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Passive agreesive or a slip up?

(34 Posts)
Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 10:38:40

Firstly I'm not blameless. But this is a specific question. I want to understand.

DH and I are in debt. We turned a corner in December. Working from cash budgets, no impulse buying - we are doing so well.

Three days ago DH and I had a row. Have been in a stalemate for a few days. I check the accounts daily to match up the forecast to the activity. Today he has put a minor purchase on the debit card. He could have taken money from the cash budget if it was a planned purchase. We also both have an emergency £20 note signed by each other.

AIBU to interpret this as a great big passive aggressive 'fuck you'? Could there be another reason?

ihatethecold Sat 18-Feb-17 10:43:08

I think you are over reacting and treating you DH like a child.
You sound controlling.
One purchase on his card is hardly him being PA.

Crumbs1 Sat 18-Feb-17 10:44:51

Good you are managing debt but hardly crime of the century.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 10:46:47

Do you think it is just a coincidence? We've both been very invested in it until now. I'm worried we will loose control of it again. sad

dowhatnow Sat 18-Feb-17 10:49:01

It does sound a bit deliberate. You need to talk calmly to each other, but I'd call him out on it.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 10:49:27

Your screen name is so appropriate to me right now!

Rixera Sat 18-Feb-17 10:49:53

I disagree. It's not controlling when you're in debt.
We are not in debt but have to manage very carefully to stay in budget, and I would be immensely pissed off if OH were to drop £20 on something without warning, it would mess up our budget, and the budget isn't just me pissing about it's vital for our family to have enough to live on.

Pay his emergency money in and address it with him, debt is no joke and expressing your anger like a petulant child by spending money you don't have is not okay.

FWIW it takes a lot of effort to keep OH in line with budget here too as he comes from a wealthy family and is used to buying without thought. It's not controlling, it's responsibility.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 10:52:54

Rixera Thank you your post has made me cry. I'm at me wits end I'm so scared about the future if we don't fix this.

Snifftest Sat 18-Feb-17 10:53:06

Having a row about it isn't a constructive way of dealing with it.

For me it would depend on what it was and why - a sandwich for lunch and he'd left his emergency £20 in the car/ office/ other coat then fair enough, a pint after work, I'd be a bit more annoyed about.

I don't think you are controlling, I assume this is an agreement you both made to deal with mutually acquired debts? And now it appears as though one of you is not sticking to the agreement, and it is a slippery slope.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 10:57:20

It is a joint agreement, yes.

Its more his than mine initially, then accumulated throughout time together. But we don't split it out that way, only saying because you asked. I see it as we are married and it's our joint responsibility to fix it.

Rixera Sat 18-Feb-17 11:01:08

You need to speak with him openly and honestly about this. Stay calm and even if he shouts he'll at least be able to keep your points in mind.
Tell him what you've said here; you're scared for the future with debt hanging over you. You both need to work together to fix it.

AllTheLight Sat 18-Feb-17 11:01:48

It could be a slip up, but it sounds more likely to be deliberate from the info you've given.

Was the row about money, or something unrelated? It's not great that you had a row three days ago and haven't made it up yet (unless it was about something really massive) - I don't think that sounds like a healthy relationship. Maybe you need to work on your communication?

SoupDragon Sat 18-Feb-17 11:08:53

Have you asked him?

Snifftest Sat 18-Feb-17 11:25:34

Team, sorry if it sounded like I was getting at you, I wasn't. I meant that you were both taking responsibility for your debt, which is good and you aren't being controlling as you both accumulated it and are both agreeing to fix it. I'd be a bit pissed off with him too!

dowhatnow Sat 18-Feb-17 11:29:39

Good point about the row. Do they normally last this long?

Olympiathequeen Sat 18-Feb-17 11:31:42

Not controlling at all. You both agreed on a plan and DH has reneged on it. You are quite right to be upset, particularly as being in debt makes things feel very out of control.

It should be fairly simple to get back on track if you both smooth things over. It's clearly a pa act to me, but also a reaction to the previous belt tightening, which can be very wearing.

KurriKurri Sat 18-Feb-17 11:36:26

I would ask him and discuss it rationally - find out what it was for.

But the basic principle doesn't change, you have agreed a budget and that means you have to both be on board- it sounds like he is being a bit sneaky and secretive trying to get one over on you by hiding his purchase on a debit card.

I've been there with the debt. We got help from a debt help line, made a very detailed budget wrote down and accounted for every purchase.
My XH stuck to it for about 3 months then the sneaky purchases started. It was ll his debt, but he behaved as if he was being punished somehow by having to stick to a budget. So I found I was doing the hard work and going without and he was carrying on as if the rules didn't apply to him.

The thing is, getting out of debt is a long haul - it is boring and you have to go without, which is miserable, but you have to stick with it or it won't work. I guess it's a bit like dieting - it's easy to slip off the wagon after a good start because it is difficult to maintain.

Your H may have made a small slip up and be feeling bad about it and be happy to get back on track, or he may be trying to secretly flout the plan and do his own thing. One small purchase doesn't really tell you which (because both scenarios start with one small purchase)

So talk about it and find out what's happening. Try to plan something nice that either costs very little or nothing, so you have treats to cheer you up, but that don't make you feel guilty.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 11:40:56

They don't usually happen at all. Any suggestion that he do something differently is met with silence - like stonewalling silence.

He thinks he's not mean because he doesn't shout or raise his voice. But the threat of this behaviour is enough to keep me from voicing any discontentment.

So I snap over something that has bottled up, he stonewalls and I give in and hate myself for yelling. This time I've just disengaged completely. I think this is a pa act to get me to loose it so he can make me out to be the 'at fault' one. I will not be 'loosing' anything anymore.

Basically my life is perfect so long as I never complain.

I appreciate all the input, even the criticism of me I know I'm so far from perfect it's disgusting.

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 11:44:57

By losing I mean I won't lose my cool not the row.

KurriKurri Sat 18-Feb-17 11:51:42

Basically my life is perfect so long as I never complain.

I appreciate all the input, even the criticism of me I know I'm so far from perfect it's disgusting.

This is ringing alarm bells with me, - treading on eggshells is no way to live your life -believe m I;ve been their (notice the XH in my post) ad when you don;t have to do it any more you realise the stress that it had been putting on you.

I'm also worried that you use the word disgusting about yourself -again, I've been there, been made to feel completely valueless as a person.
Please don't use or think that word in connection with yourself - it's not true. You are working hard to solve a big problem (debt is a huge and miserable thing to cope with) and he is fucking about with the plans and trying to make you feel guilty.

Think hard about what you want in life - and don't allow him to make you feel as if you are wrong all the time.

A word of warning - are the debts in his name or joint names? Ours were in his name, but when we divorced he still tried to argue that they were joint household debts (£25K !) and I should pay half. I had to fight him over that (I won, because I had kept receipts and records of what he was spending on). So keep your records and accounts carefully and comprehensively, protect yourself as much as you can. (I'm not saying your marriage will end, but just make sure you are financially protected if anything should happen)

sandragreen Sat 18-Feb-17 11:57:23

This doesn't sound good at all OP - it's like you have no voice and are walking on eggshells.

Can you tell us what the row was about?

Teamorwork Sat 18-Feb-17 11:58:57

KurriKurri I just don't know if I'm unreasonable or if he is crazy-making. I often loose my cool eventually, but it feels like he doesn't pay attention to me until I lose it, then bam! As soon as I lose it I'm unreasonable and here comes the wounded-puppy silent treatment!

I don't know if I'm a bitch or he's a master manipulator. Maybe both. I have been a bit badly treated in my childhood and sometimes my compass is a bit off.

Either way I know I will not lose it anymore. I have disengaged for the time being to observe patterns of behaviour.

If I ever leave him I will need to know that it was the only option left. I very much believe in working at a marriage until there is nothing left to fix.

TempusEedjit Sat 18-Feb-17 12:03:52

Sounds like a running theme....he fucks up and you are the driving force to fix it.

Just wondering, in what ways does he show you he loves you?

user1481838270 Sat 18-Feb-17 12:05:26

My XH stuck to it for about 3 months then the sneaky purchases started. It was all his debt, but he behaved as if he was being punished somehow by having to stick to a budget. So I found I was doing the hard work and going without and he was carrying on as if the rules didn't apply to him

KurriKurri, I think what you describe is quite common.

Some seem to consider being required to live within one's means as an unfair punishment rather than a fact of life. They don't seem to realise that it isn't a choice and that accumulating debt isn't a viable longterm option.

KitKat1985 Sat 18-Feb-17 12:12:00

As an aside, I think it's worrying if you have a row and the don't speak for 3 days. That's not typical relationship behaviour.

As for the purchase, it's hard to know whether it was PA or not without knowing what he bought. Having to get a tenner's worth of petrol or essential groceries and putting it on the card as he didn't have any cash on him would, for example, be completely different to spending a tenner on DVDs or a takeaway as a treat impulse buy.

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