Updated on February 01, 2010
S.B. asks from Rochester, NY
19 answers

My husband and I have been fighting about money a lot lately. He thinks I spend too much driving half an hour to see my family and going out to lunch once every week or two. This is all I do for myself. I don't shop, I don't get my hair done, I don't eat out all of the time. I waitress three nights a week and go to school three nights a week (my masters in education). We certainly do not have money problems. I was in an accident when I was younger which paid for our wedding, a trip to Europe, a down payment on our home, my bachellor's degree and now my master's degree. We both have a batchellor's and NO COLLEGE DEBT. We have PLENTY in savings and several hundred in the checking account. My husband just flipped out because our energy bill was forty dollars more this September than last September. This is simply because I am home on the computer doing my master's project for hours a day and I have to let our two year old watch a movie or TV while I get my work done. I am constantly giving my husband almost everything I make. We are not in any financial trouble, but all he does is yell about bills! I cannot handle the stress anymore. I tell him to be thankful for all we have. We were planning to try for another child in December, but I don't want to have another one of his children if I'm going to be trapped in my home until I get a teaching job. My husband makes just enough money to pay the bills and my money is for extra expenses. We do not live paycheck to paycheck. Lately our fights have gotten almost physical. How do I convince him that we are blessed and we are doing fine? How do I convince him to relax and enjoy life and not stress over money? He is so ungrateful for what financial breaks we do get and ungrateful for the work that I do to further our lives. I feel trapped, unappreciated, and borderline abused and controlled. I did not sign up for this kind of a marriage. Help!

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So What Happened?

Last night, we had a talk and I told him that this was not acceptable and that if he does, in fact, ever get physical, that I will be gone the next day and stay with family until we get counseling. We also discussed the equal allowance idea and he's up for that. I made a list of upcoming expenses -- birthdays and holidays and things our son will need and he approved it, so that'll come out of his money. I'm still not sure I want to get pregnant instead of looking for a job because I'm not ready to trust that I won't be trapped a year from now at home with no money and nothing to do... but I do want our kids to be close in age... so we'll see. Thank you for all of your advice. I just needed assurance that I was not the selfish person he was making me out to be. I am not a big spender... I am easy to please. I am just happy we have what we have at this point in our lives together. Oh, and the fighting has always been after our son was in bed and we made sure to be on the lower floor of our home just in case. I'm not giving up on this. I can't let go the idea that my husband is just immature and he needs me to show him how to relax and enjoy life.

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answers from Boston on

HI there,

Could he be picking fights about money, but really be unhappy about something else? Is the stress of a 2 year old and possibly another one too much for him? Is he getting enough down time for himself weekly? If not, he may just feel overwhelmed and stressed and sometimes men don't know how to deal with their emotions and stress directly. Do you two have any fun time together alone? I have a 2 y.o and a 12 week old and these are things that stress my husband out...we both work full-time and by the time we get dinner reday, eat, get the kids ready for bed, we are exhausted and we can snap and be irritable toward each other b/c small children are a lot of work, especially when you are working or going to school.

You need to have a heart to heart with him and tell him how you are feeling about things and see where it goes and hopefully he can open up too.

Good luck



answers from Boston on

it sounds like something else is wrong and he is taking it out on you. He sounds like he isn't in control about something and he is trying to get control back. My name is S.. I'm 25 married 2 kids work from home and I do the bills email me sometime and we can talk or get together. email:

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answers from Portland on

S....It seems to me that this is really not about money...I get the feeling you are crying out for help...I 28 years old and married for 8 years...I grew up in abusive home mother bounced us from one bad relationship to another..them all being abusive towards my mother and I ...I think he is alot angry over something then just money to get"almost" physical. I also know from past experiences that even tho you were downsatairs and your child was asleep so you careful I remember many nights lying in bed listening to mom get beat....please if you feel unsafe make a plan so you and your child is safe and also feel free to e-mail me and chat sometime...GOOD LUCK!!!




answers from Hartford on

Hi S.-
I think that money is the number one sticky point in most marriages. My husband and I have been fighting about money lately as well, but that's because right now there just isn't any. I've gone from making 1200 a paycheck to 200, because I just started doing daycare at home and haven't filled up yet. You need to explain to your husband that it is healthy for you to get out sometimes and you need to do it for your well being. Also, if there is no money problems and you are helping with the finances then he really doesn't have a leg to stand on. What concerns me the most though is that you say that it is at the point where it is almost physical..if this is the case you really need to do something PRONTO!!! Sit him down and tell him that if it doesn't stop he is going to have to leave for awhile...make sure you make it clear that he will have to be the one to go, that you aren't moving yoru child out of the house. He needs to see how bad it has gotten. It's hard to say it but it really brings the point home. Hope this help. IF you ever need to vent, feel free to email me anytime.



answers from Providence on

Hi S.,
I am 25 mother of 2 with my own home however I had to lose the love of my life to a tragic death and raise my son alone to get what I have now I am married to another man who can't hold a job since leaving the company he worked for for 4 yrs. Your husband sounds very controlling and your not doing anything wrong I would not change a thing but I have to say you nipped it right in the bud find one wife that is not also raising there husband and I want him I am ready for a divirce I am sick of being his mother and thats what he was looking for not a wife. Don't change anything your doing he needs to change his agressiveness and controlingness maybe you need to send him for a vacation out the door until he grows up. Good Luck Let me know if I can be of any more help.



answers from Portland on

It sounds like it is a form of control,if you are not living paycheck to paycheck and he still has a problem with you eating out once a week with family or friends then it sounds like something else is going on there like he is feeling insecure for some reason.Try to get this situation under control now maybe with some marriage couseling but do not let it get physical especially in front of your child and if he takes it there leave and work on your marriage from two seperate living spaces once it goes there it will more than likely go there again if you put up with it.



answers from Rochester on

Hi S.,
I didn't get a chance to read all of the responses, but I think that you and your husband need to have a serious talk. You need to tell him that his abusive behaviour will not be tolerated! My husband and I also argue about finances because he says we have no money but he is constantly buying stuff. We have a son and I know that we want more children, but I refuse to have any more until he grows up some. He is also 25. He might not be ready for another baby and just doesn't know how to tell you. Marriage counsel might also be good to try too before you call it quits. But you must address the situation before it gets out of control. Good luck.



answers from Orlando on


I scanned over the responses and there are some very good points. I would suggest Financial Peace University. My hubby and I used to have major communication issues about $$. This 13 week course has really changed our lives. comminication lines have been opened up, we do a budget together every month. We spend cash only using the envelope system and we are paying off debt. If you check out you will be able to find a class near you. Dave Ramsey also has a radio show on M - F from 1 -3. I listen almost every day. HTH.




answers from Phoenix on

It's not about money at all. Your husband is envious of your seemingly "free" time during the day. He knows that school work and caring for you child requires effort, but he probably doesn't equate it with "work". Visiting family and lunching a few times a month doesn't really fit into "work" neatly either.

He isn't aware that this is how he feels, just as you aren't.

You're looking at this totally from your perspective, and focused on the wrong topic - money.

He doesn't feel appreciated for his efforts, perhaps you've told him he makes "just enough to pay the bills", and that makes him feel inadequate in that he can't cover all expenses and more.

Perhaps he wishes he could get his master's. Maybe he's upset because he knows once you get your master's you'll be earning more than him, and that makes him feel less of a man.

You really have to try to get into his shoes, without making any excuses for what you may say or do that affects the way he feels about himself.

Build him up, focus on him, and you'll find things will change for the better for both of you..

All the best to you.



answers from New York on

Why do you give your husband the money that you make?

It sounds to me like your husband might be hiding some debt. If I where you, next time he starts yelling about money, I would ask him very nicely to go over all of the bills (including the mortgage), savings accounts and any other financials that you and he may have. That way you can understand more where he is coming from when he gets aggrivated about it. Maybe you think financially you are doing a lot better then you really are because from your posting he seems to do all the bills.



answers from Syracuse on

hi, i briefly read some of others responses and i must say that thnk of your child first. i was in a physical abusive relationship once and everybody told me to think of my child first and they were right. things just so happen to work out between him and i and we've learned to talk things out but when i think of what my daughter had to go through and watch although she was only 2 or 3 years old, it breaks my heart. thank god everybody is okay, but i didn't want to think that that was love. and the controlling thing of your money...yes...i agree with others...why are you giving him all of your money when the bills are already paid for and he still has extra money. i think it can be a numerous of reasons why he acts this way and probably you are the only one who can know besides us. for one, try using some of your money and maybe buy him a gift or treat him out to eat with it because he could be feeling pressured depending on his income to pay the bills. so yes, jealousy may play a part in it. for two, yes, look into where the money is going. first you by yourself then go over it with him. his behavior may be contolling because there maybe something else in his life like drugs or another women. for three, you need to take some time out and think about what's going on here and what you want in the future for you and your family. take some time out and explain to your husband that you would like to talk your relationship out with him and only talk without yelling and you need to do this without any disturbance maybe with a babysitter or when he is asleep so you two can come to a conclusion. ask him what does he want out of life first and what he expects out of you so you can get the computer use out in the clear because that's ridiculous. i mean, honey i can go on and on and on. if you want to talk more in detail email me at other than that good luck and remember you need to stay relaxed. take deep breaths and wipe the cloudiness from your eyes and pay attention to the truth of what's really happening here.



answers from Boston on

Finances are always a source of marital trouble. No matter what the situation is, it can be stressful. I am sure that this may be a hard topic to bring up, but have you ever considered counseling? This would be a great way to have some one outside the relationship bring another voice and opinion to the table. If what you are saying is all true, maybe your husband will get your point hearing it from some one who doesn't know you guys directly. Good Luck.



answers from Boston on

hey im 22 years old with all the problems in the world at the same time i have one little one and me and her father have been together for 4 years engaged for 2 and its the same but sumtime we have to go to check to check Mine really cant work that much and i have to takke care of my daughter ... its really up to u if u think that ur not goin anywhere and he works to pay the bills and ur really have notthin to worry about then u mihgt want to think about tellin him that u will leave if it dont stop.. if he dont stop ... its sumthing that u shouldnt have to worry about.. if ur in it together and its what u BOTH want then he wouldnt be always tellin u other wise and makin u feel bad bc u go to ur parents or out at all.... I dont no ANYTHING at all so I no how it feels but I have never been to give him all of my money when i have it .......

it just sumthin that sux.. if u have AIM (im ) me at jill3584 or Yahoo my sn is MomOfBeast612 or e-mail If u want to talk more...

~*J. *~



answers from New York on

Have you had serious calm talks about this with him? he sounds like he has a lot to be thankful for....Hopefully someone with this experience can help you more...but maybe he might need time away from you to see exactly what he has and what he would lose if you two continue to fight and then split up over it. i went through alot with my ex and all this time apart I now realize so many ways we could have changed but its too late....I wish you the best....



answers from Lewiston on

Hi S.,

It sounds like your in a tough situation which is getting tougher. Can you convince him to go to marriage/couples counseling? At this point it seems like you could really use a mediator to work things out - to keep it safe and respectable. You might be able to sell him on the idea by saying that he can complain all he wants about you there and the therapist can help find solutions. (Believe me, the therapist will pick up on the dynamic immediately and help you both wade through it together).

If you can't do that then you need to start thinking about safety issues. Just for some information and support, you might want to try a local women's hotline for domestic violence (even if it isn't physical). Those folks are free and supportive and very informative.

Good luck.

R. B.



answers from Providence on

Dear S.,

I have read quite a few of your questions, and to be honest, I am a bit concerned about you. Please check out the following website for more information I recommend that you look at the "check your relationship" section.

If you feel that it is a bit close to home, please contact somebody! I am concerned that he is controlling your money, and that he is also trying to control where you are going.

It sounds like he is starting to become threatening, and you might want to consider contacting somebody about setting up a safety plan for you and your son.

Be safe,



answers from Providence on

hi My name is M.. First does he spend money on things he likes. Do you take care of his children,clean his house and make sure all the bills are paid.and does he now of a thing call inflation.........all our bills have gone up that is what happens when the prices of things go up. you have the right to go out for a peice of mind and i give you alot of credit for doing so.I sit in this house all the time and work 50 to 60 hrs. a week. I have no life. don't let him do that to you .your not hurting no-body by spending time with family and your not going out to clubs or running up all kinds off bills. I think he is just jelious that your out with your family instead of him....Tell him if he wants he can come and You have the right to enjoy your-self every now and again....



answers from Burlington on

tread lightly my friend- i was once in your shoes. if your fights are almost physical now, they almost certainly WILL become physical. i was there, i didnt think it could get worse- it did. your child doesnt need to grow up in a home where his father treats his mother like that- he will learn to treat you like that. get out while you can. trust me. or perhaps he could go to counseling with you- get someone else involved to watch over you- dont do it alone like i did. please think long and hard about your situation and what your priorities are. good luck and be careful.



answers from Rochester on

I'm glad things were talked out

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