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AIBU re financial arrangements between ex and myself!

(11 Posts)
andwhatnow Tue 02-Dec-14 19:07:24

I would be really interested to hear people's views and give me an honest opinion about my situation. I split from my ex husband three years ago. We have a son together who is 14. We were together for 16 years and jointly bought our house a year after we met. I initiated the split and ex was quite difficult. Our son decided he wanted to spend half his time with me and half his time at his dad's house. This has worked reasonably well. The actual nights differ though each week, as my ex works shifts. Therefore in terms of actual time, it probably isn't exactly 50/50, for eg, sometimes my ex works weekends...but that's the idea behind it. I just want to give a bit of background about when we split regarding financial matters, to put it into context. My ex, as I said, was quite bitter and reluctantly put our house up for sale. I moved out and rented. He refused to move out, so I did. He made it very difficult for me to take any belongings so I basically moved out with a carrier bag of things, put a deposit down on a house and paid rent. For six months, I also continued to pay half of the mortgage each month on our house because he kept threatening not to pay it. I rented for the next two years until our house sold. He continued to pay the mortgage on our house (which was a similiar amount to my rent). I obviously had to pay out myself to furnish my home as I literally had absolutely nothing. We kept a car each, and he kept his motorbike. We eventually divorced (which we went halves on) and once our house sold, we split the equity 50/50 which enabled us to both put a deposit down to buy a house each. During our marriage his job had enabled him to pay into a generous pension but I relinquished rights to it. He took everything in terms of furniture, belongings, absolutely everything from our marital home. I obviously wasn't over the moon, but he threatened to pull out of the house sale if I didn't agree.

We decided that we would not pay child maintenance as our son would be living with both of us. The only difference is that I have continued to get £80 a month child benefit. I pay monthly for our son's mobile which is £25. I have always gone at the very least, halves on clothes, school trips etc for our son and there have been periods in the last three years where I have certainly paid out far more frequently for our son. I have always bought the majority of school uniform for example. Just recently, our son needed some clothes. His dad eventually bought him some. I have just received a text saying he has spent £150 on clothes recently for our son and that he thinks its one sided. I think he is possibly hinting at the fact that I get child benefit and he does not. I am trying to take a neutral stance. I am imagining that he probably forgot I got it and as its suddenly dawned on him, he will nag me to make sure he knows exactly how I am spending it. Should I have to account for every penny of that every month? I have given the above information just to explain how financially things have been for the past three years. I know to a point that is separate to our son's upbringing, but, for example, I had to completely refurnish our son's room, etc and he took everything. Please give me your opinion!

daisychainmail Tue 02-Dec-14 19:20:26

Hm it sounds like you have handled things well and are both reasonably well off now (i.e. own houses and have jobs). You definitely got fleeced in the early stages but that often happens to the one who instigates the split.

I think he's being a bit dickish about the £150, but he sounds like he is going to carry on giving you low-level grief until your son grows up or he finds a new partner because he's still annoyed with you.

I wonder if you could reply by saying this is a great imperative to decide exactly how much son gets each month. A clothing allowance of £40 a month and pocket money of £30 = £25 each? Something like that.

It's just post-divorce nonsense I'm afraid. My Dh's ex took all his stuff when they broke up by refusing to actively do anything and resisting change like your ex.* She's now a difficult lady who lives on her own with lots of ex-marital furnishings stowed under her bed and a stingy attitude to their DC. You wont have to put up with it forever!

*He left because she shagged someone else.

simbacatlivesagain Tue 02-Dec-14 19:24:21

Give the £80 to your son each month. Phone and some 'luxury' clothes (not pants, socks or school uniform or he will never have any-trust me) plus all pocket money spending to come from that.

School uniform, school shoes and underwear split 50/50- buy in 1 go and split the bill.

Arven Tue 02-Dec-14 19:25:47

I agree, it's an excuse to give u low level grief indefinitely.
Tell him he can have the 150 but from now on he can give taleover the phone charges.

WooWooOwl Tue 02-Dec-14 19:27:26

I think you should split the child benefit and go halves on all clothes for your son.

If you initiated the split and chose to move out of the marital home, then it's fora for you to pay the cost associated with that. If (hypothetically) my husband left me, I wouldn't expect to have to pay for our children to have a new bedroom elsewhere when I have already paid my share of providing a room for them, especially when the reason for needing extra room is entirely against my wishes.

I have a very good relationship with my children's dad, we pay for most things 50/50. It's really not that hard to keep the receipts for things and then work out half the cost.

Arven Tue 02-Dec-14 19:27:28

Better idea to give your son the responsibility of meeting his expenses with that money

daisychainmail Tue 02-Dec-14 19:28:49

Oo agree give the £80 to your son, excellent solution.

YackityUnderTheMistletoe Tue 02-Dec-14 19:34:56

You might have 50/50 custody, but YOU have no control over when your 50% is because it is completely dependant on your ex's work, and, as you pointed out, the result is that often enough you have more than 50%.

So YOU have far less of an ability to plan things to reduce outgoings.

On that basis, especially considering you are paying the mobile phone charges, I think it's quite fair that you keep the extra child benefit.

andwhatnow Tue 02-Dec-14 20:46:31

Thank you for your opinions. I do know what you mean about furnishing my son's room. It wasn't so much that per se, I suppose I was just saying that at every point so far, I feel that my ex has been rather unreasonable if he has had room to do so and has frequently found an excuse or opted out after I have say, bought clothes which he previously promised to go halves on. I think giving our son the £80 could work, but will think that through. Thank you.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 02-Dec-14 20:52:40

Did he discuss the purchase before?

HmmAnOxfordComma Tue 02-Dec-14 20:57:14

Definitely give the child benefit to your son. He pays for mobile, pocket money and branded clothes. Split uniform/pyjamas/shoes/coats costs in half with ex.

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