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To expect DH pay towards household bills?!

(397 Posts)
glossyflower Tue 20-Aug-13 08:45:52

I'm feeling rather cross.
When me and now DH moved in together, he paid £300 a month to me, as the house we live in I own, so all bills are in my name (and still are).
Then he decided he wanted to do an MA which I fully supported him doing. After a while he couldn't afford the rent so I was fine with it as he was working towards something.
Since the course is now long over, we have married and have a 4 month old baby.
I work full time but currently on maternity. I can't afford to take the full year off so I'm going back when DD is 6 months old.
DH was working in a crappy wage job but recently got a better office based job for slightly more salary.
Recently I have said to him I need some money again each month, £300. Initially he agreed. Now he's saying he needs to wait this month as he's only just started the better paid job.
This morning I said, should I go back to work full time? He knows full well I don't want to go back full time - I do three 12hr shifts a week and ideally would love to have just 2 shifts.
He turned round and said I should be going back full time as we can't afford otherwise. I said I could afford it if he contributed more towards the bills and he needs to give me £300 per month again. He then said he couldn't afford it as he spends so much on our food shopping.
BTW £300 per month is no where near even half the bills so I am being generous.
I am the main earner, and he mostly buys our food.
I can afford to pay the bills but by the end of the month I am struggling and I have no money to do anything for myself. I often can't afford to put diesel in my car, I drive and he doesn't. A couple of weeks ago he had some time off and wanted us to go to the Peak District, 2.5 hours away. I told him only if he could pay the fuel as I had literally no money, I went to put £40 in but then asked if I should put £50 in, he told me he couldn't afford the extra tenner. In fact I struggled a couple of weeks ago to find £10 to get my hair cut whilst DH has several gigs he's going to in a couple of months time and goes out on camping/climbing trips with his friend.
I've never understood with married people, the my money and your money thing, it should be wholly joint, I have said I would like a joint bank account and he's agreed but it never happens.
Recently I told him I wanted to sit down together and look at both our finances closely to see how much spare money we should have. I couldn't get him to sit with me, and all I got was vague answers like this loan is approx this much, I don't know exactly.
From this I gauged that £300 would be fair to him and he'd still have spare money for himself each month. This would also mean I could have spare money for myself.
I feel like a total doormat.

primroseyellow Tue 20-Aug-13 10:27:41

And surely the point of the MA was to improve his job prospects. He needs to get a grip and get a decent well paid job to support you and DC. That is what a good father would want to do!

shewhowines Tue 20-Aug-13 10:30:03

You need to divorce and quickly or you will lose the house when eventually do divorce.
If you can prove they were his debts, some of which weren't known about by you, then the courts may offset them against his claim on the house. The longer you are married the greater his claim on the house. At the moment the courts will give you a much greater share of the house as you will need to provide a roof for your daughter, it was yours originally and he has not contributed. This will change over time.

You will be responsible for some of the debt you knew about, but if you split then you will receive child maintenance and maybe top up benefits.

I can't see that your marriage will survive and the sooner you do it, the better off financially you will be. I can't see any other outcome, it's just a question of when.

If he is totally sorry and relinquishes all financial control to you, then there may be a slight chance. But no gigs, no nothing. Maybe give him 6 months to show you he has completely changed but use your common sense. It doesn't look good.

Sorry, but I think you need to get out now rather than later. Leopards do not change their spots.

mayorquimby Tue 20-Aug-13 10:32:19

You're married with a kid why is the house yours and you want him to pay rent?
Surely it's a family home?

Viviennemary Tue 20-Aug-13 10:34:20

It's a nonsense. He is either your lodger in which case he should pay far more or your DH in which case you should suggest money and expenses should be shared with each of you having the same amount of spending money. He has had it easy as you have been far too generous. I agree write out everything on a spreadsheet. It's about time he entered the real world. I am outraged on your behalf.

lottiegarbanzo Tue 20-Aug-13 10:39:53

Oh come on, he knew what his MA cost, he knew he hadn't paid it. He chose to spend the money on other things, presumably with some absurd hope the university admin had totally messed and would never catch up with him. And you call that not his fault??

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 10:45:47


Personally, the MA thing would be a dealbreaker for me, with the other stuff.

There is no way he could not have noticed spending 18k. Not possibly.

I find it really hard to believe it was as simple as the university messing up, too, to be honest.

Sorry to be suspicious, but are you sure that's how it happened? Every university I know of would require students to prove they could fund themelves before starting and it's done precisely to avoid someone doing retrospective monthly payments.

I am guessing this will mean he has not graduated from the MA - is he even able to use it on his CV?

I really don't see how that is 'sparing you the upset'. It's just dishonest. Realistically, who can pay off that much debt without their partner knowing? Obviously not someone in his financial situation.

Charlesroi Tue 20-Aug-13 11:02:55

I wouldn't be financially linking myself with this man as it could affect your credit rating and open yourself to a possible claim against your house. My understanding is that it is still your house as he hasn't contributed towards it via money or childcare. I wouldn't fall for the SAHD thing either, unless you are absolutely sure he'd do his fair share of housework and childcare.

Agree with others - do a household budget and insist he pays his fair share of the bills. If he won't tell you how much he spends on his debts then estimate and tell him how much you need. He'll probably say he can't afford it and you'll then have to insist he tells you why. You'll get to the bottom of it but I'm afraid it won't be pleasant.

peggyundercrackers Tue 20-Aug-13 11:04:20

sorry i think hes stringing you along with regards his story about the university not noticing they were not collecting money from him. when i done my course i was not allowed to start until i had paid something towards the course and then they billed me quarterly after that - there is no way they would leave it a full year before doing something. there was one payment which was late because my work were contributing to the cost and because it was late they said if it wasnt paid by within 30 days i would need to leave until payment was forthcoming.

i think he is also lying about the amount of other debt he has by trying to avoid conversations all the time about it.

we dont have a joint account but we both know what is in the others account as we keep our bank statements in the same place and we talk about how much bills are so we both know what it costs to run the house overall which includes food, utility bills etc. etc. we also know who pays for what. we both have money left over at the end of the month but its not a mine and theirs situation.

ENormaSnob Tue 20-Aug-13 11:06:17

How can you even look at him?

He is a sponging, freeloading twat.

I recommend you get rid asap.

Spindelina Tue 20-Aug-13 11:08:08

To put another voice in...

I've hidden debt (not big - £1k ish credit card) from my DH before. I was embarrassed that I'd been silly enough not to be able to budget properly and live within the (perfectly fair and reasonable) amount I had left over after my share of the bills. I was trying to clear it myself, but it just wasn't happening. I ended up coming clean, and from then on we agreed no secrets.

Can you let him know that, if he is in debt, you aren't going to think badly of him / tell him off? That he has no need to hide anything from you, and that you can work out a plan together, pooling money and splitting bills?

(unless that isn't true!)

NoisyBrain Tue 20-Aug-13 11:16:20

I hate to add to the voices of doom, but my now XH was a secret debt runner-upper and with the wisdom of hindsight it was a red flag I should have taken more notice of.
He managed to accumulate £20k worth of credit card and overdraft debt, about which he only grudgingly came clean when he absolutely had to. We ended up remortgaging the house (it was a joint mortgage to which he contributed equally) to clear the debt. At the time I was livid with him, but we were a partnership so that seemed the best solution.
He repayed me by having an affair a few years later. I'm not saying this is what will happen to you of course, but ime you should be VERY wary of a man who keeps things from you to 'spare the upset'. My ex used to trot out that line, when what I think he really meant was 'I hate admitting I've fucked up and I'm too emotionally immature to deal with negative criticism'.
I'd tell him that from now on the household finances are a truly joint concern, which means greater responsibility from his end. He's acting like a teenager money-wise because you're letting him, and I say that as someone who made the same mistake! Good luck x.

MariaLuna Tue 20-Aug-13 11:29:16

I struggled a couple of weeks ago to find £10 to get my hair cut whilst DH has several gigs he's going to in a couple of months time and goes out on camping/climbing trips with his friend.


He sounds very selfish.

Blu Tue 20-Aug-13 11:46:07

"in fairness it was the fault of the university and they hadn't informed him there was a mistake on their part and the payment hadn't got through; by this point he'd spent the 18k "

Oh for heaven's sake!

How can he have spent £18k in any degree of innocence? 'In fairness...' what rubbish. Yes, it was an admin error, anyone with the intelligence to do an MA would spot it before managing to remain oblivious to an extra £10k or whatever in their account and spending it.

Paulina321 Tue 20-Aug-13 12:24:33

lol noisybrain, that is such an honest post

Madratlady Tue 20-Aug-13 12:40:45

When I met my DH he had a large debt which he is still paying off, I have a car finance loan (bad decision made having got my first 'proper' job after uni) and a smaller debt. We have a joint account and share all of our income and outgoings. When everything is paid any money left is our money that we can both use for things. It doesn't matter that his debt was huge or that I earn less than him, we are a team.

I find it baffling that married couples have such possessive 'this is mine and that is yours' attitudes towards money, it seems to go against the whole idea of marriage and is usually unfair on one of the couple, in this case you. Would your DH agree to a joint account into which you both put your share of money towards outgoings, then you can use that for everything including food shopping an each keep whatever is left in your personal accounts after you've each paid your 'share' into the joint account?

Littlebigcat Tue 20-Aug-13 12:57:06

It sounds like he either has debts you aren't aware of or he's struggling to repay the ones you are aware of and if he were to start paying you a reasonable share of the household expenses he knows he would have nothing left for anything nice for himself. I do think you need to force the issue and sit down with bank statements and make a spreadsheet and if you are willing make it clear that any spare money is split between you both so you can both afford nice things, he needs to start seeing this as a family budget. It may be that you can't afford to work part time but you need to understand why. I would also consider asking him to pay you more than £300 (if once you've put together the spreadsheet he can afford to) and take on the food shopping and then he can't use that as an excuse and you can budget for it better. He definitely needs to start being honest with you, he sounds pretty selfish at present.

I am in a similar situation to you in that I owned my house before meeting DP, have most bills in my name and am on Mat leave. DP gives me an agreed amount which has increased since my full pay stopped and we put together a spreadsheet. I've never seen any reason to make things more joint even with a new baby, I figure at some point in the future we'll hopefully buy a bigger house jointly and things will naturally become that way.

Phineyj Tue 20-Aug-13 13:06:55

I think the key concern here is the DC. Try laying out for him the joint expenditure/calculations and discuss how you are both going to provide for DC's future -- that might be by earning, doing childcare, doing pick ups and drop offs, organising and buying things for DC -- he needs to contribute equally to this but not necessarily in cash terms. A focus on the future might just snap him out of this teenage attitude to money - or if not, at least you will know where you stand.

I will put my cards in the table here -- this has been an issue for us too since DC arrived. For some reason it seems to take some men by surprise that it has a big impact on family finances hmm

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 20-Aug-13 13:27:40

He managed to spend £18k and not pay for his MA????

So dh manages to pay for stuff for him ie concerts and cd/books but not for you/dc

You need to open a joint account and either put in the same amount or if one of you earns a lot more then 50% of salary - from this the mortgage /bills / food / stuff for dc get paid

Jenny70 Tue 20-Aug-13 13:48:32

I'd be getting legal advice on the house. Even though his name is not on the deeds, you are married and therefore your joint assets could be at risk from his debt.

He sounds extremely financially untrustworthy, and he needs to draw himself up a budget and stick to it - or you take control like he's a child. A basic card with allowance put in per week, no extras. If he can't accept either of those he is going to send you and your child down a debt ridden future.

expatinscotland Tue 20-Aug-13 14:24:32

Oh, dear, glossy, you have some very very big problems here.

The blowing of £18K would have been a dealbreaker for me, but once the cow's been milked there's no squirting cream back up udders.

Methinks this man has a lot of debt he's hiding from you.

On top of being very selfish and immature, prioritising concerts and trips for himself over doing his fair share with regards to the family.

And I would not be happy with this person being a stay at home parent. Then, when you're off, he will merrily swan off, because he'll see it as he's done his bit, leaving you with the baby.


Because this man doesn't appear to want a family. He wants to climb, camp, go to concerts, buy music and have it all bankrolled by someone else.

Wow, what a gig he's got right now in you!

ihearsounds Tue 20-Aug-13 14:42:37

Ahaha, sorry but hes having a laugh.
Where the fuck did he think the extra 18k came from? Anyone with an ounce of a brain cell would know that something isnt right, and deal with it, not go on a spending spree.. And I bet he bought you nothing. He gave you nothing, The selfish arse spent it all pn himself..

Kick this cocklodger to the kerb and find your self a real man. Not some little child... He wants to live the single live, let him.

IvanaCake Tue 20-Aug-13 14:42:39

He's hiding something. He's either up to his eyeballs in debt or he doesn't want you to know what he's spending his money on.

I really feel for you op. I couldnt live like this.

angeltattoo Tue 20-Aug-13 15:05:35

What they all said.

Also, if hecis a SAHD and you divorce, he'll be classed as the primary carer. In all likelihood, he'll get to stay in the famiy home, get custody of DC (or whatever the current correct term is) and you'll have to pay him maintenance.

glossyflower Tue 20-Aug-13 15:47:43

Ok, my baby is down for a nap so I have time to respond!

About the 18k loan thing, I was absolutely livid and I did reconsider our relationship. Not only was he stupid enough to spend all the money, he was even more foolish to keep it from me.
And as weird as it sounds, that a uni could never get something like that mixed up, they definitely did, although DH is absolutely not blameless.
I found it out because I read an email from the uni (Anglia Ruskin for that matter - I did my nurse training under them and yes they are atrocious). His explanation for it happening was that he is shit with money, and never checks his bank account. He only realised by the time it was too late.
He didn't just spend 18k per se, as much of it was used to consolidate other loans, for books, equipment and for train travel to get to uni. But still he wasted quite a bit.
I told him if ever anything like that happened again that would be it between us.

I haven't considered divorce - I know it might sound like I am a total pushover but it seems a bit extreme to me at this stage.
Plus the old adage of I do love him grin
It depends on how he behaves from now on, when I put my foot down as to if my marriage really is in danger.

His idea of being a SAHD is a little silly to be honest. When I go out at the weekend (daytime to do odd jobs) the first thing he asks when I tell him I'm out is "are you taking the baby with you?"
He is a good dad, but I don't think he could manage to be a SAHD as I do most of the housework and baby stuff (probably because I am BF the baby and have more time to do the housework being on mat leave.) He generally does all the fun stuff with the baby.
When he said it, my first thought was it was because he naively thinks it would be an easy ride.

I just sent him at text, as he's at work, that following this morning's conversation we need to sit down together and work out our budget in a fair manner, and that there is no ifs buts or maybes.

My plan right now, is to set up a joint account for the household bills, and I will work it out in proportion to what each of us earns.
I am doing a weekly meal planner, and our food shopping budget will be strict and the online shop suggestion I think is a good idea.
I was actually planning on returning to work full time to begin with anyway (but his lack of support for me not wanting to and to be a mother pissed me off), but I will go part time probably from next year.
I really want to knuckle down and sort my personal finances out and get a savings plan in place.

And finally cocklodger lol it would be if I actually got any cock (I can't be bothered most of the time) grin

expatinscotland Tue 20-Aug-13 16:00:20

You are playing financial Russian roulette.

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