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To feel uncomfortable about finances?

(174 Posts)
whyohwhydoibother Wed 16-Nov-16 15:45:04

Ok. Bit of a long one here ladies (and gentlemen), so I apologise. Also, any monetary figures are not intended as a stealth boast, but more as a perspective to our situation. We recognise that we are incredibly fortunate to be in the situation we are.

I am the breadwinner for our house. Our DC is under 1, and my partner stays home to take care of them. For background, we both have fairly demanding careers which can be affected by time off, however in my current job I earn 3 times as much as my partner.

We decided for economic and various other complicated reasons that I would go back to work after my paid maternity leave finished, and my partner would take the following 6-9 months unpaid leave. So far so good, I love my job, it's very rewarding, and I think is helping me to recover from post natal depression/anxiety.

My problem comes with our finances. Before my partner went on leave, we discussed our outgoings, and agreed a figure for all of his costs, plus 'buffer'. He also gets all of the agreed food budget. For reference, this is equivalent to £1500 a month (£1000 of 'his' money - mostly pre-relationship debts - and £500 a month for food).

For the last 3 months, an average of £1500 extra a month has been taken out of the savings account to pay his credit card. He says this is 'living expenses' which seems to include any coffees, house items or extras that he doesn't deem as being directly related to him. I feel very uncomfortable about this, as I thought our agreed budget covered these extras, as when I buy them, I take them out of 'my' money (budgeted at £1000 a month).

I am in the fortunate position of having none of my own debts to pay, so the budget was agreed to be strictly equitable, however I rarely spend it, and any leftovers are put into the joint savings account. In addition, I tend to arrange a pre-planned food delivery service for myself, which I pay for out of my own budget, not the family food money. He is usually only buying for himself and our baby.

When I try to discuss this matter, my partner gets very defensive, and we can end up arguing. I don't believe he's hiding or taking extra money, as I have access to all of his accounts, however it's the general attitude towards addressing my concerns I can't understand. We are trying to invest as much as we can, so we can ultimately have a choice about what jobs we take, but I end up feeling my partner is spending to 'compensate' for taking time off work.

So as not to drip feed, when we initially set up home together, I paid off roughly £30000 of his debt from my own savings, to allow us to get an investment mortgage, which he wants to decrease at £1000 per month he's not working, in addition to his other outgoings. I am also funding a nanny and the cost of various courses for him to be able to alter his career, and likely allow him to remain close to home once his parental leave ends (the alternative could be him working 1500 miles away), which will work out to around £10000.

Is this unreasonable? Am I being fair in expressing concern about the level of spending? Or do I have to accept that this is just the level of expense associated with supporting a family of two adults and one child?

mumblechum0 Wed 16-Nov-16 15:49:52

Hang on a minute; you're funding a nanny AND he's staying at home?

Or will the nanny cost only kick in after he's taken 6 to 9 months leave off?

I think you're being taken for a ride tbh. I'd suggest that you work out what the bills/food/transport/childcare/mortage etc costs are. Then deduct that figure from the income. Then split the surplus, on the basis that he pays his own debts from his share and you spend your share as you wish.

QforCucumber Wed 16-Nov-16 15:49:58

From a completely different lifestyle I personally do not think yabu at all.
I'm coming to the end of maternity leave, which has been paid at smp throughout. While on leave dp took over the mortgage payments in full - I have paid my personal bills/done top up food shopping/coffee shops days out with baby all on my SMP. it's doable here on £650 a month without really budgeting, but as I said it's a different place I'm coming from.

Ncbecauseitshard Wed 16-Nov-16 15:54:58

So he spends £3k a month? And that money covers groceries, his debts but no other joint bills?
He's having a laugh.

Trifleorbust Wed 16-Nov-16 15:55:19

Can I just double check what I am reading here: you give your partner £500 a month to cover the food budget, plus £1,000 per month that goes on paying off debt, and as a SAHP that is all the money he has access to, bar a credit card? And when he buys things for himself or for the home on that credit card, you think he is being unreasonable?

Do I have this wrong?

NickyEds Wed 16-Nov-16 15:56:26

So y8u get paid and transfer some to pay mortgage and bills, £500 to him to pay for groceries then get £1000 each personal spends which he uses to repay debt? And now he's eating into savings at £1500 a month for other things? Is that correct?

Trifleorbust Wed 16-Nov-16 15:57:26

And why do you arrange food delivery for you and not for him?

I appreciate he is overspending on the credit card but this sounds like a weird, weird set up to me.

PlumsGalore Wed 16-Nov-16 15:58:43

Fk me, Costa must be expensive where you live!

TheNaze73 Wed 16-Nov-16 15:59:22

I'm reading this like Trifle If this was reversed, you'd be called financially abusive.

whyohwhydoibother Wed 16-Nov-16 16:00:47

The nanny will only kick in once he's about to do his courses/retraining - but this could be anywhere from 2 to 6 months (tough exams) before his return to work.

I suppose I end up feeling guilty that our DC was 'unplanned' so I have to make up for it in some way, if that makes sense? (Relatively new relationship when it happened, told him I was happy to go it alone, but he wanted to be involved)

Its mainly the fact that I'm paying off preexisting debt and the 'monthly cost' is equivalent to his usual full time salary. I appreciate taking care of a baby can be a full time job (I did it for the first 5 months on my own) but our kid is pretty chilled, but my partner seems to spend his 'free' time (when DC is sleeping, or playing on his own) on his phone or the internet, not studying to possibly reduce the amount of time he's off work

PlumsGalore Wed 16-Nov-16 16:03:05

I do worry that he pays off £1000 per month in debt and yet you have already cleared 30k of his debts for him and he is still spending £1500 on top of this on coffee and other things. Of course he needs to have access to buy a coffee, or put petrol in the car or buy shoes but £1500 a month on what else exactly?

Unless these previous debts were relating to a student loan, why does he have some much (continued) debt? why does he spend so much? are the too related?

NickyEds Wed 16-Nov-16 16:03:25

So how was he managing his debt when he was working?

Scrumptiousbears Wed 16-Nov-16 16:03:28

He's a lucky boy. I have no where near that. As for £500 groceries for an adult and a baby hmm

ChocolateButton15 Wed 16-Nov-16 16:03:49

He's spending 3k a month! I don't think it's the op being financially abusive. Yanbu it's not really sustainable for him to keep taking 1.5k extra each month. I would say to sit down together with the last 3 months bank and credit card statements and work out exactly where 3k a month is going. If it's really not working out he probably should return to work, you said you have a Nanny too so would this be feasible? Why do you currently have a Nanny with your husband off work?

PlumsGalore Wed 16-Nov-16 16:04:04

* two - appalling spelling Plums

Trifleorbust Wed 16-Nov-16 16:04:48

I think it would be better for both of you if he went back to work. You seem to want a greater degree of control over money than seems reasonable in an equal relationship and you don't seem that happy to have someone at home caring for your child, allowing you to work. You seem resentful of paying his previous debts (unsurprising but again, not a great sign for a LTR) and resentful of him spending any money on himself. I wouldn't feel very safe if I were your DP.

whyohwhydoibother Wed 16-Nov-16 16:07:58

I only get the food delivery because I'm trying to lose the baby weight. My partner isn't interested, and is more than happy to buy and make his own food.

For the person who asked, all of our spending is done on credit cards, and we pay our agreed amounts first out of our budgets, and then any overspend out of the shared account. He has access to the joint savings, and in fact the other day used £7000 to pay off his car loan (on top of everything else) after we agreed on it.

I'm genuinely interested to see if I am being unreasonable about this, because I swing from feeling that every thing is fine, to being incredibly worried because of the extra amounts spent. I appreciate that this may be because of my post natal anxiety, hence trying to get a balanced opinion!

Aderyn2016 Wed 16-Nov-16 16:10:46

It is not your fault alone that the baby was unplanned. There were two of you at the conception, no? So stop thinking you have anything to feel guilty about.

Seems to me he is very good at ploughing through your money. I'd be inclined to have savings he cannot get at.
In the meantime go back through the budget and try to come up with something realistic but which doesn't allow him to burn through all the savings.

Trifleorbust Wed 16-Nov-16 16:10:48

I don't think you are being unreasonable as such, but you are clearly very affected by his former debts. He clearly isn't able to live within a £500 per month budget without spending on any 'normal' items like house stuff, gifts, activities, nights out. You clearly don't appreciate having him at home and think he is basically sponging off you. Not working all round, I would argue.

whyohwhydoibother Wed 16-Nov-16 16:14:20

Trifleorbust - I agree. I'm keen to get him back to work as quickly as possible, because I can see how frustrated he is being at home. He feels he needs his own independence, but every time I try to discuss how we can make it happen as quickly as possible, the timescale seems to be extended by a couple of months. Initially the plan was to have him ready to change jobs by 5 months into his leave, but now (even with full time nanny and residential study courses) he's estimating another 5 months!

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 16-Nov-16 16:14:33

I'll bet he wanted to be involved. You paid off debt & fund his career change.

Nursery fees would have been cheaper than him.

Trifleorbust Wed 16-Nov-16 16:17:54

Not quite making much sense here... He is frustrated at home but is resisting going back to work? I honestly think there is something lacking in the communication here. And I think you may be being disingenuous about your reasons for wanting him back at work. He wants to be at home because it's easier than working is for him, or because he loves being with the baby, or because he enjoys being funded. You want him back at work because you resent funding him being at home. You both need an honest budgeting conversation and to think about what works best for your DC.

PatriciaHolm Wed 16-Nov-16 16:18:11

He seems to have a terrifying amount of debt. Has he addressed the issues that caused the debt in the first place?

ChocolateButton15 Wed 16-Nov-16 16:18:44

I would be really worried ,it seems like he's determined to burn through the savings. It sounds like he has debt problems if you keep paying them off and he's still in a large amount of debt. It sounds like you are financially stable but if he's spending more than what's coming in then you may be in a bad position in a year or two.

VinoTime Wed 16-Nov-16 16:19:17

I'm sorry, but I wouldn't be paying for him to do any courses until he'd cleared his debt. Hire a nanny now and tell him to get back to bloody work and sort out the total arse he made of his finances. Jesus wept. It seems like he certainly saw you coming, OP sad

And yes, that would also be my advice were the genders reversed here. I think he's royally taking the piss! Are you two married?

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