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If you don't work/bring in income....

Posted by on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:19 AM
  • 26 Replies

Background:  About a year prior to DH and I getting married, he was laid off.  For the better part of 2 years, he was unemployed, BM was unemployed and I was supporting everyone, providing insurance, etc.  Then DH took a job in another state so I had to quit my job of 10 years to move.  Got a PT job in another field while I continue(d) to look for full time work in my field.  Hated the job, but we needed the money.  So out of the money I made, I've continued to pay my expenses (horse, student loans) and the travel expenses for the kids.

About a month ago, there was a family emergency and I couldn't get time off to go deal with it so I quit my PT job and went out to care for my Gma. 

My husband is getting ready to PCS for a year to another country.  With the holidays, we have quite a bit of travel planned to see the kids.  If I were working, I wouldn't be going.  We would instead fly the kids out here so I could work during the day and be home w/ them at night if Dad has to leave sooner rather than later.  So at this time, I have no intention of starting another job before the 1st of the year.  DH is on board with this.  I do have a couple of options on the horizon so this unemployed status won't last for long.  I can't stand not having my own income.

Question:  My question is, for those of you who don't bring in income, how do you handle finances, especially when it comes to non-essentials/gifts and covering your personal monthly expenses?  My total monthly personal expenses are about 600 dollars.  I don't shop, I don't go out to eat, go to movies, etc.  But I do have a horse (and that's a non-negotiable thing--established the day I met my husband.  He would not/will not ask me to give her up.)  And I have my student loan.

With the holidays coming up, I am a little worried that DH will over spend on gifts and leave nothing to cover my monthly expenses.  Last year, I paid for all gifts and travel out of my savings.  That's gone.  I'm kind of tempted to just pull some money out each time DH gets paid and throw it in my own account to make sure there is money available for my bills.  Seems kind of underhanded to me.  But my husband is the type who sees money in an account and spends it if the mood strikes him--doesn't think about the car payment or the rent.  Just thinks "Hey, SD would love that computer"  (EX:I found out he bought SD14 a computer for her bday this month when I got an overdraft notice while I was out caring for Gma)

I've never really been in a position where I didn't have my own bases covered.  But I can't work right now AND cover the bases he needs during this transition. 

by on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:19 AM
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Replies (1-10):
whatIknownow
by Emerald Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:23 AM


I would do this. I don't think it is underhanded at all. It seems like smart financial planning.

Quoting Birdseed:

 I'm kind of tempted to just pull some money out each time DH gets paid and throw it in my own account to make sure there is money available for my bills.  Seems kind of underhanded to me. 


bonitalilmama
by on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:23 AM
i thought when your married its our money and have a talk with him about budgeting. personally i don't think you should have to tell an adult not to forget major bills. sounds like he has his priorities mixed up
twinklebites
by Silver Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:24 AM

Could you let DH know you were going to pull out money to cover your expenses before hand would he be ok with that? Or does he not see an issue with his money management?

AmericanDream
by Gold Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:26 AM

We don't have "your" bills in our house.  Everthing is an our thing.  The money goes into one account and everything is paid out of that.  

I think that you and your DH need to have a sit down and figure out finances during this transition period.  Figure out exactly how much money is coming in, exactly how much has to go back out for bills and non-negotiable stuff (such as the horse, gas, food, travel)  Then, set a budget for presents, gifts, nonessentials and both of you need to stick to what you've decided on.

I don't agree with just setting the money aside without telling him but if he does have a "spending problem" then maybe it would be best if you set the money that is needed for bills and such aside as soon as it hits the account so he isn't tempted to buy his DD a new car or something. :)  

minimoo
by Gold Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:31 AM
I think it would be fine to pull it out into a separate account. In our house, we don't separate expenses, but we do this as well. We pull out a certain amount each paycheck for mortgage/bills/emergency and put them in a high Interest savings account, then transfer it when it's time to pay them.

I was a sahm until I recently reentered the work force. Now, we use my check for my new car payment and the rest pretty much goes into savings. We are still adjusting to having two incomes lol.
Birdseed
by Platinum Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:35 AM


There is an underlying money management issue. He used to make a LOT more than he makes now.  And he's been used to me having backup money.  So this is a new situation for both of us.

As an example...I've been gone for about a month. Not one single bill has been opened or paid since I left other than the cell phone bill which I paid while gone...AFTER it got disconnected.  I left in a hurry so I didn't have time to organize everything before I left. 

In an ideal world, I'd have a completely separate account that he doesn't have access to just for bills and then I would handle all of that and give him his own blow money.  That's what I had started working on before I left.  But I literally had a few days' notice that I had to hit the road to go help Gma so today is my first "business day" back and I'm looking into that option now.

Quoting twinklebites:

Could you let DH know you were going to pull out money to cover your expenses before hand would he be ok with that? Or does he not see an issue with his money management?



baparrot2
by Platinum Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:37 AM
1 mom liked this

When me and my hubby decided that I would stay home, we had a pretty in depth discussion about what that entailed. There would be pro's and cons to it.

Pro: he will never have to lift a domestic finger in this house again. ie...dinner ready, dishes washed, all laundry always done, house always warm and welcoming, I take care of paying all bills. Basically, all he has to do is go make money and wipe his own ass and that's it.

con: he had to realize that to have that "service" he would need to pay me. Meaning, I do not ask for money, I take it and spend it how I wish. If I want new lip gloss because I feel like changing colors for the season....I do it....without question. My financial needs will not go without just because I do not have a job outside of the home.

So basically, we both needed to be on the same page, that me being home, having drastically different duties than when I worked, meant he was paying me a salary to do these things for him. When he put it in his mind that way, it made sense. But I dont have 600.00 dollars worth of personal bills either.

(I do bring in some income as I still do some hair on the side in home. And my DD's basic expenses are covered by her CS and by my extra income that matches up with the monthly share of what her father sends. That coupled with the fact I am the one who created my husbands business that is quite successful also helps with the fact that I stay home)

I love love love being the domestic goddess of this home. I enjoy every bit of it.

elisesmom922
by Silver Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:38 AM

I think this is one of those things that varies depending on income,  and how things are run in general at a particular home. I had to stop working at the end of Oct. due to unforeseen pregnancy complications, but am still having to help my mom care for my dad who is on his 4th round of chemo/radiation.

I can't work again until after my baby comes in late Jan., so I know how you feel there. Here, we just decided what we really want and need, and spend less in other areas. DH is JUST like you described your SO above, that exact scenario just happened here not too long ago. We just sat and talked about it, explained to the kids that the holidays would be smaller this year,etc. I have don't the add $$ to my acct thing to be honest, but DH does mind and has no issue, and I don't have something as big as a horse to worry about.

Birdseed
by Platinum Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:44 AM

Responding to the points you made that I highlighted in red:

1)  We have "your" bills because we were older when we got married.  He has a lot more than me.  I came in to the relationship with my only debts being a car, mortgage and student loans.  He came into it with credit card debt leftover from his marriage, two mortgages, a car, other credit cards, yada yada.  So we had originally agreed that we'd cover our own prior debts. 

2) I have set budgets so many times that I feel like unless I quite literally give him an envelope of cash and give him no access to anything else, there's no way to enforce it.  It's something that we're working on.  I am trying to get him to read Dave Ramsey's book.

3) No shit.  That is a real fear.  He wants to cash in his 401k and/or take an advance on his pay to give BM 3k towards a car for SD15 nearly 16 in Feb.  I think it's about the dumbest thing I've ever heard of.  But like I said...he sees money sitting in an account and is ready/willing to pull it out.  We will have a convo about it soon.  But ultimately, it's his money.  I just don't want to be in a position where I'm destitute on the street because he has blown every last cent on non essentials.  Still, it's a hard argument for me to make when I have a horse which is a luxury.  How do I say "My horse is non negotiable" and then in the same breath say "you can't spend extra on your kids"?  My only real "argument" for that in the past has been "Listen, I've had this horse for 23 years.  I pay for her.  AND I'm paying for this extra for the kids.  So here's what is available. I'm sorry, but it's the best I can do."  Now? I don't have much leverage.  It's not that I don't want to give the kids what we can.  But if I say "my horse gets covered before kids" it's not exactly going to go over well.  I know most people would say "get rid of horse" but I swear, I'll live in a cardboard box before that happens. I'm down to 1 from 3.  I no longer compete ($$$$), I don't take lessons ($$$$) I'm simply keeping my old lady in good care.  Hell, I haven't ridden in forever due to my crappy work schedule.

Anyway....


Quoting AmericanDream:

We don't have "your" bills in our house.  Everthing is an our thing.  The money goes into one account and everything is paid out of that.  

I think that you and your DH need to have a sit down and figure out finances during this transition period.  Figure out exactly how much money is coming in, exactly how much has to go back out for bills and non-negotiable stuff (such as the horse, gas, food, travel)  Then, set a budget for presents, gifts, nonessentials and both of you need to stick to what you've decided on.

I don't agree with just setting the money aside without telling him but if he does have a "spending problem" then maybe it would be best if you set the money that is needed for bills and such aside as soon as it hits the account so he isn't tempted to buy his DD a new car or something. :)  



Birdseed
by Platinum Member on Nov. 12, 2013 at 9:48 AM

Parrot--I like how you think.  I've always taken care of the house, the cooking, etc.  I like doing it.  DH does help with vacuuming (because it's hard for me with my multiple hand surgeries) but other than that, I have always covered those bases.  Even when I was working PT, if I had a night shift, there was a crock pot dinner waiting.  So I hear you there.

But yeah, the 600/mo in expenses for myself...it's a lot.  I never intended to not be working.  Electively or not.  We CAN afford it, but only IF we ratchet back some other things.  Further, when he took this job, he knew that I'd not be able to work overseas.  So we knew going in that I'd not be working much longer.  That said, once we're overseas (can't come fast enough), our housing is paid for so that frees up 2k/mo.  Living here in DC is damned expensive!

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