29 answers

My Husband Spends Money as If It Will Never End.

My husband spends all the money in our checking account even when all the bills aren't paid, He takes care of the bills but if didn't have enough in the checking he would charge it. Our credit card bills are over $30,000. I have taken all of his credit cards and his ATM cards. He still can go to the bank and get the money out of our account if he wants to. He has said he would turn over the accounts to me so he can't get in them with out me. He said he just doesn't trust himself not to go get money if he wants to. MY QUESTION is do you think I should take controll of all our accounts and just give enough for his gas and what ever I feel he needs.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

He's telling you he has a problem and wants you to take over finances - DO IT!! Do it before he digs you into a financial hole you can't climb out of.

2 moms found this helpful

Think of him as an addict, not to drugs but to another compulsive behavior - over-spending.

He's reaching out for help, so yes, do take over the accounts and give him an allowance. My advice would be different if he didn't tell you to cut him off, so to speak. He's asking for help.

2 moms found this helpful

Yes! Give him an allowance (you both should have one) of money for the week, then once it's gone it's gone.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

I say yes as well. My husband gets paid, brings me his check, I go to the bank, pay all bills, grocery shop buy what we want, ect. And give him 10 or so for snacks for the week. He has no responsibility of due dates, ect when it comes to money. So I control every penny. We have alot of credit card debt too, most from me using them for things we can't afford. So recently I gave him all of them, he hid them, and just last month we payed off our 2 smallest :) Good luck, budgeting money is the hardest thing we have trouble with.

3 moms found this helpful

Think of him as an addict, not to drugs but to another compulsive behavior - over-spending.

He's reaching out for help, so yes, do take over the accounts and give him an allowance. My advice would be different if he didn't tell you to cut him off, so to speak. He's asking for help.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi C.,

I feel for you in this situation. I know that you want to do the responsible thing, but you are not his mother and he is not your child. If you "take control of your accounts and only gave him what YOU think he needs" you are becoming the worst kind of enabler and you are just feeding the problem. That is absolutely not the solution, though some will agree with you.

HE has to get ahold of his issues or HE will destroy your family and your finances.

Perhaps he should go see a counselor - either a debt mgmt counselor or an individual therapist to determine why he can't control himself and what at the heart of his financial management issues.

Now - a responsible budget plan where you each have a certain amount that you both agree on, is different. If he is on board with that and can stick to it, then go for it - that is a different dynamic than you being the parent and him being the child.

Good luck

2 moms found this helpful

He's telling you he has a problem and wants you to take over finances - DO IT!! Do it before he digs you into a financial hole you can't climb out of.

2 moms found this helpful

Yes! Give him an allowance (you both should have one) of money for the week, then once it's gone it's gone.

1 mom found this helpful

How much deeper do you need to be in this kind of debt and money crunch before you take over. I would set up a separate account and link it to the main checking account. I would then transfer funds accordingly and immediately.

Perhaps your hubby needs to not just consider but get involved in some counseling. Money must represent something to him and he really needs to master his emotions and stop allowing money to rule over him like this and negatively impact your family.

1 mom found this helpful

It may be best for you to take over the bill-paying, but make sure it is a joint decision and you are not making him feel like a child about it. He probably feels guilty about the excessive spending- I know I always did, but then I would justify purchases and push it to the back of my mind until the day my husband did bills. Then I would feel anxious all day long, apologize like crazy for spending so much, promise to do better, then repeat the whole process again! Yikes.
I think you should sit down with him and go over all the bills as a team. Figure out how much you spend on groceries, gas, etc. It may really help to go to a cash-only system, which is what we did. My husband pays our bills online but then we have a cash grocery allowance and a spending cash allowance. Part of the spending cash is for the kids: allowance, birthday parties, kid activities like going to museums or whatever. the rest is for gas, haircuts, and fun money. This is helping so much! I have to be very mindful of what I am spending my money on, because once it is gone, it's gone! As a result, I make better decisions and waste way less money, and we are able to put a lot more in savings each month.

1 mom found this helpful

He is telling you he needs help and I think you should jump at the chance to help him.

1 mom found this helpful

Ummm....of course!

It's not uncommon for one partner to be the "nerd" (bill payer, saver) and the other to be a bit....freer?

Since he obviously cannot be trusted...YOU do it.

(Insert commercial here) Check out Dave Ramsay's Total Money Makeover. It will change your life for the better. You definitely need to get rid of all that credit card debt and you can start by destroying ALL of the cards TODAY.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

You should. Actually, if possible, set up automatic payments on all your monthly bills including utilities and credit cards.

1 mom found this helpful

That is alot of debt I couldn't imagine taking money out when there is that much that needs to be paid for.Put the credit cards in your name only have him taken off..For the bank leave it as it is tell him BILLS give him the amount you owe $30,000 need to be paid the money we have spent already isn't here we have no other money to spend on whatever only the needs need to be taken care of.

I think trying it may be a good idea in this instance. If you take his name off the signature cards and off the ability to get funds then give him a generous allowance it might work with no hard feelings.

I would hate to be given an allowance to buy my lunches at work, buy an snacks or treats, buy some item I see at the store, etc...and it not be enough to meet my needs. You might also try a prepaid Visa, that way if he is at a work thing and gets the check he won't be calling you to come bail him out, how embarrassing that would be.

I think you should try it and see how it goes. If money is no object and he makes a lot them he may see it as he can spend it how he wants but skipping the bills is wrong.

ABSOLUTELY ! ~If he's "asking" you to do this - It will ONLY HELP your family's financial situation. Budget is key!!

I agree with both sides presented in the answers here (yes, take control vs. he needs to get a handle on it).

The only thing I would add is that you should consider what would happen in the UNLIKELY event that you were incapacitated or God forbid, died (I hate even typing that). If the accounts are in your name only your husband might have a heck of a time getting what he needs to care for the family (potential legal issues there). Just something to consider for planning purposes . . .

If he makes most of the money that funds the family then perhaps that concern is not as big an issue.

Just wanted to bring that to your attention for further research and consideration.

I have control of the finances in my house and actually asked my husband over the weekend if he cared. He said no, he likes that everything is just taken care of and I would freak out if I didn't have control and know where every penny goes. Granted, he continues to use his credit card, so I told him I now am only paying the minimum on it. Our goal is to be debt free, but if he won't let go of the cc, I can't help that. I am horrible with that too, so he has all of the cards I had and they are in a sealed envelope in the gun lock (NOT going in there!!) But if you are that far in credit card debt - HOLY COW! I would not give him anything he needed besides gas money. And even then I would put it on a pre-paid gas card so it could ONLY be used for that.

If he is willing it is definately worth a try....

It sounds like there is a larger underlying issue and it is not fair for him to put the onus on you to correct it. If he flat out says he does not trust himself then he needs to seek couseling to get whatever it is undercontrol. It is not right for him to put you in that situation where you are the ultimate gate keeper. It will cause a lot of resentment plus it is not fool proof because where there is a will there is a way.

I think it will take an effort on both of your parts to clean up the mess he has created but he needs to stop the bleeding first. I have never read Dave Ramsey but a lot of women on here swear by it. I might just have to see what I am missing :-)

I wish you the best of luck.

Of course. he offered, you take it. 30K in debt is a lot. do you have a plan how to pay off your debt? and what on earth is he buying? he's a guy. he should have not need for new shoes every week.
take over and give him an allowance. make sure you tell him all financial decisions will be discussed first but yes. sounds like he needs to be credit card-free for a while.

I did. My husband is terrible with money and willingly handed it all over to me when we started living together many years ago. He doesn't even have a bank account in his name. It works for us. We do make all major financial decisions together, but I am in control of the money and actually pay the bills. He takes over during times of sickness or whatever. When we were having terrible financial troubles after losing a business and being unemployed, and at risk of having utilities shut off, he made the phone calls to the companies because he's better at that kind of thing. I think if your husband recognizes this weakness to the point that it is damaging your credit, it's time for you to take over. That doesn't mean you don't talk about the budget together, you do and often, it simply means he can't sabotage the bill paying any more.

You need to have his name taken off of all accounts and give him a weekly "cash" allowance (just like you would a child).

As a couple, create a weekly and monthly budget on a spreadsheet so that you can BOTH track your spending. If you have a purchase coming-up take a look at where you can cut back and save to pay it off in cash.

If you are that far in debt, I would suggest NOT using credit for any purchases and start paying that down quickly!

Yes! Especially if he is being that honest with you. You should also lay all the bills/debts and income out so he can see it all and review it with you and be part of the plan so to speak. My father is the same way and I see the stress it brings my mother...I dont think they realize the amount of bills/debt they incur....if they dont see it they dont believe it type of thing.

yes i feel you need to take over otherwise hes going to bancrupt you and the rest of the family!

i say go for it, but put a few things in place before you do. One being that if you are rendered incapable say coma, he can get access to your accounts. Next, I would give you both an allowance to spend as you wish, but only after bills get paid. best of luck to you, this is a bad habit to have and at least he recognizes he has no will power, but it can hurt as much as any addiction. My question is what does spending money like that do for him and many use it as a sort of therapy that leaves them worse off than helping. So therapy could help long term.

Ok, here is how we work it in our house ... We each have an acct and in that acct we both get the same amt of funds for the week and the main acct that does pay the bills does not have a card. Works for us.

Yes, you should start a savings account in an account he has no access to, take over bill payment and give him a small debit card in which he can get gas and lunch. He clearly knows he needs help and is asking for you to take control.

That's a hard one because you don't want to treat him like a child, but frankly he's acting like one. If he is game to put it all in your name then it might be a good idea. It means, though, that you will have all the responsibility for money matters in your house, which could backfire--if something goes wrong, even if it's a result of his overspending, you may get the blame for it.

Additionally, putting all the debt into your name means creditors are going to be looking for YOU. If something happened and you divorced, then you would be responsible for paying it all back and he would walk away scott free. So if you think there's ANY chance that you might be headed down that road, don't put all the debt in just your name.

My in-laws have separate accounts because my MIL has a gambling problem and has spent all their money one-too-many times. In fact, they got a divorce because of it, and later remarried. I'm sure my FIL made the separate accounts stipulation. I'm sure his account goes to pay for all the bills, etc. He is retired from a really good job so he can afford to. She still works so she has spending money. Are you able to do something like that? Or maybe he can be in charge of paying the bills for the things you could live without--i.e., cable, internet, etc. That way if he goofed up and didn't pay then at least you wouldn't be without electricity or water. But if you do something like that, then whatever bills he becomes responsible for should be in his name only, so he doesn't drag your credit score through the mud.

Maybe you could put some of the credit card debt into his name only, then close the accounts so he can't spend any more, but he'll be responsible for paying it back.

I'm no credit or financial counselor, though. Maybe you should consider seeing one together.

yes maam, my dh has this SAME issue, he doens't have 1 active cc in his name, if he gets one and spends like that on it, (i have all and full control of money) his cc doesn't get paid, therefore messes HIS credit up.

there is 1 checking account with only MY name on it. he has his paycheck set up for direct deposit into that account and cannot touch it.

you have cc debt that is worth more than a house! i would definately make a change

I certainly would take over paying the bills and do auto pay. If necessary open an account in your name and take most of the money for safe keeping and use it for an emergency if necessary. You don't want the debt to get worse.

OF COURSE take over the fiances and all cash and checking accounts.

How much more debt do you need to go into before you would think this is a serious problem?

And from the sounds of his spending habits thus far, this solution will probably not last and not work long term. You are only putting a bandaid on a much bigger wound. It sounds like his spending represents are far deeper problem. Did he grow up poor?

I highly recommend pulling in all the financial strings and attending a financial workshop together in a church or through an investment business. Otherwise, you will end up resenting him if you play responsible financial cop and he just starts it all up again when he thinks you won't notice.

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.