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Husband’s not helping

Husband’s not helping

I️ need advice from someone who doesn’t know either of us, but can offer helpful advice, especially from someone who has experience in a similar situation.

My husband barely helps with the bills. He is an owner/operator for his own business and it’s primarily paid cash for his services and he isn’t very reliable about actually going to work, so I️ honestly have no idea what his income is. We moved in together before getting married, with me and my children moving into his house. I️ found out a couple of years later that his house was owned free and clear and although I’d thought that we’d been splitting costs 50/50, I️ had in fact been paying 100% of the bills and then some. His mom outed him and told me that he wasn’t the best financially and was too prideful to tell me. Why’d I️ marry him with that huge secret and blatant deception? Well...Love? That’s all I’ve got.

Fast forward to 2014. I️ had a preapproval for about $180K, which in my cotybcan get you a really nice house. We weren’t married yet and my (now) husband’s credit score didn’t qualify, so it had to be in my name only. He fell in love with a house that was $200K and refused to even consider a less expensive house, so I️had to pay off some debt to get approved for a higher amount for the house that he wanted. This meant that what it took to run the household went up hire a bit.

Fast forward to this year. My husband hasn’t paid his part of the household bills since about April. I had a baby last August and when I️ was out on maternity leave, I️ had to cash out my 401K because he wasn’t contributing regularly and we were super behind on bills. I️ think that he has a lot of payday loans and bills that are behind, but I’m not totally sure because he won’t tell me, I’ve just seen letters that are obviously from collection companies and emails from predatory lenders. Smiley Sad

We sat down together and created a budget last year. He said that he could “afford” about $1200 a month, but if you count my car note and insurance, it takes about $4K/month to run our house. I️ think that it should be included because I️ pay his health insurance through my job and it would be a lot less if he wasn’t on it because he smokes and the kids and I️ don’t.

As you can see, it’s a lot. I’ve tried setting dates to talk budget, but that doesn’t work. He’ll pull out a calculator and write down a number and make me a promise that he’ll pay me “this much” once whatever his newest make money quick plan pans out, but even when it does l, don’t get anything toward the house, or not much. Case in point, he bought a rental property over the summer from family and took out a loan on it. He’s promised for months that he’d give me the money that he was behind when he did this, but not only did he not do that, but he also didn’t contribute to home again. He asked to use my credit card to buy something as I️ was leaving town to visit a sick relative and promised he’d pay it back the next day, but he didn’t. Later the next week, he needed me to pay something else and eventually gave me back $250, which covered the cost of what he’d borrowed in the month and $40 towards bills. That was it for October.

I️ know that this sounds simple, leave, but I’m married, not casually dating, we have a toddler together, and I️ believe strongly in maintaining my commitment. With that said, how do I️ bring this up, what can I️ do besides continue to carry the weight of everything by myself. He’s thanked me for holding things together, but feels attacked when I️ bring up money and my frustration with the current state of affairs.

Message 1 of 22

Re: Husband’s not helping

Sorry for all the typos. I’m on my phone and strange symbols are popping up when I️ try to say “i”.
Message 2 of 22
Established Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

Newflash:  It's not going to get any better.  That's is the only advice I can give you. You have been dealing with this man for years, through the lies and deceit, the selfishness but you thought maybe a ring would change it but it didn't.  You allowed a man that did not contribute one red cent before or after dictate what kind of home you would purchase?  Then you went on to have a baby by him, basically tying yourself to this man for a lifetime all while you worked and he reaped the benefits (I'm almost dizzy).  You have cashed out your 401k, you continue to enable him by giving him money when he ask, you have never put your foot down and shown any kind of backbone that he would respect then to top it off, you say you don't want to leave.  I'm not sure what kind of advice you are looking for here.  Did you just want to vent?


In situations like this, where kids are involved, I always wish people would take their feelings and emotions out of it and think about your kids.  Is this how you want your kids to grow up behaving or patterning their lives after?  Do you want to give them any kind of inkling that this kind of emotional, finanical relationship is okay?  It is exactly what you are doing.  Your children deserve better, you deserve better and no man can give you that because it comes from within.  Good luck to you and whatever you decide.

***Gardening 3/29/2018 until 9/25/2018***

FICO 8 Scores: EQ~692 l TU~657 l EX~669
Message 3 of 22
Regular Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

This subject is touchy.  I too believe in commitment and a long lasting marriage as I've been married 19years now.  Having said that.  You seem to be the only one committed to the marriage.  It takes 2.  Having kids together is not a good excuse for staying together.  When you look at it another way, kids learn from their environment and although we as parents try our best to safe guard our babies from seeing any type of negativity or stress in a relationship, finances has always been at the top of the list for stress and eventually divorce.  


You've already admitted to marrying him KNOWING that he was not fiscally responsible and keeping secrets from you, why do you think that will change?  As your kids become older, neither of you will be able to hide his indescretions.  Things will become more and more vivid to them.  In addition, they could potentially follow in the same footsteps of either parent when it comes to Life Lessons 101.  I would think of them first.  The debt that he's secretly building will become yours the longer you stay in this marriage.  If you're not getting anything out him now that will not change.  He didn't care before you were married and it sounds as if marriage and children doesn't mean enough to make him change those ways.  Save yourself and kids.  Don't be the doormat that he sees in you, but a woman who preservered through a troubled marriage.  Need moral support?  Tony A. Gaskins, Jr.  Look him up, read his books.  I'm sure this may not be the response you were looking for but what's great about this forum is that it is truly a great support system.  I don't think you would be here if you didn't feel the same way.

Message 4 of 22
Frequent Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

OP, I want you to know that I sympathize. Marriage is not always easy and leaving is not always the right answer. 


I also want you to know that when people broach the subject of leaving, they aren't doing so flippantly. You are in dire straights. You have straight-up blown money that should have been funding your living expenses for retirement. You didn't use it to fund your living expenses now - you (pl) used it to cover whatever the heck he's doing with HIS money and not telling you. 


It is not likely that he will change. I won't rule it out, because I don't know him personally and I don't believe in certainties. However, the probability is that what you have been going through to this point is only going to continue, and likely get worse. 


I am a divorcee. My ex-husband is the one who asked for separation, and then I asked for the divorce. I would never have gone on my own (separation) - I was too determined to make it work at any cost. I don't have children involved. But it was harming me severely. I stayed for an extra 18 months trying everything I could think of to make it work. It ultimately didn't.


If you are absolutely determined, you can

* insist he go to counseling with you.

* go to counseling yourself, regardless of whether he goes with you or not. (I recommend this highly. Please do this.)

* offer to attend credit counseling with him.

* spend 1 hour per day going over his financial situation together, then 1 hour a week doing something fun together to get your minds off things.

* etc.


Then you could say you did something. However, I'd say you've already done a whole lot. Read your post again. How long has this been going on? More than 3 years, on my reading. Read again every action you've taken to try to remedy the situation.


Frankly, it sounds exhausting. And trust me, I don't say so judgmentally. I say so because I've been there (just that my situation wasn't financial), always having to chase someone down for answers and for help, always being left out of the loop.


I encourage you to start with a counseling appointment for yourself, and to consider joint counseling. It may or may not fix your issues with your husband - he may or may not agree to go at all - but it may elucidate some things for you in the process. 

Remember that even a healthy car needs a tune-up sometimes; nothing has to be "wrong" with you to seek counseling from time to time.


Best of luck OP.

Ch7 discharged 10/2017. Pre-file FICOs high 400s.
04/2018 EX 644; EQ 670; TU 648
Message 5 of 22
Established Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

We need a hug button to along with the kudos button for threads like this.  I wish I could give the OP a hug.  Hopefully she will come back.

***Gardening 3/29/2018 until 9/25/2018***

FICO 8 Scores: EQ~692 l TU~657 l EX~669
Message 6 of 22
Valued Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

Things need to be transparent.  He needs to come clean and you all together set a budget.  If he can't do both of these things its time to plan your escape. The first Mrs Backwoods made great money but  could spend it even faster. At that time I owned a very seasonal business. It made good money BUT I had to find new ways to make money in the off season because  she had already spent my whole years income and had nothing coming in for several months.  I became a nervous wreck.     I felt much better after I left.  

Message 7 of 22

Re: Husband’s not helping

The DW and I have been married 18 years. It takes both giving 100% not 50/50.


If the both of you are not on the same page, you will never win with money, OR win at anything else for that matter.

Message 8 of 22
Super Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

I agree on the counseling.  Just keep in mind he may not be willing to go which would be telling in itself.  You might also mention to him about the forum here and see if he is willing to join it.  He may want to change but doesn't know how to ask for help what to do.  Also you need to protect yourself by making sure you have your own credit history and consider a good credit monitoring/ id theft service if you can afford to do that.


06/13/2018: FICO 821 EQ 814 TU 808 EX
Message 9 of 22
Valued Contributor

Re: Husband’s not helping

I would recommend seeing if he is willing to combine your finances, but all under your name. Does he work a regular job? Yes I'm still a young student but I've seen things get better with counseling and combining finances. Best of luck OP, and I do hope for you, him, and especially the child(ren) that all works out for the best.

TU FICO 8: 750 (5/18) — Ex FICO 8: 751 (6/18)
Message 10 of 22