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To say we can’t afford to visit DF’s family at Christmas

(294 Posts)
Ambivalence Thu 06-Dec-12 14:48:19

My DF ( fiancé) is pretty hopeless with money and so I have been nagging him for ages to prepare a list of his incomings/ outgoings so that we can prepare a joint budget. I have also been nagging him to check his finances before committing to things, rather than just spending the money and asking me to bail him out. He is not good at living within his means, which I realise is unlikely to ever change as he is 46!

He has now just texted me with the conclusion that we should not go to Holland for Christmas as it would be cheaper to stay at home ( he doesn’t get paid time off anyway).

I have texted back to say we will discuss it tonight. I feel really mean to agree with him, and let him spend Christmas without his family and friends but it would be a lesson to him about working out what you can afford before making plans ( we just went to Holland a week ago for his birthday – he booked the wrong flights and so lost 2 days wages as a result, and spent £200 hosting a party in a bar for his friend).

I am a bit annoyed with him about money anyway as he has been in a low paid call centre (£9/ hour) job since he moved to London in the spring – despite promising to look for something in his field and at a professional salary comparable to the job he left ( her hasn’t put much effort into this), and he is disorganised about giving me money towards the bills ( no rent as I pay the mortgage on my flat) and I have been asking him for months to set up a weekly standing order/ direct debit to me, as he is paid weekly and his budgeting skills are poor.

I feel really mean saying we can’t afford to go to see his family, but in the end I think this might be a lesson learned for him. He never saves anything for a rainy day. I have just had to spend my rainy day fund on some unexpected building work and so don’t have funds to bail him out. Should I agree with him we can’t afford the trip at Christmas or be kind and pay for it?

TheLightPassenger Thu 06-Dec-12 16:55:04

Agree with the others, but I don't see what's wrong with a partner doing a £9 per hour job if they are paying a fair share of the food/bills etc.

Ambivalence Thu 06-Dec-12 16:56:10

Mrs Pratchett

We split up over these issues 8 years ago, but in the last 8 years he has been my touchstone and I have compared every other man to him. Since we got back together last year, we have been going to relate, and I have some separate sessions with the relate counsellor – her view is that given I want this relationship to work, I need to accept he is no good at financial management and take over this (to the point of setting a budget and giving us” both pocket money”.

I am trying to make a stand about the poor money management and planning now – I am trying to draw a line in the sand, if you have any suggestions how I can do this, in addition to not bailing him out, I would really like to hear them and I will try them out.

expatinscotland Thu 06-Dec-12 16:58:28


Good grief!

I'm going to have to walk away from this one, way too melodramatic and silly for me.

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 16:59:29

But he still has not given you the financial info. So yet can't do what the counselor said. Guessing ha has debts, hosting £200 parties on £9 per hour

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 06-Dec-12 17:02:53

Are you a similar age to him, Ambivalence. I will say that you sound younger. Love of my life and touchstone are quite teenage phrases.

My lines in the sand would be, complete financial disclosure, you don't pay his bills or debt, he contributes fairly to the household, if you take over the budgeting he does a commensurate amount of housework to balance this time. Those would be mine. Oh, and don't moan about your shit job if you are unwilling to change it. If that wasn't working, I'd LTB.

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 17:03:02

Financially incontinent...I would seriously step away

TheLightPassenger Thu 06-Dec-12 17:04:15

But would he be willing to let you manage the money, including his wages? or does he expect all his wages to be used for luxuries for him? If you think that he has such marvellous qualities that they outweigh him making any attempt to pay a fair share then I guess that's your look out. But make sure you don't run up any debts/credit cards in your name.

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 17:06:48

He isn't letting her manage the money she is "nagging" him to let her but he isn't playing ball despite counselor advice.

Can't see this changing!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 06-Dec-12 17:07:48

Yes I remember now - aren't you planning to have a baby with this guy? Was there some issue about how the wedding was going to be paid for as well?

OP seriously - no-one can advise you as long as you are prepared to let this guy take the piss out of you. Clearly you are desperate to be with him, he knows that and therefore has no impetus to change.

Ambivalence Thu 06-Dec-12 17:08:47

The point is the £9/ hour job does not allow him to contribute equally to the finances. Particularly in zone 1 of London. I earn 3 times that amount, but as I am paying all almost all the bills, the mortgage, etc I have less of a disposable income. I have asked him to pay half the regular bills ( gas, elec, council tax etc) which works out as £400/ month –which is a VERY low estimate as it isn’t including a lot of things. He has trouble covering that in time – he could not manage to pay half our real costs of living. Given he takes home £300 a week, and pays £50 for a travel card and then half the shopping bill, I think a £100 a week contribution is more than fair – his disposable income is probably more than mine...(certainly he spends more on himself than I do)

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 06-Dec-12 17:10:55

"He has trouble covering that in time – he could not manage to pay half our real costs of living." Do you see that you are making excuses for him and minimising? He CHOSE not to prioritise this, he DECIDED to party not pay the bills.

verlainechasedrimbauds Thu 06-Dec-12 17:11:16

The flight to Holland is a bit of a red herring isn't it? He's said he can't afford it so you should be thinking "good, at last he is getting the message".

Or is it that you think he has said this knowing that you will feel guilty and sorry for him and therefore pay for you both to go?

I'm sorry if this seems harsh and critical, but your replies are a bit exasperating! If you really, honestly believe that your future is with this fellow and you are willing to accept him, warts and all then you need to work really, really hard at making yourself much tougher and stop worrying about upsetting people. There is no way on earth you will both survive otherwise.

Also, differences in the way couples manage money are a very common reason for relationships to founder. Believe me, it's very tough - even when you love someone a lot.

TheLightPassenger Thu 06-Dec-12 17:13:33

but if he earns £300 per week, he could afford to give you £100 per week if he wanted to. Even if he earns more, if he is stingy with his own money, the base problem still remains, that he's not bothered about paying a fair share of the bills.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 06-Dec-12 17:13:50

If his disposable income is more than yours, then he should contribute more.

honeytea Thu 06-Dec-12 17:14:02

If I were you and I could afford it and I wanted to go I'd pay for both of us.

I remember your thread about wanting to TTC but him being a bit useless with money, I think if you are going along the lines of accepting his useless budgeting as a sort of exchange for him moving to the UK then you should just except (with gritted teeth) this mistake and next year get him to book and pay for the tickets in march.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 06-Dec-12 17:15:07

Also - how can you bear to be with a man who would rather play the generous host in front of his friends, than give his future WIFE a fair share towards joint living expenses?

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 17:17:50

Why haven't you got the same amount of disposal income? You are supposed to be giving him pocket money, you earn more than him and he has more spending money than you...get real!

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 17:20:48

Who paid the £200 bar bill at the party

Ambivalence Thu 06-Dec-12 17:20:50

Yes,I am desperate to be with him, which he knows, so he has no impertus to change. The only leverage I have is to insist on a weekly contribution of £100 for the bills and let him have to miss out if he can’t afford things.
He has no money to go to his work christmas drinks tomorrow so he is not going. I think he is coming to the realisation that I am not going to bail him out.
He doesn;t have any debts, he has always lived very hand to mouth though,so no savings either – money runs through his fingers like water.
Yes, I posted about how our wedding is being paid for – it is being paid for by my mother, I am covering the alchol and flowers. He is not contributing anything. The deal was that he would be paying for the honeymoon. He hasn’t saved a penny towards it, and when I have challenged him on this, the response is “ I only earn £9/ hour so what am I supposed to save it from”.
His plan is to ask his mother to pay for it ( both he and his brother thinkthis is the solution to their financial problems – his brother’s wife is the breadwinner too so DF thinks this is a normal state of affairs.
He seems to be realising he needs a better paid job ( only has taken 9 months of nagging!)

i am sorry if my responses are exasperating I don't mean to be. I am finding all your comments really useful.

lucidlady Thu 06-Dec-12 17:22:59

He's a waster. Are you sure you want to have a child with this man?

givemeaclue Thu 06-Dec-12 17:25:28

Do not marry him. He cannot be bothered to pay a penny to you wedding. Tells you all you need to know.

How old are you?

Ambivalence Thu 06-Dec-12 17:25:29

I am 35.

I am ashamed to say that as he didn’t have the £200 (240 Euros) to pay the bar bill at the party, I paid it, and as i was a bit tipsy at the time I said it could be his birthday present from me! After sobering up, I changed my mind ( and I know it is not good to go back on your word) and said that it was his party and he had to pay for it, and I would buy him a “ proper” ( and much cheaper) present. He hasn’t given me this money yet ( 2 weeks later), but I have told him I need it by Saturday.

I really regret paying the bar bill – I have been brought up in a very different (Indian) culture where it is very important not to lose face in front of other people, and so couldn’t face up to him scrabbling around asking the guests to lend him money.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 06-Dec-12 17:26:22

I genuinely cannot understand how you can have any respect for him.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 06-Dec-12 17:27:14


Dear God. What an absolute wanker.

ENormaSnob Thu 06-Dec-12 17:27:15

Fgs he is pathetic.

Wake up.

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