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Why do I put up with this?

(296 Posts)
MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 14:40:49

I have name changed for this.

I'm a SAHM to a newborn and toddler. The thing that's making me write this is that I want to do something, costing £16 a week, that will benefit my toddler. But I can't afford it, yet my DP can afford to spend £100's on his hobby.

I'll try not to make this too long.

We have lived together for over 2 years. The first year, I had very little money. I literally just managed to buy shampoo and take my DC1 to a £1 baby group once a week. No clothes/makeup/haircut. Luckily my mum brought most of DC1s clothes. DP paid all the bills nappies ect. I didn't ask DP for any money and he didnt give me any. I remember when all my money ran out and I only had £1 left (DP didn't know this) DP needed change and so borrowed it. I had saved it to be able to take DC1 to the baby group so obviously I couldn't go. I cried the whole day. I can't blame DP because he didn't know.

After a few weeks I built up the courage to ask him if I could have some of the tax credits, and I'd buy all of DC1s stuff with it. At least then I'd be able to treat her occasionally and take her to the baby group. So we agreed that the tax credits could go into my account, I'd keep £25 a week and give the rest to him.

Anyway we've had this arrangement for about a year now. So I buy nappies, wipes, cotton wool, clothes, shoes, toys, ect plus all non essential food items like toddler crisps ect.

Sometimes DP offers to pay for something but mist of the time I can tell it's a half hearted offer so I just say no. I'm stupid I know. But I can't take his money. Because that's how o see it. His money.
When we go shopping, he does the food and I have my own stuff, nappies ect, separate. (what must people think??) when we were buying DC1s birthday cake, DP put it with my stuff. He didn't even want to buy his own Childs birthday cake. Luckily I had enough money for it. We go halfs on their birthday presents.

Then I had DC2. Only a few weeks old and I haven't had the chance to contact tax credit yet so I've got to buy 2 lots of nappies ect with £25. I'm struggling. I haven't been able to give DP his money this month and I just didn't mention it. I didn't think he had noticed but i jokingly said 'I wish I had loads of money in my bank account!' and he said 'well you're luckily haven't taken any money off you.' so obviously he has noticed.
I don't know how he thinks I'm managing with £25. dC2 was a big baby. None of the newborn clothes I had brought fitted which meant I had to buy more. Only 6 babygrows fit. Icant afford to buy more.

DP spends so much on his hobby. Parcels every week. Sometimes more than one. It never used to bother me and I used to think this was normal. It's only since being on mumsnet that I realise it's not. To be fair we are very young and so maybe he doesn't realise. And I have never asked him for any money or told him I'm struggling.

I'm starting to get resentful though. I can't afford to get my haircut. My mum paid for it last year as a birthday present. I can't afford any clothes and none fit after having DC.

I can't ask him for money. I just can't. I have a mental block that just won't allow me.

I think about leaving him sometimes but I've got nowhere to go and no money. I'm not from this part of the country so doubt the council will house me either.

Thanks fir reading. I just needed to get this off my chest. I know nothing is going to change.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 14:45:16

You know there's a very simple solution, don't you? You need to sit down and talk finances properly. He is the father of your children (I assume), and if they are being deprived because you are totally broke, then this is as much his problem as yours.

Why are you giving him all the but £25 of the tax credits btw?

He can't be totally blind. He must realise you have nothing while he's getting parcels left right and centre. You need to call time on him ignoring this situation.

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 11-Sep-13 14:45:27

Why do you think the tax credits, which are paid to you as a couple, are HIS money?

That money is your money, it is paid to you.

Stop giving him any of it.

He is spending money he can't afford on his hobby and leaving you with nothing.

That's called financial abuse.

You should get away from him as soon as you can.

Go to the Citizens Advice Bureau and ask them what you would be entitled to if you left him.

He's HAVE to pay you money for your child then and you would get benefits in your own name.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 14:48:56

just to make this totally, totally clear, and I really don't want to be mean, but.... this isn't just about you.

If it was and you wanted to martyr yourself, fine, but to deprive your children because I can't ask him for money. I just can't. I have a mental block that just won't allow me.

is daft and very unfair on your kids. I say that with kindness and brew

MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 14:52:03

I give him the rest of the tax credits because that's just what we agreed.

Yes, they are both his DC.

Is it really financial abuse if he doesn't know I'm struggling though? It's not like he does it to control me.

He's a great guy in every other way. I can't wait until the DC are old enough for me to get a job.

bluehearted Wed 11-Sep-13 14:53:44

This thread shocked me. You need to talk to him. DH and I share all our money, it's all pooled and we use it together. I'm a stay at home mum to our 7 month old and he would never let me struggle like you are. I know not all couples share all money etc but I'd guess that most couples have shared finances and split things as equally as possible.
You really need to sort this out, talk to him and make it clear this can't continue.
I hope you have someone in real life you can talk to?
I hope you're ok? Can I ask, how is he as a partner? Is he supportive of you?

MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 14:54:49

I try and give my DC everything I can. I go without so they can have things. I don't deprive them of essentials.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 14:54:54

He's a great guy in every other way
Well, most (good) relationships are based on trust and communication, and if you can't tell him/he hasn't noticed you and your children are bursting out of your clothes then... how great a guy is he, really?

If he is that good a guy then he should be easy to talk to about money, right?

FloraFoxley Wed 11-Sep-13 14:56:34

If he really is oblivious then why the bloody hell aren't you telling him?

If he's a 'great guy' you'll be sorted in no time

saythatagain Wed 11-Sep-13 14:56:56

I'm shocked - really shocked.
Reading your thread has made me feel suffocated.
Sit down and speak to him....please.

PaleHousewifeOfCumbriaCounty Wed 11-Sep-13 14:57:14

Does he have any idea how much you are going without?

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 11-Sep-13 14:57:19

"Is it really financial abuse if he doesn't know I'm struggling though? It's not like he does it to control me."

What does he think you are living on? Fresh air?

Tax credits are money paid by the state to support families with children.

That money is for you and your children.

It is not for him to spend on his hobby while you have nothing.

Why does he think it's OK for him to spend all that money on himself?

Why isn't he giving any thought to whether YOU should have hundreds of pounds a month to spend on YOUR hobby?

Why does he think you should pay for everything to do with the children out of £25 per week?

Quiltcover Wed 11-Sep-13 14:57:53

You should be a team. Why are you depriving your dd abs yourself of your basic needs.
Why don't you both right out a budget of what things cost. He sounds mean and entitled. You and dd deserve better.

unBant Wed 11-Sep-13 14:59:00

OP - you already have a job - looking after his DC. You get paid by the government to do that in the form of tax credits, and your DP should be paying for other stuff too as he is able to earn money at his work.

You really need to work out how to take all the money that comes into the household and first of all pay bills, food, nappies, stuff for the DC etc and then what's left over can be split between the two of you to pay for things like haircuts and hobbies. His priorities should have changed when he fathered a child.

He may not realise how difficult things are for you, and if that's the case it's not abuse, it's just ignorance. This is where you have to man up, so to speak, and talk to him about it. His hobby may have to wait for a while.

What's the hobby by the way?

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 14:59:30

Your quotes Only 6 babygrows fit. Icant afford to buy more. and I don't deprive them of essentials don't quite stack up.

MoneyMug, you know you have to talk to him, right? Or are you worried that if you do, he'll refuse to give you money?

It doesnt matter if he knows that you are struggling although tbh he would have to be very stupid not to know.

It is the fact that he has access to a lot of money to spend how he likes whilst you do not.

And, no he is not a good guy. a good guy doesnt seperate purchases in the supermarket or not think about the fact that his partner and children have no access to any money apart from £25 a week.

How on earth are you supposed to manage on that?

Chubfuddler Wed 11-Sep-13 15:04:00

I put this only in these terms because I think it is the only way it will chime with you, and not because I think you are some kind of scrounger: the tax credits you receive are to assist with providing your children with essentials, not for your so called DP to squander on his hobbies.

You really couldn't be any worse off if you left him. In fact I can guarantee you would be better off in every way.

You say he doesn't realise you're struggling - bollocks he doesn't. 25 poxy quid a week?

Contact women's aid. Seriously.

Ledkr Wed 11-Sep-13 15:05:18

The tax credits are for the whole family to live on they aren't his fgs.
What does he pay for?

MissStrawberry Wed 11-Sep-13 15:05:39

I don't know. Why do you put with it?

Your children need you to speak for them. Find your voice. Today.

And get on the phone to the TC people. It is silly to say you haven't had the chance to call them. I am surprised the bully hasn't done it so he gets more money to piss up the wall hmm.

What did you learn about relationships when you were growing up?.

Presumably as well you cannot ask him for money because you are also afraid of his reaction if you do so. He will not change.

And when you do go to work you'll probably hand over most of your income to him as well. Or he will tell you to do so.

Financial abuse is a form of mistreatment and fraud in which someone forcibly controls another person's money or other assets. It can involve, for instance, stealing cash, not allowing a victim to take part in any financial decisions or preventing a victim from having a job. The issue tends to occur most often in domestic relationships, such as between a husband and wife or an elderly parent and an adult child. People don't always recognize the problem, because an abuser purposely might select an isolated, vulnerable victim who is unlikely to realize what's happening or who will feel too ashamed to report it.

Financial abuse also can occur as a means to have control over a partner in order to make the other (in this case you) feel hopeless enough to never leave. One partner might not allow the other to have access to any of the household money, or he might give only a small allowance.

This is financial abuse because he knows that you are skint and he is actively doing nothing to help you and your children. You are buying separate shopping items, he put the child's birthday cake in your shopping!!. You have gone without for a long time but your children are now also feeling his penny pinching ways.

What would you say if a friend was telling you all this?.
This is no relationship model at all to be teaching your children is it?.

I would go back to your mother's; you are just living a pitiful half existence currently. You and this man should not be together.

antshouse Wed 11-Sep-13 15:06:58

Does he take the child benefit too?

TeaJunky Wed 11-Sep-13 15:08:59


Darling, you need to toughen with him - and yourself - firstly by removing that mental block.

I'm outside the school waiting to pick up dd so have to run now but will be back with something useful later.

SirRaymondClench Wed 11-Sep-13 15:17:34

Is he working Op?

Repeatedlydoingthetwist Wed 11-Sep-13 15:26:59

OP please listen to the advice given already. What of you decide not to do anything, where does this stop? When your DC's go to school what will you do for uniform? Will you have to buy all of that too?

MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 15:36:49

Yes he works.

He has the child benefit. Although it's in my name because of the pension thing.

I can't move back home with my mum as she has told me I can't.

I haven't been able to ring tax credit yet because I have no credit on my phone.

Sorry I'm on my phone so I can't remember names. I'm not being rude.

I know I need to tell him. I need to build up the courage first though. It took me ages to ask him the first time.

I know I must sound really stupid and immature but I just don't know how to tell him.

Chubfuddler Wed 11-Sep-13 15:39:59

You don't need to tell him he's financially abusing you. He knows he is.

You need to leave him.

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 11-Sep-13 15:40:30

The child benefit is for YOUR CHILDREN.


He is basically stealing money from you and your children to spend on his hobby.

It's absolutely outrageous how he is treating you and your children.

And yes, if you are too broke to phone up for the tax credits you need because you have no credit on your phone, then this is very serious financial abuse.

Don't talk to him.

Talk to Women's Aid first.

A man who would leave you this broke is not a reasonable man who will ever play fair.

cestlavielife Wed 11-Sep-13 15:46:09

whose name is the house in? is it owned or rented? if you not married you on very poor grounds financially, but he should support your children.

if you were separated he would have to pay 15% of his income for his children so start on that basis, even while you toegether....and use the tax credits on stuff for the kids before giving any of it to him!

why cant baby use toddlers ex-baby clothes? did you keep them? (doesnt matter if different sex for basics right now eg if "wrong" colour)

look on freeecycle for clothes for baby.

what is it that costs £16 per week?

but 1. sort out tax credits for baby now today get on the phone as it will be backdated to when you claim and 2. keep all the tax credits spend it on baby and toddler needs plus food and only then look at what is left to see if is spare for other joint spending.

what does your mother say? why does she collude with this?

why are you with him?

cestlavielife Wed 11-Sep-13 15:47:46

go to local library and fill in tax credits online at their free use computers

cestlavielife Wed 11-Sep-13 15:48:15

why cant you talk to him/ask him/discuss? does he get angry? shout? violent?

Chubfuddler Wed 11-Sep-13 15:49:31

20% for two children is CSA maintenance

whitsernam Wed 11-Sep-13 16:02:23

Would it help you to practice saying what you need to say in front of a mirror several times, then when he gets home give him a greeting, and let him know you need to discuss money tonight? When you sit down together (I recommend both sitting so you're the same height - this does matter!) then say what you have practiced already. Something like "25 per week really is not enough for 3 peoples' needs. We need to set up a different system for paying for what I and the DCs need.... etc." If you can't do this, then that tells you what the other posters here are saying is really right! If you can't approach your loved partner about necessities.... something is really wrong in the relationship. Really wrong.

TalkativeJim Wed 11-Sep-13 16:03:17

What the fuck?

So, by the logic you employ here, your DC are not his children.

That's right, yes? You pay for everything for them, do everything for them - that makes them yours.

Just as, he goes to work, he does everything FOR the money he gets - so it's his.

Yes? I hope you're sticking to this. If it's his money to waste on hobby parcels, then your quid pro quo is that they're YOUR children to enjoy and not his. Hope you don't allow him any cuddles or to comment on discipline, food, or school choices!


That's right - no. They're his children too. He's equally responsible for them, for meeting their needs, for funding them. In return, he Gets To Have Children Of His Own. He Gets To Have A Family.

Now, children this small need to have their needs met in different ways. The main thing they need is one other adult accompanying them. This is the most expensive factor in these early years. Either full-time nursery/nanny/childminder is paid for, OR one parent's salary is sacrificed.

Your partner is responsible for half of the cost of rearing his children.

You have given up your chance of direct outside employment to cover this aspect.

He therefore OWES you half of the costs you are stumping up.

It is not goodwill. And it has nothing to do with tax or child credits.

You could sit down and lay this out for him. A useful way might be to tell him you cannot afford to have him owe you all this childcare, and you need to get a job - the children will go into nursery and the costs will be split 50/50. You will both keep your salaries, and contribute an equal proportion of them to the joint expenses.

Or, or - it might be easier to do what most sane people do, and pool all resources on the understanding that YOU ARE A FAMILY, AND IT'S FAMILY MONEY!

He COULDN'T work and have his children and his family if you weren't there doing all this. He does not fund his own life - YOU fund it just as much as him, by making it possible for him to be a person who can walk out of the door 9-5 and walk back in as a father with a family, every day.

I hope you can start sorting this out - it is madness.

frogslegs35 Wed 11-Sep-13 16:04:59

I don't believe for 1 minute that he doesn't know that £25 weekly is a pittance and not enough. He's been to the supermarket with you - he knows how much nappies cost = it's bullshit!
There's no other reason that TC's should be under his control unless he is a controlling manipulating greedy twat.
Sorry OP but he makes my blood boil.
When you do call to TC regarding your new baby (congratulations btw) - give them your bank account details and tell them to start paying them directly to you.

Personally I couldn't be with a man who deprives not only me of the simplest of human basics but also his own DC's too sad

If you genuinely believe that he is oblivious then as someone else mentioned above, sit down and write your complete weekly expenditure inc a little extra for 'just in case' items that may crop up.
Get over whatever reason you can't ask for or take his money - your pride has no place when your DC's need you to have a voice for them.

You should also make a list for him of how much it would cost him for hourly childcare (during his access to DC's), a cleaner, launderette service etc.... if you left his sorry arse.

Don't think that just because you're not from the area that you live that you wouldn't get help with rehousing etc.... someone else already mentioned - call Womens aid and have a chat with them.

TalkativeJim Wed 11-Sep-13 16:05:18

Oh and yes - a starting point here is that if you walked out the door, you'd firstly find yourself with 20% of his salary plus the child benefit in your bank account straight away.

Sausageeggbacon Wed 11-Sep-13 16:05:27

My ex was financially controlling but not to the stage your dp is op. Even my ex would ensure the the kids had everything they needed it was only me and my activities he controlled. And I left him because of it.

He is not a good man and you should not be putting up with it. I can see how this will end up but you need to stop him abusing you first. And if you are nervous of speaking to him about it there is something else here that we haven't been told because the kids have to come first.

You're scared to bring this up with him - is he really a great guy?


What do you get out of this relationship now?.

Why has your mother told you that you cannot move back?.

He is actively taking the child benefit money for his own selfish needs even though it is in your name!.

Find your voice and use it, your children are now also feeling the effects of his financial abuse of you as well. You must not stay within this, you and your children will be completely destroyed emotionally if you were to do so.

Please talk to Womens Aid today; they can and will help you here. Putting up with this will also harm your children and give them damaging lessons on relationships as well.

MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 16:10:59

Sorry if I don't answer all the questions.

My mum knows most of it. She says the same as you basically. But there's nothing she can do to help me really.

I don't want to say what the £16 is for if that's okay. I don't want to give too many details away. DD won't be affected by not having it. It would just be good for her if that makes sense? He said wasnt going to pay for it without me even asking him to.

I think I should give him a chance before I leave him. I just need to ask him. I don't think he would get angry. Annoyed maybe because obviously it would mean he Would have less money. I think he would resent me having it.

DownstairsMixUp Wed 11-Sep-13 16:15:52

He is a financial abuser! If you seperated though, would you not be able to cancel the joint claim and claim child tax credits as a single claimaint or am i wrong? Even so, you'd be better off without him, you'd get CSA and the child benefit (which is yours anyway!) I can't believe he is so cruel - please OP, speak to women's aid, your family, anyone, he isn't a nice man.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:17:43

Why are you frightened of talking to him about it?

Leaving that to one side (though it is the biggest thing frankly), you need to make a list of everything it costs to raise his children.

This should include things like play groups and trips put which are essential to develop children's social and spatial skills, all clothes (what about shoes?), all nappies, wet wipes, sudocrem, bath stuff, medicines (winter is coming up and they will get sick), toys, drawing paper, ummm, god I'm sure people can add to this list.

You need to add it all up, work out what you actually need, and present it to him. You need to show there is a massive gap between £25 a week and what you actually need to raise a child without depriving them or being neglectful parents (I'm not saying you are, it's about making a point). Then you ask him what he thinks.

I am sure he will point out that he pays the household expenses, but this is a red herring, as he also has plenty of money to spend on his hobby.

You do not get emotional. You stay calm. You repeatedly point out that both of you should not deprive your children any more. You repeatedly remind him they are his children as well.

You remind him that child benefit is for them not him, and you need to reorganise your finances (remember they are YOUR finances, ie both of you) so that his children grow up being properly looked after.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:17:49

Why are you frightened of talking to him about it?

Leaving that to one side (though it is the biggest thing frankly), you need to make a list of everything it costs to raise his children.

This should include things like play groups and trips put which are essential to develop children's social and spatial skills, all clothes (what about shoes?), all nappies, wet wipes, sudocrem, bath stuff, medicines (winter is coming up and they will get sick), toys, drawing paper, ummm, god I'm sure people can add to this list.

You need to add it all up, work out what you actually need, and present it to him. You need to show there is a massive gap between £25 a week and what you actually need to raise a child without depriving them or being neglectful parents (I'm not saying you are, it's about making a point). Then you ask him what he thinks.

I am sure he will point out that he pays the household expenses, but this is a red herring, as he also has plenty of money to spend on his hobby.

You do not get emotional. You stay calm. You repeatedly point out that both of you should not deprive your children any more. You repeatedly remind him they are his children as well.

You remind him that child benefit is for them not him, and you need to reorganise your finances (remember they are YOUR finances, ie both of you) so that his children grow up being properly looked after.

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:18:00

Why are you frightened of talking to him about it?

Leaving that to one side (though it is the biggest thing frankly), you need to make a list of everything it costs to raise his children.

This should include things like play groups and trips put which are essential to develop children's social and spatial skills, all clothes (what about shoes?), all nappies, wet wipes, sudocrem, bath stuff, medicines (winter is coming up and they will get sick), toys, drawing paper, ummm, god I'm sure people can add to this list.

You need to add it all up, work out what you actually need, and present it to him. You need to show there is a massive gap between £25 a week and what you actually need to raise a child without depriving them or being neglectful parents (I'm not saying you are, it's about making a point). Then you ask him what he thinks.

I am sure he will point out that he pays the household expenses, but this is a red herring, as he also has plenty of money to spend on his hobby.

You do not get emotional. You stay calm. You repeatedly point out that both of you should not deprive your children any more. You repeatedly remind him they are his children as well.

You remind him that child benefit is for them not him, and you need to reorganise your finances (remember they are YOUR finances, ie both of you) so that his children grow up being properly looked after.

Scarletohello Wed 11-Sep-13 16:18:18

They are his children too and he has a duty to pay for them. I am really shocked at his attitude. If he refuses to then yes it is financial abuse. If you left him he'd have to contribute financially. He sounds mean and immature and I really feel for you. Please listen to the advice on here. This won't get any better even if you get a job if he doesn't change his attitude. Do you have any friends with kids who might be able to talk to him, especially dads if you feel you can't ! He needs to see that what he's doing isn't normal!

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:18:29

God, sorry. Computer hiccup blush

WhatHo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:22:09

I think he would resent me having it
Seriously? Then remind him it's not YOU having it, it's HIS CHILDREN having it. OP, stop thinking as if these kids have nothing to do with him.

TalkativeJim has the right of it.


He has had more than enough chances, do not keep giving him the opportunity to do you over financially!. Why do you have any need at all to give him more chances?. That is something you need to consider, you need to look at why you have allowed this to happen to you.

Staying with him will do you no favours at all, you'll be scrabbling around for money for the rest of the time you are with him.

I do not think you can actually ask him for money because you are afraid of his reaction.

If you think he would resent you having more money then what sort of person do you think he actually is?. You're supposed to be a couple; you are anything but a stable couple as the power and control balance in your relationship is heavily skewed in his favour. Abuse after all is about power and control; he wants absolute over you and I would think he controls you in other ways as well.

Your children are already being affected by his penny pinching because you are having to modify your own behaviours here. They see all this and learn from you as well.

What do you want to teach them about relationships?.

frogslegs35 Wed 11-Sep-13 16:24:58

He said wasnt going to pay for it without me even asking him to shock
So basically instead of saying 'yeah hun, no problem here's the money to buy/do something with our dd' He'd rather you have to go to him in a 'please sir' manner?

Angry, annoyed or resentful - he shouldn't bloody well be any of those things.
If you want to give him chances then obviously thats up to you, I hope for yours and DC's sake that he will see the error of his ways.

showtunesgirl Wed 11-Sep-13 16:27:27

Any relationship where you are actually afraid to discuss something is not good.

You really do need to talk if you want it to change.

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 11-Sep-13 16:29:18

"Annoyed maybe because obviously it would mean he Would have less money. I think he would resent me having it."

He is a FATHER.

Why the fuck would be be annoyed that taking care of his responsibilities means he has less money?

Welcome to parenthood, we all have less time and money than we had before.

Or at least we do if we are doing it right.

CoteDAzur Wed 11-Sep-13 16:30:14

Why can't you just tell him 25/week is nowhere near enough? shock

showtunesgirl Wed 11-Sep-13 16:32:33

OP, when I was on maternity leave, DH and I set out a budget for me and for him. Also included in the budget was what DH called the Maintenance Fund for me, this was a small amount of money each week that I was to use solely for me, not for DD, not for him but for me. It was his way of showing that he wanted me to know that what I needed for me was also important.

I cannot imagine living in fear of my partner the way you are right now. sad

Squitten Wed 11-Sep-13 16:33:19

Your whole situation is wrong, wrong, WRONG!

Time for a proper discussion about family finances. How you have allowed this man to take ALL of the family money while you are left on a shoe-string is beyond me. If he will not split your finances properly so that you can do what you need, he is a TWAT and needs dumping pronto.

Time to find your backbone OP. Do it for your child if nothing else.

wannabestressfree Wed 11-Sep-13 16:34:21

I am really shocked in this day and age that women choose to live like this......

bleedingheart Wed 11-Sep-13 16:34:49

It's one thing for him to keep all of his wages to himself, that's bad enough but why the hell does he think he should have the tax credits and child benefit too?

Have you ever discussed m

bleedingheart Wed 11-Sep-13 16:35:20

It's one thing for him to keep all of his wages to himself, that's bad enough but why the hell does he think he should have the tax credits and child benefit too?

Have you ever discussed money or has he always been like this?

bleedingheart Wed 11-Sep-13 16:37:02

It's not right that you are too scared to raise it with him. I can't believe he is a good man if he is letting you and your children live like this.
Your mum's reaction is disappointing too.

DuelingFanjo Wed 11-Sep-13 16:41:47

Jesus - you really need to sit down with him and sort this out. Get the Child benefit changed to go into your account.

SpanishFly Wed 11-Sep-13 16:52:39

Why the hell does he think he's entitled to receive the child benefit? It doesn't take a genius to work out it's for the CHILD.

SirRaymondClench Wed 11-Sep-13 16:52:39

This man is an arsehole.
What the hell are you taking £25 out of the tax credits and giving him the rest for?
Is he charging you and your DC rent or something?
You don't need to ask him - tell him you're keeping the money!
What kind of nasty fucker lumps his childs birthday cake cost in with the pittance you are 'allowed' to keep?? angry

TeaJunky Wed 11-Sep-13 17:06:48

And I'd like to know what his 'hobby' is OP, if you don't mind telling us.

I'd like to know what is more important than his children. hmm

southfieldsmum Wed 11-Sep-13 17:06:50

When you imagine having this type of conversation what do you think is the worst that can happen? What are you so worried about.

I think you situation sounds heartbreaking and is really unacceptable for you to be living like this. Its not OK. And that tells me that he is not as good a guy as you would like to make out. And I think you know that, this level of fear of a perfectly reasonable request indicates that he is not reasonable.

Sorry OP sounds miserable.

MoneyMug Wed 11-Sep-13 17:35:10

Sorry I don't have time to reply properly at the moment but I'll e back later. Thank you all for replying.

LoisPuddingLane Wed 11-Sep-13 18:42:03

Yes, I think we can say for sure that he isn't a good bloke. Taking the Tax Credits and Child Benefit, for fucksake.

hesterton Wed 11-Sep-13 19:01:48

Would it help for you to sit down and talk to him with a third person present, a parent or aunt/uncle perhaps? Especially if you're both quite young. What he's doing re: money isn't a normal way for a couple to live. Maybe he needs to hear it from someone else.

CrazyOldCatLady Wed 11-Sep-13 19:14:35

I'm sorry, but I can't agree that he's financially abusing you based on what you've said. You say you're both young - maybe he's just utterly clueless about your needs. You're a parent now too, you need to pull yourself together and have a conversation with him about this, for your kids' sake. It doesn't matter a damn if he gets resentful - he should have thought of this before getting you pregnant!

KatOD Wed 11-Sep-13 19:27:54

Hi moneymug, this is extremely odd. You do realise that don't you?

Why are you scared of discussing finances with him?

As per the others, both you and your OP need to sort out a fairer arrangement that benefits your kids appropriately within your means. If what you say is correct then I find it very strange that you think you need to give him a chance to realise that you can't make ends meet on that amount unless he is the world's most stupid person (which, going on what you've said he sounds far from, as he's in a great situation...).

You need to have the conversation now.

AnyFucker Wed 11-Sep-13 19:31:43


Anniegetyourgun Wed 11-Sep-13 20:08:59

Hmm, there's a clue in what your mother said, I'm guessing. She might say you should stand up for yourself, but did she actually bring you up to do that? Were you encouraged to be independent-minded and forthright as a child? Did your parents have an equal partnership? I'm guessing this is where the mental block may originate. And once you've nailed the reason, you can maybe start working on how to get round it.

Because really, a family should totally not be living like this - one member hogging all the resources while the rest struggle.

LoisPuddingLane Wed 11-Sep-13 20:33:51

I remember when all my money ran out and I only had £1 left (DP didn't know this) DP needed change and so borrowed it. I had saved it to be able to take DC1 to the baby group so obviously I couldn't go. I cried the whole day. I can't blame DP because he didn't know.

Well...he probably did know. After all he knows exactly how much money you have each week. So if there was £1 left in your purse, it's unlikely you had squirreled away the other £24 somewhere else for high living. So he took the last quid you had, the fucking git, knowing it was all you had.

This goes further than control; I reckon he's actually quite sadistic - flaunting all his new things bought for his "hobby" while you have a pound in your purse which he takes.

Why the hell didn't you say something when he took the only money you had?

PaleHousewifeOfCumbriaCounty Wed 11-Sep-13 20:46:00

If you dont speak up he will keep pretending its all fine. Theres just somethin about it all thats well.... Odd.

PaleHousewifeOfCumbriaCounty Wed 11-Sep-13 20:49:05

Sometimes DP offers to pay for something but mist of the time I can tell it's a half hearted offer so I just say no

This ^

You need to talk to him. To me it sounds like hes happy being blind to it. You are being a bit of a martyr if you wont even bring it up. Flip it round.

'I offered to pay for the nappies but she just says no'... See where it might all be going wrong?

Shakey1500 Wed 11-Sep-13 20:57:40

I'm truly shocked shock angry

And I say this in the nicest way- you need to stand up for your sake and the children's sakes.

He's financially abusive. And you and the children would be better off without him. Sorry.

Ledkr Wed 11-Sep-13 21:06:05

I think the op is very young so go easy on her or she will stop listening.
I know it's hard, when I read that he has the child benefit I thought my head would physically explode with rage!
Op what have you decided to do?
Does he pay rent and bills and food?
Can you speak to his mum?

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 11-Sep-13 21:06:37

"'I offered to pay for the nappies but she just says no'... See where it might all be going wrong?"

No, not really.

She has two children in nappies. There won't be much change from £25 per week once they are all paid for.

Just because someone says no doesn't mean it's impossible to work out for yourself that they don't have anywhere near enough money.

TeaJunky Wed 11-Sep-13 21:12:42

Moneymug - are you ok?

totallydone Wed 11-Sep-13 21:12:56

If you leave you will get benefits --child benefit paid to you AND he will have to pay 20% of his wages for his children.
You will be rich compared to where you stand now.
This man knows exactly what he is doing. He is not nice and her is not a good father--don't kid yourself on that account.

Tell him to pay up or your off.

gamerchick Wed 11-Sep-13 21:17:16

Funking hell lass.. seriously?

TELL him he's not getting the tax credits and tell him you want the child benefit as well to boot.

Have the conversation and take it from there.. nobody thanks somebody who just takes it and says nothing.

MissStrawberry Wed 11-Sep-13 21:34:53

Massive missing of the point.

She can't stand up for herself.

He wants her to struggle or else really does not understand budgeting.

gamerchick Wed 11-Sep-13 21:40:14

Some men really don't. Fuck some woman don't.

You have to have a conversation before throwing in the towel and this is one conversation that is well overdue.

PedantMarina Wed 11-Sep-13 22:06:07

OK, my reply may be overtaken by events, but I have something to day, based on FA by both ex-husband and (to a major extent), the DGPs who raised me.

I am 49 years old and only, over the last decade and craploads of painful self-analysis and the love of a good man, been able to talk about money in any meaningful way.

I'm not disagreeing with all the posters who tell you that raising children is a PARTNERSHIP, and DP should be doing more to help.


Perhaps he's as [clueless] about all this as you are.

I was raised to know nothing about money, how it worked, etc. I didn't know how a stamp worked. I didn't know how banks make their money. I didn't know even the fundamentals, so even if I'd been encouraged to to, say, read the financial sections of the papers, I wouldn't have gotten the first bit about what they were saying. My DGM, widowed in her 80s, had to ask a [male] relative how to even write out a cheque for her own husband's funeral, because he never taught her.

So, I COMPLETELY get how hard this must be to talk about it.

I also get that a lot of people are saying he MUST be a bastard, etc, and frequently I'm among those, but between your own reluctance to talk about it, and what might be your ages (I'm not clear on how old you are), perhaps he really is that ignorant. So, I'm keeping an open mind.

But, as tough as it is, you MUST have the talk. Talk about finances. Start up a spreadsheet (or even a simple list) of everything it takes to raise a baby - take any records you've got and get as accurate an estimate as you can. Even if you get only a partial snapshot, you'll see that there's a lot more than £xx per week.

Then TALK!

What's important is not what's been before - viz the possible clueless DP - how he reacts to this will inform the next stage. If he's as [clueless] and simply not educated about finances and/or families, he might initially have a bit of a strop, but will, within days, perhaps even hours (depends on whom he consults) realise how bad this has all been for you and DCs.

(BTW, this is for a whole 'nother thread, but cloth nappies, once you get past the initial investment (and even factoring it in they're cheaper, but not on a week when you have nothing), are a total money-saver - I would be happy to send you DC's no-longer-needed ones, if you PM me).

nopanicandverylittleanxiety Wed 11-Sep-13 22:41:39

You need to speak to him, then hopefully things will drastically change.

The ctc and child benefit should be kept in your account. So I would start with that personally.

frogslegs35 Wed 11-Sep-13 22:41:46

Oh please he's educated enough to know how to leave the childs birthday cake in OP's side of the shopping basket for her to pay for.
He's educated enough to know that by keeping OP and the Dc's in a life of poverty that he has more spends for his hobby.

Why the feck should she have to use cloth nappies? The children receive enough money from the government (TC's and CB) to allow her to use disposables if she wishes. I certainly wouldn't make my life as a mum any more time consuming and difficult to enable his penny pinching.

clam Wed 11-Sep-13 22:56:03

Look, if you won't ask for yourself, then PLEASE find the courage to ask for your children.

This is one of the saddest threads I've read on here.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 12-Sep-13 00:16:47

I'm finding the Relationships folder almost unbearable to read at the moment. So many people living lives in fear, putting up with horrendous shit in relationships, and unable to break out.

I wish you could all break out.

FeelingWeirdNow Thu 12-Sep-13 08:04:14

OP are you ok? Are you about? I'm shocked at this thread, I feel like taking you to a big supermarket and letting you fill a trolley with stuff for you and the DCs.

I'm not being patronising by saying this.

You must know you have got to sort this with him. x

Come back to this thread! thanks for you

NandH Thu 12-Sep-13 08:36:59

Op, if anyfucker if speechless you know this is incredibly wrong!

I've read some awful things on here but this is right up there with the worst of them.

I have no advice to give that you havnt already been given, this is madness, get out! He is NOT a great man at all.

NandH Thu 12-Sep-13 08:38:20

Do you drive op?

camelindasand Thu 12-Sep-13 08:46:13

This thread has moved me to tears. OP please, please stand up for children. No-one else has and they are helpless. They don't need to live like this.

AnyFucker Thu 12-Sep-13 08:47:55

Don't sort it out with him, make your plans to get away from him

OhDearNigel Thu 12-Sep-13 09:09:08

I built up the courage to ask him if I could have some of the tax credits

This, for me, is a MASSIVE red flag. Why do you have to build up courage to inform the father of your children that you will be using the benefits provided by the government to feed and clothe them ????

Or, like some other woman's husband on another thread, does he think that the purpose of tax credits is to enable him to paint warhammer figurines or whatever it is that he does ?

Buying food and nappies separately ? Seriously, your finances are totally fucked up. You should be pooling all income and whatever is leftover can be split between you to do with as you please.

DownstairsMixUp Thu 12-Sep-13 09:10:23

I do hope OP comes back :/

MrsMinkBernardLundy Thu 12-Sep-13 09:14:00

Op it is this simple:
You as a couple get tax credits because you have dcs
you get child benefit because you have dcs

therefore, no children no tax credit and no child benefit.

if you op did not look after the dcs you as a couple would not be able to have dcs and/or he would not be able to work.

Therefore, without your contribution the family would have less money.

Any money you get because you have dcs is for the cost of raising dcs and that includes compensating you for loss of income. your tax credits claim is joint and takes into account that you have no income.

You need to either talk or walk.

MrsMinkBernardLundy Thu 12-Sep-13 09:16:40

Keep repeating to yourself. it is not HIS money. it is not HIS money. it is not HIS money.
These are OUR children. this is OUR money.

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 09:28:44

I think we've scared op away with our shock and outrage at her situation sad

Believe it or not, I woke up this morning for DD at 3am and I couldn't get the OP out of my mind, so I just lay there thinking about her and worrying.

Op, I hope you're ok and you come back to talk to us.

We promise we will be gentle.

If you are in Manchester and need a friend, I am here too. I can help.

Please come back and talk to us.

The child benefit is FOR THE CHILDREN, not for him to spend on himself.

You should not be putting up with this and he surely can't be so stupid that he hasn't noticed that you have nothing. You need to sit down and write out a fair budget.

The only reason you can't earn money of your own is because you're taking care of his children. Therefore "his" money belongs to all of you and you shouldn't have to ask for it.

Please don't put up with this for a second longer.

Op, can you tell us what part of the country you live in? There are people here who are willing to help in any way if you're local to them. I know I would be.

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 14:29:57

I'm so sorry I haven't been back. My toddler is ill. I promise I'll be back later when she is asleep!

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 16:02:36

Glad to hear from you op!

Hope DD is ok x

JaceyBee Thu 12-Sep-13 16:27:49

I hope you do come back. People don't mean to sound harsh, they're worried for you and want to help smile

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Thu 12-Sep-13 16:50:38

To clarify- when the two of you go to the supermarket, you have two separate trollies- yours and his?
That is insane. Are you partners or housemates?

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Thu 12-Sep-13 16:53:27

Sorry I hope that didn't sound to harsh. You have posted asking why you out up with it so you know that this situation is not normal or fair. Why DO you put up with it?
Poor you. I'm so sorry you're in this situation.

I'm chiming in with the others, this sounds awful. At the end of your post you say you knwo nothign is going to change. Why is that, is it because he does not want to give a flying fuck about his own family?
You really shouldn't need to ask him for money, it should be there as a matter of course for you and the children. I'm sure shelter would welcome you, and get the child benefit, tax credit and income support sorted. You'll feel rich!
And your children will be well looked after by a mother who can buy clothes that fit and have her hair cut 2 or 3 times a year.
(don't get me wrong, you don't swim in money on benefits. I can relate to the feeling (not one hundreth as bad though) because x spent vast sums on fancy whisky, and now that's not on my expenditure list money is easily managed.)
I'm sure you will find it in you to speak to him. Listen to his answer and act accordingly to protect yourself and your children. Then you'll have given him heaps of chances, and have nothing to regret.

LayMeDown Thu 12-Sep-13 17:18:18

£25 a week plus bed and board? For full time childminding of two and housework? If you were an au pair he'd be arrested for exploitation. You are practically a slave. You get that don't you?
Outrageous, what a cunt.

MrsMinkBernardLundy Thu 12-Sep-13 17:26:09

OP ask yourself, what did you hope would be the answer to your thread? Your title "why do I put up with this" suggests you know you should not have to.

You have had lots of validation of your POV that you are right to be resentful and you should not put up with it.

I hope this helps firm your resolve and give you the case to bring to your partner for changing the finances. and if he is not receptive to your point of view, then I hope it gives a New perspective on your rs that may help you decide your next move.

Hope DD is OK. you must be exhausted with a little one and an ill toddler and all the worry about money. brewthanks

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 19:10:55

Hi I'm back. Thanks to everyone for replying. I wasn't expecting so many replies.

Firstly I just want to say that I give the DC everything I can. The baby may only have 6 babygrows but they are washed and he always has a clean one on. The toddler has been in the same sized clothes for ages so has loads of clothes. She always has fitted Clarke shoes ect. I'm sure they get more than alot of children.

I thought my situation wasn't right, but I'm shocked by your responses. Is it really that bad? From what I've read on here, £25 would be quite a lot of money for some people.

I spoke to one of my old friends (childless) today. I told her everything and she thought it was fine so I'm a bit confused.

You've all made me realise that I do need to say/do something about this now. I'm not going to give DP any more money. I normally give him half of the TC. (£25 each) my grandad brought me some credit today so I will ring TC tomorrow to tell them about DC2. I'll be able to get DC2 some more babygrows at the weekend too.

Please don't worry about me. It really upset me to think someone was kept awake by me last night. sad honestly I am fine. I was just having a bad day yesterday and having a Moan. It's my own fault for being in this situation really. I shouldn't have let it go on for this long without saying something. I don't think DP is FA me though. I think it's more selfishness. I know that doesn't make it much better.

I'm not sure what else to say. Thank you all for your messages.

gamerchick Thu 12-Sep-13 19:17:57

Make sure you get the child benefit as well. That's for your kids. Not his hobby.

MoneyMug, nobody doubts that you are doing your best for your DC, but you shouldn't have to struggle like this while DP has spare money to spend on himself. As well as stopping giving him half the TC, please make sure you get the Child Benefit paid directly to you. That money is for the children, no-one else.

catameringue Thu 12-Sep-13 19:29:47

Money - in response to your most recent post, it's not necessarily the amount of money that's the issue, if neither of you had any and you were hard up. But he does have money.

Maybe if he physically bought the dc supplies one week, he would see how much it costs?

MrsMinkBernardLundy Thu 12-Sep-13 19:33:44

Money I am sure your dcs are well looked after. but what about you?

MrsMinkBernardLundy Thu 12-Sep-13 19:36:01

Remember you are entitled to some money of your own too. you are working as well to look after the kids.

You need to sort it out do that there is not only enough for the dcs but some left for you too.

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 19:56:17

Money - I and I dont think anyone else here, doubted that you are giving your children the best care possible.

It shocked us, well me, because I have two children like yourself, and I am in charge of doing all the family shopping, be that food, gifts, toiletries , clothes, baby things, school things for older dd (4), and generally anything and everything (I draw the line at buying DH's clothes because a) he's a fussy git anyway and b) I'm not his mother grin).
Anyway! My point is, I actually know exactly how much money is spent every month, and the majority of it is on the kids things. It's SO expensive and they need so much stuff I can hardly keep up.
And I know for a FACT that £25 would never ever ever cover the costs of two kids in a week.

I make sure DH knows the price of everything that I buy for them. Not that he's ever complained/questioned, but just because sometimes even I am surprised at just how much money goes on baby/children's things and for the person who isn't in charge of the spending, it's good to have an overall idea where all the money is going.

So perhaps it just a matter of communication ; telling him exactly how much something cost, how frequently you buy it, so he KNOWS.

The other thing is though, the thing that bothered me about your op, was that you said you had to build up the courage to ask him for a portion of the tc. That made me feel as there is more than just naivety on his side, because you feel as though it will be an issue when you ask.

And really op, there shouldn't be and mustn't be because there IS extra, misspent money there to be had and you don't have to feel the pinch so much.

I'm glad you've made the decision to keep all of the tc and I echoe other posters who say you must keep the child benefit too. Whether you spend it or save it for your dcs will be upto you! And that £16 a week thing you wanted to do will be easily done as well.

P.s: and you didn't keep me awake at night grin I got up for dd anyway and she was full of snot so just lay there cuddling her wondering!

DownstairsMixUp Thu 12-Sep-13 19:58:51

Yes please make sure you do keep all the tx and child benefit, that is yours for the children! Take care OP.

honeybunny14 Thu 12-Sep-13 20:03:54

Im really shocked by this i wouldnt put up with it at all u sound like a lovely person u and ur dcs desearve so much more put ur foot down

honeybunny14 Thu 12-Sep-13 20:06:03

This is the way our family works i am in charge of everything and yes kids are extreamly expensive lol

LisaMedicus Thu 12-Sep-13 20:35:35

If Child Benefit is not in your name your pension is fucked.

WhatHo Thu 12-Sep-13 21:38:30

I spoke to one of my old friends (childless) today. I told her everything and she thought it was fine so I'm a bit confused. Don't be confused, she doesn't have children. If YOU didn't have children, £25 a week would be fine. It would be like pocket money. But with food and nappies and wipes and taking them out etc etc etc it's not enough. Ask her if she thinks three people can function on £25 a week and then see what her response is.

£25 would be quite a lot of money for some people. It's really not, for anyone. I have a 1 year old and a three year old, I buy my nappies of amazon, I get a lot of clothes from friends and eBay, and I know I spend more than this.

I was one of those people (sort of) saying you were depriving your children. I don't mean that you aren't a good mum, but if you can't do lovely, cheap things like baby groups for the lack of £1, then it's not ideal for your kids, is it?

Anyway, you're going to talk to him, so great. Don't let him resent you for it, and remember - they're his kids too.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 12-Sep-13 21:51:23

Is it really that bad?

Yes it is. Really.

chinam Thu 12-Sep-13 22:00:51

This is one of the saddest things I've read on here. No one doubts that you are doing your best for your children but this guy needs to man up and stop living the life of a single bloke while you are struggling to buy nappies. All money should be family money.

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:20:29

We got into a discussion about the cost of formula milk tonight. I asked him what we'd do if I stopped breastfeeding. His answer was that I'd have to pay for it because I buy all the DCs stuff. I thought he was joking at first so I kept asking really? Seriously? Then told him I wouldn't be able to afford it and they are his kids too. (I never would have said that before this thread, thank you!) so eventually he said, well I suppose I'd have to then. But I'd still expect you to pay for it sometimes.

Lucky I don't plan to stop breastfeeding then really, isn't it? angry

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:22:49

The child benefit is in my name. It just goes into his account.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 12-Sep-13 22:23:55

Christ almighty, he's a monster. Sorry, but he is.

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:26:45

Money - good on you! Now keep saying it !!! Over and over and over again until paying for things like baby milk becomes second nature to him, as it rightly should.

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:27:40

He sounds like a complete miser , money , if you don't mind me saying so hmm

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:28:16

The thing is, he is so good to me in every other way. He does housework and helps with the DC. We get on really well. Which makes me doubt myself when I start feeling resentful about money. I can't explain what I mean. confused

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:28:30

When are you calling child benefit to change the bank details to your own?

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:30:03

Well that's a positive thing. It shows that he IS committed on some levels.

It doesn't take away from financial situation though, money. And don't let it.

gamerchick Thu 12-Sep-13 22:30:46

The child benefit is easy if it's in your name..just ring them tomorrow and change the bank details.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 12-Sep-13 22:31:22

he is so good to me in every other way. He does housework and helps with the DC

That isn't being "so good to you". It's just normal. Doing the housework and looking after the kids is not a special favour to you, it's a normal part of being in a partnership.

I just cannot see how he is good to you if he leaves you with literally no money.

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:32:41

Lois - I think we've all established that what the op's DH is doing is wrong in any way you look at it. We're trying to move forward now.

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:33:51

I don't know. I don't think I'm ready to do that yet. I know I sound absolutely pathetic but I need to work up to it.

Wuldric Thu 12-Sep-13 22:34:17

How old are you OP?

Because my grumpy 15 YO would be more savvy than this.

Also I have to ask why you have to wait until your DCs are in school to get a job. You don't, you know.

You need financial independence. Up to you to work out how you get that.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 12-Sep-13 22:37:39

Thanks for the memo, TeaJunky. I'll leave you all to it then.

scallopsrgreat Thu 12-Sep-13 22:38:34

MoneyMug he is abusing you. Financially certainly but with his attitude I would imagine in other ways too. This is absolutely dreadful. Please don't minimise it.

Here is the Rights of Women website.

Here is Women's Aid

Here is Citizen'sAdvice

There is absolutely no reason that he should be getting child benefit or any other benefits you are entitled too.

There is absolutely no reason why he shouldn't be paying for your children and you whilst you are not working and looking after the children.

He knows what he is doing to you. He isn't stupid. He knows you need money and that you haven't got any. He gets off on controlling you in this way. He is cruel.

Please contact (or at least look at the websites) of the links I've given. If you only contact one make it Women's Aid.

Take care.

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:39:19

I'm 22.

I'd love to get a job. Not just for the money. DC2 is only a few weeks old and ebf so I'll have to wait a while first. I've tried expressing, but so far he's another bottle refuser!

TeaJunky Thu 12-Sep-13 22:40:24

Why do you feel like you have to work yourself up to it, money?

What would you say is the one thing that makes you hesitate?

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 22:46:18

Thank you for the links. I'm on my phone at the moment but I'll look tomorrow when I'm on the laptop.

I really don't know. I'm thinking about that conversation with him and I know I will struggle to do it. I could just change the bank details without telling him as he doesn't check his bank statements, but that would just be wrong.

WayHarshTai Thu 12-Sep-13 22:49:41

It wouldn't be wrong. It is INSANE that he gets to spend the Child Benefit and half the tax credits on just himself, and you and the two DC are existing on £25 a week.

elah11 Thu 12-Sep-13 22:50:41

Threads like this make me so sad that there are people out there who seriously think this kind of behaviour is acceptable and normal sad. He is NOT a good guy, that's not the way normal loving parents and partners behave, it's just not. The fact that you cannot see that is incredibly sad and what's even worse is that your dc will grow up thinking that's ok.

Bumpstarter Thu 12-Sep-13 22:55:17

Is there anything else you are scared to talk about with him? Or just money? Have you ever had your own money?

Inertia Thu 12-Sep-13 22:57:07

Money, child benefit was originally set up for women in precisely your circumstance. Women who had no access to household funds and whose husbands refused to pay anything for their children, and would go without.

The child benefit is designed to pay for the needs of the children.

This man sounds awful.

MoneyMug Thu 12-Sep-13 23:00:36

Not that I can think of. It literally is just money.

I did when I worked. Before we lived together. We didn't move in together until DC1 was born. It's a long story.

I have to go to bed now as my DD is ill and she wants me to get into her bed. Thank you for talking with me. I really appreciate it.

NoSquirrels Thu 12-Sep-13 23:02:24

It wouldn't be wrong to do it - change the bank details. You pay for the kids stuff (he has made that clear). Child benefit is to benefit the children, to pay for what they need. You need to have it to spend on them. (Why was it set up that way anyway?)

If you like, when he notices, say the HV advised you to. But please please change it to come to your bank account.

And don't give him any tax credits till you can both sit down and draw up a FAIR, EQUAL budget of who's paying for what every month.

Kids get more expensive, not less. Please stand up for them, and for yourself. If he is a good guy, like you say he is, then this will make things better, not worse.

PS I am with the posters saying this is a really worrying thread. Please listen and act.

BettyBottersBetterButter Thu 12-Sep-13 23:03:17

Please call & get child benefit change to your account & <then> tell your OH - if you don't want a confrontation just casually say you were talking to a friend & they pointed out it's meant to help cover costs relating to the children plus needs to go into your account or it will affect your pension. I really hope you take on board the excellent advise given on here & speak to either Women's Aid or at the very least CAB.

NoSquirrels Thu 12-Sep-13 23:03:23

Hope your DD feels better soon.

Bumpstarter Thu 12-Sep-13 23:10:54

I'm glad to hear you are not scared to discuss anything else. You are being very clear that this problem is not because your dp is abusive. Many people on here find this impossible to believe, however, you are the one who knows your situation best. Working on the premise that he is not abusing you, this is your problem, because it is you that can't talk about money. Does that sound right to you? In which case you need to do something which will raise your self esteem. Then you will be able to talk about it and agree a budget for your family with him.

Sleep,well, money mug. Money is important. It is not 'just money' it is trust and sharing and communication.

Is he young money?
He sounds dreadful tbh.

LeaningTowerOfGaffney Thu 12-Sep-13 23:12:12

This is grim, OP sad

In my relationship we share all the money - nothing is monitored, nothing is debated, we just do what's best for us and the DC. That's normal, believe me. And helping with the housework and the DC? That's normal, too. It's not worthy of a medal or even of a mention, it's just part of a functional relationship.

I find this thread worrying too.

MaireadnotMermaid Thu 12-Sep-13 23:13:46

Do you have a children's centre locally?

cansu Thu 12-Sep-13 23:19:06

I am shocked. If you were living apart you would probably get more money than you are currently surviving on. He should be paying for the things the children and you need because you are a family. They are his children and you are taking care of them. If he can't see this he must be a moron. Perhaps you should find out the cost of a nursery for your two dc full time and tell him he will need to pay this whilst you are working outside the home.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 12-Sep-13 23:20:55

The child benefit should be going to you - I'm pretty confident you won't find a single person that disagrees with that.

I can only think that you're childless friend didn't fully understand what you were saying.

Love- if it takes you time to build up to asserting yourself- then a little bit of time working up to it, but do make sure you do it. You sound quite overwhelmed by the strength of feeling on this thread, but you really shouldn't be living like this while he's splashing the cash on his hobbies. Best wishes x

MrsMinkBernardLundy Fri 13-Sep-13 00:33:02

Op I do understand how this happens. got into a similar position. and buying things for the dcs was my job. so we did the separate shopping thing too. not to such a great extent and I went back to work (and paid for all the childcare) so I had some financial independence but I do understand how you got into this situation if the kids arrived before you had time to sort out balance of your rs.

But you need to sort out that balance now and tip it a bit more in your favour.
first you need to co vinceyourself it is not fair. tick.
Then you need to convince him.
You have made a start smile

Baby steps. phone T C next. then work up to child benefit.

I hope it works out.
Keep posting if the back up of MN bolsters your resolve.

Albany chance your mum can help out with dcs when they get a bit bigger so you can maybe work a few hours (assuming you can find a very pt job?) if she is sympathetic she may help.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 06:35:59

op I think your situation is absolutely ridiculous.
you are not pathetic and you are clearly excellent and loving mum.
but your situation is ridiculous. as a sahm, you are essentially working a full time job. more- a 24/7 job. so you work full time for your family and so does your dp. as two people who work full time (regardless of who actually receives a salary), everything you both have should be shared. just because his contribution is more financial and your is more practical doesn't make it any less equal. THEREFORE EVERYTHING YOU HAVE IS SHARED.
you should have a joint account. all income should go into it. you both should spend all joint and child things from that account. any personal expenditure should be equal for both of you and discussed in advance. any other setup in your situation is just fucking ludicrous.
can you suggest this setup to him as a way of making both your lives easier and ensuring that this doesn't cause an issue? if he says no, I guess you know where you stand. he doesn't consider your contribution to your joint life important and relevant. he is abusing you and depriving you.
if he says yes, problem solved.

How was your parents relationship OP when you were growing up?. Was it like this?. Were there the self same issues with regards to money?.

He is abusive and he knows full well what you're doing; his comments re he expecting you to pay for the formula milk on occasion are nothing short of cruel.

Re him doing the housework and helping with the DC that is patently not him being good to you. That is part and parcel of being a parent.
My guess too is that he does the barest of minimums he can get away with.

I bought a couple of items in the supermarket (newspaper, a loaf, some chicken) the other day and spent £7; I thought of you and thought that this is just under a 1/3 of what you have for the entire week. I felt sickened.

You're 22; how old is he?.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 07:08:15

I just read his comment about formula milk. That's absolutely outrageous. If he's serous, he sounds really really horrible. I still don't understand why all this 'yours and mine' rather than 'ours' business.
Perhaps remind him that is he wants to keep everything separate, you would have to get a job and he would have to share the massive cost of childcare so neither of you would really be any better off.

I'm so sorry but I'm inclined to say ltb to be honest.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 07:10:28

The more I think about it, the more furious I am on your behalf. Just show him this thread and he can see what a bunch of objective strangers think about his behaviour.

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 08:38:18

Hi everyone. Sorry if I miss out any questions as I'm on my phone again.

He's 24.

I did tell him the cost of child care around here once but he just said that 'we' are lucky I don't work then.

My mum lives about 8 hours away but I wouldnt let her look after the DC anyway. She loves the idea of having granchildren but she they start to annoy her after a few minutes.
It doesn't bother me though as we have never had a great relationship. Although she has brought alot of clothes for DD over the last two year which I will always be grateful to her for.

My mum has always been a SAHM. She's never worked. She expects everything to just come to her and her life is dominated by money. She has always taken all my dads wages from him. He has to nicely ask her for anything. She also gets money from pretending to be a single parent if you know what I'm getting at? (I have younger siblings at home) I NEVER want to be like her. I know that's definitely where my money issues come from.

I've been reading through this thread a few times and it's been making me think about everything. I'm really annoyed at myself that I let this go on for so long. And I keep thinking why is DP so selfish? I would never let him live like this. All the times I have sat up at night helping pack up his eBay parcels and then dragging DD out in the snow ect to take them to the post office!

Sorry I've rambled on a but there! blush

Ramble away op, he is being totally unreasonable and you are starting to find all the examples to back up your resolve!
I can understand the difficulty of building up courage to talk about certain things, even if dp is not being "difficult", but the examples you give here show why you are reluctant to bring things up with him, because he's being so utterly UNREASONABLE about it!
I can also understand you don't want to be money-grabbing like your mum. But to get the tax credits and child benefit for the children and you as a family is really not money grabbing. It is to provide for you so that you can be healthy and well.
Don't beat yourself up, you came to a point where enough is enough, and I'm sure with support here and in real life (WA) you will find the strength to speak up for yourself. It is impossible to do it alone, with tiny children. So you are doing remarkably well!

MrsMinkBernardLundy Fri 13-Sep-13 09:10:50

Money hold on to that anger. use it to make sure you get what is FAIR. not him keeping all the money and not like your mum. but you really are entitled to recompense for your contribution to the partnership. ask him what he would expect if he stated at home and you worked. and if he says he expects you would keep all the money tell him that is a deal and he can stay at home you are going to look for a job.

callamia Fri 13-Sep-13 09:15:21

It's not immature, or stupid, but it needs to be sorted.

What does he think you manage on? What do you talk about? If you can't talk about really basic things for your family, I wonder what you can talk about?

You need to spell it out for him clearly - as a couple, with children, you should be working together to make everyone in your family ok - not just the one with a job.

You can, as others have said, present him a budget of what you need (as a family) and what you actually have. I am worried that you are trapped with so little to look after yourself with. You, and your children, deserve an awful lot better.

VoiceOfRaisin Fri 13-Sep-13 09:28:46

Sweetheart, it is not his money. Your DP can only go out to work because he has YOU at home looking after his DC. If he stayed home and looked after the DC then YOU would be able to work. You are a team. His earnings are JOINT.

I can see that you have massive problems seeing it this way which is probably what has enabled your DP to be so blind to the problem (partly his fault too, but until the bf comment it sounded more like you had not ever discussed finance with him). Well done, btw, for having the temerity to mention that they are his DC too and that you would not be able to afford formula. You must know that is not right.

Work out the family's joint income (salary, TC, CB). Decide how much the DC will cost (everything - baby groups, food, nappies, wipes, clothes, babysitting now and again) and take that out. Split the rest 50:50.

Suggest this reasonably to your DP. It may give him food for thought. He may simply have never realised before. If he reacts negatively then come back and talk to us again as you may have to rethink.

Don't let this continue until you are desperate (although maybe you are already there). Do this for your children. Good luck, sweetheart x

You don't have issues with money money mug you are just skint and stressing about having enough for your kids.
You are allowed to occasionally treat yourself too occasionally .
To put it into perspective my income is low just now because of mat leave and my husband left me money to go get my hair cut as he new I felt rotten.
That's what families do ,not spend it all on themselves and make you feel like a slave and grateful for every crumb.
I can't believe he doesn't notice you never have new clothes etc.
You need to tell him you are struggling and feeling stifled by the lack of finances to take care of your children in the way you should be able to.

He knew I felt rotten

You have had a lot of good advice here MM. Your latest point that you would never put him in the predicament he puts you is very telling. He is supposed to love you and your children and one facet of that love should be to ensure that you are not struggling on a pittance (which is what £25 is really).

You're supposed to be a partnership, a team, and it's certainly not unreasonable to expect that.

So he is basically a financially abusive 24 year old. This is also deeply rooted within his own psyche and likely learnt too from his own parents.
He will not change.

Re your comment:-
"My mum has always been a SAHM. She's never worked. She expects everything to just come to her and her life is dominated by money. She has always taken all my dads wages from him. He has to nicely ask her for anything. She also gets money from pretending to be a single parent if you know what I'm getting at? (I have younger siblings at home) I NEVER want to be like her. I know that's definitely where my money issues come from".

I asked you what you learnt about relationships when growing up and the above is very telling. You have basically found someone who has done to you what your money grubbing mother did and likely still does to your Dad; i.e take all his money. You're now repeating yourself what your Dad has done i.e having to ask nicely for anything. You've also been reduced to doing that.

The child benefit money is for your children, not for him to spend it on whatever takes his fancy.

You need to get angry and ultimately to get away from him because he will be like this for the rest of his days. This bloke knows exactly what he is doing. He likes the power and control he has over you, abuse is about power and control.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Fri 13-Sep-13 10:52:12

Moneym, I just wanted to explain to you, along with many other posters, that what he is doing to you is financial abuse. A person doesn't have to aggressive, nasty, or shouty, to be a financial abuser - all they have to do is control the money - and/or to keep you short of money and struggling while they spend what they want on whatever.

ruddynorah Fri 13-Sep-13 10:58:23

If you lived on your own with the kids you'd have your rent paid and you'd get about £300 a week to live on. PLUS he'd have to give you 20% of his wages.

TimidLivid Fri 13-Sep-13 11:02:56

I have been you and you have to have some conflict about this is in inevitable but we didn't have kids and was for the first month or two of our moving I'm together when we were still teenagers annd my dh didn't realise he had to share. It took conflict argueing growing up and maturity to resolve. It won't fix itself he won't wake up one day and think I should really be sharing with moneymug. You really are gooing to have to say something and change things and if you are as passive as you sound it will be uncomfortable but you are together there should be space to talk things through and change things and get offened with each other then sort it out. If he is as nice but selfish as you say he will change it for you.he will unmdestand the concept of sharing surely and that he is a father and if you split up and he is working he would be paying for his chikdren a percentage of his wage.

I don't think the posts suggesting the OP leave her partner are helpful. Nor are the ones suggesting he's getting a kick out of having power and financial control over her.

To me it sounds like he's ignorant about what it means to be in a financial partnership where the DC are a joint financial responsibility and the OP's passiveness until now has enabled this situation to continue and worsen.

She needs encouragement to be more assertive about her and her DC's needs, not to be told to ltb.

She is now realising how wrong this situation is and how selfish her DP has been over money and it looks like she's going to take some steps in the right direction with our encouragement.

So how about we all concentrate in supporting and encouraging her rather than slagging off the man she loves, eh?

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 11:12:12

Please don't think I'm nit listening to you, because I really am. I'm just not convinced it's FA. I don't think he does it to control me in any way. He just does it because he is selfish. Bills, and then his hobby come first. It's a seriously expensive hobby which makes me laugh really as he's the first person to admit he's tight when it comes to everything else. He moans that food shopping is so expensive so I try and keep out of shopping decisions as it makes me feel guilty.

He was brought up by his mum who was a single parent and has never known his dad so he hasn't ever had experience of sharing money in a family.

"I don't think the posts suggesting the OP leave her partner are helpful. Nor are the ones suggesting he's getting a kick out of having power and financial control over her".

Why?. Genuine question.


You are still unsure as to whether this is financial abuse or not.

Below is a definition of financial abuse:-

Financial abuse is a form of mistreatment and fraud in which someone forcibly controls another person's money or other assets. It can involve, for instance, stealing cash, not allowing a victim to take part in any financial decisions or preventing a victim from having a job. The issue tends to occur most often in domestic relationships, such as between a husband and wife or an elderly parent and an adult child. People don't always recognize the problem, because an abuser purposely might select an isolated, vulnerable victim who is unlikely to realize what's happening or who will feel too ashamed to report it.

Financial abuse also can occur as a means to have control over a partner in order to make the other (in this case you) feel hopeless enough to never leave. One partner might not allow the other to have access to any of the household money, or he might give only a small allowance.

Anyway why would you want to be with someone who is so selfish in the first place and admits to everyone that he is himself tight fisted. Bet he has told no-one that you and his children subsist on £25 a week; he likely spends more than that in the course of 3 days on his bloody hobby.

All he cares about is him.

NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 11:17:23

It's interesting what you say about your mum. Your parents didn't get it right either.

But you and your partner can get it right. It will take effort, but you can do it.

He may be financially abusive, I don't know. He may just be young and selfish. He may not understand how much the kids cost. He can't fix being young, but he can grow up quickly and fix the rest of it.

Please do change the CB to your account now. And then work out how much it costs all of you to live. Once you have the figures, you can come up with an equal split that's fair. He won't like it (almost everyone would like more money than they have, I know I would!) but he will get used to it, I hope.

If he doesn't/can't/won't then you'll need to think seriously about your future and what living like this with him would say to your DC as they grow up.

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 11:18:08

Since having the DC I have had anxiety problems which doesn't help with having the money conversation.

NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 11:19:34

Btw, do you know how much money comes into the family and how much the bills are? If not you need to know.

Not surprised at that either. Your man's control of you financially has likely been the main contributor to your overall levels of anxiety now; you're wondering how the heck you are going to manage on such a small sum a week.

NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 11:23:26

I understand you find it really hard to discuss with him.

And don't beat yourself up about it, you have really tiny children, they take up all your emotional and physical energy at that age. It's understandable.

But even if you can't face the a face-to-face conversation right now, you can do things to help yourself, quietly and in your own time.

Call the TC people. Call the CB people. Work out a list of what comes in and what you need to spend. When you have the figures you will be able to discuss it from a better, more reasonable standpoint. The facts won't lie, he won't be able to argue with them. He may not like it, and moan about it, but he won't be able to argue they are wrong.

Can you write it all down and email him when you have got your facts together, then you can have a discussion about it after that?

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 11:24:41

I have a basic idea but not exactly. All the bills are in his name so obviously I don't open the letters. He hasn't toldme not to. I just think it's respectful.

snowsjoke Fri 13-Sep-13 11:24:45

MoneyMug - can I ask if you are in an 'arranged' marriage?

Damnautocorrect Fri 13-Sep-13 11:25:58

Do you make sure you eat properly? Or do you feel guilt?
I can't believe he thinks its ok for you to buy all your kids stuff on £25 a week when he KNOWS how expensive it is.
Even most step dads step up more then he is financially.

I can sympathise with alot of what you say, I cut my own hair buy my clothes off eBay whilst oh spends alot on his own stuff. But I do accept alot of its my issues for not asking as I feel massive guilt at being home.

Is the property in his sole name as well?. Is it rented or is there a mortgage?.

NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 11:29:15

After you have changed the TC and the CB, perhaps asking your DP about the cost of the bills would be a starting point? It's really not unreasonable to ask, or disrespectful to look at an electric bill.

Presumably they are filed somewhere in the house, so you could look if you wanted to?

ExitPursuedByADragon Fri 13-Sep-13 11:29:34

This thread has made me feel very sad.

You do need to sit down together and write down all your incomings and outgoings.

Attila, because we don't know him so how can we assume he's on some power trip? And the OP, who does know him, says she doesn't think that's why he does it.

It sounds much more likely from what she's said that he's being a bit blind and selfish and ignorant. Not that he's deliberately trying to abuse her, though that is the effect if his ignorant actions.

And I don't think LTB is helpful because this sounds like a situation that can be fixed with a bit of encouragement for the OP to be more assertive and put her foot down. They need to have a long-overdue talk and get this sorted out. Walking out instead of trying to fix the problem is not going to benefit anybody, least of all the DC.

I think he will completely disregard any notion of equality in terms of finances from the OP because of his own inbuilt attitudes i.e its his money and he sees it as such.

Abusers are not reasonable people, a reasonable person would not treat OP this way regardless. Bet you as well he will not in any way cut down on what he spends on his very expensive hobby; no, that is way off limits.

I do not have to personally know such people to call this financial abuse. Her initial and subsequent posts of him (his comments re formula milk in particular) are very damming. She cannot bring herself to ask him for more money, that in itself is awful and is indicative too of what he is like as a person.

It is a mistaken idea to assume that abuse is somehow related to "misunderstandings" or lack of communication.

MM I haven't read the whole thread but I would say-- please remember that the money that comes in is not specifically HIS money, it is family money. My kids are much older than yours but my H always took this attitude as well and has always used the fact that he was 'doing us a favor' by supporting us to create a whole environment where he was the king and the kids and I only had things because he'd paid for it all (not really true) and therefore he had to at all times be allowed to behave however he wanted without fear of reprisal or anyone standing up to him. So please recognize that it is financial abuse and can lead to other types of abuse.

Hope things are looking up-- and congrats on your new baby! It should be such an exciting time but it's no fun to struggle financially.

If discussion and compromise, the mainstay of mediation, could help in any way most domestic violence situations would be long ago resolved because victims of abuse "discuss and compromise" constantly. Mediation assumes both parties will cooperate to make agreements work; the victim has always 'cooperated' with the abuser; the abuser never cooperates.

She's suggested that the reason she can't ask for more money is to do with her own upbringing and her own issues around that, not that she's scared of him.

Trying to bully the OP into believing she is being deliberately abused is not going to help her to tackle this situation.

JuliaScurr Fri 13-Sep-13 11:51:45
NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 11:53:20

Attila, I think you can read the formula milk thing two ways. 1) He is a bastard, a controlling cold-hearted bastard. Or 2) He is used to his partner paying for "the kids stuff" and so he assumed she would pay for formula. When she said he couldn't afford it he grudgingly accepted he'd need to pay, but said he'd "expect her to pay sometimes too" i.e. in his mind it would be fair if she paid too. He is selfish, and used to the status quo, but not necessarily an abuser.

I agree with you that this IS a situation of financial abuse.


the OP has her own issues. They have never discussed finances properly. If they can, he may step up.

He may not. But until the discussion is had, how can you say the abuse is deliberate and not just thoughtless?

This is not a situation where the OP has been begging him to share or up his contributions. So far.

Either way, we should support the OP to discuss with her partner. I think she has now got the message loud and clear that this is not a normal or desirable situation to be in.

MissStrawberry Fri 13-Sep-13 11:54:19

Doesn't matter if you think it is FA or not. It is.

The Government gives money to mums to help with child related costs. WHY the fuck is it going in to his account?? angry.

He is taking money from you. He does fuck all special around the house.

Your baby needs more than 6 babygrows fgs. He could go through that many in one day.

TidyDancer Fri 13-Sep-13 11:59:25

Christ almighty. I have just read through this read from beginning to end.

No reasonable partner or father would not see how you are struggling. And to let you carry on like it? Disgusting.

On what planet does he consider it acceptable to keep the child benefit and half the tax credits?!

OP, this is financial abuse, it really really is. You need to bite the bullet and tell him he must pay more towards his DCs and his partner. If that means scaling back the hobby, then so be it.

I can't believe he took your last pound.

And the credit on the phone issue? Surely he's known that! Why hasn't he given you money for that? Why hasn't he bought more clothes for the DCs?

This is not normal behaviour and he is not being a good partner or good father.

OP learnt a lot of damaging crap from her own parents about money, her own mother took all her H's money and he has been reduced to asking for money. This pattern is now being played out again.

OPs man put the child's birthday cake in her own supermarket trolley, I ask you what kind of person would do such a thing?.

She could also well be afraid to ask him for more cash because of his reaction for actually asking. She has had to already pluck up more courage to ask him for more tax credits, that in itself is awful.

He knows what he is doing.

I agree that the situation is financially abusive but I think it's come about through thoughtlessness in his part, the OP's passive acceptance of that thoughtlessness and a serious lack of communication on both parts.

I do believe this CAN be fixed once they start talking openly and honestly about the situation and agree a completely different approach to family finances.

OP, you can change this situation if you can find the strength to do so. We're all here to help in any way we can. If having the talk face to face is what's putting you off, what about writing him a letter? It might help in that you can say what you want to say, the way you want to say it, without getting nervous or flustered. We can help you draft one if that's something you would like to do.

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 12:11:26

We aren't married And the house is rented.

I do eat properly. What I meant is I wouldn't just put something in for myself eg chocolate unless I could pay for it myself.

What if he says that I've managed on £25 a week for this long, why do I need more? Because I think that's what he will say.

scallopsrgreat Fri 13-Sep-13 12:14:15

Thoughtlessness?? FFS! Thoughtlessness is using the last of the milk.

There is no way he can't see the financial discrepencies between him and her. And not only that, he thinks that is OK.

MoneyMug Fri 13-Sep-13 12:15:05

I like the email/letter idea. I think that would make it easier. When I asked him for some of the tax credit te first time, I text him because I was too embarrassed to ask face to face. Thanks for reminding me of that.

gamerchick Fri 13-Sep-13 12:18:30

If he does, tell him you've managed because you've only had one kid at that time. Now you have two so need more money... 1+1=2 and all that. If he has to have it simplified down to the nitty gritty. Ask him how he would manage on 25 quid a week looking after the kids.. make him do the math if you have too.

Personally I would just tell him how it's got to be from now on and that the kids money goes to you for the kids.. but it's easy for me to say that as i've never been in the position you're in.

TidyDancer Fri 13-Sep-13 12:20:51

I think you need to make a list of all the things you and the DCs need and present him with that.

His reaction will tell you whether or not you have a future with him.

MissStrawberry Fri 13-Sep-13 12:25:30

Tell him

you haven't managed before, you have been going without.

he is spending money meant for his children on himself.

he has be sorted or ....

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 12:26:02

Lyra personally I don't think it is helpful to suggest the views of others are unhelpful. Everyone is trying to help and I think many of us feel that we want the op to realise just how wrong this situation is. This isn't a small thing, this is affecting every aspect of her life and minimising it may just convince her that she should suck it up and just learn to live with it. Clearly the op is intelligent enough to make up her own mind which advice to follow.
OP if you feel able, can you give some more details about your anxiety problems and their origin?

BombayBadGirl Fri 13-Sep-13 12:28:12

your post reminds me so much of my sisters situation

firstly, its not 'your' or 'his' money, as you are a couple, you share finances

my sister has to wait for her oh to get home from work so he can buy a jar of pasta sauce as she isn't given any money

its a form of control and you need to be strong and not take it anymore

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 12:28:23

I still find it absolutely unbelievable that a couple sharing a life where one is a sahp can walk around the supermarket with two separate trollies deciding who pays for what.

scallopsrgreat Fri 13-Sep-13 12:29:21

But you aren't coping at the moment are you MoneyMug? Your children are missing out on doing stuff. Presumably you haven't had new clothes or anything for a while.

But tbh that's not the point. You and your children should not be surviving on £25 a week when he has considerably more. Money should be pooled. You are now a family.

gamerchick Fri 13-Sep-13 12:30:41

Actually that's a better idea in telling him you haven't managed and you've been going without.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 13-Sep-13 12:31:18

I asked about the anxiety because I find it concerning that you can't have this conversation with him face to face. This kind of conversation is what sharing your life with someone is about.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Fri 13-Sep-13 12:38:04

A bloke writes: OP, this is how a normal father and partner of an ebf child and a SAHM did it.

ALL the money into a joint account. Pay bills, shopping, kids stuff. Take out £5 per week for DW hairdo (v. important), same for my weekly pint. What's left? Split it 60/40 her/me, Why the discrepancy? Because I knew she would budget under, but she grew up on little enough and a cushion is nice. Any purchases over a day's wage discussed first.

Guy, I'm not trying to minimise anything. Everybody here agrees that the situation is very wrong. I was questioning some people's assumptions that the reason it's come about is because he's deliberately trying to abuse and control her, not that he's just a bit of a selfish, tight idiot.

I have been in a relationship that was abusive, financially among many other things.

My XP (father of our children) was very generous with money when he thought everything was ok between us. The more he realised I wanted out, the more he tried to find ways to control me. He announced one day that he would no longer be paying the family's food money into my account, as he had done for over a decade, but if any food was needed he would buy it on his way home from work. That would mean I'd have no control over when or what I fed our DC. He tried this because power and control were important for him and the more he lost control of me in other ways, the more he tried to find other aspects of our life to control in order to retain his power.

I told him in no uncertain terms that I would never agree to this system, that I needed the financial freedom to be able to feed our DC the way I wanted to and had done since they were born. I would not be dictated to on this.

He eventually backed down but not without a hard fight.

The OP is lacking this ability to fight for what's right for her and her DC and that's why I think we should concentrate on trying to help her gain the courage and assertiveness to do it.

My XP very much WAS financially abusing me (or trying to). It doesn't sound to me that the OP's partner has the same motivations, from what she's said, and she know him best.

MissStrawberry Fri 13-Sep-13 12:58:13

it not he

though of course he does too.

If you do and say nothing, nothing will change.

If you tell him he is out of order and what you expect (equality!) and he says no then you make him say why not and then you choose to stay as a put upon mug or you walk away to make a new, better life with your children.

scallopsrgreat Fri 13-Sep-13 13:04:32

OP The other thing maybe to remind him you are not a child who has to ask for pocket money. You are an adult who is looking after your/his children. You are entitled to be treated as such and that means having access to the family finances when you need them. Not having to go cap in hand and prove that you need more money.

And it wouldn't do any harm to remind him if you weren't there he would either have to take a huge drop in income to look after the children himself or take a huge hit on outgoings to get someone else to look after them. A damn sight more than £25 a week anyway (not to mention food/clothes etc for the children).

Lyra, I think you are reading a different OP to some of us. Yes he maybe 'nicer' than your ex but the underlying attitude is the same. He thinks it is OK to financially control his partner and his children, because he is the wage earner. It is deliberate. The example Atilla gave about putting the children's b'day cake in her trolley demonstrates that perfectly. Why wouldn't he want to buy his child a birthday cake? Why?

The problem is that changing attitudes is incredibly difficult to do.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 13-Sep-13 13:11:10

"I was questioning some people's assumptions that the reason it's come about is because he's deliberately trying to abuse and control her, not that he's just a bit of a selfish, tight idiot. "

I would question whether it matters.

Whether he is motivated to control her through lack of money, or whether he is motivated through greed and wanting to keep all the money for himself is irrelevant.

The result is that he is controlling her through lack of money because she is permanently short of the money she needs.

The fact that he is taking tax credits and child benefit for himself speaks of an EXTREMELY greedy man.

If he was expecting her to make do on just what the state provides for children and not giving her any access to family money, I'd still think he was a sod.

But he is TAKING money that is clearly, and unequivocally meant for the children and spending it on himself.

And he seems to have devised a logic whereby he can set an arbitrary and very low amount of money and insist that his wife and two children get by on it while he keeps the rest for himself.

There is no kindness here, no care for his own children and the woman he is supposed to love.

Just a very keen sense of his own interests and a determination to make sure no fucker (even his own kids) get in the way of what he wants.

NoSquirrels Fri 13-Sep-13 13:53:26

It DOESN'T MATTER if he means to or not. Lyra has agreed that. He IS financially abusing her, whether he means to or not.

So the OP needs help to change the status quo. She has agreed it needs changing, so no one needs to keep saying how abusive it is.

OP I think you will feel more confident when you know that facts of your household finances, so start there. Gather the figures, add up what you need to spend (not what you have been managing on, what you would spend if you could, including the £16 for an activity for your DD). When you have the figures you can email them to your partner and ask him to sit down to discuss it.

But do all this AFTER you have called the TC and changed the CB to your account!

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 13-Sep-13 14:01:44

Actually, the OP herself keeps minimising what is happening because she doesn't think he intends to control her using finances.

I think it is important to point out that it doesn't matter whether he intends to control, or whether the control is a by-product of his greed.

You are not in charge of this thread or what people are allowed to post here and your aggression is hardly likely be helpful to the OP, even if it is aimed at other posters who are not obeying what you perceive to be the party line.

Money I hope you are OK. And I hope you are starting to see that the money that is intended for you children is not in any way HIS money and that you are absolutely entitled to have it paid to your account and not to give it to him.

Who is the "you" in the last post?

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 13-Sep-13 14:13:18

Sorry, the PP. I would have thought that was obvious.

Anyway, no interest in getting into spat on Money's thread, just think NoSquirrel's peremptory bossiness is out of line.

I do not for one minute think the OP will actually get anywhere with talking to her man. She can try certainly and perhaps he may give her some small concession but it will not last long.

This is from Womens Aid re financial abuse:-

"It is often very difficult for victims to recognise abuse which is of an economic or financial nature: it may develop slowly and insidiously, so that what at the outset could be seen perhaps as protectiveness can become increasingly controlling, and leave no outlet for an independent life of any kind. For example, a potential abuser might say something along these lines:

I’ll take care of all the bills – you don’t need a bank account.

I earn enough for both of us, so you don’t need to work now: I’ll look after you.

While initially this might seem acceptable, it gives the one earning and paying the bills considerable power which could potentially be exploited in order to perpetrate abuse over the other partner.

Both victims and those supporting them may be reluctant to name this behaviour as “abuse”. Hence many women will have lived with it for many years, until the negative impact has become almost overwhelming".

I also think he will do everything in his power too to dissuade her from working or if she does work, to hand over all her earnings to him.

OP has already handed over the child benefit along with a proportion of the tax credits, what is to stop him ripping her off her earnings as well?.

stubbornstains Fri 13-Sep-13 14:26:50

OP, you've taken some baby steps in standing up to your DP over the cost of formula milk, which is great. Just keep doing a bit more of the same.

The tax credits issue seems easiest to deal with from my POV, as you don't have to do anything, IYSWIM. You can just stop giving him half your tax credits- so it would be up to him to ask why.

As for why you can't survive on £25 "any more"? You now have 2 children. Babies are expensive. But children get more expensive as they get older, so the toddler's costs are rising too....And the world and his dog know that the price of food keeps going up!

MrsMinkBernardLundy Fri 13-Sep-13 14:27:39

Op if you would find writing a budget difficult and also this poses the risk that any budget you makewill also beset in stone and will not cover emergencies or extras e.g. birthday invites, sudden growth spurts etc. so you may get more money but probably not much more and it is still not equality.

You could instead approach it by saying. i don't think the finances are fair. 25 is not enough money. don't justify it. it is not, end of. and then tell him to imagine he stayed at home and you worked how would he expect the finances to b managed. this will tell you if he has any empathy. if he has to imagine himself in your shoes he may see how unfair it is. if he cannot then it is probably deliberate.

Either way you will have made progress. and you can tell him this in an email or a text.

MaireadnotMermaid Fri 13-Sep-13 16:07:57

What if he says that I've managed on £25 a week for this long, why do I need more? Because I think that's what he will say.

Is that what happened with your parents? You have such a strong sense of what's 'his is his', what's 'mine is mine' (+ the DCs) but no sense at all of 'family income' where one or two parents work for the benefit of all. You taking some control back does not mean you are treating partner like your mother treated your father.

It's almost irrelevant whether partner is acting purely out of selfishness or control. Either way he thinks it is fine to not only spend earned income on his hobby, but also take possession of child benefit and tax credits. It's really, really not good. It's also really, really not good that you can't see this and that you are frightened or ashamed to confront the situation.

People have mentioned Women's Aid - they're great. Children's Centres are great (if you have one). GP - great if you feel you would benefit from counselling (and I suspect you would benefit from counselling).

This thread has upset me so much. I can't get OP and her little kids out of my head.

Inertia Fri 13-Sep-13 17:21:30

The simple answer is that you are not managing.

Your children are going without the clothes they need, they are missing out on activities that as a family you could afford, they have missed baby sessions because your partner took the last pound you had put by. You have no clothes to fit.

He tells you that you have to pay for the children's needs, yet takes the money intended for that. I'm not one to go on about taxpayers funding lifestyles , but the CB and TC are meant to enable you to provide food, clothes, shoes and living costs for your children. Nobody begrudges your children that money apart from their own father, who would prefer to spend it on remote control helicopters or whatever.

And the fact that you don't want to consider this financial abuse doesn't stop it being financial abuse.

LisaMedicus Fri 13-Sep-13 17:27:11

The headlines are full of things like food inflation. It was never possible long term and now things are going up it is just not tenable. He can research food inflation if he wants.

It's not that though. My DH loved spoiling our ds. He liked getting him little treats, getting me little treats. He loved seeing ds in nice clothes. Your partner is taking the food out of the mouths of your children

MariaLuna Fri 13-Sep-13 17:35:51

OP, you feel bad asking your partner for a more equal share in the finances but you are actually letting your own family - mother, grandad - subsidise you financially. (hair cut, DC's clothes, phone credit).

So, by extension they are also helping pay for his hobby...

Please find your inner strength to fight for you and your DCs. You owe it to yourself and them.

Inertia Fri 13-Sep-13 17:50:44

Everybody's paying for his hobby Maria. Most of all his children.

Money, you don't need to be embarrassed. Your partner, on the other hand, should feel totally bloody ashamed that his children and their mother are going without so subsidise his hobby. His behaviour is a disgrace, and I really do wish you the strength to stand up to this.

If you went to work, it'd cost him much more than the child benefit and tax credits to fund childcare places. And if you left him he'd still be paying more than he is now via CSA payments.

LayMeDown Fri 13-Sep-13 20:52:58

Do you not see OP, in your desperation not to be like your mum, you have instead married her? You are your Dad. You know the relationship model is not healthy. You have experience of it as a child and look where it led you. So along with a deprived childhood caused by their fathers greed, you will pass on an horrific attitude to money, control and relationships to the next generation. Is this what you want?

MoneyMug Sat 14-Sep-13 08:38:30

I know this is going to sound silly but today, for the first time in ages, I actually woke up feeling positive for the future. blush

I was doing some thinking last night and I feel so much confident about all this. I've got quite alot of money in my account (I get tax credits weekly but save up DPs half and give it to him at the end of the month) so I'm going to buy the DC a little treat each at the weekend. smile

I want to say thank you to all of you. Seriously you can't know how much you've helped me. I know I've still got a long way to go until things are 'normal' but this is definitely a start.

I know I would be giving my DC a bad example of how relationships should be but at least I'm trying to change things. Luckily they are too young to notice yet.

I'm still not convinced I'm being financially abused but I do see I'm being treated badly now. I'm really angry at myself. I've decided that if DP doesn't agree to the changes or doesn't get over the changes very quickly, I will think about leaving him.

Did someone ask me about my anxiety? That wasn't because of DP. It just started after DC1 was born. I had PND and it just started with that. The PND has (mainly) Gone but the anxiety stayed.

I rang TC yesterday and told them about DC2 being born. I'm glad that's sorted now.

Thank again to everyone. I'll always be grateful to you. smileblush

stubbornstains Sat 14-Sep-13 08:40:10

Be sure to buy yourself a little treat too! smile

ExitPursuedByADragon Sat 14-Sep-13 08:46:33

Go Girl smile

clam Sat 14-Sep-13 08:50:46

Well done.
Just keep remembering that he doesn't qualify for "half of the TC" or the CB. The children qualify for all of it.

gamerchick Sat 14-Sep-13 08:56:41

Brilliant to hear.

FWIW it may not be abuse.. He just may be used to mine and yours money and needs to realise the our money thing. Either way you'll find out soon enough. I'm glad you've posted this thread, now you've talked about it it won't allow itself to stay silent.

Good luck and enjoy treating yourself.

NandH Sat 14-Sep-13 09:04:32

so glad to have read your last post smile well done you!

Inertia Sat 14-Sep-13 09:41:48

Really glad to see that you are ready to tackle this smile

JoinYourPlayfellows Sat 14-Sep-13 10:46:19

That's the spirit, Money smile

Next job - have the child benefit paid into your account.

You don't need his agreement to do this. Just do it.

cakehappy Sat 14-Sep-13 11:20:13

I feel sick for you OP, you're living a very difficult life. Child benefit is yours, take it. Face up to the reality that you need to talk to your partner about this to relieve the anger/anxiety/ fear you feel about this situation, you'll feel so much better. I'd put a lot of money on your anxiety being linked to this. Worry about yourself and your needs first over his so you can take good care of yourself and babies, your partner can take care of himself. You sound like an excellent mum and a real sweetiesmile

springydafty Sat 14-Sep-13 11:43:06

I'm sorry to hear it's you you are angry with. You've got that wrong, got the wrong person to be angry with, imo.

It sounds to me that you are so horrified by your grabby mother that you have vowed you will never be like her. Hence a powerful inability to ask for any money or to insist it is yours, to spend how you choose.

However, you don't have to ask. You don't have to lay out to your partner why you need the money. It is yours, because you are in charge of bringing up the children.

Lovely, I hate to think of you slaving away with his ebay parcels... THEN HE GETS ALL THE PROFIT. That's mad, can you see? He keeps all that profit to himself and won't share it with you. Did he know that the £1 he took for change was essential to you that day? It's sounds like you're being far too forgiving and understanding. My guess is he knows exactly what he is doing. I'm sorry OP.

You say the anxiety started when you had your first dc. But that was when you moved in with your partner. I had PND when I was with my ex and it was a long time before I realised it wasn't post-natal depression, it was controlling relationship depression. My guess is that if he was out of the picture your anxiety would vanish. That's a big thing to say but I stand by it.

I do appreciate your intense fear of standing up for yourself. Which suggests you have been beaten down before, probably when you were a child. I really do appreciate that fear, I have had it myself (which was why I ended up with someone controlling). Have a look at the Freedom Programme and get on it - it really helps to open your eyes, and you also meet other women in a similar position. I have linked you to the 'finding a meeting' page, please find out where there is one near you.

You may be shocked at the idea that what you are experiencing is domestic abuse - please don't be, it happens all the time. You don't have to be hit to be a victim of domestic abuse, it happens in a million different ways. Having severely restricted choices and anxiety because of not enough money is one way, there are many others. The Freedom Programme shows how control can exist in relationships, whether the perpetrator is aware they are doing it or not. It is a kindly, supportive group. Please give it a try.

OP what you are going through has upset me. It is hard to read. Well done for beginning to step out xx

springydafty Sat 14-Sep-13 11:48:25

actually, have a bunch of flowers for bravery

Make sure you buy yourself some flowers this weekend... or at least something nice FOR YOU smile

MrsMinkBernardLundy Sat 14-Sep-13 11:52:14

Well done OP. decoding others saying get yourself a treat too! You need to get used to thinking you deserve it. you have not long dice given birth and are looking after a baby. you deserve it!

MrsMinkBernardLundy Sat 14-Sep-13 11:52:40

Since not dice.

MangoTiramisu Sat 14-Sep-13 11:58:34

Someone may come along and disagree with me but....
Look MoneyMug, if you agreed to be a SAHM and look after YOUR (yours and his) kids for reasons agreed by both of you e.g. it's too expensive for childcare, we want to be there for young children, DH works long hours and can't share childcare and chores etc. etc. then it is only fair that you have access to all the money as a family account without blowing it all on stuff of course. That is how it works in my family. I am a SAHM, my DH travels overseas every week, we live abroad and my family are 7,000 miles away so I stay home and do everything house, babies etc. If he had a problem with me spending a bit of cash on myself or my kids were deprived due to his selfishness I would go back to work FT straight away and he could do 50% of everything. I don't think that would go down well.
Your DH needs to have it spelled out for him.

I feel really sorry for you, and I hope you get it sorted. This is where you go to change the account CB is paid into: here

Also, I think you will get more Child Benefit now you have a new baby, so it is worth talking to them too, if you have not done so already.

TeaJunky Sat 14-Sep-13 13:37:47

Money, WELL DONE! smile

It is excellent news hearing about your positivity this morning - I feel so happy for you and it's really made my day!
We're all here to support you along the path to Change...
Don't look back now...get them bank details changed to YOUR account ASAP

claretandamberforever Sat 14-Sep-13 14:04:46

Awh, it made me feel sad to read this post. I hope you can come to an agreement which benefits you and your children. Children get more expensive the older they get! Don't let yourself get brow-beaten, and if he sulks or whatever, he's doing it to manipulate you as he's not used to the new assertive you. Just remember why you are doing it xxx

Well done, Moneymug. Now keep building on your new-found confidence to get this situation changed once and for all. Start first thing on Monday by getting the Child Benefit changed to your account. You'll feel positively rich once you start getting this, because you WILL be rich compared to what you've been struggling on for all this time.

Buy yourself something nice and I hope you and DC have a lovely weekend.

NoSquirrels Sun 15-Sep-13 14:19:23

Really pleased to hear you're feeling good about changing things for the better, Money. You have to start somewhere, and a major thing for you to overcome is believing that things need to change, so flowers for you.

You have such a small baby, you need to be kind to yourself, as well as taking steps to fix things. Good luck.

How are things going?

PedantMarina Tue 17-Sep-13 12:02:33

Glad to hear your update. I hope the next stage of this goes well.

Elizabeth22 Tue 17-Sep-13 13:07:33

Would it be helpful if someone drafted an email for you?

MoneyMug Fri 20-Sep-13 14:38:51

The updated TC letter came today so I'm hoping that will start up the conversation tonight and I'll be able to tell him I'm not giving him any more money.

I feel so rich. I literally don't think I could spend this much if I tried! While I was waiting to hear from TC, I went on the Internet and put loads of clothes in my 'basket' ready to click PAY for the DC smile I'll be able to get them now. DD needs a coat and wellies which I can now get too. It's such a relief not having to worry about how I'm going to afford these things. Thank you so much for all your help!

If the letter doesn't start up the conversation, help with an email would be great, thank you.

whatdoesittake48 Fri 20-Sep-13 15:41:44

You need to be ready for when he kicks off about you keeping your money...

I suggest that you keep the receipts for the clothes you have needed to buy, the food you buy and anything else which is essential and show them to him. it proves to him what is needed and that the kids are more expensive than he realises.

You should also put together a little budget of your weekly expenses and show it to him. Together you may be able to think through exactly what is needed and when. then decide on a fair way to split all of the incoming money (including his wage) to allow treats, days out and his hobby.

if it is written down in black and white he can't suggest that you are living the high life. he will be able to see that you are literally going without. he may even feel some shame...

if he has ideas about how to save money - then he can try to discuss it. but i bet you know every trick in the book already!

whatdoesittake48 Fri 20-Sep-13 15:43:58

he really needs to be willing to make this work - simply because it is upsetting and distressing for you. he should want you to be happy as the mother of his children.

if he refuses to listen or comes up with excuses you need to rethink. it then goes from being ignorant to being abusive.

MoneyMug Fri 20-Sep-13 15:53:33

He has to be willing to make this work or I will be leaving him. I mean that because its just not fair. It's not like I'm wanting to buy designer clothes and fritter money away. I want to be able to buy essential nappies and clothes for our children.

cosydressinggown Fri 20-Sep-13 21:25:00

Yes - the child benefit and tax credits are for the kids, not for you or him. Make sure that you get them BOTH.

The remaining money (i.e. his salary) is for the family - be that rent, shopping, bills, haircuts (for both of you), hobbies (for both of you), days out and so on.

Childcare around here costs £1000 per month per child, so that is the equivalent of what he 'owes' you and what he would have to pay out if you weren't doing childcare. Remember that. Raise it. And if he says that you are 'lucky' again, say that it's not 'luck', it's a decision that you are making to be without a job in order to save you both this money, but that you think that the resulting lack of income for you should be reflected in the household budget.

FWIW I think you should lovely - very young, and trying your best.

cosydressinggown Fri 20-Sep-13 21:25:36

*sound lovely, that should say!

springyduffy Fri 20-Sep-13 22:47:20

oh well done for doing this OP! Did you get something for yourself? yy TC are for the kids but what are you wearing/how is your hair when you're out with the kids?

He may reacte very badly, irrationally, when it comes to light what you have done. Be prepared for that. I hope not, of course, and that this is an opportunity for him to see that he has been shockingly unreasonable; has, effectively, kept you in dire poverty - when there was absolutely no need sad

saggyhairyarse Fri 20-Sep-13 23:08:31

I say this with kindness but you need to man up.

I have no idea how he can think you can manage on £25 a week even if he is paying all the bills and groceries etc. £25 a week does not go far at all. But, some men wouldn't have a clue unless you spell it out to them, or would choose to not acknowledge it because they are fine (thank you very much) or may be have outdated views that what they earn is theirs.

You are one unit and his income and tax and child benefit are to pay for the 4 of you. Most married couples would have a joint account that wages were paid into and bills came out of, a savings account and then two single accounts with half of an agreed surplus income each to spend on whatever.

You need to sit down and sort this out, hopefully he will be mortified when he realises what an unthinking fool he has been and you wont have to LTB because actually he is just an arse.

springyduffy Fri 20-Sep-13 23:24:45

with all due respect I don't think you get the complexity of this situation hairy.

fyi she has just 'manned' up. What she has done is awesome - the first step is the hardest and she's done it. Don't knock her down.

EricNorthmansFangbanger Sat 21-Sep-13 10:46:46

I have only just found this thread. I'm glad your are going to insist on the tax credits and child benefit being in your account - just as it should be.

I honestly don't know how you have managed all this time on so little and it makes me angry and sad how your partner has been. If he reacts negatively to you receiving all of the money, that is rightfully yours for your children, please do not stay with him. I hope he sees the error of his ways. How he has been able to spend (read waste) so much on his hobby whilst you've had nothing..... sad

MoneyMug Mon 23-Sep-13 16:56:26

Well DP said I could have the tax credits. he was a bit quiet when I told him but he did agree so i was quite pleased.

He wanted to buy a new game at the weekend so we went into town. I started buying clothes ect for the DC from a few different shops. I think I spent about £50 altogether. I know that's alot, but it was all stuff that they needed. Every time I pick something up, he commented on it. For example
'look who's turned into a big spender'
'you're buying loads today'
'how much money have you got!'

even though I'd told him how much I'd got. It made me feel really uncomfortable and makes me feel guilty. He also mentioned that the rent was going out that week which he would never normally say to me. I had to read through this thread again as I was starting to doubt myself.

He wanted to buy a new game at the weekend

How much did his game cost?

Great that he's agreed to you keeping the tax credits, but nothing has changed. He still thinks he's entitled to spend whatever he wants on shit for him and begrudges you spending the children's money on clothes for them.

By the way, I guarantee he will make a fuss about not being able to cover the rent and guilt you I to handing over money.

He is begrudging his own children clothes, while he buys games.

That tells you everything you need to know about this man.

onefewernow Mon 23-Sep-13 19:15:46

Moneymug, you are doing well but keep going. You may well find he won't give up without a fight, and he comes back to guilt trip you with that rent discussion.

He must surely know that child benefit is paid for children's expenses .
You clearly both have issues with money- you in asking for it, and him in being "tight".

He is not a little boy any more- having a family is not about spending all the spare on yourself and sod everyone else.

I think it might be helpful to you to mention your anxiety issues to your GP. Some counselling may help you with that. Lots of people have it, and usually wish they had started sooner.

Finally can I say my sister was in a marriage for 25 years where he controlled the money, and used it to control her too. It got way worse over the years, and extended to other areas. She says now she can't believe that she allowed herself to put up with it, and it was some time after before she was able to stop herself continuing what he had done to her.

These things which don't get sorted from our childhoods for so long can cause such damage bit by bit, without us noticing. Don't let that happen to you.

PedantMarina Mon 23-Sep-13 23:51:51

I am not heartened by this latest update, OP. Youvedone well, but he hasn't.

Still not Becca saying LTB, but do step it up a bit. Next time he even mentions a new game or owt, mention the rent, or DCs winter coat or shoes. Ask him peeringly "how much did THAT cost?!?". Turn it round. See how he likes it.

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 23-Sep-13 23:56:20

Is he still stealing the children's Child Benefit to pay for his expensive hobby?

springybuffy Mon 23-Sep-13 23:57:58

DP said I could have the tax credits
Why does he get to make the decision, yay or nay, about what happens to the money? Is he your dad?

He wanted to buy a new game
Has he been doing that all along - buying games when you and the children have been living in absolute poverty? I find it hard to contain myself if so angry

I spent about £50 altogether. I know that's alot
That's not a lot! £500 would be 'a lot' but not £50, which is not much - especially as they've had nothing for so long.

even though I'd told him how much I'd got
Please don't tell him how much you've got. He knows what you've got - he's been spending it on games and ebay stuff angry

It made me feel really uncomfortable and makes me feel guilty
That's his plan sad

He also mentioned that the rent was going out that week which he would never normally say to me
drip drip. He'll make you pay for going against him sad

I'm sorry Money - this man is abusing you financially. sad angry

HansieMom Tue 24-Sep-13 02:05:57

When he mentioned the rent going out, you could have said, maybe you should not get the game then.

VoiceofRaisin Tue 24-Sep-13 09:41:43

Good advice from all. We know it's easier said than done, but try to take some of it smile. You have made a great start.

Inertia Tue 24-Sep-13 13:07:37

And I bet the game wasn't far short of £50.

You didn't spend a lot , and it was all essentials for the children. If money is tight and rent is due then he shouldn't be buying games.

MoneyMug Tue 24-Sep-13 13:29:49

I hadn't thought of it like that. The rent/game thing. And yes it was nearly £50! I'm glad I started this thread. When I start to doubt myself, o come back and read it again.

He did buy DD some shoes for the first time ever though. I should have mentioned that before. So there are some improvements.

TeaJunky Tue 24-Sep-13 13:34:55

I was just going to say, I'll bet that game wasn't cheap!

I don't know how you put up with him, money hmm I would have started hating him a long, long time ago.

stowsettler Tue 24-Sep-13 13:45:27

Ohhhh I really don't like the way this is going. Obviously Money, you're doing really well by standing up to him and I'm not trying to patronise you - you really have done incredibly well because you're standing up to an abuser.

I agree with others who say that it doesn't matter whether he realises what he's doing - the fact remains that his selfishness is taking food from your DC's mouths and clothes from their backs. It really is as simple as that.

I suppose it may be possible to get what you're entitled to from him - and just for the record this is all the tax credits, all the child benefit and at least three quarters of what's left over from what he earns after bills and rent. But I seriously doubt it and you may find yourself battling for every poxy penny for the rest of your life.

Think VERY hard about whether this is what you want for yourself and your children. And good luck - you're doing an incredible job in the circumstances.

showtunesgirl Tue 24-Sep-13 17:28:39

This is worse than I thought it was.

OP, you should not be feeling guilty for buying things for your children. It's not some big favour he's doing you here, giving you money for you to spend on your children should be the NORM and NOT a special treat!!!

MoneyMug Tue 24-Sep-13 17:42:21

I know I shouldn't feel guilty. I need to change that. I am getting there, slowly.

Busybusybust Tue 24-Sep-13 17:56:08

Money, you sound so lovely - you and you DCs deserve so much more than this abusive idiot.

HansieMom Tue 24-Sep-13 23:23:24

I just wanted to say that for your small children, thrift shops are great! If I were you, I would want to go by myself, not have him hanging over your shoulder.

Others have stressed that you should get ALL the child benefit and child tax credit. I'm not in England, but that's what those are for, not him taking part of it to buy stupid games.

Didactylos Wed 25-Sep-13 00:26:53

MoneyMug - just an idea but maybe take the 'rent thing' as an opportunity and ask him to discuss household budget/bills/outgoings overall as a lead in to sorting things out. You probably should know how much is being spent eg rent, bills etc and about what dates they come out - because you are a partner, an equal adult sharing in all these things, it will help you both budget over the weeks/months, and hopefully by normalising the issue lessen your anxiety and make it easier to discuss things in future. (And very cynically, if he does start messing about eg 'struggling' to prioritise the rent when he can afford to buy computer games you will have a handle on it and know when things are due/how much they cost)

but the big thing is to get through the mine/thine separation of finances and responsibilities hes got in his head. Whether its deliberate or not hes putting you under stress and depriving you and his children in this situation. Hope you stay positive, and good luck, keep posting.

MoneyMug Tue 22-Oct-13 09:00:07

Sorry to come back to this thread and thank you for all the help you've already given me, but I've kind of realised how many problems we actually have in our relationship.

I think I'm going to leave him. I don't have anywhere to go, or anyone to turn to, so I need to stay until I've saved enough money. Also (I know this makes me sound like a manipulative bitch) DP agreed to let me change the DC surname to double barrelled, so I want that done before I leave too.

Can anyone give me any advice? Would I even be able to rent anywhere without a job?

BrunelsBigHat Tue 22-Oct-13 09:17:17

Oh money, you are so NOT a manipulative bitch.

Good on you for recognising the situation you are in.

I'm not very knowledgable on this, olgaga I think she is called does a superb link to every bit of advice you will ever need. I'll try to look for it.

In the meantime women's Aid and CAB are the ones that spring to mind first.

Stay strong.

I am glad that you have come to a realisation re him that you yourself needed to make and in your own time.

Womens Aid can and will help you here with making plans to leave.
I would talk to them if you have not already done so.

It may take some considerable time (perhaps even years) for you to save enough money to leave. This is not really an option given your circumstances as they have been, in the meantime you and by turn the children are still being financially controlled by him. You patently do not want them growing up thinking such behaviour is at all normal.

I would consider seeking legal advice re the name changes. I ask this as I think changes can only be made if the child is under 1 year of age; I will stand corrected on that if this is not the case.

BrunelsBigHat Tue 22-Oct-13 09:20:57

Here it is

Not all of this will apply to you OP but a lot will. In the general advice links you will find particular links relating to Scotland. The Resolution (family lawyer) link allows you to search by your area. Good luck.

Relationship Breakdown and Divorce – Advice and Links


Read everything you can get your hands on. Get familiar with the language of family law and procedure and try to get an understanding of your rights BEFORE you see a solicitor. Get word of mouth recommendations for family lawyers in your area if possible. If you have children at school, ask mums you are friendly with if they know of anyone who can make a recommendation in your area. These days there are few people who don’t know of anyone who has been through a divorce or separation – there’s a lot of knowledge and support out there!

If there are children involved, their interests will always come first. It is the children’s right to maintain a meaningful relationship with the non-resident parent (NRP) – not the other way around. Children are not possessions to be “fairly” divided between separating parents. Parents have no rights, only responsibilities. A divorce will not be granted where children are involved unless there are agreed arrangements for finance, and care of the children (“Statement of Arrangements for Children”). It is obviously quicker and cheaper if this can be agreed but if there is no agreement, the Court will make an Order (“Residence and Contact” regarding children, “Financial Order” or “Ancillary Relief” in the case of Finance)

Many family lawyers will offer the first half hour consultation free. Make use of this. Don’t just stick with the first lawyer you find – shop around and find someone you feel comfortable with. You may be in for a long haul, so it helps if you can find a solicitor you’re happy with.

If you can’t find any local recommendations, always see a solicitor who specialises in Family Law. You can search by area here:

You can also find family law solicitors here:

Check your eligibility for Legal Aid here:

Some family law solicitors publish online feedback from clients – Google solicitors to see if any recommendations or feedback exists.


You will be encouraged to attend mediation. If there has been violence or emotional abuse, discuss this with your solicitor first. Always get legal advice, or at the very least make sure you are aware of your legal rights, before you begin mediation.

Married or Living Together?

This is a key question. If you are married, generally speaking you have greater protection when a relationship breaks down.

Legal Issues around marriage/cohabitation and relationship breakdown are explained here:

DirectGov advice on divorce, separation and relationship breakdown:

Legal Rights are further explained here:

I found these guides from law firms quite informative and easy to read – there are others of course:


Before you see a family law solicitor, get hold of every single piece of financial information you can, and take copies. Wage slips, P60s, tax returns, employment contracts, pensions and other statements – savings, current account and mortgages, deeds, rental leases, utility bills, council tax bills, credit statements. Are there joint assets such as a home, pensions, savings, shares?

Handy tax credits calculator:

Handy 5 Minute benefit check, tax and housing benefit calculators:

Child Maintenance Calculator:

Further advice and support
(Re Shelter, if you are not in England follow the link at the top)

It won't all be relevant, hope there's something useful in there. Thanks olgaga for all that.

BrunelsBigHat Tue 22-Oct-13 09:22:02

Attila, I assumed she meant by deed poll? In which case there's no age limit?

Nottalotta Tue 22-Oct-13 09:28:45

I read your post originally and am so glad you have got to this stage in your thinking. I can't offr much adbice other than to look at the benefits calculator website 'turn2us' as this covers everything in one go.

Also, go to your local council housing department. They may have a 'homeless prevention fund' which they can use to help you rent somewhere privately. They can loan/grant money for a deposit etc.

Good luck.

MoneyMug Wed 23-Oct-13 20:06:17

We are going to change their names by deed poll. One of the biggest mistakes I ever made was to let myself be bullied into giving the DC, DPs name.

Thank you for those links. They've been really helpful. I'm still reading through them all.

Ursula8 Wed 23-Oct-13 21:28:39

Moneymug I am so pleased you have found the courage to make changes in your life and to improve the situation for yourself and your DC.
However, I cannot get my head round the fact that you think your "biggest mistake" is the relatively minor matter of whether your DC names are double barrelled or not.
Please just investigate your options and get the hell out of there.
I wish you luck.

ImperialFucker Wed 23-Oct-13 21:56:20

I remember you! I worried about you quite a lot, tbh; it was such a clear case of financial abuse.

I'm so glad you've decided to leave, but I just can't see how you're going to afford to save up with the little money you have.

Could you go back to your mum's? Do you have a friend you could stay with?

mammadiggingdeep Wed 23-Oct-13 22:04:25

I remember your thread. I remember reading your origami post and feeling so sad for you...I felt miserable just reading it.

Good luck op. sending you good vibes for the next chapter. Hang on in there x

mammadiggingdeep Wed 23-Oct-13 22:06:45

Have just had a thought. Pm'd you x

Just a thought because like you I was bullied into putting dp's name as ds's surname, it's a good idea to go double barrelled as when you have,you can if you want, just use your own and then you have the choice.

I think from your post it is clear he has no respect for you, you are a good mum and you deserve that respect

Good luck, although I'm not sure you need it ! You seem to be flying along smile

Changing names is important, it lasts for the whole of the dc's life and he will not sign the form if they aren't together I'm guessing, it is quick to do.

Believe me it's important that my ds has my name, especially if you go on holiday

OP, the change in outlook in your posts is amazing - you've come so far. Keep going: we're all behind you.

FiftyShadesofGreyMatter Sun 27-Oct-13 07:29:39

Make sure that your surname is the first part of the double-barrel, then you can always "drop" his name later if you want to.

Mojavewonderer Sun 27-Oct-13 07:47:53

Op you are a family and you should be sharing all the money that comes into the house!! Sit your partner down and tell him you need more money and that you and the kids are going without when he should be providing for you all. Jeez op I don't mean to be unkind but you really need to sort your life out.

Walkacrossthesand Sun 27-Oct-13 07:58:25

OP, please ignore mojave who has clearly read your OP only, not the nearly 300 posts which followed it before your most welcome update. Well done for summoning up the courage and determination to leave - your 'D'P is likely to try and prevent this, so keep schtum and say safe.

Walkacrossthesand Sun 27-Oct-13 07:58:53


HotDogSlaughter Sun 27-Oct-13 12:13:29

Sending you positive vibes op. Please update us. I really am rooting for you!

antlerqueen Mon 28-Oct-13 20:30:01

how kind of you mojave hmm

OP, you sound like a different person than the one in the beginning of this thread. I wish you all the best smile

Also, just wanted to possibly contradict this sentence (too young to notice)

I know I would be giving my DC a bad example of how relationships should be but at least I'm trying to change things. Luckily they are too young to notice yet.

with a slightly amusing anecdote i saw told some time ago, 1 minute into this video

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