Its been a while since I posted, was having doubts about relationship, things have been up and down, some issues got sorted and some new ones have surfaced. Xmas was a nightmare with lots of conflict about everything. Now the latest issue is money. H2B who always seemed to be very generous has become quite the opposite and said at xmas that it occured to him that he spends more than I do and this has been the case for months - which is in fact true but there is a HUGE difference in what we earn, our spending styles and disposable income. He was practically insinuating that I am trying to rip him off, I was so insulted as I am not at all mean. He always paid for holidays and dinners out etc but insisted on it. Any time I offered to pay for a drink he would not hear of it, we were going away for a weekend and I said it would be my treat and he just went ahead and booked it. A few months ago I booked a long weekend in Spain as a surprise and he kept trying to give me the money for it, saying how generous it was and it was too expensive as I couldn’t afford it. Forever the charmer it looks like maybe all this was in the first year to impress me as he certainly went out of his way to woo me as he had decided long before I did that he wanted me and wasn’t taking no for an answer. We are together a year and a half now and were supposed to be getting married in Sept this year but now its put back to next year deciding that there was no rush. Now he's decided that it should be 50/50 as thats fairer on everyone. We went out with a crowd last weekend for dinner and when the bill came he just put in his own share - I was disgusted! Now I am not mean but why has he changed when he had always insisted on paying for things. Question for u girlies: do you all know what your partners earn? I have no idea and he has never told me – can I ask such a question? I have a very average job and he has a very senior position earning a lot of money (I have no doubt about this). So I have a problem with 50/50 because its all relative and it means that I am actually spending more. ie if we do a grocery shop its generally about 200 per week (he has expensive tastes) and when I was living on my own I would spend about 50 so now my expenditure has doubled. But 100 per week for him is nothing to spend on groceries. Sorry but am I being petty here. Now we’re going on hols in april and he’s stalling booking it cos he’s going to ask me for my share and he’s planning on staying in a 5 star hotel. Advice please – this is really bothering me. Do I sound mean if I say this to him and what do I say exactly?
Tell him what you would tell any friend who puts you in that position - "I'm sorry but while I would love to go, my budget won't stretch to an expensive hotel and I would feel bad if I can't pay my share. Can we stay somewhere cheaper?" and get him to let you pick it. If he insists on the more expensive hotel, tell him that you cannot stretch to the extravagance and ask what he proposes to do about it.
I know what my H2B earns. He's never been secretive and while he has always had more money than me, his attitude is "I want to do nice things and I can afford it. However I would enjoy it a lot more if you were with me. Your not being able to afford it is a poor reason for us both to miss out!"
I have to say, I love being spoiled :D but I try very hard never to take it for granted.
I think your H2B is being a bit childish over the money thing - maybe it is, as you say, just the latest in a long line of conflicts. Not a one-off argument over finances, but a complete personality change? I would be wary. You're dead right to put the wedding back a bit, they say you should never get married to someone you've known for less than 18 months... long enough for the honeymoon period to wear off and to have an idea whether you will make it through a continuous bad patch or not.
Hi goldy p, i had to read and reply to you. I think money is such an issue for couples and I actually heard somewhere that it is the main cause of arguments in relationships.
I am in a slightly similar situation to you where I earn less than my partner. My salary is actually very good but his is much better. There is always that little niggling feeling of guilt inside you when they start paying for everything but there is also insecurity on their part that we are using them for their money. Whats more annoying for me is that my friends say how spoilt I am. We have definitely had arguments in the past about money and especially that he is saving practically all the money for the wedding and I am not...in fairness I am particularly bad with money though so I could see his point.
I definitely don't think you sound mean in any way. Especially the fact that you are conscious of it shows that you are definitely not mean! What I did when we started arguing (when we first started living together) was to point out to him exactly how much my take home pay is, what my outgoings are against it and then what I was left with. So I was like mortgage, phone bills, esb...then I have so much per month.
I would advise you to do this...be totally honest. Say to him you feel like he's being snide and rude about the whole thing. Point out that you can't afford the weekly shop he wants or to stay in 5 star hotels. Why not look up a holiday you can afford and show that to him he won't be long deciding he'll pay for the upgrade. Once you start telling him on a Sat night you can't afford to go out for dinner or for drinks he might start to cop on. If he continues being mean about it just be upfront and ask him if he wants the fact that you don't earn as much as him to ruin your relationship.
I hope that helps a bit...I think most relationships go through something similar?
PS I definitely think you should know what he earns...it shouldn't be that big a deal?
I am in the opposite situation to you in that i earn a good deal more than my H2B. It has never been an issue for us though and I would never expect him to contribute 50/50. As you say its all relative and it wouldn't be fair to expect him to pay the same as me when i earn more than twice his salary. i would sit down and talk to him about this as there may be a deeper issue here.
You are not being selfish at all. Your h2b is. If my h2b only paid for himself in a restaurant in front of our friends, he wouldn't live to tell the tale. It's all about compromise. If he is going to be petty about money, you should play him at his own game. When the grocery bill comes next week, you should mark all the expensive things that he wanted on the receipt and ask him for the money for them! I know this is not a solution but it may make him realise.
You need to really sit down and tell him that your wage simply cannot stretch as far as his can and that you're struggling. If he wont budge than you have to think if you can live like this when you're married!
My FFIL doesnt give my FMIL much money and she has to work part time to pay for the grocery bills while all his money sits in the bank making interest. She has done this all her life and reared 6 kids and has only ever had 1 holiday abroad(which me and h2b paid for) because my FFIL wouldnt pay for her. I know this may sound extreme or harsh but do you really want to end up like this?
I totally agree with Callalily about the hotel situation. If your h2b wont budge from the 5star hotel ask him is he willing to fork out the extra money that you can't afford to pay for the hotel!!
I know what my H2B earns and he knows what I earn. I earn more than him at the moment which will all change when he finishes college but we share everything with each other. If he can't afford a holiday or break away, I will always pay for it rather than us both miss out on something nice. He doesnt like it when I do this but I dont give him the choice!
I have to say, I find your H2B behaviour in front of your friends downright rude and unacceptable. Particularly when it's displayed in front of your peers, it's just not good form and he should know better.
My DH and I earn similar amounts, but we tend to pool our money - we knew early on in the relationship that we were going to last, so we view our combined salaries as 'our money' - not just his, not just mine. There are occasions when one of us overspends, so we help each other out and we never discuss it beyond that.
I think putting back the wedding is the right idea, and if your H2B is as markedly changed as you say, it may be a good opportunity to question the relationship. Is this financially motivated, or is the issue a symptom of something greater? If he is like this in front of your peers, is this showing a lack of respect for you? If he is suspicious of your 'lack' of spending (for want of a better phrase - nothing malicious in it) then why is he marrying you? Is it possible that a friend or colleague may have mentioned something to him in passing and now he is thinking too hard on the subject?
As I said earlier, my DH and I earn a similar amount, yet he almost always pays for me in restaurants. He sees it as his way of treating me to something nice, his way of being 'the man' in the relationship and an expression of courtesy - and I really appreciate it! There is no reason why you can't be treated like the lady you are, PARTICULARLY if he earns so much more than you.
You should know how much he earns, or at least the region of it. If you were buying a property together, for reasons of mortgage, you would find out anyway. And it's only right that you know if this man could keep you in the ways you are accustomed to if you were let go from your job or had to stay at home to mind children (This is a real situation for many women if childcare proves too expensive for multiple children or if good quality childcare is difficult to find - not a reflection of you or any situation in particular). I find his attitude odd and if he persists in maintaining it into married life and beyond, does this mean you would have to justify every penny you spend that may be from his salary?
Again, I would use this opportunity to question the relationship and challenge the reality against your expectations.
It does sound as though hes changed, as if overnight. You say you dont know how much money he earns but you think its a lot. You also probably dont know what his outgoings are, maybe something has come up for him recently that he feels he cant afford to be spending so much? Or perhaps one of his mates has said something to him about his spending? I'd suggest you have a good chat with him and explain all that you said in your post - that you do want to pay your way but to your ability too. As another poster said, so many relationships break down due to money issues - if you love him, dont let it eat away at yours. Good luck.
I think randall may be right - you don't know what he earns, but assume it's a lot more than you. Which of course may well be true but maybe he lost out on the stockmarket or he has worries about work etc, that may lead him to be tighter with money?
I hope you don't mind me saying, it does sound as if you don't really talk about money, which is odd....maybe he feels he has to deal with the finances and he is trying to get you to take a more proactive role? or perhaps the other rows you've been having have left him feelign angry and he is taking it out this way?
I would sit him down and ask him about it, if you have a good relationship don't let money sink it!
I think ye definately need to sort this, the girls have pretty much covered everything, the other thing that should be considered is the future, if u hav children u may hav to work part time or not at all, then u would be dependent on ur man for money, this can be a v serious issue (i have a friend whose hubby controls her in this way), so make sure u talk bout wat will happen wen/if ye have kids so u know were u stand!
I have no more practical advice in addition to some of the very good suggestions above, but I felt I just had to add how your post just seemed to ring huge warning bells to me, i'm finding it hard to put it into a short sentence or two, but this is weird behaviour on his part considering you are about to be married - a partnership forever?
I agree that since H2B and I have been together its pretty much 'our' money - we haven't yet gotten around to the joint account, but we will soon. I've been in the situation of earning far more than him, then changed careers and took a big cut, so its all been swings and roundabouts, but my house which I bought before we were together I'm just in the process of selling and the profits are 'ours', which we're using to build our life together! Maybe that's why I find his attitude a bit scary?
I think you do need to talk about this seriously, and hopefully you will get to the bottom of it - best of luck...