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New troubles with Ex - money mainly

(20 Posts)
LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 07:03:25

I've never asked for advice here before, as I didn't need it. I love my DSD, she is a good kid and we get along great. DHs ex is another matter, but I have always just 'detached' after letting her rile me in the early years. Something has happened though that I am stressing over. If I give the whole story now it will be an essay, so I'll try to be brief and just give the facts.

DH doesn't work, he is a SAHD. I work, good hours, good wage. DH ex works, good hours, good wage (slightly less than me). DH has a pension of about 500/month.

DSD is 15. Split happened when she was 6. We have been married 6 yrs, DD is 5.

DH pays about 100/month to Ex. I pay another 100, and give money to DSD.

Last Fri Ex asked for 150 for present dsd wanted. We said no, we had finished Xmas shopping and would not pay for more. Got very PA text telling DH to remember he has 2 children. Replied that both had same amount spent on them and that any extra money comes from me.

Got text this am. Nasty one that essentially calls him a sponger, 'hopes he's proud that another woman has to support his children' etc. He hasn't seen it yet. When he does WW3 is going to break out sad.

I'm tempted to delete the text. I don't want the hassle, I don't want him upset. I know if he reads it we are all going to suffer (he'll get moody, snippy with me and DD, furious with Ex, it will just put a cloud over Xmas)

I actually wrote out a very PA reply to her, but that's not my style, and I don't want to ruin DSDs Xmas either.

Snow isn't helping. Our plans to travel have been kiboshed and now we aren't seeing DSD till the NY. Oh and one of the threats this am is that we aren't going to see her again 'as you can't afford it'

so, do I delete text? Leave it but plan a reply for him? I don't think I can stay out if it this time.

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 07:04:10

Ok, that wasn't brief, I'm sorry, but I'm stressing!

tribpot Fri 24-Dec-10 07:36:47

I find it slightly weird that your DH pays over that much income on such a low wage but I suppose 20% is about the CSA average isn't it? Your £100 I can't fathom but let's leave that aside for now.

I would be very tempted to delete the text, except for the risk she sends another referencing it, which he does see, and he questions what the first one was. Was the text to his phone or yours, incidentally? That makes a big difference.

Just to demand 150 out of the blue so close to Christmas is very strange. It sounds like your DH and she need to set some ground rules for Christmas presents, odd that this should crop up so long after they split? What's happened in previous years?

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 08:11:29

Hi tribpot. Thanks for replying. I have put phone in his jacket for now so he won't see it straight away.

Text was to his phone, but we read each others whenever. DH is technophobe so hardly ever looks at it! I read it because it came in at 0545 and I worry when we get calls so early (sickness, death etc)

he pays that much because we can afford it, and ex does a good job of making him feel guilty. I give money to DSD because I was sick of her turning up here with nothing, wanted her not to ask.

Ex will either think 'she's won' if he doesn't reply which I can live with, or she will text again. I don't know now if I can take the risk.

Prev years haven't been a problem. When younger DSD would write a list, ex would sent to us with things she has bought crossed off. This year DSD has asked for something costing £300 and Ex wants half. Text says she has given DSD 150 and has spent another 200 on her (not getting 300 thing) I think that is ridiculous. We spent 100 on DD and 50 on DSD, plus giving her 50 to buy what she wants. Apparently this is not good enough and means we don't care about her sad

ladydeedy Fri 24-Dec-10 08:17:46

we have this sometimes and are almost in same boat so can sympathise.
Suggest the following:

- dont delete text.
- simple reply to exW saying, you have your christmas presents all organised so cannot help out with the additional gift that SHE WANTS TO BUY for DSD. (NB just because she wants it doesnt mean she should get it, IMO!!)
- suggest that in future, to simplify things and avoid confusion, that you stick with separate presents.
- looking forward to seeing DSD at NY.

Factual. Just remember exW probably running a bit short and is trying it on....

reassure husband and let everyone be kind and thoughtful to eachother!

tribpot Fri 24-Dec-10 08:48:01

Okay, so half each on something costing 300 would be reasonable - if she'd announced it before you'd done your Christmas shopping (and it was within your budget, which it wasn't). This should have been negotiated in October/November, not announced a week before Christmas. Hopefully DSD won't be too disappointed about whatever it is.

I don't think the ex will think she's 'won' if there's no reply, but by the sounds of it she's likely to text/call again asking why he hasn't replied. So deleting it will be short term gain, long term pain.

Is he likely to look at the phone tomorrow, i.e. to text or call his DD1 to say Happy Christmas? Or is there an option at least to hide it til Boxing Day? And then prepare him to read the text with the promise not to respond at once. Does the ex think your DH became a SAHD to avoid having more income to support his DD1?

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 10:08:08

Sorry, everyone up now so very hectic! Haven't deleted text but only a matter of time now. Wish we could do what ladydeedy says, but I know DH will blow and it's all gonna go horribly wrong. this mornings text was really nasty.

We would have given the 150 if we had known about it before, even tho we think it is ridiculous (37 inch flat screen). I don't know when DSD asked for it, so it could be her own fault.

I have a good job, and cannot / will not break contract until DD is 7 (2 more years). It made sense for DH to become SAHD rather than pay for childcare, plus he would not be able to earn much anyway. Maybe Ex does think this is on purpose, but if she could see past her anger she should realise why we did it. Dh was on a very good wage when they split and has always given more that he 'had' to IYSWIM.

Ex is very materialistic, whereas I'm more 'old hippy' but to tell DH he is 'denying his child' is below the belt.

FFS she is gonna ruin our Xmas with this, I know it.

tribpot Fri 24-Dec-10 10:31:42

A 37" flat screen telly? Jeepers! Well presumably it won't kill her to wait for that - what's she gonna do when she goes to uni? Drag it with her? That's a big bit of kit for a 15 year old to own.

I have no personal view on your dh being a SAHD, btw - mine is too. He has a small income from a rental property so it's interesting to suppose what we would do in your circs, ds is also 5.

Could you forward the text to your phone, then delete from his? At least then you can control when he sees it. What a silly thing to spoil Christmas over, denying his child a 37" telly is hardly a deprivation!

Snorbs Fri 24-Dec-10 10:52:47

Don't delete the text. This is a text from his ex to him about his DD. Yes I know it affects you too but at its core this is his problem to deal with, not yours to try to manage.

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 11:18:26

Well I did the 'get out from under my feet' thing and sent him to the gym. He didn't take phone, and he's had another text just saying 'well?'

she's obv just spoiling for a fight.

I've marked them both unread and put phone back. Just wait for the fallout I suppose.

I know it's not right, so I've not deleted it. I just didn't want to deal with this today sad

ladydeedy Fri 24-Dec-10 11:42:18

it's a bit sad that you have to do this. As you say, she is spoiling for a fight. By not responding (if your DH can do this) he will defuse the situation. She hasnt "won" - he has in fact made a considered decision to stay out of conflict over something ridiculous and petty and not worthing getting cross about at Christmas. If the ex wants the child to have a particular present at christmas, and doesnt want to pay for it herself, then that is tough, frankly.

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 12:43:32

Thanks lady, that's the track I'm going to try to take, just don't respond, it will piss her off more etc. It might work.

I really hope that DSD isn't in on this, I wouldn't put it past the ex, but hope our good relationship counts for sometime. But then she's 15, so I can't expect her to be too over mature. As far as she is concerned she wants a tv and it's our fault she's not getting one.

I want to say FFS it's a TV, not a kidney. Why the drama?

LaurieFairyonthetreeEatsCake Fri 24-Dec-10 12:52:59

Ok, but keeping it to bare facts and from your dh's ex point of view:

1. she gets £200 a month to keep her child
2. she expected more for Christmas and she texted to ask for it to be told no
3. and not just 'no' but was told that your daughter will get more because it comes from you

I'm going to guess from her point of view that she thinks her child has a worse standard of living than yours - because he doesn't work and because your daughter is going to get more than hers. It sounds like she expected to get more money towards Christmas.

Your point of view is of course different but the step daughter is caught in the middle of it whether you all like it or not.

It's not the TV in itself, it's that to your stepdaughter it may look like she's not getting as much as your daughter.

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 14:29:10

My daughter isn't getting less than hers, actually it's the other way round. My DD has had 100 spent on her. We have spent the same on DSD. DSD is also getting stuff (over 300) spent on her by her mum.

If ex is hurting for money why is she spending 200 on her daughter for Xmas, AND giving her 150 towards tv, AND expecting us to give another 150?

LaurieFairyonthetreeEatsCake Fri 24-Dec-10 14:34:42

"Replied that both had same amount spent on them and that any extra money comes from me".

Maybe she's misunderstood? as I certainly did?

The above sentence makes it sound as if you are buying your little girl more.

LtEveDallas Fri 24-Dec-10 14:55:00

I see what you mean, but it's just the way I put it here. In the text it says 'sorry but no, we have already bought (dsd) presents. She has got £100, same as (dd). I don't have another £150, it would have to come from (ltEve). We are being fair here' (because she told him to remember he had 2 daughters)

sorry for confusion.

Anyway he's seen the text, blew up, and now walking dog. Hopefully he will calm down on walk

WildistheWind Fri 24-Dec-10 15:14:07

hi Eve- It seems to me that you are being quite fair here and I don't understand why you should be expected to shell out more- end of.

We plan our own gifts for all our children in an equal way and what they do in their mum's house has nothing to do with us- I can't see why they or we would have to spend more money on gifts that weren't planned by all parties in the first place.

If anything my DBDs get more between the 2 houses but it's not about the gifts , it's about being with both your families and enjoying the time together.

She has no right to make it difficult for you. She is being petty.

Antidote Fri 24-Dec-10 15:23:23

Just doing some sums:

The TV costs £300 now (price will fall in Jan sales I imagine).

Mum has given her £150 towards this, you have given her £50 to spend on what she wants. she is over half way there.

With a bit of saving, earning from doing chores and prices falling in the sales I think that plasma screen is in the bag.

I appreciate this is completely not the point, but may be useful in diffusing the argument.


Libby10 Mon 27-Dec-10 14:13:33

We have generally resisted buying joint presents for christmas and birthdays and are fairly open about what we intend to spend in advance. I think given the length of the split and the age of your DSD it is strange that you would still be buying joint presents unless agreed in advance. I would just ignore the text - it is annoying that some exes feel they can vent their frustration whenever but it doesn't seem worthwhile joining in. I'd leave it for her to sort out with your DSD. As an aside, we did notice that as our kids got older they grew more sceptical about ex continually saying she didn't have money to spend on them - it may be that this is happening with your DSD and is even more reason to leave them to it.

droves Fri 31-Dec-10 21:48:40

how many children have 37 inch tellys in their bedrooms ? ffs .


.... You could always offer to buy that telly for dsd , with the proviso that it stays in your house ? . If ex goes nuts , then its not for dsd .wink

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