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can't believe him -

(18 Posts)
brdgrl Wed 31-Aug-11 00:29:14

So. DH has a history of giving the kids presents when they finish exams. This is alien to me, definitely not a part of the family or social culture I was raised in, but I understand that it is fairly common at least amongst the kids' schoolmates, etc.

Relevant other points - we argue abut two things: 1, he indulges DSD and I feel that her desires often trump the needs of the other kids or of the family as a whole. 2, he makes major decisions without talking to me as a partner. We have also had some issues over money in the last year, mostly stemming from him not being able to manage money very well, getting into a bind, and then trying to hide it from me because he is ashamed of himself.

DSD just had her GCSEs. I suggested to DH a month or so ago that a new laptop might be a nice gift. She has a laptop but it is an older model (used to be DHs) and has some issues (battery life, etc). I'd seen some ads for good new laptops that were in a price range which, while it would be a stretch to our finances, would not be impossible. He seemed to think this was a great idea. We were both pleased at the thought and at how happy she was going to be.

Then the time gets closer, and he tells me that he's intending to spend £1000 to get her a really top of the line laptop. While we have some income, we both work part-time and are students part-time (both working on our PhDs), and mostly we live off savings at the moment, and we don't have a lot of financial stability. My engagement ring cost about £150, and I bought a dress on bay for £10. I haven't had new clothes since before I was pregnant - my maternity clothes were passed on from my sister. We bought a laptop for me when I was pregnant, for about £300. The baby wears clothes that were presents or her male cousin's handmedowns. I bought her a used (and kinda shabby) pram for £6. We don't go out, because we can't really afford a babysitter. Point being - we don't have a lot of money to spread around in the first place. and while I'd like the kids to have nice things, I think £1000 on a laptop for a teenager is a bit OTT.

So, we argued about the laptop. He agreed to look for one for about £500. He found one, too. Great. She's very happy, although I think that the upshot in his mind is that I prevented him from getting her that really amazing £1000 laptop, and the fact that it was my suggestion in the first place is totally forgotten; instead I'm just mean.

Then he tells me today that he also bought two other laptops at £300 each, which he plans to resell and try to make a profit on. So, he spent the £1000 anyway, and didn't consult me about it. I'm livid. Seething, really.

nickschick Wed 31-Aug-11 00:36:18

No yanbu....but i cant see he will stop.

Hope he does make a profit on them cos he owes you and baby a new dress and dinner out grin.

Sometimes I think as women we cope a little too well and sometimes I think it would wake the blokes up if we did irrational things ourselves like buying a new outfit, treating the baby.....go on I double dare you.

brdgrl Wed 31-Aug-11 00:42:35

well, I did tell him I was going to list his tv on ebay and see if we could make a profit from it...

I also suggested that I might take £600 from savings and spend it all on lottery tickets; after all, we might make a profit.

Then I told him that I want a separate account in my name, with a chuck of money put aside in it for the baby - so that we'll have something for her care after he runs through all the rest of the savings.

theredhen Wed 31-Aug-11 06:30:46

No YANBU. Its not just a step parenting issue, its a relationship issue. I suspect he's trying to make to put to be the bad guy to justify himself.

It doesn't matter what he spends the money on, it's the fact he's spending money you don't have. We have 4 teenagers here and none of them have a laptop!

My ex husband did something similar when ds was a baby, who too had second hand everything, no days out or nice things for me. Spent thousands he 'invested' into a 'toy' to make us extra money. I'm still waiting for my share in the profits. Lol.

MellonCollie Wed 31-Aug-11 08:59:34

You are NOT being unreasonable. £1000 on a laptop is ridiculous. I have been looking at laptops for DS and the £500 ones by far exceed what he would ever need unless he suddenly morphed into a high tech game paying business man overnight. His laptop will cost £400 max. My own laptop was only £350 and it's brilliant.

The laptop isn't the issue though is it, the issue is that he's not listening to you and you are blatantly not an equal partner in this relationship. Not in his eyes, anyway.

brdgrl Thu 01-Sep-11 22:37:38

thanks. you're right - the laptop cost is secondary; the real problem is that i've been left out of the decisions again.


Message withdrawn

HansieMom Sat 03-Sep-11 17:40:05

Can you get him to take the two back to the store? Or did he buy them used?

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 03-Sep-11 17:43:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

brdgrl Sun 04-Sep-11 23:39:02

Well, now he's going to keep one of the two "extras" for himself and pay back the 'household' account out of some money he was given for a bit of extra work. That's fair.

The other one he is going to sell on ebay. Sigh.

Still furious about the way he went about it all. We've talked (ok, shouted) about it a bit and I guess we're ok. I don't think he'll be doing it again...He's agreed to sit down this week for a real overhaul of our finances, so we'll see how that goes. I think we're going to change how we manage some of these things.

ChippingIn Sun 04-Sep-11 23:46:19

It is not fair. You are not in a position for him to be keeping money from extra work. Any money either of you earns should be household money. I couldn't live with this man child.

I'm pleased to hear you are going to sit down and talk about things, but it does worry me somewhat that you think him keeping extra money when you aren't flush is OK.

PontyMython Mon 05-Sep-11 00:06:34

Wow. I'd ask for this thread to be moved - this is nothing much to do with stepfamilies. He's just being a twat... A Disney dad, but also, a twat.

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 05-Sep-11 07:38:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TrainingJedi Mon 05-Sep-11 08:05:51

Brdgrl, I don't often make a judgement on other people's relationships on here but I've read a few of your threads and I don't wish to upset you but I feel it just has to be said - you are never going to be happy in this relationship.

Time and time again he has disrespected and disregarded your feelings and opinions, his DD (well, not her really but her Disney upbringing) is always going to act as a wedge between you and your DH.

I feel for you because you sounds so unhappy (and rightly so). He's not going to change. Be happy. You only live once.

brdgrl Tue 06-Sep-11 14:50:33

well - the 'his own' money thing - i didn't explain that right. it is not cash that he was given, but a budget for him to purchase things for his work and be reimbursed. so a laptop for himself can come out of that budget. so i guess that is why i see it as 'fair' - he's been given a lump sum to use towards certain things that will help him with his work, and the laptop will do that, and it doesn't take away from the household budget - it's not money he could have used toward rent or food or something anyway. so he can apply to be reimbursed for the laptop from that fund, and pay 'us' back.

to be honest, if he'd just said in the first place, "i think i'm going to use some of my work equipment budget for a laptop", i'd have asked him if he were sure he wanted a laptop more than some other things he could use that budget for - but it would be up to him and i do think its fair.

As for the rest - thanks. I mean that. I do still have faith in the relationship, because I have seen a lot of change over the time we have been together. It is not easy though, and it is never all good or all bad. We've been to breaking point with it just now, and we're trying to sort it out because I think we both know that it isn't going to work if we can't resolve at least these two issues - the Disney Dad parenting of DSD; and the way he makes decisions without consulting me. He's been amazing this week (yes, post-battle, so we'll see how it lasts!) - firm with DSD, communicating with me, was very honest and engaged at our counselling, maybe this is a turning point.

In all honesty, the Disney Dad stuff is so much better than it was two years ago. It is almost unrecognizable as the same relationship! So while there is still stuff that makes me unhappy about it, there IS change.

But I think something happened this last week or two, and he is making a real effort - because he knows, really knows, that I will leave if I think I can't, and DD can't, be happy and healthy here. So, I guess I'm feeling hopeful at the moment, but not blind to the problems.

chelen Tue 06-Sep-11 17:26:53

Hi, just wanted to offer some encouragement, I would have happily despatched/left/bludgeoned my OH on many occasions last year, but things are so different now. I know all that stuff about leopards & spots, but if a person wants to change for themselves then they can. We had some counselling which helped us talk rather than shout.

I've loads of friends who have been thru really rough patches and come out the other side too. Of course there are people who bang their heads against the same issues with no results, and I sometimes wonder why they carry on.

Hope things carry on improving, and fingers crossed things don't slip back round here...

MrsBradleyCooper Tue 06-Sep-11 17:46:37


Spending £1000 on anything when your DD has a £6 pram and hand me downs is nuts IMO.

You need to sit and have a very serious chat with him about what you expect from him with regards to your family finances.

ChippingIn Tue 06-Sep-11 20:31:37

Oh - that makes much more sense smile

I'm glad you feel things are still improving. However, I think you should set some kind of time line for it otherwise things may still keep getting a tad better but the overall situation might still not be 'good enough' iyswim.

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