"Living like a welfare case" - DH - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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*Mods, I didn't know if this should go here, or Parents As Partners. Please forgive me if it's wrong!*

OK, he has FINALLY realized that we can't have EVERYTHING under the sun & still make ends meet. My income will probably be ending this year sometime, so we need to prepare for that. I make about $18-20,000 a year, DH makes about $35,000. So we will need to tighten that belt really well. It will be hard, but I know we can do it.

But he ALWAYS makes the comment that he "doesn't want to live like a welfare case" : . We have gone way overboard with our spending, and it needs to stop. I don't know exactly what he means by a welfare case, but if it means a small house with just the basics, that is totally fine with me. Food stamps & the like don't bother me either. DH has some sort of problem with it, I guess. I don't know if it's a threat to his manhood or his ability to support us, or what. But if it comes down to it, we'll HAVE to.

His comment just irritates me to no end, like it's that awful if we need to ask for help at some point. I can live without satellite TV, cell phones, etc, if it means we can make ends meet without government assistance. But not DH - he thinks he's ENTITLED to it, that he deserves it for working. We are both guilty of spending frivolously, and I have stopped. DH's thing is he goes places with friends, then spends $$$ without telling me, & it screws up the checking account.

I've already started making things from scratch, been looking for cheaper alternatives for what we use now, and trying to budget better. But it's hard doing it all myself, especially with DH wanting to buy a boat now . Our house is already on the market, and hopefully it will sell this summer.

*Sigh*

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#2 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:22 PM
 
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this is a huge reason my husband and I separated. you both need to be on the same page for this to work. unfortunately he and I are not and it seems like you two aren't either. Maybe sitting down with him and going over the finances and showing him exactly how much he is spending here and there on stuff that's not a necessity will help. Let him help you budget things out. But he sounds like he needs a financial awakening as to how much he's spending and exactly what it's doing to his family. I tried multiple times and it wasn't until my husband was on his own spending his own money constantly that he figured it out. He still does it but it finally hit him about a month ago(after being separated 5 months!) that he is spending $200 a month just in fast food lunches and coffee. He still does it but at least he realizes that he IS doing it and it's not as cheap to head to burger king for lunch every day like he thought.

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#3 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:24 PM
 
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He's going to be a welfare case if he doesn't make some changes. It sounds like he's got some issues with money and appearances that are affecting his ability to be rational about this.

Maybe spending a little money on counseling to prepare for the lowering of income would be helpful.
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#4 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:49 PM
 
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How frustrating for you!

He needs to realize that your family cannot spend money that doesn't exist.

If he wants to increase his buying power he needs to increase his income. Has he considered a second job or increasing his training/education to gain a higher salary?

Or does he want your income to continue and he'll spend that money? I guess I might not be understanding fully.
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#5 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:49 PM
 
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So by my calculations, you make GROSS about 53-55K a year. Net that is no doubt a lot less since both of you are working and both getting taxed. Add to that, are either of you doing pretax deductions to retirement? That lowers your taxable income and builds a nest egg for later and creates bigger net base pay. But I doubt a spender like that is thinking of retirement.

OK, I am harsh and blunt. I am a sahparent and my DH makes double the income Gross what you as a couple make gross. That said, we have only one taxable income, a large portion (the max) taken out each year for retirement, drive 2 paid off 6 plus years old cars and cannot afford a large tv, lunch out everyday or eat out weekly much less daily. A boat would be totally out of the question! We have our mortgage (less than 190K) as our only true debt and we live quite simply. Its not a fast lifestyle, we have nice things and can sleep at night and have me home raising my kids. We also have a huge retirement saved and we are only in our mid 30s.

If you both do not stop, you will be in a huge nightmare of debt, if not already plus a huge issue in your marriage. You husband is also entitled to a huge debt that he will be getting soon along with all these things he feels he needs.

The welfare case is not looking at boats and is living off of less than 18K a year. He will be a welfare case like he says pretty soon.

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#6 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:52 PM
 
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sorry. but in real life some "welfare cases" i know have it better then we do(we only get state healthcare right now and wic at the end of this month)

there needs to be serious conversation between u and ur husband. hope u both get on the right page
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#7 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 01:53 PM
 
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My advice is to get several checking accounts (free checking hopefully).

One main joint account for all household bills.

One in each of your names only that you put a little but of allowance/mad money/spending money in.



THAT way he can't bounce your checks!

And say NO to a boat. Unless he wants to work another job for it! It's your life and household too!





You may want to ask him how his parents felt about welfare. The reaction he has many times is rooted in the past and something that happened to him, or family constantly saying your not a "man" if you get welfare.



Anyway you guys can get a few couples counseling sessions?


Will he read any of the finace books? Total Money Makeover or Your Money or Your Life?





Tell him point blank that this may rip the two of you apart?

Resistance is futile Matey
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#8 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 03:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I wish I had time to reply to everyone.

We have way too much debt, which a good part will be paid off with taxes. We are shredding all but one credit card too. Hey, it's a start!

I just talked to him on the phone, and he was saying how he was thinking a boat might not be such a good idea. I've been telling him this for weeks now, and I think it finally sunk in. Thanks goodness!

DH does have a 401k account through work, which his employer matches. There's almost $27,000 there.

He knows I stress out over money more than I need to, but if someone doesn't, we'll be way worse than we are now. It's starting to affect my health, and I'm already struggling with depression .

Counseling is a good idea, and I think we could both benefit by going. I will have to look into that more.

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#9 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 03:13 PM
 
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Ask him for a description of a "welfare case".

Summer: crafty mama to 2 little girls and wife to Bob
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#10 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 03:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by mamalotusyoga View Post
Ask him for a description of a "welfare case".
I did once, and he gave me the runaround. Never gave me a direct answer.

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#11 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 04:43 PM
 
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My DH does something similar. He is always saying in a sarcastic matter "I guess I don't deserve to have x/y/z" whenever I break it to him that our budget can't afford whatever toy he wants. He was used to living on a higher salary, while in the Army, and having no one but himself to spend it on. He had his living expenses paid for, so basically he used all his money as disposable income. Expensive clothes (brand names of course) and electronics and the like. Now that we're living on a smaller budget, with a family of four, and actually using the money for things we need, it's always me saying how he doesn't "deserve" it. Well, TECHNICALLY, he doesn't. If he earned more money I guess he would "deserve" the toys. I don't know how to get around that though. But yeah, he has this mindset that he "deserves" more, and I guess your partner thinks he "deserves" to not live like a welfare case. It's hard, because the issue is so sensitive, and so hard to communicate about.
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#12 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 04:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by truemists View Post
My DH does something similar. He is always saying in a sarcastic matter "I guess I don't deserve to have x/y/z" whenever I break it to him that our budget can't afford whatever toy he wants. He was used to living on a higher salary, while in the Army, and having no one but himself to spend it on. He had his living expenses paid for, so basically he used all his money as disposable income. Expensive clothes (brand names of course) and electronics and the like. Now that we're living on a smaller budget, with a family of four, and actually using the money for things we need, it's always me saying how he doesn't "deserve" it. Well, TECHNICALLY, he doesn't. If he earned more money I guess he would "deserve" the toys. I don't know how to get around that though. But yeah, he has this mindset that he "deserves" more, and I guess your partner thinks he "deserves" to not live like a welfare case. It's hard, because the issue is so sensitive, and so hard to communicate about.
Wow, our DH's sound a lot alike! I think mine needs to realize that the kids need food and a roof over their heads than, say, a boat. It IS hard talking to him about it, because he pouts like a child sometimes. It gets so old so fast .

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#13 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 05:53 PM
 
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Blah, my stbx was like this too. I was the sole wage earner for many years, while he stayed at home. Then I became disabled and he had to get a job. He constantly complained about turning money over to me to pay the bills, because he "deserved" to have money in his pocket. Well, too bad I need to pay the mortgage and buy food. I hope you turn him around and can work together to tighten your belts. good luck.
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#14 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 06:12 PM
 
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My dh makes much more than that and we can not afford a boat, large tv's, electronic gadgets, etc. We do not eat out more than twice a month, and thats cheap food, like the chinese buffet. We don't even have cable tv, yet satellite tv. We can't go places with friends often. Such is life. It really sounds like your dh wants to live well above his means. If you cant afford it, you dont have it. If its that important to him, he needs a second job or a much better paying job. It seems like you get it, but he doesn't. If he doesn't want to do without the extra's of life he is going to have to do something about it, period. Write out all of your expenses and his income and show him where you stand. Maybe he will agree to go out to cheaper places with friends or give up some other luxuries.

ETA.. I just noticed you have 6 kids. He is really going to have to cut back to make ends meet. We only have 2 kids. I can't imagine supporting 6 kids and having all that stuff, and we make over double what your dh does.
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#15 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My dh makes much more than that and we can not afford a boat, large tv's, electronic gadgets, etc. We do not eat out more than twice a month, and thats cheap food, like the chinese buffet. We don't even have cable tv, yet satellite tv. We can't go places with friends often. Such is life. It really sounds like your dh wants to live well above his means. If you cant afford it, you dont have it. If its that important to him, he needs a second job or a much better paying job. It seems like you get it, but he doesn't. If he doesn't want to do without the extra's of life he is going to have to do something about it, period. Write out all of your expenses and his income and show him where you stand. Maybe he will agree to go out to cheaper places with friends or give up some other luxuries.

ETA.. I just noticed you have 6 kids. He is really going to have to cut back to make ends meet. We only have 2 kids. I can't imagine supporting 6 kids and having all that stuff, and we make over double what your dh does.
He got a job offer at work from a customer, and I told him to call him on it, just to get the details. I asked him what if it pays double or triple what you make now? Wouldn't you want that for your family? He then says he'd never be home (there'd be lots of traveling involved), get to do anything fun, etc. I understand that, but if it means we're better off, I think it would be worth it.

He hasn't called about it yet : .

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#16 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 06:33 PM
 
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WOW. My DH & I actually make $5K less than your combined income, and we have trouble on that with just TWO of us - no kids yet! LOL. I don't know how you guys manage to stretch that money with such a big family. Of course, you may not have debt like we have either so that can make a big difference. I wish you the best, and I must say that my DH has similar problems with his spending, thus why we have separate accounts now (and separate bills). He has gotten a lot better, but he still needs a good dose of reality. He wants his cake & to eat it too, i.e. he wants to get our debts paid off but also fantasizes/obsesses about buying things (things we don't actually NEED, like a frickin Nintendo Wii, and yet another guitar, or more golf clubs). I have sacrificed a lot and there are fun things I want too (like a piano), but I have had to push them aside for later when we are debt-free and have more income.

It's so frustrating, and I feel your pain. Perhaps you should see if there's any way you can get some free/cheap financial counseling and that way a professional will tell him he's spending too much. Maybe hearing it from them will make it stick in his head! My work offers free counseling for various things, including finances, so I may sign up for that soon so we can get help preparing our finances to buy a house later this year. Hopefully they can tell us what both of us should be spending less on so we can really get into a better situation.

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#17 of 36 Old 03-05-2008, 07:10 PM
 
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A rowboat? Dh makes much more than that and there is no boat in our near future...unless a second hand Costco kayak counts. lol gosh, reality bites sometimes, huh?good luck with helping him to see the light.
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#18 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 12:19 AM
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He got a job offer at work from a customer, and I told him to call him on it, just to get the details. I asked him what if it pays double or triple what you make now? Wouldn't you want that for your family? He then says he'd never be home (there'd be lots of traveling involved), get to do anything fun, etc. I understand that, but if it means we're better off, I think it would be worth it.
I'm not understanding this. You say your income will be ending. Does that mean you're planning to SAH? Why is it ok for you to SAH and spend time with the kids, but your DH needs be gone all the time and not have any fun? That sounds like a serious double standard to me.
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#19 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 02:16 AM
 
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I think it's perfectly fair to insist he get a better paying job with more hours if he insists on spending so much money they're going into debt for things they don't need.

$35k will qualify you for food stamps, just barely. He needs to either up is income to tighten his belt!

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#20 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 08:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not understanding this. You say your income will be ending. Does that mean you're planning to SAH? Why is it ok for you to SAH and spend time with the kids, but your DH needs be gone all the time and not have any fun? That sounds like a serious double standard to me.
I work at home now. I assemble pieces that go on other parts for DH's work. They will be cutting back on the production of those parts, so I won't have any work to do. I get paid for each piece I assemble.

Sorry for the confusion. There's no way I can work outside the home, as daycare would be just outrageous. I'd be working to pay daycare. DH & I both agreed that it was pointless. IF worse comes to worse, I could find a job on second or third shift if needed.

I'm sure DH would have some fun. I was stating what he said about it. He's capable of amusing himself.

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I think it's perfectly fair to insist he get a better paying job with more hours if he insists on spending so much money they're going into debt for things they don't need.

$35k will qualify you for food stamps, just barely. He needs to either up is income to tighten his belt!
That's how I feel too. If he wants to buy these "toys", he will have to work extra for them. Good to know we could qualify for food stamps.

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#21 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 12:59 PM
 
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I'm not understanding this. You say your income will be ending. Does that mean you're planning to SAH? Why is it ok for you to SAH and spend time with the kids, but your DH needs be gone all the time and not have any fun? That sounds like a serious double standard to me.
As a sahm, believe me, its not all fun. The OP has 6 kids which is a handful and a lot of busy time. And also, this dh has had his fun and now he is going to have to pay for his fun and work to pay for it which will mean time away from his family sadly. Once the debt or spending habits change, then he can worry about fun.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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#22 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 01:13 PM
 
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My DH struggles with feeling "deprived" at various times and it IS very difficult. I started on the road to frugality out of necessity. It then became fun, a choice and a value/belief system! We both are much more into it because we "choose" this not because we are "desparate".

My DH still struggles though, and when he does, look out! Major money blowing.... I want to pull my hair out.

My saving grace is that he is a workaholic. I mean work IS his vice. And he makes good money too.

Are there small, little things you can do for him so your DH doesnt' feel like a "welfare case"? Sometimes buying name brand is a serious boost for my DH. If I plan carefully it doesn't impact our budget too much.

Maybe counseling would be a place to start?

Hugs mama
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#23 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 01:26 PM
 
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Your husband and mine sound very similar. For my DH it has everything to do with how he was raised. If he can't have the cool techie gadgets, cash, a debit card and the ability to spend money on "stuff" he doesn't feel "complete".

We are committed to fulifilling our needs first and understanding our wants and if they are really important to us. It has taken us 6 years to get here. It's not perfect and we still get frustrated with one another. It can be done but will require more patience and understanding than you even know you have.

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#24 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 01:36 PM
 
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He got a job offer at work from a customer, and I told him to call him on it, just to get the details. I asked him what if it pays double or triple what you make now? Wouldn't you want that for your family? He then says he'd never be home (there'd be lots of traveling involved), get to do anything fun, etc. I understand that, but if it means we're better off, I think it would be worth it.

He hasn't called about it yet : .
Having a partner that travels a lot with six children would be stressful to both of you (especially if depression is already in the mix). My partner travels an average of 5-6 days per month and I have two kids.
It's stressful for me both on the days I WOH and on the days I am home (although it's very different stress if the makes any sense).

It's also stressful for my partner (although he gets to eat in good resturants: without kids making racket).

And it stressful to our children (although once they are old enough to understand that Daddy's working and hasn't just stepped out indefinitely it's a lot better).
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#25 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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As a sahm, believe me, its not all fun. The OP has 6 kids which is a handful and a lot of busy time. And also, this dh has had his fun and now he is going to have to pay for his fun and work to pay for it which will mean time away from his family sadly. Once the debt or spending habits change, then he can worry about fun.
Thanks Amy! Being a SAHM is HARD and stressful, but I handle it OK. DH has plenty of fun - he hunts, goes fishing, goes to his friend's house to BS 7 watch the fights, etc. It's hard for *me* to find time to do fun things actually.

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My DH struggles with feeling "deprived" at various times and it IS very difficult. I started on the road to frugality out of necessity. It then became fun, a choice and a value/belief system! We both are much more into it because we "choose" this not because we are "desparate".

My DH still struggles though, and when he does, look out! Major money blowing.... I want to pull my hair out.

My saving grace is that he is a workaholic. I mean work IS his vice. And he makes good money too.

Are there small, little things you can do for him so your DH doesnt' feel like a "welfare case"? Sometimes buying name brand is a serious boost for my DH. If I plan carefully it doesn't impact our budget too much.

Maybe counseling would be a place to start?

Hugs mama
Thank you, I'm looking into counseling .

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Your husband and mine sound very similar. For my DH it has everything to do with how he was raised. If he can't have the cool techie gadgets, cash, a debit card and the ability to spend money on "stuff" he doesn't feel "complete".

We are committed to fulifilling our needs first and understanding our wants and if they are really important to us. It has taken us 6 years to get here. It's not perfect and we still get frustrated with one another. It can be done but will require more patience and understanding than you even know you have.
That's how mine is too. His friend or boss has cool gadgets, then he wants the same thing. We just can't do it, and DH doesn't realize that.

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Having a partner that travels a lot with six children would be stressful to both of you (especially if depression is already in the mix). My partner travels an average of 5-6 days per month and I have two kids.
It's stressful for me both on the days I WOH and on the days I am home (although it's very different stress if the makes any sense).

It's also stressful for my partner (although he gets to eat in good resturants: without kids making racket).

And it stressful to our children (although once they are old enough to understand that Daddy's working and hasn't just stepped out indefinitely it's a lot better).
I know it would be stressful, but we could do it, I know we could. If he was making 2x or 3x what he is now, that would be a HUGE load off of my shoulders.

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#26 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 04:14 PM
 
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I would tell him that if he wants to buy his frivoulous, then he has to make that extra money on his own.

When my DH wants to spend money on something, he sells one of his "other" toys to pay for it, or he runs a small business selling vinyl decals and lettering so he puts a little more time into that to pay for extras.

If he can't do that, then he can't spend it! Treat him like a child if you have to and restrict access to the accounts....but then you might get into him opening credit cards...

I wish you luck with this!!!

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#27 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 04:19 PM
 
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sorry. but in real life some "welfare cases" i know have it better then we do(we only get state healthcare right now and wic at the end of this month)


I was just going to post that!

Entitlement attitudes can make life difficult.

I wonder if the OPs husband has considered the future. Not budgeting and living off credit may make him feel like he's "wealthy", but that will catch up with him at some point. Better to budget now and live well but frugally and be able to enjoy life later on, or be 80 years old are *on* welfare because he didn't budget?
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#28 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 04:21 PM
 
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Ohh ((hugs)) it is hard when one member of the house doesn't want to 'do what it takes' --- I'm sure you'll get through it though!

me, dd1, dd2, ds, and #4 due March 1. dbf has 2 of his own, so it will be an adventure!

i like making things. 

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#29 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 05:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Mamatolea View Post
I would tell him that if he wants to buy his frivoulous, then he has to make that extra money on his own.

When my DH wants to spend money on something, he sells one of his "other" toys to pay for it, or he runs a small business selling vinyl decals and lettering so he puts a little more time into that to pay for extras.

If he can't do that, then he can't spend it! Treat him like a child if you have to and restrict access to the accounts....but then you might get into him opening credit cards...

I wish you luck with this!!!
Thank you; I hope we can get through this & be sane.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cappuccinosmom View Post


I was just going to post that!

Entitlement attitudes can make life difficult.

I wonder if the OPs husband has considered the future. Not budgeting and living off credit may make him feel like he's "wealthy", but that will catch up with him at some point. Better to budget now and live well but frugally and be able to enjoy life later on, or be 80 years old are *on* welfare because he didn't budget?
I don't know how far ahead he really thinks. Not much, I guess. I hope to cahnge that.

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Originally Posted by mallieandjoolsmum View Post
Ohh ((hugs)) it is hard when one member of the house doesn't want to 'do what it takes' --- I'm sure you'll get through it though!
I know we will too. It'll just take some work .

Thanks!

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#30 of 36 Old 03-06-2008, 06:39 PM
 
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You should take a look at "You Need A Budget Pro". You can download from your bank account to the program.

For free you can sit down with your dh, you monthly income and expensed. Read the amounts of your bills to him one by one as he subtracts them. Then (if you haven't yet) calculate payments on debt, retirement accounts, and 529s. You can only spend what you have.

"It should be a rule in all prophylactic work that no harm should ever be unnecessarily inflicted on a healthy person (Sir Graham Wilson, The Hazards of Immunization, 1967)."
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