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To feel awkward about our financial situation?

310 replies

Choppypog · 15/03/2023 16:15

Over the last few years my DH has been doing insanely well in his job, to the point he is going to be getting a very large sum of money soon which will make us very wealthy.
I work in the public sector on a fairly low wage all things relative, but I am a professional and got to where I am through 4 years of uni and hard graft.
I went part time after having our daughter however so my income is really very tiny in comparison.

Urgh, I'm probably going to get flamed for this, because it certainly isn't a bad problem to have considering the hardship many are putting up with out there...

But honestly, I feel so awkward about it all.
I didn't grow up in a wealthy environment, and all of a sudden we are in a position where we can buy whatever we want, go on whatever holidays we want, we can invest in a much bigger/nicer property.

I think there's a couple of reasons. Firstly I'm starting to worry about what friends/colleagues think. I often get jokey remarks about how amazing my life is, our 'fancy' cars, things like that. I feel awkward talking about it when people comment.

The second is I guess is I feel awkward about it not really being my wealth. It's my husband's. I almost feel like it's not really mine. Especially now I only work two days a week. Yea I could buy myself a nicer car, but my DH has paid for it. He argues what's his is mine, which on paper it is, but mentally it doesn't feel that way.

I guess I know I'm BU but I just need advice regarding how to adjust to all this and whether I need a good slap round the head and told to just enjoy it!

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?


You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

Ibizamumof4 · 16/03/2023 17:53

I would feel the same so get you. Maybe it’s because you haven’t earned it directly yourself and also the guilt as other people are struggling ? But yeah be careful what you say to who as people will be jealous as that’s just human nature at times !

Dizzybet74 · 16/03/2023 17:54

Be proud of what you've achieved as a team..and yes it is your money too as you've facilitated him being able to work full time whilst you work part time and look after your daughter.

nannykatherine · 16/03/2023 17:57

Donate it all to charity then

Littleladygeorge · 16/03/2023 18:03

Enjoy it and ignore the comments, at the end of the day it’s jealousy pure and simple.

Crazycatladyy · 16/03/2023 18:13

OK. So my take on this would be, yes it's a nice position to be in. You should not feel bad about it and your friends should be pleased for you. I know that some will be jealous but so long as they don't expect you to pay every time you go out, and nor should you offer and everything's kept on an even footing this should not change your relationship. By all means buy the odd coffee if you want to, but don't fund whole meals out, etc.

You are in a position to be able to secure your children's future, start putting money aside for them for when they're older, invest in their education.

Get a financial adviser if you don't have one. Invest wisely for your future as there will come a time when you and DH want to slow down, take time out, change career, etc.

Most of all enjoy it and don't feel guilty.

Cersai · 16/03/2023 18:13

Enjoy your blessings! If someone does make a snarky comment just say “thank you, I feel blessed or I feel lucky “. Your husband is right - you have built a life together, raised kids (lions share I’m assuming you are doing ), made a house a home.. thats a lot of contribution to a beautiful relationship .

Doggate1 · 16/03/2023 18:18

those who care don’t matter and those who matter don’t care !
I mean who talks about their money and lifestyle. Why would anyone know or even want to know? They probably will think you took out on credit cards or a relative died. How would they know what car you have and how much you paid for it or even care? Why do you have to even tell anyone where you shop, or where you go out to eat or where you go on holiday?? How will they even know where you live? I have worked for many companies over the years and not one person knows what my husband does, that our children are privately educated etc etc
truly … no one cares

Dibbydoos · 16/03/2023 18:19

Congrats OP.

I do understand your worries, but tgey are unfounded.

Your DH can work and earn as he does because you in part sacrificed your career for family and home, so he's right. His wealth is your wealth.

Ref colleagues, what they think is tgeir problem. Don't brag about things or anything, just your life and don't keep buying for everyone either. If you want to bring in a treat to share some of the good luck, then do that but just do it once.


bonkersconkers101 · 16/03/2023 18:26

I don't think you're being unreasonable OP. Firstly because having worked hard to achieve a certain level of income/professional status, it can't be easy to have that so quickly ridden over undermined by a partner on a higher wage.

Secondly because your husband's money doesn't give you what your own money did: total mental and financial independence. I've always taken pride in working hard to earn the money I enjoy. I think suddenly finding myself considerably wealthier without having personally earned it would make me question my value, even if that sounds totally nuts!

However, that's marriage and what's his is equally yours. If things were the other way round and he was massively in debt, that debt would also be yours. Maybe muse that you're on the luckier side of that deal on your next spa day Wink

HikingforScenery · 16/03/2023 18:27

It’s such a shame you’re so in your head about it. There are plenty of £80+K cars round my way and we’re not really in a
particularly affluent area. A spa break is far from a big deal, not really luxury.
What kind of friends do you have outside work, etc , etc.

Enjoy being comfortable.

I am grateful for our position but i never feel awkward about it. We both work FT though , but I never felt awkward when i was earning significantly less than DH. I knew it was a very temp situation, thankfully.

heyyouitsme · 16/03/2023 18:31

You’ll lose some friends, in my experience some people can cope with it and others just can’t.

My advice is, try to stay grounded because it will get harder and harder as time goes on. Your life becomes normal to you and over time you just have different problems that’s all.

moomoomoo27 · 16/03/2023 18:34

We are kind of in a similar situation (been growing a business with my partner for several years and our monthly profit is now more than most of our friends' yearly household incomes). However, we haven't changed much - still live in a tiny terrace, we don't even own a car or a dishwasher (mainly because we have far too much going on to think about big life changes). One or two have made the odd comment, because we can obviously afford to be paying a lot of people's salaries in an expensive sector, we've just moved into a huge office, and we've spent 2 years upgrading our house. We like nice food/drink, tech and gadgets, and going away a lot, but other than that our time and energy is consumed with people and animals and our business.

This is a privileged comment, but once you get used to it, money is more of an energy/byproduct than anything else. I don't care about having money other than beyond it being what I hand over to do the things I want to do. I don't sit there counting it or thinking about what other people think of it, I'm too busy with my life.

I've worked for a lot of incredibly rich people in the past and you wouldn't know that the plain black t-shirt they're wearing cost £300 or their sunglasses were £15k or they have several million pound holiday homes all over the world. They don't talk about it, not because they're consciously playing it down, but because it doesn't occur to them.

As people have said, if it makes you feel bad then donate some or use it for random acts of kindness. You could also make a list of people who've really been there for you in the past completely genuinely without expecting anything back, and send them something nice anonymously or treat them to something. You can also invest in charities like Kiva where your money is loaned to people who need it and then they pay it back for you to reinvest. There's also a big push for generational wealth at the moment, so investing in something for your children (even multiple types of things) could be a good way to not think strangely about money but still keep it in the family and not throw it away on random things.

Anele22 · 16/03/2023 18:38

Be generous. Give to charity when you can and enjoy the spoils of your / and your husband's hard earned labour.

Mummadeze · 16/03/2023 18:38

My sister is very wealthy, well, her husband is. She gave up her good career to support him. She is grateful, generous and sensitive. She still talks about finding a good bargain in a cheap clothes shop even though I know she has lots of designer clothes as well. She never makes me feel inferior even though I am much much much less wealthy. She volunteers. She has just remained down to earth. I think you will get used to it so long as your husband respects you and doesn’t resent your earnings in any way.

user3199 · 16/03/2023 18:45

I sort of get where you're coming from OP. Our income is decent but we're not wealthy (we only have our income, no family money). In a few years it's possible my DP will inherit a substantial sum of money. If that comes to pass we would suddenly be able to afford a much better house/area but I do think I'd find it hard to accept an expensive home as 'mine' as up until now in my life I've worked for everything I have. I don't know if that's something others relate to.

With regards colleagues - I work with a number of lower-grade, older women (50s and 60s) who earn less than half what I do but who can afford to live in expensive areas, big holidays, private schooling children etc. Presumably because they have a high earning partner. I don't really give it any thought to be honest, it's none of my business.

LaSevillana · 16/03/2023 18:46

These humblebrags are really draining. The past few years have been brutal for many of us and a lot of the country are struggling to heat their houses or put food on the table right now. Many others have had all sorts of life challenges caused by the pandemic, from losing vital dating time at the end of fertile years, to marriages or relationships collapsing from the strain of lockdowns, to long Covid.

This doesn't even qualify as a first world problem - it's frankly quite insulting to frame it as one. There's nothing wrong with wanting to be wealthy and comfortable and enjoying your wealth, but for the love of God, stop finding things to complain about for the sake of it. If you feel uncomfortable about people knowing how great your life is, then just don't talk about it at work. Keep it vague when asked personal questions. There, not so difficult, is it?

TeenLifeMum · 16/03/2023 18:48

I find this really weird. No one at work has a clue what my dh earns so I can only assume you’re flash with the cash which would make me uncomfortable. I work in a hospital management office with PAs on 24k and chief medical officer with his consultant first shifts taking him over £200k. Everyone treats each other with equal respect.

Lostinalibrary · 16/03/2023 18:50

I could have written this exact post - until you described my colleagues reactions. Mine don’t care but I don’t think about it and I don’t talk about it. Maybe that’s why.

Sudoku88 · 16/03/2023 18:56

It’s lovely that your DH says what’s his is yours . It shows he is a decent man- so enjoy it. Don’t feel bad, guilty or embarrassed

lcl · 16/03/2023 19:03

I am in a very similar situation. Just sadly be prepared for many green eyed people. As we have achieved more success our friendship circle has dwindled. I am learning that I am too old for people I am unsure of. Enjoy this security and never feel guilty. Others will always try and piss on your bonfire.

EmmaGrundyForPM · 16/03/2023 19:06

I'm.not in your position, OP. I work in the public sector and DH works for a charity. I have a couple of colleagues whose partners are high earners, and I never really think about it or judge unless they send their dc to private school, and then a bit of me thinks "how could they do that" but its a judgement about their politics not their finances!

And some of my colleagues think I'm loaded because we've just bought a house that costs a lot - but only because our previous house was in a very good location and increased in value due to the market, so we got lucky.

Enjoy your situation, but don't share too much with your colleagues. It's none of their business!

CandlelightGlow · 16/03/2023 19:12

GoodChat · 15/03/2023 16:54

Sorry but this is a pretty entitled attitude

Blimey. It might be grabby but it would be a cold day in hell before I was buying myself a million pound holiday home while my parents couldn't afford a stair lift.

ZombiesForever · 16/03/2023 19:15

You are reading too much into this. Its normal if people go on a spa break for colleagues to say things like wish I could be there, sounds lovely.

Meandfour · 16/03/2023 19:20

Choppypog · 15/03/2023 16:26

Fair question.
Noticing my car in the car park (especially when I take DH's car to work).
And the fact we've just been for a spa break (it only came up in conversation because someone asked if we had any breaks planned)...I guess people aren't daft.

Spa breaks and nice cars aren’t exactly unusual OP. I think you’re overthinking it. In the nicest way, I’m sure your colleagues don’t care. “Oh nice car Sarah” it’s harmless small talk. A passing comment. They aren’t dwelling on it and nor should you.

Natalie2821 · 16/03/2023 19:24

There’s much more to life/personality than how much money you have. It doesn’t automatically make you a better or more deserving person than someone else.
No one needs to know how much money you have unless you tell them. I don’t see the issue why you would worry so much you are just in a very fortunate position and should be grateful that your life will be made that little bit more easier.
As to whether you’re spending your husbands money- you’re in a marriage with him therefore you shouldn’t feel like it isn’t yours.

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