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DP and "not wanting to worry me"

(9 Posts)
BertieBotts Sun 14-Aug-11 13:49:55

Disclaimer: I might well be in a horrible mood, I've got a horrible cold, potty training is going badly, and CBeebies is getting right on my wick. But still.

Is this a thing? Men trying to deal with problems (esp. money, or emotional things going on with their family) by themselves and not bloody discussing it with you because "Oh I didn't want to worry you". What the hell? What does he think is going to happen if I worry? Am I going to self-implode? And how come it's fine for me to worry about some things, like DS, or some phone call I need to make, but not others?

We have a very equal relationship, on most things I feel like we're tackling stuff together, we discuss things, we're very open, but this morning he comes home with a load of stuff to sell on ebay saying he hopes it will fetch around £3-400 and we need that. WTF? I know things were a bit tight, but we suddenly need £300? Does he forget that I can actually do maths, in fact, better than him, and I'd be quite capable of working out a proper plan if we could just talk it through and look through the figures together? (Also I think he might be wrong about this £300 figure anyway, at least through ebay. This stuff is nice, and deserves proper looking at to see where to sell it properly, if he really wants to get what it's worth. Not a snap decision let's sell this on ebay.)

I know this is more of an AIBU, but I didn't want a million and one answers saying exactly what my mum has this morning - that men do feel responsible for finances, and like to be in control, and that he probably needs reminding that I will be contributing to the family as well once I finish my studies. He knows this (he's not stupid just because he's a man!) and I don't see why this doesn't mean I get input in the meantime. We haven't been living together long, about a month, so I realise these things take time to sort out. But I want to be equal and not take a back seat. I want to be in control too!

Katisha Sun 14-Aug-11 13:53:24

"I didn't want to worry you" often means "I didn't want you to find out".

Why does he think you are short of £300?

KRIKRI Sun 14-Aug-11 13:59:11

Bertie, I don't think it applies to all men. My first H was happy for me to do ALL the worrying about finances (and eventually the making of all money to live on, too) - but that wasn't a good thing either. My DH now and I DO share the good and the bad, the worries and the opportunities. It's been that way from the start and maybe that's why it's been easier to continue along these lines.

But, I agree that some men ARE conditioned to just "handle stuff," and it takes some un-learning to move away from that. Sometimes it genuinely IS about control in a relationship, but I think other times it's about feeling it's a man's responsibility to provide.

You say that you've only been living together a month and this is cropping up - so imho, it's important to address it now before it continues. Talk to him openly about how it's making you feel. Perhaps say that you can understand why he doesn't want to worry you, but that by not sharing things with you, it's worrying you even MORE and undermining your feeling of being in a genuine, equitable partnership. Best of luck.

BertieBotts Sun 14-Aug-11 14:13:19

He thinks we are short because he wants to save for DS' university fund. (DS is 2, BTW.) I think we're fine because we are going to just about scrape by this month and hopefully by the end of the month the adjusted tax credits claim is going to have come through. And growing up I never had any illusions of having any kind of university fund because we were always skint and there was only my mum - his family are really close-knit and support one another and I suppose his sense of having to (and wanting to) provide for DS when he's older are a lot stronger than mine. (DS isn't his, but he loves him like a son, and considers him as good as one.) We just have different priorities, which is fine, but it irks me that he's either assumed my priorities are the same as his, or assumed his priorities trump mine. However I may be overthinking this.

I didn't mean to imply I thought it was a "man thing" but I wondered if it was a common thing and what it actually meant, because with my "angry feminist" head on, it means "This is far too important an issue for you to worry your poor tiny female head about, now go and sit down and do some sewing before you get hysterical." (And DP is really not like this at all! But I wondered if on some level he did feel he had to "protect" me from things like this.)

I don't think he's hiding anything consciously, but I did insist before he moved in that I was made aware of the state of his finances. He has a bit of debt, but not massive amounts, and he isn't irresponsible with money as a rule.

KRIKRI Sun 14-Aug-11 14:14:45

Whatever the reason, talk to him about what you are feeling. It sounds like he would be genuinely receptive, and most probably will welcome the opportunity to talk about it as well. Take good care!

BertieBotts Sun 14-Aug-11 14:18:16

Thanks, KRIKRI. I am sure we will talk about it, just didn't have much chance this morning.

PenguinArmy Sun 14-Aug-11 21:01:57

hopefully it's his way of saying we need to talk about this, however he should just come out and say it instead of foistering a decision on you

Dozer Sun 14-Aug-11 21:08:50

Agree with katisha. Or it can mean "I don't want to have to talk about it",

Dozer Sun 14-Aug-11 21:09:18

Or (worse) I don't want to listen to what you have to say about it.

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