I wonder if I’m paranoid or if I have reason to feel needed.
My wife and I have two children and we own a house. We’ve had rocky moments throughout our marriage, but we’re sticking with it. In 2019, I took a sales job thinking this would lead to more pay. I was wrong. It took me a while to get my sales up and running along with my commissions.
I had to start diving into my savings to pay my share of the bills, which is usually just over half of our expenses. Coincidentally, my wife started making a lot more money from her job and made more than I did in 2019. It was around 60/40.
Knowing that I was little and immersed in my savings, she offered to “borrow” money to pay it back. I declined their offer and decided to borrow money from my company in what they called a “draw”. I was shocked and upset that she was treating our marriage like a business transaction.
“She claims she shouldn’t have to pay bills because she’s at home with the kids now during COVID, and I’m doing six-digit numbers.”
Fast forward to 2020: Fate has changed. She received an inheritance of $ 200,000 and $ 40,000 in severance pay after she was released in March. The difficult sales job I’d accepted actually resulted in getting a new job that paid me well over six figures.
When I started my new job and my wife got her money, she used part of her $ 200,000 inheritance on a shopping spree: a $ 50,000 truck and a $ 20,000 trailer. Amazon
Parcels arrive every other day and the rest of the money is put in a savings account.
Here is the thing. She won’t pay any more bills. She says she has no income other than $ 3,200 from unemployment. She claims she shouldn’t have to pay bills because she’s at home with the kids now during the COVID, and I’m doing six-digit numbers.
She also insists on “budgeting” so she can settle every dollar I spend and make sure I put that much extra money in our mortgage after the bills to repay the house faster. It feels like I’m being pushed, but I can’t make her pay bills.
Am i a sucker?
Dear confused one,
I was more confused than confused when I read your letter. Why would your wife offer to give you a “loan” instead of contributing more money to get you both through difficult times? Why shouldn’t your wife consider her $ 40,000 severance pay as some form of business income? Why shouldn’t she just help pay bills when she can afford it? Wouldn’t it make her feel good about being able to take part in running your household? You went to great lengths to pay your way.
“If a fool is born every minute, you can assume that every minute someone is married too.”
You could ask her these questions, of course, and you would no doubt end up in a debate that was just right for you. If we accuse others of being sullen, they will no doubt find an example – comparable or not – of our sullen or petty behavior. I’m not naive enough to believe that I or anyone else can win a lifelong game with small points and get away with it. It can take years. You separate until death.
Therefore, while these questions are valid, they are unlikely to lead to a satisfactory conclusion. They would likely open doors to more rooms filled with stubborn outrage piled on financial rash. Are you a sucker There is no productive answer to this question either. If a sucker is born every minute, every minute you can be sure that someone is married too. But what is the use of indulging in self-pity or displeasure and starting another battle of wills?
Some questions you might need to ask are, “What happened that brought us to this unfortunate place where we start a Cold War – bank account versus bank account, income versus inheritance, and spouse versus spouse? Is this the life we planned for ourselves? Because it wasn’t the life I planned for us, and it’s not the kind of life I want to live. What can we do to achieve a place of mutual understanding and respect? “
You also need to ask yourself the toughest and easiest questions of all: What are you willing to accept? Where are the red lines in this marriage that are unacceptable to you, and where are the white lines that you are willing and able to compromise on? Your wife making lavish purchases and refusing to contribute to household expenses is not a measure conducive to a healthy marriage, but she doesn’t come out of nowhere.
You have to find out where all of this is coming from. It can either be fixed or it cannot be fixed. But you need to ask your wife – and yourself – the right questions to find out.
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