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Can I get some opinions?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm not really sure where to post this, I guess it could go in parents as parteners too, but it really is a finacial question.
Ok, I just recently took over the bill paying and budget. My dh just is lost when it comes to this, when he does the budget we just get further and further in debt. I finally have a hold on things and have a good view on what we need to do to get out of debt. We don't have much in savings at the moment, but according to my budget plan we will be building a savings soon, right now its just a few hundred. We just did a refinance and a HE last year but still have about 3900 in cc debt, and 2900 in student loans. We are getting a good tax refund, and my plans are to knock our cc debt down to at least 3000 and use the rest to get a car, a cheap car, small, good on gas, my dh's truck is on its last lag and its a gas guzzler.
Now this is my problem. My dh's brother is getting married on Memorial Day Weekend, in Ct. We are in Mich., I calculated everything yesterday, and it seems that its going to cost about 5-600 dollars for a family for four to stay in Ct that weekend. Issue #1, I'm planning on having about a grand in the bank by then, maybe a little more, I don't want to wipe things out, we are planning on moving in the fall and I need things to be stable. Issue #2 our baby will be just over a month old by then and I can't even imagine the car ride with a one month old and a 16 month old. Issue #3, I'm planning a VBAC, but what if I have another surgery? I don't want to be traveling like that. In my head its a non-issue, we can't go. I don't want to put my family in jeopordy financially to go on a trip, they are having a reception here a little while after the wedding for friends and family in Michigan, so I say we just go to that. We have been married 4 years and all this time we have been getting into debt under my dh's control, now I have a hold on things and he thinks we are just fine and wants to take a big chunk out of our account. It just seems irresponsible. My new way of thinking is "Pay yourself first, then pay your creditors", I've been listening to a lot of Suze Orman. Now DH is mad at me, since its hard to discuss this with me, I don't see the need to dicuss, our family comes first.
Am I looking at this wrong? TIA.
post #2 of 12
I think you are right on target.

Not only will you finally have a good start on your savings but you might possibly have just gone through surgery. I can't imagine putting a newborn and your 16 month old through that kind of a trip, either.

Ask your husband why he would want to derail the train when it's just gotten out of the station?

Maybe you can work with him to set up a "play" fund. Put a few dollars into that account and when it reaches a certain amount then go spend it on whatever makes you two happy.

Don't touch the regular savings except for emergencies (death, threat of life, limb or property). If it doesn't meet those criteria don't do it.

Good luck on working it out with dh. Maybe once he sees how nice it is to have a cushion of money in the bank it will make it harder for him to touch it. I swear, when I transfer money into our savings account it's like pulling teeth to get me to transfer it back out. I just like knowing it's there.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the quick reply, I was starting to think maybe I was being paranoid. These hormones are getting to me and I've been so upset all day. I talked to dh at lunch and he says, " Your acting like I'm nothing but a paycheck, don't I have an opinion?" I know I'm being hard on him, but I feel like saying "no, at this point you don't have an opinion, look at the bank account, thats your opinion!!!" . Its just so black and white to me. Not to mention the kids, does he not remember the first few months after dd was born? I know all I'll want to do is focus on our family, the new baby, spend all day nursing and cuddling my babies, not in a car. I know his brothers marriage is important, but thats just too big a risk for me right now.
post #4 of 12
I think that if I were in your shoes, I would feel the exact same way. At the same time, though, I would have a really hard time if I had to miss my sibling's wedding... Is there any way that he could go alone (in a way that cut your costs down significantly)?
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks, I went over the cost of him going alone, and its still going to cost over 200 in gas, a few hundred to stay that weekend, so the cost doesnt change a whole lot. For him to go it would be 400-450, still more than I think is prudent. I feel bad, but I really think that our stabilty should come first, I've already had to take money from my mom a few times to cover bills, and I don't want to be in that position again.
post #6 of 12
Wow--that is still a lot. It seems to me, though, that it would be best if you could convince him enough that he feels like it's his decision, kwim? I would probably feel pretty resentful if my spouse told me that I couldn't go to my brother's wedding. Although it's a non-issue for you, your DH clearly feels like it's important for him to be there.

One way to address the problem might be to sit down with him, tell him how much you feel like you need to have in savings to feel stable at that point, and try to work together to figure out ways that you could come up with enough for him to go (cutting costs of day to day living, figuring out alternative transportation/housing at the wedding, etc.). If both of you working together can't figure it out, then maybe he'll come to the realization himself that not going is the best choice.

I totally agree that your own family has to come first. If this might cause a rift between you and your husband, then maybe figuring out a way to come up with the money would be better for your family (I don't know if it would or not--just something to consider).

It sounds like a really tough situation... I hope that you can work it out in a way that will make you both happy.
post #7 of 12
I agree that you should not be going. Heck, if you were to go into labor two weeks late, the babe might be only 2 weeks old. I don't think it's right for anybody to expect you to travel that far that early, even overlooking the financial issue.

However, I think you should let your dh make up his own mind about going and not give him *any* pressure about it. Yes, $450 is a bite, but it's not huge in the grand scheme of things. Yes, your immediate family does come first. But, extended family comes a very close second and you have to take his feelings about them into account. I know a few people who've been seperated from very close, loving families because their spouses had so many excuses about keeping them apart (travelling or money or personal issues with people.) It is very painful for the extended family and for the spouse who was seperated from them, and it really isn't healthy for the couple. It breeds resentment and distance between them. Extended families, even if they're geographically distant, are very important. It really doesn't benefit you, your husband or your children to make your extended family resent you. It's not like they're asking you to spend this money to come out for Thanksgiving dinner, or asking you to fly to Bermuda for a "destination wedding". This is a very emotionally important, (hopefully-) once in a lifetime occasion. $400-450 isn't much to spend for him to participate in that, as long as you have it. It doesn't sound like that will put you way too far behind in your repayment schedule, and I think it's an important investment in family.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks Tara,
You hit on a lot of other issues we are also going through. My dh comes from a family of 14 sibs, strangely none of them are very close, and me coming from a family of 5 sibs that are very close, I have a hard time with dh's family to begin with. This brother thats getting married stood up to our wedding (most of them did, as I tried to include everyone) and never gave any kind of wedding gift, has never acknowledged our dd, just very out of tune, and I get hurt very easily when it comes to how people treat my dd. My thinking is why take that kind of money away from our family to go see a brother that couldn't even spend the money on a "congratulations on the baby card"? I feel like that plays into whether or not we spend that kind of money on going out to see him, even though it is a wedding. My dh is a big spender on little things and we have always been in debt, over 15,000 when we got married (not including student loan), and I don't resent him for it, but I feel that now is the time to buck up and be frugal as our family is growing and I don't want to get into serious trouble again. I had no medical insurance when I had dd, so am still paying on that too. I just don't feel like the circumstances are right. Anyways, maybe I'm coming off as a b* but I just want to be stable for once.
post #9 of 12

if he is determined to go in the end have you looked

at discount websites for hotel rooms?
I learned about a site called www.lastminutetravel.com
its got deals for 'last minute trips" and trips that people have had to cancel and the place wants to rent that room out still so give cut rate deals

If you have an auto club they often have discounts or local passbooks

on the hand of no way no how have you showed him the expenses even with him only and bare boning and then showing him where that $$$ would better benefit your family ?

I also recommend the book "how to get what you want with the money you already have" by carol o keefe from the library
A lot of what you are doing is in her book it may have some other stuff that will help
Good luck on the 'fixing the mess "
post #10 of 12
Kinda off topic, I noticed you are getting a good sized tax refund. You might want to think about adjusting the number of deductibles so that you will break even next year. Otherwise, you are just giving the fed gov a free loan and you lose out on money you could put into getting rid of debt now. I hope you don't mind me mentioning this.
post #11 of 12
Everything you are saying is really reasonable. But here is what worries me. Grown ups never like being told what to do. This is your plan, your goal, your values. But it is shared resources. How can you talk about this together, without giving orders? I suggest if he wants to go, he go. But he needs to figure out how to do it cheaply.
post #12 of 12
[QUOTE=CerridwenLorelei]at discount websites for hotel rooms?

We almost didn't go to a wedding last summer because of the cost of a hotel. We ended up staying in a great bed and breakfast. It was about half the cost of a hotel room. May not be a great option if you have 2 very little ones, but might be a costsaver if DH is g oing on his own.
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