me he would never change, his sort never do. And even then i still believed he could change.

sorry rant over!!!!!!

CharlotteCollinsislost Thu 06-Dec-12 22:28:05

No, keep ranting: anger is what you need! It's all to easy to lose the anger, and then you're just lost.

So, could you get him out again?

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 22:39:03

he is just in from pub (always nicer after alcohol) - asked me why im not talking to him. i told him it is because he refused me money twice this week and didn't ask me how hosp appt went. he asked me how we could resolve the money situation, how much exactly i need each week. I NEED! I asked why he didnt ask how my hosp appt went, he said it was because i wasnt talking to him. I told him he was capable of asking me how the kids are, where i was but he couldn't muster the strength to ask me how i was? he said its not fair what i am doing to him and we are going to have a terrible Christmas if i dont stop. he is dying to now know how hospital went. he said he feels like tyrone in coronation street!!!!!! does he really have no idea??

foolonthehill Thu 06-Dec-12 22:43:23

He actually has plenty of idea...it is deliberate you know.

CharlotteCollinsislost Thu 06-Dec-12 22:47:29

"How much do you need each week, schooldays?"
"I need to be treated as an adult. To be trusted with your our money. No more, no less."

He's a drama queen! He's making a big deal of the hospital thing now, so you wish you'd never brought it up, feel like you made a mountain out of a molehill and start doubting yourself. Then hopefully (in his pov) you'll think twice about questioning his behaviour again.

CharlotteCollinsislost Thu 06-Dec-12 22:49:16

Plus he doesn't seem to think you have a right to anger, or to express things emotionally - that thing about how you'll ruin Christmas.

Beamur Thu 06-Dec-12 22:55:08

I feel really cross on your behalf. Paying his fair share is not like he's doing you a favour - this isn't pocket money!
I'm not even married to my DP yet we have a joint bank account (we do have a child together) - all my money goes in, all his money goes in, all our bills go out and we have equal access to what's left (until it runs out) he earns more than me but that is immaterial. I wouldn't have it any other way.
Rather than wrangling over this matter - the crux is - if he doesn't change (and I have to say, I reckon that any change would only last as long as he felt was needed to get you off his case) do you really want to live like this? Does he have redeeming factors that outweigh his stinginess and manipulative behaviour?

schooldays Thu 06-Dec-12 23:07:10

its like an odd game of russian roullette at this stage. i know deep down his behaviour is deliberate, i am sorry i brought up hosp appt, i know he is treating me like a child. he also knows that i have had him out before but he doesnt know if i will do it again, in truth i dont know if i will either. its like a minute battle of wills and whoever is truely the strongest will win. he knows it and i know it. obviously its not the marriage i signed up to or thought i had, not even a friendship just a battle as i said, subtle and cunning on his part, he pretends he doesn't understand. scared and nervous on my part - afraid of the consequences for myself and my dc's if i stand up to him again.
and by the way no he has no particularly wonderful qualities, not successful, not particularly smart (except at this), not really popular, not even really good looking or anything. truth is my family had their jaws on the ground when i said i was dating him first all them years ago -but i was all 'oh but ye dont know him really' and 'oh he didn't mean to be rude was just stressed/drunk/felt uncomfortable. and 'oh i know he isn't a professional but he's a hard worker and he's earning loads, and oh you know his mother died when she was young and his father is horrible to them,oh and you know he likes to go out after working so hard all day and i dont mind, im easy going, and hes so good with the kids and on and on and on.

amverytired Fri 07-Dec-12 10:03:37
CharlotteCollinsislost Fri 07-Dec-12 11:06:46

Yeah, do, we're lovely over there! grin

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