Re: Hoping I'm not the only bad person out there ...
08-14-2012 07:56 PM
Yours, mine, and ours, and be honest and reasonably informative about the yours and mine part. The "reasonably informative" part simply means making the other aware that you have your own stash (as does she.) It doesn't mean that you owe her an accounting of how you handle it, UNLESS the time comes that you can't hold up your end of the joint financial responsibilities because you've overspent your own money.
You have joint responsibiities as a married couple/ household, and these should be jointly funded. Some people do it by splitting down the middle; others pro-rate their earnings after retirement savings. i.e., you make twice as much as she, so you pay two-thirds of the joint expenses and she pays one-third. Whatever, as long as it makes sense to both of you, and you both feel (however grudgingly) that it's a fair division.
Despite being married, you are also two unique, individual persons, and IMO you should each have your own play money/ mad money/ whatever to do stuff with. ("Seriously, you really had to buy one more Howlin' Wolf CD/ Number One Ladies' Detective Agency book/ another flat of petunias???" <-- this is avoided when you each have your own independent accounts, because by golly, it's your money, as long as the joint finances are taken care of.)
The fact that you feel that you have to hide this from your wife, and also that you are still resentful about having to combine your accounts, tells me that you two have some pretty huge subterranean issues that need to be pulled into the light of day and ruthlessly examined. If you genuinely want to stay married, you're going to have to learn how to handle money as a couple AND how to talk about money. You think this is bad? Wait till you hit big stuff like children, buying a house, and retirement. If you're having problems now, wait till these other things hit. I'd look for a marriage counselor who also has experience in financial matters.
On a purely emotional level as a woman, my reaction was that if you're hiding this from her, you're also hiding something else even more important, or you soon will be. I feel like you're paving your escape road. But that's just me.
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007