Who is being unreasonable - joint finances(450 Posts)
Namechanged for this but regular poster.
Please help me work out whether I am being unreasonable, or whether my husband is being unreasonable (I think he is, obviously!).
I'll try to make his as succinct as possible. Been with my DH for 8 years, married for 18 months, DS1 is 7.5 months. DH bought the house we live in when we had been together for 2 years, large cash deposit, small mortgage. I moved in and paid a reduced rent until the mortgage was cleared (approx. 3 years). I have then lived there for free ever since. The justification for this which we both agreed to was that I had to move around an hour from my friends, family and work to allow him to continue to run his business, which would obviously benefit us both in the future. His friends, family and hobbies are on his doorstep (literally, we can see his parents house and the rugby field from our windows!). I hate the town we live in, but we plan to move out of town in the next couple of years and as I have made lots of friends in the wider area I am happy with this prospect, although ultimately I would prefer to move back to where I grew up and where my family are.
So, mortgage is paid off and we both have significant savings, however he has about 3 times what I have. I believe his ability to save has been partly facilitated by me because by moving to his area I have allowed our relationship to continue and him to pursue his professional desires. Of course he has also saved very hard and worked very hard for that money. I have explained this part of our financial situation not to be goady, but I don't want to drip feed and I do think this is relevant to my AIBU.
Since moving in together we have paid into a joint account for food, bills, council tax etc etc. Basically everything that's needed to keep the house running. I have just stopped receiving maternity pay but have been paying in as normal until now. Agreement is that I will stay at home with DS1 because my commute to work means I would work for about £25 per day once we have paid for childcare. We have always been of the understanding that we would both prefer for me to be at home with the children for a certain amount of time whilst they are young and that was a large part of the reason we have settled in DH's area. All discussed and agreed years ago.
I do all of the housework, so cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing, food shopping, bins, recycling, night feeds etc. plus all those other little things like buying birthday presents, cards etc. He does bath and bed with DS 5 nights a week. He plays rugby twice a week and all day on a Saturday, with the occasional night out afterwards (not regular, say once every 2 months or so). He has a lie in at the weekend on both days while I get up with DS.
I have always said that I would prefer our savings to be held jointly, with a direct debit into an account for household stuff and then an equal allowance each for spending money. He has always said that he will just top up our existing joint account as needed. We are both relatively good with money so whilst I'm not really comfortable with this, in theory it should work as long as we are both reasonable.
With regards to our savings, we are both saving for a property investment, so in that sense our intentions for the savings are mutual. He obviously has a great deal more than I do at present, but my parents will be giving us a significant (approx £175k) sum to purchase said property when we find it so he will then benefit from my/their investment. Basically what I am trying to say is that we are on a fairly level playing field once all is taken into consideration.
Fast forward to today. We are looking after his parents dog for a few days while they are away. I took her for a run on the beach this morning and it was lovely down there so I bought a coffee in the cafe and sat outside for a bit longer. The coffee cost £1.50. DH has told me that I should take my own coffee in a flask because buying a coffee out is a waste of money. He says that if I was out for a walk with a friend and we went into the coffee shop that's fine because it's being sociable. I think that considering he disappears for 2 evenings a week plus most of Saturday week in week out (and there is a cost of say £20 a week for this) I should be allowed to buy a bloody coffee every now and then if I want one! I'm not one of these people who walks around with a costa permanently attached to my hand, I hardly ever buy drinks or food out. My social commitments are a buggy fitness group once or twice a week (£4 a time), baby sensory (£5 a week) and slimming world (£5 a week). I then go for a walk with a group of mums once a week and we have a coffee afterwards. This mornings coffee doesn't usually happen, it's only because I was down there with his parents dog and I just fancied a coffee because it was really nice there today. He is saying that if I had been with someone else it would have been fine because it's being sociable. I argued that if his hobby was cycling or running which he might do by himself I would still be happy for him to pursue it, it just so happens that he plays rugby and that is a team sport.
This next bit is the important bit.
He then said that he is spending his money when he does things, and I am spending our money. My argument is that all of the money is our money, including he money that my parents have promised me for the property purchase** whenever that happens.
I think this statement completely summarises his attitude towards me being a stay at home mum and whilst he is happy for me to do so, he is going to want me to account for every last penny I spend because as far as he is concerned, I am not the one who went out and earned it. I also think that this shows he does not value anything I do in the home and whilst I am happy to do it and appreciate that I am fortunate to be able to stay at home, I do not think that attitude is fair.
Well done if you are still reading - I am happy to be told I am unreasonable if I am and in which case I need to start grovelling after the argument we've just had. If I am not being unreasonable and he is being financially controlling, then I am just disappointed in myself for being so stupid as to think we were on the same wavelength.
So you both agreed you will stay at home do most of childcare and all of housework and he will go to work? And now says anything you spend is his money as he earnt it? Total bollocks if you ask me, where is "your" money does he expect you to justify everything? It should either be one giant pot that people can have as many coffees (within reason) that they want or seperate finances (even that is a monthly "allowance" agreed by you both)
He cant agree you should not work and look after dc and then in the next breath say you should do all that penniless and without ever having any fun because youre spending his money.
You're heading down a path which many men and women have travelled before and it does not end well.
Any partner, male or female, rich or poor, working or not working, should be trying to ensure fairness and balance in how the financial setup works.
You seem to have a skewed opinion about it in some ways. Do you or your DH have any idea about the financial hit you've taken by moving? What about the hit to your career now you have children, will he be doing drop offs and illness covering for half when you're back at work? Do you have a pension being paid into Every month?
You don't earn £25 after childcare. Why is it you think you should count it as wholly coming from your wages, when your DH should pay half?
It's like you've bastardised the worst bits about having separate finances with the worst bits of considering them separate!
Either treat everything as one pot of family cash OR you need to be adequately reflecting both the hit on your earnings and the costs he should cover.
Your DH is cherry picking the bits that work best for him here.
I don't think YABU at all. My family set up is the same, I stay home with our young children currently and my DH works. He earns enough for us to manage financially but we will benefit when I return to work.
I think of your DH wants to have a moan about a £1.50 coffee and say that it's his money, maybe you should invoice him monthly for the childcare you provide as you looking after the DC saves BOTH of you money currently.
Thank you all.
@agbnb you are so right, I am getting the worst bits of both aren't I. And that means he is getting the best bits of both.
Take the 175k from your parents and buy yourself an investment property. You’ll need it.
I think he would say that if I want to spend money I can spend it out of my savings. My argument is that if I was working then I would be earning money and wouldn't need to dip into my savings.
He seems to see you as some kind of paid help or indeed a house slave - yes he is financially controlling
No way should you dip into your savings!
I agree with invoice him if he acts like this.
Your original suggestions for financial division were much better.
omg yanbu, he told you not to buy a coffee? bloody hell, his attitude towards you is horrific
I think that out of your 'family money' currently earned by him, you should each have equal 'pocket money' to spend as you please.
If he isn't working as a team (and frankly you seem to have approach or 'his and hers') then you'd be better off going back to work and splitting the cost of childcare.
“All that I am I give to you
And all that I have I share with you.”
Married means what’s his is yours and what’s yours is his.
Sorry WTAF???? You are about to put 175k into a house that you're going to buy together and he is quibbling about one pound fucking 50 for a cup of coffee you bought while looking after his parents dog and you're questioning whether he's right?
Sorry for being so emphatic OP but I wonder what sort of number he's done on you that you actually think he might have a point. I can't imagine anything more petty than how he's behaving, it really is incredible.
My very strong advice is to take that £175k and run, very fast and very far.
Honestly I'd consider going back to work and stop doing all the housework
sit down with him and say you need a salary for your childcare now that his ridiculous attitude has been made clear, or you have to go back to work, splitting childcare costs jointly just like you do electricity etc. This is unacceptable and you should think very carefully about investing the gift from your parents with him.
£10 an hour, because you are generous and caring you will do housework as well , and only charge £10 a day. If of course he doesn’t appreciate you then you will have to rethink such generosity.
That's outrageous. You should be equal in everything- whatever your current roles are in life. No-one should be able to tell you where and when you drink coffee ffs! You're married. It should be one pot for everything
Well if the housework, childcare and everything else is worth nothing, stop doing it. All of it. Oh but you can't, right, because the house would descend into anarchy and your child would be in SS care. Those things are his job too, just like earning money is also your job. You have delegated your parts to each other. He still wants none of the work but all of the benefit.
So what to do:
1. Go back to work, childcare for the baby and housework half done by him or he pays a cleaner. Use your parents' money
for a divorce to buy a property for you to rent out.
2. He treats you like an equal partner. All money is joint.
3. He pays you for the cleaning, childcare, PA, planning, project management and everything else you do. Market rates. Your parents' money is still yours.
I think he's a selfish dick and you probably need to leave because he isn't going to change. But give him a chance.
For perspective, DH and I started going out when we were 19 and relatively penniless. Pretty much from day one we just shared all our money - sometimes I'd have more, sometimes he'd have more and we'd just buy each other things as needed. That's what partners do. When we got married we got a joint account, all money goes in there and we just spend it as we need it, there is absolutely nothing ever said about who earns it or who owns it, because we're a team and we work together. If you're going to split everything and quibble over £1.50, why be married? How is that set up any different from two housemates who don't really even trust or like each other? FFS when I shared houses I regularly bought things for my housemates and they did the same for me, just because we liked each other. I could never imagine making any bones about £1.50, no matter how poor I was - it's just so mean.
I was a SAHM and all money was put into joint account, I didn't have the same earning power so stayed home. You have to talk to your husband about the situation, and he will get defensive, to find a way that works for the both of you. Wouldn't look at buying another property till you are happy with arrangements.
All the housework and childcare isn’t even worth one (very cheap) cup of coffee to him. That is so demoralising.
I’d bet of you went back to work you’d still be doing all the housework and childcare.
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