Really angry about the finances


#1

...and a lot of things in my marriage right now.

My husband WON'T sit down to do the budget with me. It's a major source of strife right now, because we are constantly being called by creditors. I'm going back to work in a month or so (part-time) to help out.

I'm really aggravated, because I sometimes feel like the only adult in the family. My husband is very good about going to work, etc, but he goofs off on all of the other traditional husband tasks like taking care of the lawn, the cars, the finances.

I sat down and laid out a budget for us and came up with a paydown plan that would get us out from under any/all debt within 2 years. He agreed to follow it a few months ago. Things were going pretty well. We still weren't saving at a decent rate, but we at least didn't have NSF fees and we had paid off a couple of high-interest, payday loans that were eating us alive. We were also current on all of our bills.

Well, a month ago that stopped. I would tell him "we have to sit down and plan together so we stay on the right track" and he didn't. Every time I mentioned it he snapped at me "I know, enough already, I get it, stop telling me". But, then we never sat down to look at things.

Now, it's back the way it was with him spending whatever/whenever and never looking at the budget. I try to keep my stuff straight and stick to our plan, but it doesn't really matter when he's doing whatever/whenever. My efforts are a drop in the bucket.

It got so bad last week I had to pawn some of my things to make sure we could make it.

This is stupid, mainly, because we're living on over $6500 per month. I've run the numbers, we've got enough to pay our debts, feed/cloth the kids, and put away savings.

In NSF fees caused per month alone we're paying $160-$400 a month plus his habit of hitting up pay day lenders. At one point, between payday loans and NSFs we were putting out an extra $800 per month...and that doesn't even account for late fees and other finance charges.

I'm ready to rip my hair out because the real problem isn't how much he makes it is the undisciplined spending/saving practices that are killing us. No one can spend whatever/whenever, really. Maybe Bill Gates, but that's about it. The rest of us have to have some discipline.

It's really simple. I've crunched all the numbers and shown him how we can do this. We WERE doing it for months, but now he's fighting me like a child that doesn't want to eat his veggies.

Has anyone else been through this??? How do I get to stop acting like MOM to everyone in this house? I'd much rather be wife at least some of the time.


#2

Wannabcatholicmom -
I have no advice for you, but I just wanted to offer a prayer and support. It sounds like your husband is out of control with his behavior right now, and is refusing to acknowledge reality. Does he perhaps have a mental illness, such as depression, that might be causing him to behave delusionally and antagonistically?
I have read many of your posts and I am aware of how hard you are trying to move your family toward a more Godly path. This is very commendable, but the reality is, it cannot happen without your husband's active involvement and willingness to LEAD his family in holiness. A priest might be a good person to guide you in what steps you should take to address these problems in a constructive fashion. I hope that other people here at the forum can offer some helpful ideas for you, too.
Praying for you and your husband...:gopray:


#3

[quote="mommamaree, post:2, topic:212786"]
Wannabcatholicmom -
I have no advice for you, but I just wanted to offer a prayer and support. It sounds like your husband is out of control with his behavior right now, and is refusing to acknowledge reality. Does he perhaps have a mental illness, such as depression, that might be causing him to behave delusionally and antagonistically?
I have read many of your posts and I am aware of how hard you are trying to move your family toward a more Godly path. This is very commendable, but the reality is, it cannot happen without your husband's active involvement and willingness to LEAD his family in holiness. A priest might be a good person to guide you in what steps you should take to address these problems in a constructive fashion. I hope that other people here at the forum can offer some helpful ideas for you, too.
Praying for you and your husband...:gopray:

[/quote]

Thanks mommamaree. I agree, and I'm really looking forward to talking to a priest. I don't know if I can at this point and being in RCIA. We've tried counselling, but that's been a mixed success. He usually twists what the counselor says to the point that you'd think the counselor was endorsing his bad behavior.

He has had alcohol and depression issues in the past. But, we've come through that. I mean, he's turned around a lot. Just NOT drinking anymore is a major accomplishment. So, there is hope.

He does need to LEAD though. As the mom, I'm not the natural leader of the family. My boys really look to him for guidance. I can see it in their eyes. Right now, my oldest is very disheartened by what he sees and has told me that he doesn't trust his father to be honest with him or answer his questions. :( He doesn't even think my husband likes him. :( My oldest is very honest, clean cut, and very strong about faith. He said he felt like a "weight had been lifted off his chest" when I finally came to my senses and got them back to church. He's really excited about RE and communion.

But, that's another matter. I know there's good underneath my husband's flashes of immaturity and bad attitude. If I could get my husband to accept God and straighten up, we'd all be healthier for it. I feel strongly opposed to divorce and I won't give up without something outrageously dangerous happening (he was in prison at one point in our marriage related to multiple drunk-driving events, but that's been nearly a decade ago now). Whenever I've felt there was a potential for harm to me or the kids, we've left for a while and let him have time to think about it. Not separation, just avoiding his destructiveness.

I guess I'll just keep praying and try to remain dignified in my own behavior as much as possible. God's done a lot for us so far. I know it will work out eventually. I guess I just wish it would happen faster, but, that's how it is. ;)


#4

Well... the things I would try.... Not knowing your exact situation, you'll have to determine what will work.

1)Get direct deposit on his payroll.

I assume you are both on the the account that you would direct deposit to? Transfer that balance or most of it to an account with JUST YOUR NAME on it. Pay bills, and buy groceries, and clothing from there. TRANSFER the 2nd it hits the account. I wonder if you can have his wages garnished? No idea how that might work... But it would certainly bypass his wallet...

2)Vist all those check lending places, and inform them of your bad credit. See if you can prevent them from lending $$ (not sure if this is even possible). This is where I see the biggest problem. He's aquiring REALLY high interest debt.

3)Lose DH's debit & credit cards. Fail to re-order. If you can't get your hands on them, just call the banks and say they've been lost. They will be frozen, and he can't spend. Watch the mail for the new ones... CUT THEM UP!

4) BURN all your checks. Or keep them under lock and key.

The problem is, YOUR credit also goes into the toilet with his. I'm not sure what legal protection you might have... As a married couple his credit is yours.

5) have DH work from cash only. When it's gone, it's gone.

Well, these are the things I would try. I've a read one or 2 of your other posts. Not sure if this would instigate world war 3. So use your judgement. Let him know that you're willing to control all the $$ without a monthly meeting. But he can't dip in when he wants. Agree to an amount he can have as spending $$...

Prayers for you. Finances can be such a drama.


#5

I am so sorry that you are struggling. I am married for 15 years and quite a few years ago, my DH ran up a huge amount of debt under his own name and hid it from me. We wound up in serious financial straights, to the point of him having to take drastic measures. It stressed our marriage big time. After that, I INSISTED on taking care of the finances. I have been doing just that ever since. There are a lot of (personal) reasons that I dislike handling that, but it is what it is.

My situation is obviously different, but the feeling of "I don't WANT to be in charge all the time" resonates with me. I didn't ask for this assignment, but I look at is as I was given the duty and in order to keep family peace, it has just become part of my "job."

I don't want to pry, but I assume you know where all this "spending" money is going? I know my DH cannot resist buying stuff for our daughter (who has way too much stuff, IMHO) :rolleyes:. Now we are to the point that I actually give him a dollar amount to be spent each week. IF he has to go over, he has to tell me (ahead of time) in order to ensure there is "extra." It sounds like your DH is still rebelling against the rules, and I sympathize. That can be terribly difficult.

Again, I know my situation isn't the same exactly, but I can understand how you feel. Please feel free to PM me if you need. God Bless, my sister and good luck. I am praying for you!

Pax


#6

I'm sure this suggestion is not new to you.

Al-Anon.

Many of the suggestions that might work for others will not necessarily work for your husband who is a recovering alcoholic. I'm sure you realize that he has survived a devastating, often deadly disease and is still in a very young, precarious stage in his recovery. This is not a situation that can be helped with a few suggestions from people like me who've never lived through what you and your husband are experiencing.

IMO, the best possible way to try to straighten things out in your family is for you to become involved with others who are living through the recovery of a spouse from alcoholism, and now have a strong, healthy family.

These people have shared your experience with a recovering alcoholic, and they will no doubt be able to not only give you practical suggestions, but also encouragement and hope and friendship.


#7

[quote="wannabcathmom, post:1, topic:212786"]
It got so bad last week I had to pawn some of my things to make sure we could make it.

[/quote]

You pawned **your **things? Not his? That says a lot, don't you think?

[quote="wannabcathmom, post:1, topic:212786"]
now he's fighting me like a child that doesn't want to eat his veggies.

[/quote]

Well, you married a boy. Don't you think it's a little unfair of you to expect him to be anything else, especially this late in the game?

[quote="wannabcathmom, post:1, topic:212786"]
Has anyone else been through this??? How do I get to stop acting like MOM to everyone in this house?

[/quote]

Simple: you stop acting like Mom. That means you stop cleaning up his messes after him. From now on you pawn **his **things. I've been through this before, but in my case it got so bad that we did a little counseling and then I did a little dumping. Thank God there were no vows - or children - involved.

p.s. Do what you need to do to protect your credit. I'm not talking about playing the nagging game, I'm talking about his-n-hers accounts. Get your papers in order. Yes, it will be ugly, but you need to protect yourself or he will take you down with him.


#8

[quote="faithfully, post:4, topic:212786"]
Well... the things I would try.... Not knowing your exact situation, you'll have to determine what will work.

1)Get direct deposit on his payroll.

I assume you are both on the the account that you would direct deposit to? Transfer that balance or most of it to an account with JUST YOUR NAME on it. Pay bills, and buy groceries, and clothing from there. TRANSFER the 2nd it hits the account. I wonder if you can have his wages garnished? No idea how that might work... But it would certainly bypass his wallet...

2)Vist all those check lending places, and inform them of your bad credit. See if you can prevent them from lending $$ (not sure if this is even possible). This is where I see the biggest problem. He's aquiring REALLY high interest debt.

3)Lose DH's debit & credit cards. Fail to re-order. If you can't get your hands on them, just call the banks and say they've been lost. They will be frozen, and he can't spend. Watch the mail for the new ones... CUT THEM UP!

4) BURN all your checks. Or keep them under lock and key.

The problem is, YOUR credit also goes into the toilet with his. I'm not sure what legal protection you might have... As a married couple his credit is yours.

5) have DH work from cash only. When it's gone, it's gone.

Well, these are the things I would try. I've a read one or 2 of your other posts. Not sure if this would instigate world war 3. So use your judgement. Let him know that you're willing to control all the $$ without a monthly meeting. But he can't dip in when he wants. Agree to an amount he can have as spending $$...

Prayers for you. Finances can be such a drama.

[/quote]

Amen to that. Yes, we have direct deposit. He opened up to accounts with a split direct deposit. Which is a disaster because now we end up with twice the number of NSFs and bounced checks. On top of that, he opened a bank account at the bank where I had a savings account in my name. When I had that, at least, I could cash a check if someone gave me something for my birthday (for example) even if he'd screwed up everything else. When he opened that account, I started having trouble cashing anything "oops, it looks like your husband is overdrawn.."

I have tried taking money out of the account, taking over the account, forcing the use of cash only. And I've learned one thing: when someone really doesn't want to listen, they're very creative in undermining your efforts to the contrary. Everything from writing checks by phone with written bank info (not even physical checks) to getting loans and credit cards w/o my foreknowledge.

Such drama, indeed. I hate money.

My mantra has been "cash only, cash only--it's gone, it's gone" but that's been a train-wreck. I even had him watching "Til Debt Do Us Part" with hopes of inspiration. Nope.

[quote="Trinity117, post:5, topic:212786"]
I am so sorry that you are struggling. I am married for 15 years and quite a few years ago, my DH ran up a huge amount of debt under his own name and hid it from me. We wound up in serious financial straights, to the point of him having to take drastic measures. It stressed our marriage big time. After that, I INSISTED on taking care of the finances. I have been doing just that ever since. There are a lot of (personal) reasons that I dislike handling that, but it is what it is.

My situation is obviously different, but the feeling of "I don't WANT to be in charge all the time" resonates with me. I didn't ask for this assignment, but I look at is as I was given the duty and in order to keep family peace, it has just become part of my "job."

I don't want to pry, but I assume you know where all this "spending" money is going? I know my DH cannot resist buying stuff for our daughter (who has way too much stuff, IMHO) :rolleyes:. Now we are to the point that I actually give him a dollar amount to be spent each week. IF he has to go over, he has to tell me (ahead of time) in order to ensure there is "extra." It sounds like your DH is still rebelling against the rules, and I sympathize. That can be terribly difficult.

Again, I know my situation isn't the same exactly, but I can understand how you feel. Please feel free to PM me if you need. God Bless, my sister and good luck. I am praying for you!

Pax

[/quote]

Sometimes we do have to take charge, and I understand that. I suppose, it wouldn't be so bad to take charge if I were allowed to actually do it. What ends up happening is that he plays Mr. Jerk Teenager with the family finances while I try to beg, plead, and fight my way to sanity saying "moderation" "cash" and "budget" all the way.

Prayers are appreciated, because I need the strength not to go insane and he needs the strength to develop better habits.

Spending money usually ends up going to friends (but so-n-so is in jail and needed some money in his account for the canteen), family, high interest loans, and stupid spending (look! I just got a new sub-woofer for my car!...or I just paid off XYZ debt, but now we don't have the money for the rest of our bills...oopsy!)

Yes, rebelling against the rules. Rebelling against being nearly 40 most of the time. He thinks his irresponsibility is "youthful"...and he's got time to worry about it all later.

Got news for him...he doesn't.


#9

You pawned **your **things? Not his? That says a lot, don't you think?

I'm running out of jewlry, I've pawned the necklace my dad gave me when I was 18, a bracelet from my mother, my class ring... keepsakes, antiques... but that's just stuff. I can't replace my family.

Well, you married a boy. Don't you think it's a little unfair of you to expect him to be anything else, especially this late in the game?

Well, it's a complicated story. It's not like I came from a stellar upbringing in a Catholic home and then just went wildly down the wrong path. I got off to a rough start and then woke up one day on the other side of wedding vows with a lot of mess to clean up after. I've been changing myself and fixing things up in my own right. I wouldn't be much of a wife if I didn't want to help my husband turn things around, would I? Throwing my hands up and letting the whole family slip off to hell doesn't seem like a very good battle plan or like something God would be really happy about. Better or worse...and all of that.

Simple: you stop acting like Mom. That means you stop cleaning up his messes after him. From now on you pawn **his **things. I've been through this before, but in my case it got so bad that we did a little counseling and then I did a little dumping. Thank God there were no vows - or children - involved.

I clean up the messes for the kids and for the family--not him specifically. I don't pawn his things because, well, that's just starting a fight and going tit for tat. If I thought it would make an impression, I might, but I know it would only be a source of more rebellion and pig-headedness. I'm not going to get anywhere with that sort of thing. I say that from experience. If I push too hard, it gets worse. I pushed hard regarding the alcohol and he showed me what he thought of all that pushing by getting into two accidents with two DUIs in the space of two months.

Things are a bit different when you have a history, a life, and kids in the mix. The best way to avoid a problem is never to start having one, but it's a little late for that. Again, we didn't come from good homes and good, Christian backgrounds.

That is by no means an excuse, but it is an explanation for the deeply entrenched garbage-thinking that has occurred. I can certainly attest to the fact that any sins committed now will be felt by generations to come. It ripples. I'm trying to do damage control by making freshly minted Catholics out of the lot of us, and trying to stop all that rippling from hurting my kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids.

p.s. Do what you need to do to protect your credit. I'm not talking about playing the nagging game, I'm talking about his-n-hers accounts. Get your papers in order. Yes, it will be ugly, but you need to protect yourself or he will take you down with him.

Too late for that. This is a community property state. My credit is already trashed by dint of being married to him. Believe it or not, there was a time when he didn't allow my name on any accounts (and we were married) and wouldn't give me any money to use for gas or food or anything for the kids. I had to use my savings, money from work, money from pawning things, or money from my grandparents to live. And then he got laid off and didn't work or even look for a job for a few months. Needed a "vacation"...

But that was back during a very dark period of alcoholism. Alcoholism is brutal. Believe it or not, things are much better now. He's cleaned up the act on the alcoholism and is at least willing to meet me half way on going to church and much nicer to the kids.

Someday we'll get there. We're just not there yet. You know, people who come from good families who are close and/or are faithful to the Catholic Church have NO idea how lucky they are. When you grow up without the Church and without a good family to fall back on it's really hard to fight your way out of it.

A strong family and strong faith in God are priceless in this life and the next. Treasure in heaven, as I see it. I look at the stuff I pawn to make sure the house doesn't come down around our ears as just that. More down-payment on my treasures in heaven. :)


#10

Wannabcathmom -
I just read your most recent post and I gotta tell you...you are one amazingly strong and patient woman. I will be praying hard for you. Earlier today, I started praying for you and the Lord just laid on my heart all these things to pray about for your family. I will continue in earnest, and I am sure you can count on the prayers and continued support of so many of the good people here at CAF.

Your sister in Christ,
mommamaree


#11

[quote="wannabcathmom, post:9, topic:212786"]
You pawned **your **things? Not his? That says a lot, don't you think?

I'm running out of jewlry, I've pawned the necklace my dad gave me when I was 18, a bracelet from my mother, my class ring... keepsakes, antiques... but that's just stuff. I can't replace my family.

[/quote]

You know... You have a better attitude about this than I would. I would have absolutely sold his non emotional items, and NOT my momentos from my family.

You are amazing for even trying to figure this out. Seriously. I just googled around for some ideas, and basically I have found no solution, other than divorce.

You know, I would talk to a priest to see how this MIGHT work? But I might tell my husband I was going to file for a civil divorce so that I could start building credit. Say, "honey, I don't plan on leaving you. But being legally married to you, is going to destroy our family. I can't risk losing our home etc. So, I'm going to divorce you. As you know in the church it won't be recognized. I love you and I will stay with you. But you clearly have no interest in our financial health. I'm going to do what I can. I'm going to seperate our legal ties from a credit standpoint. "

And then if he didn't step up. I'd do that.


#12

From someone who's been there, I'd say that the Al-Anon suggestion is very important.

Overall, I think that your husband is definitely rebelling against anything that curtails his freedom and choices, which is overall an adolescent-type of rebellion against authority. This includes rebelling against Authority = God. The fact that he wants to have his way and get away with it is a symptom.

He's a "dry drunk" and is trying to control what's going on his life with money, instead of medicating with alcohol, IMO.

He also isn't a mature man / husband /father if he can't appreciate how his actions affect his family. If you know of any Christian men who would be good role models for your husband to influence him, try to get him connected with them. Even something like a Protestant event like Promise Keepers might help.

Also, if you can move the household finance dollars to a new account in your name only, it may help curb some of your husband's out-of-control spending.

When I went with my husband to counselling after being at my wit's end, the counselor suggested that my husband be in charge of the money so he could deal with the ramifications. I don't necessarily think that would work in your case, at this point.

We did file for bankruptcy and it relieved the pressure a bit, but now we're living on a fixed income which finally seems to have gotten my husband's attention. He's much better about discussing purchases in advance.


#13

Dear OP,

I am very sorry you are going through this. What a lot of people don't realize is when someone quits drinking that in no way shape or form improves their life. It simply gives them the clear head they need in case they choose to make changes.

I respect your decision to stay with him. Unfortuantely, that means being willing to accept the consequences. It appears to me (and this is simply to help you understand where he is coming from) that your trying to 'get the family into a Catholic lifestlye' is making him feel like he is being controlled. I understand your reasons for wanting to take charge and I don't think he is having a mature reaction, but as long as he feels nagged he will rebel. Consequences are what is needed and by choosing to stay with him, you are not giving him any consequences. It is putting you in a difficult situation. I pray God will guide you

CM


#14

[quote="Suegra, post:12, topic:212786"]

He's a "dry drunk" and is trying to control what's going on his life with money, instead of medicating with alcohol, IMO.

[/quote]

Wannab, I agree with Suegra 100% on this.

Your husband sounds exactly like my daughter, who spends money that she doesn't have to buy things she doesn't need to compensate for the loss of her father when she was a little girl. It sounds to me that your husband is trying to fill a void in his life--which he previously filled with alcohol.

He is to be commended for quitting drinking, but is he receiving any ongoing counseling?

Miz


#15

I must have read this wrong. How much income do you have every month? How many in the family?
I saw the number $ 6,500 a month.
Never saw how many depend on that income.
Also noted the one making the income is being insulted here.

Is there a reason you can not make due with that income?


#16

"I'm going to do what I can. I'm going to seperate our legal ties from a credit standpoint. "

Sounds good but in the real world of "community property state" his debts are your debts and believe me they will hound you until you die. Ask me how I know this. :cool: The best YOU can hope for is to claim bankruptcy separate and apart from him. Otherwise the debt will be dropped in your lap. You really need to speak with an attorney or financial advisor about this because he is out of control. And with him being in so much debt if you did go through a divorce don't count on any alimony, and child support will be only what will be affordable for him. Been there done that for a long time. The house will be sold and the profit split. Where will you and the children live?

All of this is much too familiar unfortunately.

I would speak with an attorney and find out if there is anyway at this point to protect yourself financially--now and in the future. I would definitly get a job and keep my earnings separate from him to ensure the bills are paid.

Do you know where he is spending all this money?
Why does he need to keep taking out loans and where is that money?
Quit trying to bail out a sinking ship by pawning your things from your Mom and Dad.

You can try to get your name off the credit cards but if he is the primary card holder he will have to allow you to be taken off. The cards can not be closed out until the balance is paid. If you ask the credit card company to stop raising the credit limit, they will raise it even higher.

He has already taken you down the financial tubes. you really need some financial advice.


#17

My advice is to ask the mods to delete the thread now. Never talk about a legal matter pending on a forum.


#18

[quote="StrawberryJam, post:15, topic:212786"]
I must have read this wrong. How much income do you have every month? How many in the family?
I saw the number $ 6,500 a month.
Never saw how many depend on that income.
Also noted the one making the income is being insulted here.

Is there a reason you can not make due with that income?

[/quote]

Yes, YOU DID READ IT WRONG...

It's not that she couldn't make things work on $6500.00 a month. She had a plan for that. A PLAN that her husband agreed to. It's that her DH blows it before she can pay bills with it. Go back, and re-READ!!!! The WHOLE problem.

Whether you can see how one becomes dependant on their income is irrelevant. The reality is they are in deep debt. With a spender that acts unaware.

Also, note the one that earns the income, a man she loves and doing all that she can in her power to make her marriage last. He has a serious problem... unfortunately insulting the marriage.

Your lack of compassion is astounding...
Being the family earner does not earn the right to put them in financial crisis.


#19

[quote="faithfully, post:18, topic:212786"]
Yes, YOU DID READ IT WRONG...

It's not that she couldn't make things work on $6500.00 a month. She had a plan for that. A PLAN that her husband agreed to. It's that her DH blows it before she can pay bills with it. Go back, and re-READ!!!! The WHOLE problem.

Whether you can see how one becomes dependant on their income is irrelevant. The reality is they are in deep debt. With a spender that acts unaware.

Also, note the one that earns the income, a man she loves and doing all that she can in her power to make her marriage last. He has a serious problem... unfortunately insulting the marriage.

Your lack of compassion is astounding...
Being the family earner does not earn the right to put them in financial crisis.

[/quote]

I am still waiting to hear from the OP thank you.

You are not the OP, and I never saw any disclaimer that the OP gave that left you as her voice in absence.

Let her reply.


#20

[quote="StrawberryJam, post:15, topic:212786"]
I must have read this wrong. How much income do you have every month? How many in the family?
I saw the number $ 6,500 a month.
Never saw how many depend on that income.
Also noted the one making the income is being insulted here.

Is there a reason you can not make due with that income?

[/quote]

[quote="StrawberryJam, post:19, topic:212786"]
I am still waiting to hear from the OP thank you.

You are not the OP, and I never saw any disclaimer that the OP gave that left you as her voice in absence.

Let her reply.

[/quote]

Nope, No disclaimer that I speak for her.. I certainly DO NOT. It's just that I can read...However, As you can see. She answered your question in her original post.


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