Author Topic: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning  (Read 64904 times)

RQO

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #150 on: April 09, 2015, 12:19:48 PM »
dagiffy: I'm a firm believer that we should all realize that we can afford almost anything , but we cannot afford everything.  That's to say, compromises must be made.  Your wife appears to have more non-negotiables than she has income to support.  With your income, that might ordinarily be fine, but with your debt, it obviously is not.

Why not compromise with her that your paycheck will also go towards half (or possibly even more) of all necessary household expenses there in Portland, but that she be fully responsible for the bottled water, witchdoctor, Landcruiser upkeep, etc.?  That way, you're helping out with the necessities, but not all the luxuries.  She would obviously still be able to pick and choose what's important to her, but picking and choosing would be necessary.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #151 on: April 09, 2015, 12:24:35 PM »
It sounds like you could both benefit from some therapy and/or marital counseling. Maybe, since your wife grew up with a literal vagabond dad for an example, she has skewed expectations of "hard work." Her massage practice may be fulfilling and feel very worthwhile, but at $70/hr bringing in $12k per year, she's working less than 4 hours per week. That's not working your ass off, that's basically doing part-time work you really enjoy and essentially being retired. She definitely seems in denial about the road you're heading down if you don't change course rapidly -- which is trying to survive on social security or never being able to retire.

As for you, you basically went 0-60 over the course of a few days, from jumping full-on into MMM, to being proud of all the changes your wife was making, to saying that you'll be living in different states and she can fend for herself. That much radical change over the course of a few days kind of seems unstable to me.

If you have irreconcilable differences and are planning on living separately on separate incomes in different states, why stay married on paper? Why is divorce not an option?

And if you are planning to stay married, then the two of you need to get a handle on many issues about how you are living and making decisions together.


Apparently her changes were not done wholeheartedly, just to pacify me. She resents the whole thing underneath it all. She hasn't enjoyed the "coming to Jesus" moment that I have. I thought she was embracing it, but she was just co-existing. When I brought out my plan, that sent her over the edge. There were no changes, it just seemed like there were. Oh well.

I realize I can't expect her to go on this journey with me. She just won't do it. She won't leave Portland. If I go to CA, I'm going alone and I'll stay there alone until and unless I come back. I realize that now. She just has expectations that cannot be fulfilled in me living this MMM life. I'm almost in a panic situation. I see how dire it is. In her mind she's already been living this life for decades and now instead of coasting I want her to ramp up? Preposterous.

 If I go to CA, I'm leaving in a few weeks. NO time for counseling. IT also costs money. No money for counseling.

I see her reasoning. I just can't agree with it. My options are limited.

charis

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #152 on: April 09, 2015, 12:26:38 PM »
What you are proposing is tantamount to leaving your wife.  That's ok, but divorce is not an option?  What am I missing here?

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #153 on: April 09, 2015, 12:34:11 PM »
What you are proposing is tantamount to leaving your wife.  That's ok, but divorce is not an option?  What am I missing here?

Well, the difference is that I am her retirement now. It's going to me, my job, my insurance, my retirement package that she lives on at the end. I imagine that if I hadn't pursued her that she'd have married someone else in a much better financial position, but she didn't. She married me.

When we married we made a commitment to each other. I'm going to honor it even if we aren't living together.

If we divorce she has nothing but her skills. Self-employed so no insurance, or if she gets it it will be prohibitively expensive. She can look forward to "working her ass off" until she drops dead, because at best she can make maybe 35k per year. That's what she made at her peak.

I'm not going to divorce her just because we can't get along. I promised I'd take care of her in our vows and that's what I'm going to do. Financially, at least. And yes it'll suck living the life of a single man but not able to pursue a mate to share life with because I already have a wife.

I will need to stay in the CA job until I'm retired. She won't move. This is just how it is, at least for now. Don't know if that explains it or not.

EDIT: when this mansion sells and she has to pay rent and utilities some place, I will start sending her money. But she doesn't need any more than what she is making except when she sees the witch doctor. She can't afford him on what she's making even though there's no rent or utilities to pay.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 12:35:42 PM by dagiffy1 »

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #154 on: April 09, 2015, 12:39:12 PM »
dagiffy: I'm a firm believer that we should all realize that we can afford almost anything , but we cannot afford everything.  That's to say, compromises must be made.  Your wife appears to have more non-negotiables than she has income to support.  With your income, that might ordinarily be fine, but with your debt, it obviously is not.

Why not compromise with her that your paycheck will also go towards half (or possibly even more) of all necessary household expenses there in Portland, but that she be fully responsible for the bottled water, witchdoctor, Landcruiser upkeep, etc.?  That way, you're helping out with the necessities, but not all the luxuries.  She would obviously still be able to pick and choose what's important to her, but picking and choosing would be necessary.

I explained to her that our paychecks would go into the same pot of money. It wouldn't be "her" money that paid the monthlies, the plan was for her to earn enough so that the net income she brought in would equal our monthlies. Then we would KNOW that all of MINE went to debt relief. But it's all the same pot of money.

This doesn't help her. Why does SHE have to pay the monthlies while I live in CA and not working 7 days a week? She's been working her ass off!

She can't be reasoned with, I have always had to reach her some other way. She doesn't think logically, more conceptually. The whole IDEA of this seems wrong; therefore, it is. It feels wrong, therefore it is. She's very empathetic, sympathetic, and nurturing and I am not. Yet that is how I can get through to her. I haven't come up with anything she can relate to that way.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 12:46:32 PM by dagiffy1 »

justajane

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #155 on: April 09, 2015, 12:40:49 PM »
So, you're 50 now and plan on retiring when you are 65 or 67. That means you are going to live separate from your wife for up to seventeen years? During that time, you will support her fully, including paying for a second apartment in a different city? You have to realize that this is crazy. It's just not tenable.

How long have you been married? A decade? Two decades? Your commitment is admirable, but I just don't see how it's tenable. You don't "deserve" (whatever that means) to punish yourself for the rest of your life just because you married someone with whom you are not compatible. 

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #156 on: April 09, 2015, 12:50:55 PM »
So, you're 50 now and plan on retiring when you are 65 or 67. That means you are going to live separate from your wife for up to seventeen years? During that time, you will support her fully, including paying for a second apartment in a different city? You have to realize that this is crazy. It's just not tenable.

How long have you been married? A decade? Two decades? Your commitment is admirable, but I just don't see how it's tenable. You don't "deserve" (whatever that means) to punish yourself for the rest of your life just because you married someone with whom you are not compatible.

We've been married 9 years. Yes I thought of the untenability, too. But on her side, why should she now have to work till she drops because she married a guy who wasn't financially solvent and who ended up divorcing her when she was 50?

I know paying two rents and so forth is not tenable, but so is paying back 101,000 in school loans. I made the commitment and now I have to pay the piper. It's a miserable situation but I can't cut and run. Maybe it will get better? Or maybe not.

richschmidt

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #157 on: April 09, 2015, 12:53:19 PM »
dagiffy: I'm a firm believer that we should all realize that we can afford almost anything , but we cannot afford everything.

This is the mantra behind the website I mentioned earlier, www.AffordAnything.com. You might point your wife toward it at some point, dagiffy. It might help her see that she can afford some things she wants, but not others. Or, if she wants to afford them, she needs to hustle and earn more money so that she can afford it.

It's heartbreaking to read about how she treats you & to think of the two of you living separately for that long. I hope that some other option presents itself. But I admire your commitment to keeping your commitments!

As for the shared financial situation... perhaps it would be better to do some financial separating. Perhaps you keep separate accounts for your income, and then split all the basic bills (which really should include your rent, utilities, and food as well, if/when you move to CA... but I'm not sure you could sell that to her), and then you're each free to do what you want with the rest of it. You might have to cancel the credit cards, so she doesn't just rack up massive debt on one. A debit card would prevent her from doing that.

This would allow her to see how much she can truly afford to spend on lattes, naturopaths, and weekend getaways, and it would allow you to pour a ton of money toward debt. This might be just the nudge she needs to expand her business... because she sees that's the only way she can afford the lifestyle she desires. She can afford anything, but not everything.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #158 on: April 09, 2015, 12:55:34 PM »
So, you're 50 now and plan on retiring when you are 65 or 67. That means you are going to live separate from your wife for up to seventeen years? During that time, you will support her fully, including paying for a second apartment in a different city? You have to realize that this is crazy. It's just not tenable.

How long have you been married? A decade? Two decades? Your commitment is admirable, but I just don't see how it's tenable. You don't "deserve" (whatever that means) to punish yourself for the rest of your life just because you married someone with whom you are not compatible.

If we did decide to divorce, I'd probably have to give her half of what I make anyway, right? Equal rights for women and equality and all that jazz. From friends who have gotten divorced, the man has gotten absolutely hammered. I know one guy who can only afford to live with his Mom at the age of 47 while he continues making the payments on the large house that his ex-wife lives in.

The judge won't care that I have 130k in debts and only a short time to pay them before I can't work anymore. He's going to see that my wife makes 12k and I make 120k and she needs to be supported for the rest of my life. I guess I could be wrong but that's what I've seen happen to people I know around here.

swick

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #159 on: April 09, 2015, 12:58:04 PM »
Sorry you are in such a difficult situation :( I would pull out your marriage vows and read them in the light of what you are both not doing. I imagine there is not a lot of love, cherish and respect going on.

If you get divorced, yes you will be breaking part of your vows, but you (her?) are probably breaking some of them regardless with how you are living now.  Also, you seem to be forgetting that with the huge difference in finances, you will be supporting her anyways - for the foreseeable future. It does give you both the option of finding a partner better in line with your beliefs and goals for the future.

charis

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #160 on: April 09, 2015, 01:00:19 PM »
 
If we did decide to divorce, I'd probably have to give her half of what I make anyway, right? Equal rights for women and equality and all that jazz. From friends who have gotten divorced, the man has gotten absolutely hammered. I know one guy who can only afford to live with his Mom at the age of 47 while he continues making the payments on the large house that his ex-wife lives in.

The judge won't care that I have 130k in debts and only a short time to pay them before I can't work anymore. He's going to see that my wife makes 12k and I make 120k and she needs to be supported for the rest of my life. I guess I could be wrong but that's what I've seen happen to people I know around here.

I thought you wanted to support her for the rest of her life.  You just said you can't divorce because you need to support her financially.  With that in mind, you post above makes NO sense.  Who cares whether the judges orders you to support her if you were going to anyway?

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #161 on: April 09, 2015, 01:03:55 PM »
dagiffy: I'm a firm believer that we should all realize that we can afford almost anything , but we cannot afford everything.

This is the mantra behind the website I mentioned earlier, www.AffordAnything.com. You might point your wife toward it at some point, dagiffy. It might help her see that she can afford some things she wants, but not others. Or, if she wants to afford them, she needs to hustle and earn more money so that she can afford it.

It's heartbreaking to read about how she treats you & to think of the two of you living separately for that long. I hope that some other option presents itself. But I admire your commitment to keeping your commitments!

As for the shared financial situation... perhaps it would be better to do some financial separating. Perhaps you keep separate accounts for your income, and then split all the basic bills (which really should include your rent, utilities, and food as well, if/when you move to CA... but I'm not sure you could sell that to her), and then you're each free to do what you want with the rest of it. You might have to cancel the credit cards, so she doesn't just rack up massive debt on one. A debit card would prevent her from doing that.

This would allow her to see how much she can truly afford to spend on lattes, naturopaths, and weekend getaways, and it would allow you to pour a ton of money toward debt. This might be just the nudge she needs to expand her business... because she sees that's the only way she can afford the lifestyle she desires. She can afford anything, but not everything.

She doesn't treat me poorly, really. She sees me as lazy, as trying to get out of doing work, as putting undue hardship on her, a lot of "woe is me and how could you do me this way" stuff lately.

She loves me, cooks for me, does my laundry, helps me where she can. She's no ogre. She is just on a different plane than I am about how she sees everything and vocal about it. Any time I present an idea to her, she is suspicious of my motives and thinks I'm doing it to take advantage of her and to get out of doing something.

I will point her to this way of thinking but I'm not going to explain anything to her. She hates the computer and the internet and navigates it with frustration, so I doubt she'll go for reading youcanaffordanything.com.

Maybe I'll take the advice of adding our two separate monthlies together and dividing them between us and keep two separate accounts.

The problem is that unless I give her that goal to shoot for, she is going to go along at her 12k annual earnings while expecting me to "work my ass off" 7 days a week because that's what a husband should do for his wife. This is why I gave her a number to shoot for and asked her if she thought she could do it.

But that's what sent the whole house of cards down, instead.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #162 on: April 09, 2015, 01:04:42 PM »
If we did decide to divorce, I'd probably have to give her half of what I make anyway, right? Equal rights for women and equality and all that jazz. From friends who have gotten divorced, the man has gotten absolutely hammered. I know one guy who can only afford to live with his Mom at the age of 47 while he continues making the payments on the large house that his ex-wife lives in.

The judge won't care that I have 130k in debts and only a short time to pay them before I can't work anymore. He's going to see that my wife makes 12k and I make 120k and she needs to be supported for the rest of my life. I guess I could be wrong but that's what I've seen happen to people I know around here.

I thought you wanted to support her for the rest of her life.  You just said you can't divorce because you need to support her financially.  With that in mind, you post above makes NO sense.  Who cares whether the judges orders you to support her if you were going to anyway?

In a divorce I think I would get a worse deal than if we stay married and I send her money when she needs it. That's all.

My main thrust with ALL of this is to get out of debt and save enough to retire. If I'm sending her 2500 per month in a divorce settlement, I'll never make it.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 01:23:16 PM by dagiffy1 »

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #163 on: April 09, 2015, 01:07:18 PM »
Sorry you are in such a difficult situation :( I would pull out your marriage vows and read them in the light of what you are both not doing. I imagine there is not a lot of love, cherish and respect going on.

If you get divorced, yes you will be breaking part of your vows, but you (her?) are probably breaking some of them regardless with how you are living now.  Also, you seem to be forgetting that with the huge difference in finances, you will be supporting her anyways - for the foreseeable future. It does give you both the option of finding a partner better in line with your beliefs and goals for the future.

An excellent point, Swick. This is definitely a down time with us and a lot of not cherishing and respect and stuff but I hadn't considered that breaking vows is breaking vows.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #164 on: April 09, 2015, 01:08:58 PM »
dagiffy: I'm a firm believer that we should all realize that we can afford almost anything , but we cannot afford everything.

This is the mantra behind the website I mentioned earlier, www.AffordAnything.com. You might point your wife toward it at some point, dagiffy. It might help her see that she can afford some things she wants, but not others. Or, if she wants to afford them, she needs to hustle and earn more money so that she can afford it.

It's heartbreaking to read about how she treats you & to think of the two of you living separately for that long. I hope that some other option presents itself. But I admire your commitment to keeping your commitments!

As for the shared financial situation... perhaps it would be better to do some financial separating. Perhaps you keep separate accounts for your income, and then split all the basic bills (which really should include your rent, utilities, and food as well, if/when you move to CA... but I'm not sure you could sell that to her), and then you're each free to do what you want with the rest of it. You might have to cancel the credit cards, so she doesn't just rack up massive debt on one. A debit card would prevent her from doing that.

This would allow her to see how much she can truly afford to spend on lattes, naturopaths, and weekend getaways, and it would allow you to pour a ton of money toward debt. This might be just the nudge she needs to expand her business... because she sees that's the only way she can afford the lifestyle she desires. She can afford anything, but not everything.

I like this idea a lot. I'm going to think about proposing this to her.

JLee

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #165 on: April 09, 2015, 01:35:28 PM »
So, you're 50 now and plan on retiring when you are 65 or 67. That means you are going to live separate from your wife for up to seventeen years? During that time, you will support her fully, including paying for a second apartment in a different city? You have to realize that this is crazy. It's just not tenable.

How long have you been married? A decade? Two decades? Your commitment is admirable, but I just don't see how it's tenable. You don't "deserve" (whatever that means) to punish yourself for the rest of your life just because you married someone with whom you are not compatible.

We've been married 9 years. Yes I thought of the untenability, too. But on her side, why should she now have to work till she drops because she married a guy who wasn't financially solvent and who ended up divorcing her when she was 50?

I know paying two rents and so forth is not tenable, but so is paying back 101,000 in school loans. I made the commitment and now I have to pay the piper. It's a miserable situation but I can't cut and run. Maybe it will get better? Or maybe not.
Do you have children together that caused her to stay home and forsake a working career? Sounds to me like you are a dual income couple, and she just didn't happen to choose a career that she could live on. Did she marry you 9 years ago just so she wouldn't have to worry about working anymore?

I'm noticing some huge communications problems and trust problems here - counseling is likely a necessity if you want to have a successful relationship.

Josiecat

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #166 on: April 09, 2015, 01:38:42 PM »
Is it possible that she is keeping her income low, because she knows if you divorce she will get more $$? 

supomglol

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #167 on: April 09, 2015, 01:40:10 PM »
Dagiffy1,
This is a very interesting post, From the moment I read your OP I correctly assumed how I would read your tone on Page 4. 

The only real difference between our two relationships is that I had the foresight to see this coming.  I learned early on that my wife was a bit of a spend-thrift; and she too enjoyed the "finer things in life".  She equated the number in her bank account equal to the number available to spend at any given moment. 

I'f I'm to be honest: I used her lack of financial savvy-ness in combination with some choice examples from her poorly managed financial past as leverage to take full financial control of our relationship early-on.  As a result, I control the bank accounts, investments, bill-payments etc.  My income represents roughly 90% of our current income.  I set up a system whereby our direct deposits are put into an account she doesn't have direct access to; and then I have an automatic distribution set up to provide her with a monthly "allowance".  This took some convincing on my part (she wanted 100, I wanted 50 per week).  The stipulation was that she spend that money on whatever she wants to (eating out, nails, hair, etc.).  Note that is still $3,000 per year if you think about it.  I also have an unregulated system of mentioning off-hand how we can't afford this or that - even if we technically could.  Odiously she had to put trust in me and my financial abilities to allow me this much control; and I would be foolish to break that trust.  The only account she worries about is her own, which gets automatically populated with $75/week.  This combination of activities provides for a "false" sense of financial comfort, which is a bit of a mind-game I play on myself too; to prevent from making large ticket impulse purchases.  The trick is keeping her dis-interested in numbers like our NET worth, Annual Income, Annual Bonuses, etc.  If she knew we had several hundred thousand dollars at our "disposal" I would hear constant whining about wanting to go on vacations; how we "can't spend it when we're dead" etc. 
Is it more work for me to keep up with 99% of the finances?  Yes, absolutely.  But I can tell you with no doubt in my mind that if this system were not in place, I would be constantly fighting off each and every purchase.  There is no way I would have or would still be married. 

This is a lesson in avoiding income-creep; where more money = more spending.  We've kept our spending the same, while our income has increased; but this would not have been possible without the above. 

Unfortunately she doesn't have any real interest in the MMM lifestyle just like your wife; there is no convincing.  If she was left to her own devices we would be your typical consumers, spending every penny we have and then some.  In many ways I think this may be the greatest weakness in our relationship as we truly have two different paths. 
Sometimes my wife's day consists of just like what you describe, shopping, napping, with a dash of TV watching; and the only thing that stops it from infuriating me beyond belief is the knowledge that I am still saving >50% of our NET income this year.  In your situation, with the work you are putting in, I'm sure its tough to come home to that every day.  I know it still wears on me sometimes. 

You need to recognize that she equates income with spending opportunities.  If you are truly on-board with MMM than you do not feel that way any-longer. 
That difference of opinion will tear you apart in every conceivable way.  I have been there.

My wife ended up deciding that she wanted to go back to school and is now ending her 3rd full-time semester in college with solid career prospects.  If she hadn't decide to become a income participant we wouldn't still be married; and nobody could make that decision but her.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #168 on: April 09, 2015, 01:41:45 PM »
So, you're 50 now and plan on retiring when you are 65 or 67. That means you are going to live separate from your wife for up to seventeen years? During that time, you will support her fully, including paying for a second apartment in a different city? You have to realize that this is crazy. It's just not tenable.

How long have you been married? A decade? Two decades? Your commitment is admirable, but I just don't see how it's tenable. You don't "deserve" (whatever that means) to punish yourself for the rest of your life just because you married someone with whom you are not compatible.

We've been married 9 years. Yes I thought of the untenability, too. But on her side, why should she now have to work till she drops because she married a guy who wasn't financially solvent and who ended up divorcing her when she was 50?

I know paying two rents and so forth is not tenable, but so is paying back 101,000 in school loans. I made the commitment and now I have to pay the piper. It's a miserable situation but I can't cut and run. Maybe it will get better? Or maybe not.
Do you have children together that caused her to stay home and forsake a working career? Sounds to me like you are a dual income couple, and she just didn't happen to choose a career that she could live on. Did she marry you 9 years ago just so she wouldn't have to worry about working anymore?

I'm noticing some huge communications problems and trust problems here - counseling is likely a necessity if you want to have a successful relationship.

Definitely huge trust problems. Counseling doesn't fix everything. It's a shot in the dark.

When we married we I was in school. The idea was that she would support us so that when I got out I could make a good living for us, but she'd still work some.

Our situation doesn't allow that at the moment. We both need to work like it's the only thing that matters right now. She's willing to work more than she is now but I'd better be ready to work 7 days per week, preferably 16 hours a day, so that it's fair to her.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #169 on: April 09, 2015, 01:45:11 PM »
Is it possible that she is keeping her income low, because she knows if you divorce she will get more $$?

No. Don't think so? In her mind, she is "working her ass off". She told me that several times yesterday evening. She never mentions divorce, only I offer it as an alternative thinking if she'd be happier without me, then go ahead. Either trust me or don't. But choose one.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #170 on: April 09, 2015, 01:48:41 PM »
Dagiffy1,
This is a very interesting post, From the moment I read your OP I correctly assumed how I would read your tone on Page 4. 

The only real difference between our two relationships is that I had the foresight to see this coming.  I learned early on that my wife was a bit of a spend-thrift; and she too enjoyed the "finer things in life".  She equated the number in her bank account equal to the number available to spend at any given moment. 

I'f I'm to be honest: I used her lack of financial savvy-ness in combination with some choice examples from her poorly managed financial past as leverage to take full financial control of our relationship early-on.  As a result, I control the bank accounts, investments, bill-payments etc.  My income represents roughly 90% of our current income.  I set up a system whereby our direct deposits are put into an account she doesn't have direct access to; and then I have an automatic distribution set up to provide her with a monthly "allowance".  This took some convincing on my part (she wanted 100, I wanted 50 per week).  The stipulation was that she spend that money on whatever she wants to (eating out, nails, hair, etc.).  Note that is still $3,000 per year if you think about it.  I also have an unregulated system of mentioning off-hand how we can't afford this or that - even if we technically could.  Odiously she had to put trust in me and my financial abilities to allow me this much control; and I would be foolish to break that trust.  The only account she worries about is her own, which gets automatically populated with $75/week.  This combination of activities provides for a "false" sense of financial comfort, which is a bit of a mind-game I play on myself too; to prevent from making large ticket impulse purchases.  The trick is keeping her dis-interested in numbers like our NET worth, Annual Income, Annual Bonuses, etc.  If she knew we had several hundred thousand dollars at our "disposal" I would hear constant whining about wanting to go on vacations; how we "can't spend it when we're dead" etc. 
Is it more work for me to keep up with 99% of the finances?  Yes, absolutely.  But I can tell you with no doubt in my mind that if this system were not in place, I would be constantly fighting off each and every purchase.  There is no way I would have or would still be married. 

This is a lesson in avoiding income-creep; where more money = more spending.  We've kept our spending the same, while our income has increased; but this would not have been possible without the above. 

Unfortunately she doesn't have any real interest in the MMM lifestyle just like your wife; there is no convincing.  If she was left to her own devices we would be your typical consumers, spending every penny we have and then some.  In many ways I think this may be the greatest weakness in our relationship as we truly have two different paths. 
Sometimes my wife's day consists of just like what you describe, shopping, napping, with a dash of TV watching; and the only thing that stops it from infuriating me beyond belief is the knowledge that I am still saving >50% of our NET income this year.  In your situation, with the work you are putting in, I'm sure its tough to come home to that every day.  I know it still wears on me sometimes. 

You need to recognize that she equates income with spending opportunities.  If you are truly on-board with MMM than you do not feel that way any-longer. 
That difference of opinion will tear you apart in every conceivable way.  I have been there.

My wife ended up deciding that she wanted to go back to school and is now ending her 3rd full-time semester in college with solid career prospects.  If she hadn't decide to become a income participant we wouldn't still be married; and nobody could make that decision but her.

OK, this is NOT my wife. She does watch a lot of TV but it's usually when she's taking a break from cooking, cleaning, laundry, vacuuming. This is NOT a lazy woman. This is a woman who prides herself on "working her ass off". She stays busy being productive and doesn't sit around goofing off, napping, shopping, etc. She won't even take an ibuprofen when she needs one. She's hard core.

okits

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #171 on: April 09, 2015, 01:50:10 PM »
Unsure how it works in the U.S.  If you stay married and she signs up for new credit cards, takes out additional loans, and accumulates more consumer debt to fund her lifestyle, are you jointly on the hook?  In determining spousal support, will the judge consider that your wife has the capability to earn more ($35k/yr), she is just choosing to earn $12k?  In a divorce, will she end up shouldering part of the debt burden?  If she can undo all your debt reduction while married, knowing you'll pay $X alimony is better. It limits the financial damage and you know exactly how much you have to budget with.

I'm sad you think it's impossible to reconcile your differences. That is certainly the best route. It sounds like you don't have much of a partnership anyway, with her poor opinion of you (lazy) and focus on your perceived faults. You're in a tough spot.  Research all options (including staying with her and ending up destitute - I know you don't want this but it is an option) and pick the least awful one.

mabinogi

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #172 on: April 09, 2015, 02:11:01 PM »
You've used the expression "works her ass off" probably a dozen times now in reference to your wife, and I just don't get it. As a stay-at-home mom, I do all the things your wife does - cook, clean, laundry, grocery shopping, bring in a little extra income from side gigs, etc - PLUS I take care of a toddler (soon to be a toddler and an infant) full-time...and I still wouldn't say that I work my ass off. I also find the time to manage our finances, since that's not my bread-winner husband's strong suit, exercise, and take a nap most days. In what way, exactly, does she work her ass off?

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #173 on: April 09, 2015, 02:17:07 PM »
You've used the expression "works her ass off" probably a dozen times now in reference to your wife, and I just don't get it. As a stay-at-home mom, I do all the things your wife does - cook, clean, laundry, grocery shopping, bring in a little extra income from side gigs, etc - PLUS I take care of a toddler (soon to be a toddler and an infant) full-time...and I still wouldn't say that I work my ass off. I also find the time to manage our finances, since that's not my bread-winner husband's strong suit, exercise, and take a nap most days. In what way, exactly, does she work her ass off?

I think it's that her work is all labor intensive. I'm not sure. She tends to exaggerate for dramatic effect, but this is her favorite phrase.

She would also tell you she's older now, so she doesn't have the energy she did when she was 30. Also, she's having some health problems which sap her of energy. So you can't compare her to anyone else.

All the work she does is physical, so I think this means "working her ass off". And if it's away from home, she spends a LOT of time on the road driving. With traffic the way it is around here, this is "working her ass off fighting traffic all day".

When she gets home from a full day, she's pretty spent.

richschmidt

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #174 on: April 09, 2015, 02:23:11 PM »
Maybe I'll take the advice of adding our two separate monthlies together and dividing them between us and keep two separate accounts.

The problem is that unless I give her that goal to shoot for, she is going to go along at her 12k annual earnings while expecting me to "work my ass off" 7 days a week because that's what a husband should do for his wife. This is why I gave her a number to shoot for and asked her if she thought she could do it.

But that's what sent the whole house of cards down, instead.

To be clear, I wasn't suggesting you pool your incomes and then split them down the middle. I was suggesting you each keep your own income and split the basic bills. From your summary, I wasn't sure how you were reading it.

You've said she makes more than enough to pay for her basic needs. That's great. If she's not receiving your income, she'll see that if she wants to afford more luxuries, she can work for them.

If it'll help, you can commit to her that you're pouring all of your excess income into paying down the debt... and maybe it'll help if she knows that the reason for this is so you can eventually enjoy some of those luxuries without the guilt or stress of wondering how you're going to pay for them later. You're doing it for both of you, not just for yourself.

I know some couples who handle their finances separately, splitting bills, etc. It seems to work for them. Fortunately, my wife and I are on the same page about finances, for the most part. Occasionally we disagree, but we work it out. If we had dramatically different ideas about where the money should go, we'd probably have to separate our finances somehow.

supomglol

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #175 on: April 09, 2015, 02:23:18 PM »
Dagiffy1,
This is a very interesting post, From the moment I read your OP I correctly assumed how I would read your tone on Page 4. 

The only real difference between our two relationships is that I had the foresight to see this coming.  I learned early on that my wife was a bit of a spend-thrift; and she too enjoyed the "finer things in life".  She equated the number in her bank account equal to the number available to spend at any given moment. 

I'f I'm to be honest: I used her lack of financial savvy-ness in combination with some choice examples from her poorly managed financial past as leverage to take full financial control of our relationship early-on.  As a result, I control the bank accounts, investments, bill-payments etc.  My income represents roughly 90% of our current income.  I set up a system whereby our direct deposits are put into an account she doesn't have direct access to; and then I have an automatic distribution set up to provide her with a monthly "allowance".  This took some convincing on my part (she wanted 100, I wanted 50 per week).  The stipulation was that she spend that money on whatever she wants to (eating out, nails, hair, etc.).  Note that is still $3,000 per year if you think about it.  I also have an unregulated system of mentioning off-hand how we can't afford this or that - even if we technically could.  Odiously she had to put trust in me and my financial abilities to allow me this much control; and I would be foolish to break that trust.  The only account she worries about is her own, which gets automatically populated with $75/week.  This combination of activities provides for a "false" sense of financial comfort, which is a bit of a mind-game I play on myself too; to prevent from making large ticket impulse purchases.  The trick is keeping her dis-interested in numbers like our NET worth, Annual Income, Annual Bonuses, etc.  If she knew we had several hundred thousand dollars at our "disposal" I would hear constant whining about wanting to go on vacations; how we "can't spend it when we're dead" etc. 
Is it more work for me to keep up with 99% of the finances?  Yes, absolutely.  But I can tell you with no doubt in my mind that if this system were not in place, I would be constantly fighting off each and every purchase.  There is no way I would have or would still be married. 

This is a lesson in avoiding income-creep; where more money = more spending.  We've kept our spending the same, while our income has increased; but this would not have been possible without the above. 

Unfortunately she doesn't have any real interest in the MMM lifestyle just like your wife; there is no convincing.  If she was left to her own devices we would be your typical consumers, spending every penny we have and then some.  In many ways I think this may be the greatest weakness in our relationship as we truly have two different paths. 
Sometimes my wife's day consists of just like what you describe, shopping, napping, with a dash of TV watching; and the only thing that stops it from infuriating me beyond belief is the knowledge that I am still saving >50% of our NET income this year.  In your situation, with the work you are putting in, I'm sure its tough to come home to that every day.  I know it still wears on me sometimes. 

You need to recognize that she equates income with spending opportunities.  If you are truly on-board with MMM than you do not feel that way any-longer. 
That difference of opinion will tear you apart in every conceivable way.  I have been there.

My wife ended up deciding that she wanted to go back to school and is now ending her 3rd full-time semester in college with solid career prospects.  If she hadn't decide to become a income participant we wouldn't still be married; and nobody could make that decision but her.

OK, this is NOT my wife. She does watch a lot of TV but it's usually when she's taking a break from cooking, cleaning, laundry, vacuuming. This is NOT a lazy woman. This is a woman who prides herself on "working her ass off". She stays busy being productive and doesn't sit around goofing off, napping, shopping, etc. She won't even take an ibuprofen when she needs one. She's hard core.
Who are you trying to convince, me or you?

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #176 on: April 09, 2015, 02:26:19 PM »
Unsure how it works in the U.S.  If you stay married and she signs up for new credit cards, takes out additional loans, and accumulates more consumer debt to fund her lifestyle, are you jointly on the hook?  In determining spousal support, will the judge consider that your wife has the capability to earn more ($35k/yr), she is just choosing to earn $12k?  In a divorce, will she end up shouldering part of the debt burden?  If she can undo all your debt reduction while married, knowing you'll pay $X alimony is better. It limits the financial damage and you know exactly how much you have to budget with.

I'm sad you think it's impossible to reconcile your differences. That is certainly the best route. It sounds like you don't have much of a partnership anyway, with her poor opinion of you (lazy) and focus on your perceived faults. You're in a tough spot.  Research all options (including staying with her and ending up destitute - I know you don't want this but it is an option) and pick the least awful one.

We have enough credit cards so that she doesn't need to open another one. We have many credit cards with zero balances, keeping them open for credit score. One more would be zero but she used it to "pay" for the 6000 in repairs recently.

The 2nd one has a large (6393) balance, mainly due to doctor bills that were beyond what we were bringing in and not covered by insurance.

The 3rd credit card (around 5000) was created to catch the excess part of our car loan when we refinanced and the bank said we owed more than it was worth. That excess was put onto a low interest credit card.

Like I've said, when I met her she spent within her means. Granted, her means were more than double than they are now. She wasn't saving for retirement but she was in the black. This is not a foolish woman, it's just that she's been "working her ass off" and doesn't like the idea of ramping up at her age after working her ass off for so long.

She was expecting to coast by this time in our lives, and I guess it doesn't matter that we are actually destitute. She's tired. That and her suspicious nature suspects me of trying to get out of my obligation to support her financially, not work and stand by while she "works her ass off".

JLee

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #177 on: April 09, 2015, 02:28:50 PM »
You've used the expression "works her ass off" probably a dozen times now in reference to your wife, and I just don't get it. As a stay-at-home mom, I do all the things your wife does - cook, clean, laundry, grocery shopping, bring in a little extra income from side gigs, etc - PLUS I take care of a toddler (soon to be a toddler and an infant) full-time...and I still wouldn't say that I work my ass off. I also find the time to manage our finances, since that's not my bread-winner husband's strong suit, exercise, and take a nap most days. In what way, exactly, does she work her ass off?

As an unmarried guy, I do all the same stuff while working 40+ hours a week. Cooking, cleaning, laundry, shopping, etc is all handled (because if I don't do it, well, it doesn't get done!). If you remove kids from the equation, it's sure not all that impressive to say "I can adult all by myself!"  :P

justajane

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #178 on: April 09, 2015, 02:28:58 PM »
+1 to the idea that your wife is not "working her ass off." Trust me, she isn't. I am a SAHM to three young kids who still manages to make more money than your wife does freelancing on the side. Two adults do not create that much work in the house.

She is a lady of a fair amount of leisure, and don't let her convince you otherwise. This would be okay if it was mutually agreed upon and you could afford it. But neither of these are the case.

The reality is that she has to move where you get a higher paying job. Why don't you bargain with her that when the student loans and other debts are paid off that you two will move back to Portland together? You can't afford to pay for two places. You just can't.

JLee

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #179 on: April 09, 2015, 02:30:12 PM »
Unsure how it works in the U.S.  If you stay married and she signs up for new credit cards, takes out additional loans, and accumulates more consumer debt to fund her lifestyle, are you jointly on the hook?  In determining spousal support, will the judge consider that your wife has the capability to earn more ($35k/yr), she is just choosing to earn $12k?  In a divorce, will she end up shouldering part of the debt burden?  If she can undo all your debt reduction while married, knowing you'll pay $X alimony is better. It limits the financial damage and you know exactly how much you have to budget with.

I'm sad you think it's impossible to reconcile your differences. That is certainly the best route. It sounds like you don't have much of a partnership anyway, with her poor opinion of you (lazy) and focus on your perceived faults. You're in a tough spot.  Research all options (including staying with her and ending up destitute - I know you don't want this but it is an option) and pick the least awful one.

We have enough credit cards so that she doesn't need to open another one. We have many credit cards with zero balances, keeping them open for credit score. One more would be zero but she used it to "pay" for the 6000 in repairs recently.

The 2nd one has a large (6393) balance, mainly due to doctor bills that were beyond what we were bringing in and not covered by insurance.

The 3rd credit card (around 5000) was created to catch the excess part of our car loan when we refinanced and the bank said we owed more than it was worth. That excess was put onto a low interest credit card.

Like I've said, when I met her she spent within her means. Granted, her means were more than double than they are now. She wasn't saving for retirement but she was in the black. This is not a foolish woman, it's just that she's been "working her ass off" and doesn't like the idea of ramping up at her age after working her ass off for so long.

She was expecting to coast by this time in our lives, and I guess it doesn't matter that we are actually destitute. She's tired. That and her suspicious nature suspects me of trying to get out of my obligation to support her financially, not work and stand by while she "works her ass off".
Newsflash!

She is an adult. You don't have an "obligation" to support her financially. Has she spent the last 20 years staying home raising kids for you? Does she have the capacity to work?

My SO is ~5 years ahead of me with plans for FIRE and she is being careful to make sure she's not going to lean on me too hard in the early years while her 'stashe continues to grow. We're both adults with the ability to work - one of us does not have to financially provide for the other.  If you both want to? Sure, you're adults. Make that decision.  Her entitlement and outright expectation that she doesn't have to make a living while you do? Absurd.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 02:31:52 PM by JLee »

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #180 on: April 09, 2015, 02:30:20 PM »
Dagiffy1,
This is a very interesting post, From the moment I read your OP I correctly assumed how I would read your tone on Page 4. 

The only real difference between our two relationships is that I had the foresight to see this coming.  I learned early on that my wife was a bit of a spend-thrift; and she too enjoyed the "finer things in life".  She equated the number in her bank account equal to the number available to spend at any given moment. 

I'f I'm to be honest: I used her lack of financial savvy-ness in combination with some choice examples from her poorly managed financial past as leverage to take full financial control of our relationship early-on.  As a result, I control the bank accounts, investments, bill-payments etc.  My income represents roughly 90% of our current income.  I set up a system whereby our direct deposits are put into an account she doesn't have direct access to; and then I have an automatic distribution set up to provide her with a monthly "allowance".  This took some convincing on my part (she wanted 100, I wanted 50 per week).  The stipulation was that she spend that money on whatever she wants to (eating out, nails, hair, etc.).  Note that is still $3,000 per year if you think about it.  I also have an unregulated system of mentioning off-hand how we can't afford this or that - even if we technically could.  Odiously she had to put trust in me and my financial abilities to allow me this much control; and I would be foolish to break that trust.  The only account she worries about is her own, which gets automatically populated with $75/week.  This combination of activities provides for a "false" sense of financial comfort, which is a bit of a mind-game I play on myself too; to prevent from making large ticket impulse purchases.  The trick is keeping her dis-interested in numbers like our NET worth, Annual Income, Annual Bonuses, etc.  If she knew we had several hundred thousand dollars at our "disposal" I would hear constant whining about wanting to go on vacations; how we "can't spend it when we're dead" etc. 
Is it more work for me to keep up with 99% of the finances?  Yes, absolutely.  But I can tell you with no doubt in my mind that if this system were not in place, I would be constantly fighting off each and every purchase.  There is no way I would have or would still be married. 

This is a lesson in avoiding income-creep; where more money = more spending.  We've kept our spending the same, while our income has increased; but this would not have been possible without the above. 

Unfortunately she doesn't have any real interest in the MMM lifestyle just like your wife; there is no convincing.  If she was left to her own devices we would be your typical consumers, spending every penny we have and then some.  In many ways I think this may be the greatest weakness in our relationship as we truly have two different paths. 
Sometimes my wife's day consists of just like what you describe, shopping, napping, with a dash of TV watching; and the only thing that stops it from infuriating me beyond belief is the knowledge that I am still saving >50% of our NET income this year.  In your situation, with the work you are putting in, I'm sure its tough to come home to that every day.  I know it still wears on me sometimes. 

You need to recognize that she equates income with spending opportunities.  If you are truly on-board with MMM than you do not feel that way any-longer. 
That difference of opinion will tear you apart in every conceivable way.  I have been there.

My wife ended up deciding that she wanted to go back to school and is now ending her 3rd full-time semester in college with solid career prospects.  If she hadn't decide to become a income participant we wouldn't still be married; and nobody could make that decision but her.

OK, this is NOT my wife. She does watch a lot of TV but it's usually when she's taking a break from cooking, cleaning, laundry, vacuuming. This is NOT a lazy woman. This is a woman who prides herself on "working her ass off". She stays busy being productive and doesn't sit around goofing off, napping, shopping, etc. She won't even take an ibuprofen when she needs one. She's hard core.
Who are you trying to convince, me or you?

lol well all I know is this: we are living in a 7000 square foot mansion with 3 floors, 6 bedrooms and 5 full bathrooms. She is keeping it clean and we have two cats that have the run of the place. She does all the shopping (shopping for me now consists of buying beans, rice, and some veggies however), the cooking (I can make my own rice, beans and veggies now), cleaning this place. I help where I can, but her standards are way above mine, almost OCD if you ask me.

On top of this she works outside the house. This stuff is never undone. The house is always spotless. SOMEONE is doing this, and it ain't me.

I'm trying to convince YOU, cuz I already know! She does have time to work more outside the house and I hope she does.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #181 on: April 09, 2015, 02:31:48 PM »
Unsure how it works in the U.S.  If you stay married and she signs up for new credit cards, takes out additional loans, and accumulates more consumer debt to fund her lifestyle, are you jointly on the hook?  In determining spousal support, will the judge consider that your wife has the capability to earn more ($35k/yr), she is just choosing to earn $12k?  In a divorce, will she end up shouldering part of the debt burden?  If she can undo all your debt reduction while married, knowing you'll pay $X alimony is better. It limits the financial damage and you know exactly how much you have to budget with.

I'm sad you think it's impossible to reconcile your differences. That is certainly the best route. It sounds like you don't have much of a partnership anyway, with her poor opinion of you (lazy) and focus on your perceived faults. You're in a tough spot.  Research all options (including staying with her and ending up destitute - I know you don't want this but it is an option) and pick the least awful one.

We have enough credit cards so that she doesn't need to open another one. We have many credit cards with zero balances, keeping them open for credit score. One more would be zero but she used it to "pay" for the 6000 in repairs recently.

The 2nd one has a large (6393) balance, mainly due to doctor bills that were beyond what we were bringing in and not covered by insurance.

The 3rd credit card (around 5000) was created to catch the excess part of our car loan when we refinanced and the bank said we owed more than it was worth. That excess was put onto a low interest credit card.

Like I've said, when I met her she spent within her means. Granted, her means were more than double than they are now. She wasn't saving for retirement but she was in the black. This is not a foolish woman, it's just that she's been "working her ass off" and doesn't like the idea of ramping up at her age after working her ass off for so long.

She was expecting to coast by this time in our lives, and I guess it doesn't matter that we are actually destitute. She's tired. That and her suspicious nature suspects me of trying to get out of my obligation to support her financially, not work and stand by while she "works her ass off".
Newsflash!

She is an adult. You don't have an "obligation" to support her financially. Has she spent the last 20 years staying home raising kids for you? Does she have the capacity to work?

We have no kids. Married at 40. So...no. She DOES work, she just needs to ramp it up more. Making 12k annually just won't cut it.

JLee

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #182 on: April 09, 2015, 02:34:19 PM »
Unsure how it works in the U.S.  If you stay married and she signs up for new credit cards, takes out additional loans, and accumulates more consumer debt to fund her lifestyle, are you jointly on the hook?  In determining spousal support, will the judge consider that your wife has the capability to earn more ($35k/yr), she is just choosing to earn $12k?  In a divorce, will she end up shouldering part of the debt burden?  If she can undo all your debt reduction while married, knowing you'll pay $X alimony is better. It limits the financial damage and you know exactly how much you have to budget with.

I'm sad you think it's impossible to reconcile your differences. That is certainly the best route. It sounds like you don't have much of a partnership anyway, with her poor opinion of you (lazy) and focus on your perceived faults. You're in a tough spot.  Research all options (including staying with her and ending up destitute - I know you don't want this but it is an option) and pick the least awful one.

We have enough credit cards so that she doesn't need to open another one. We have many credit cards with zero balances, keeping them open for credit score. One more would be zero but she used it to "pay" for the 6000 in repairs recently.

The 2nd one has a large (6393) balance, mainly due to doctor bills that were beyond what we were bringing in and not covered by insurance.

The 3rd credit card (around 5000) was created to catch the excess part of our car loan when we refinanced and the bank said we owed more than it was worth. That excess was put onto a low interest credit card.

Like I've said, when I met her she spent within her means. Granted, her means were more than double than they are now. She wasn't saving for retirement but she was in the black. This is not a foolish woman, it's just that she's been "working her ass off" and doesn't like the idea of ramping up at her age after working her ass off for so long.

She was expecting to coast by this time in our lives, and I guess it doesn't matter that we are actually destitute. She's tired. That and her suspicious nature suspects me of trying to get out of my obligation to support her financially, not work and stand by while she "works her ass off".
Newsflash!

She is an adult. You don't have an "obligation" to support her financially. Has she spent the last 20 years staying home raising kids for you? Does she have the capacity to work?

We have no kids. Married at 40. So...no. She DOES work, she just needs to ramp it up more. Making 12k annually just won't cut it.
There's my point. Married at 40, and she wants you to carry her financially, while she earns ~20% under a minimum wage income?

If she works so hard around the house, price out what it would cost to have someone come by every week. Even at $300 a month for house cleaning, she's still only 'making' $15,600 a year (still under minimum wage at 40 hours a week). Hell, I make more than she does annually simply by renting out two rooms in my house! It's simply unacceptable...

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #183 on: April 09, 2015, 02:38:16 PM »
+1 to the idea that your wife is not "working her ass off." Trust me, she isn't. I am a SAHM to three young kids who still manages to make more money than your wife does freelancing on the side. Two adults do not create that much work in the house.

She is a lady of a fair amount of leisure, and don't let her convince you otherwise. This would be okay if it was mutually agreed upon and you could afford it. But neither of these are the case.

The reality is that she has to move where you get a higher paying job. Why don't you bargain with her that when the student loans and other debts are paid off that you two will move back to Portland together? You can't afford to pay for two places. You just can't.

OK. I don't know what she does when I'm at work. I'm gone for 11 hours on the days I work.

Well, that won't work. She is tired of moving (in the two years that I've been out of school, we have moved 6 times). She has also declared that she wants to work (massage work) till we are out of debt.


justajane

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #184 on: April 09, 2015, 02:38:52 PM »
Close off all the bedrooms and rooms in this mansion that you don't use. Then the cats don't get in them and she doesn't have to clean, except perhaps every few months. Your valor (in defense of your wife) here is sweet but also rather clueless. There's absolutely no reason that she needs to clean five bathrooms when only two people live in the house. What are you doing? Rotating the bathrooms you urinate and bathe in? Sleeping in different beds every night?

caliq

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #185 on: April 09, 2015, 02:42:19 PM »
Why does she have to keep this entire giant house spotless all the time?  Presumably showings for a house that massive are rather irregular and scheduled in advance. 

Can't you just shut off the majority of the house (after cleaning it very well) and only allow your cats to run about in a normal-house-sized area?  This would significantly reduce the amount of work your wife has to do to clean.  Then she (or both of you!) can clean up when a showing is scheduled -- and do a dusting/vacuum once a week in the closed off rooms anyways, to keep things relatively clean. 

This thread is like a rollercoaster!  At first I was feeling sorry for her, and then you, and now I'm just confused as to what is actually going on here...

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #186 on: April 09, 2015, 02:45:29 PM »

There's my point. Married at 40, and she wants you to carry her financially, while she earns ~20% under a minimum wage income?

If she works so hard around the house, price out what it would cost to have someone come by every week. Even at $300 a month for house cleaning, she's still only 'making' $15,600 a year (still under minimum wage at 40 hours a week). Hell, I make more than she does annually simply by renting out two rooms in my house! It's simply unacceptable...

We know what it would cost. The owners had weekly cleaning done. A house this size was about 800 per month.

ZiziPB

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #187 on: April 09, 2015, 02:46:52 PM »
I may be wrong, but I'm detecting a fair amount of sarcasm when the OP is talking about his wife "working her ass off"...

justajane

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #188 on: April 09, 2015, 02:50:47 PM »
Can you explain why in the heck why this doctor costs so much? He/she sounds like a huckster. I've been to actual specialists like orthopedists or dermatologists that cost far less than that. This is the type of spending that has to go. I know you know this, but she absolutely has to come to her senses if you are to ever get ahead.

I'm still trying to wrap my head around where all your money is going, since you don't even pay for housing. Could you provide us a snapshot of a recent credit card bill?

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #189 on: April 09, 2015, 02:52:25 PM »
Why does she have to keep this entire giant house spotless all the time?  Presumably showings for a house that massive are rather irregular and scheduled in advance. 

Can't you just shut off the majority of the house (after cleaning it very well) and only allow your cats to run about in a normal-house-sized area?  This would significantly reduce the amount of work your wife has to do to clean.  Then she (or both of you!) can clean up when a showing is scheduled -- and do a dusting/vacuum once a week in the closed off rooms anyways, to keep things relatively clean. 

This thread is like a rollercoaster!  At first I was feeling sorry for her, and then you, and now I'm just confused as to what is actually going on here...

The only up and down part was when I THOUGHT she had gone all in. I was very happy and very proud of her making this hard choice. Turns out she didn't, and she just flipped out when I presented my plan to her. We are right now pretty much at where we started: me all in and her not so much. Oh well, you can't have it all.

She has a thing about cleaning. That's all I'll say about it. She does pet sitting and when she sits for people, let's just say they never ever again want to use anyone but her.

There are a few rooms closed off to the cats but just a couple. She can't bear that her babies would not be able to be with her wherever she is, whether in bed or elsewhere.

I wondered at first what she did all day and when she told me she was both a bit pissy that I'd ask and she explained herself really well. I don't have mistrust issues, I have trust issues. If she says it, that's good enough for me. But maybe there is some fat to be trimmed in here someplace. We'll see as the days roll on what is what. Things are kind of touchy at the moment so....

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #190 on: April 09, 2015, 02:57:18 PM »
Can you explain why in the heck why this doctor costs so much? He/she sounds like a huckster. I've been to actual specialists like orthopedists or dermatologists that cost far less than that. This is the type of spending that has to go. I know you know this, but she absolutely has to come to her senses if you are to ever get ahead.

I'm still trying to wrap my head around where all your money is going, since you don't even pay for housing. Could you provide us a snapshot of a recent credit card bill?

I can when I get home.

All our money was going to savings to pay off the huge tax bill we knew was coming. When we got the 10,666 news the other night, we had 10k put away. I don't want to have zero cash in the bank so I sent 8k off.

Also, I have been paying 750 per month just on the relocation repayment.

The witch doctor charges 95 an hour and he's famous around here because he's helped so many people. He changed my life, I'll say that much. Not so much my wife, she has some issues and he's having a hard time pinning down what's going on. In the last 3 months I'm sure we've paid him 3000 to 3500 dollars in treatment and drugs.

That's where our money was going.

caliq

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #191 on: April 09, 2015, 02:59:32 PM »
But why are two people using all but a couple rooms in a house that big?  It just doesn't make any sense. 

My husband and I live in a 1500 sq ft ranch with two big dogs (100 lbs and 70 lbs) and a cat, and we don't even have a couch in the living room because we'd rather hang out in our finished basement.  There's three bedrooms -- the master, the 'dog room' with crates/water bowls/food storage, and my office/closet which is constantly closed off and only used for storage, basically...if I go in there to work then I leave the door open, and the animals can come in, but otherwise it's closed. Stays pretty clean that way.

Honestly it sounds like you guys have an extreme case of lifestyle inflation and have been living way above your means for a significant portion of your lives.

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #192 on: April 09, 2015, 03:01:18 PM »
I may be wrong, but I'm detecting a fair amount of sarcasm when the OP is talking about his wife "working her ass off"...

The sarcasm is there because she says it so much! And I know from experience that she exaggerates dramatically to make her points. I've heard this one so much that it's comical to me, but I don't laugh in front of her. I tell her she doesn't know what the phrase really even means, as I've had jobs that were so demanding that she's never known a time in her life that she could do them for a day, much less over a long period.

She says that's nonsense, she's worked in warehouse. She knows what work is. So now she says it all the time and I pretend to believe it, even though I don't. She WORKS a lot sometimes, but she doesn't "work her ass off".

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #193 on: April 09, 2015, 03:02:02 PM »
But why are two people using all but a couple rooms in a house that big?  It just doesn't make any sense. 

My husband and I live in a 1500 sq ft ranch with two big dogs (100 lbs and 70 lbs) and a cat, and we don't even have a couch in the living room because we'd rather hang out in our finished basement.  There's three bedrooms -- the master, the 'dog room' with crates/water bowls/food storage, and my office/closet which is constantly closed off and only used for storage, basically...if I go in there to work then I leave the door open, and the animals can come in, but otherwise it's closed. Stays pretty clean that way.

Honestly it sounds like you guys have an extreme case of lifestyle inflation and have been living way above your means for a significant portion of your lives.

We live here for FREE! We are watching it and taking care of it until it sells. It isn't ours.

You can't close the basement off. It's fully finished and there are no doors to close down there. The main floor is closed off where it can be closed off: the master bedroom. There aren't any other doors to close.

You can't block off the upstairs except for the bedrooms, and the one we don't use is closed off. Don't know what to tell you.

As I tried to explain, my wife has a thing for cleaning. If I walk into a house I'll think it's clean. My wife, however, sees it as "filthy". She likes to use that word, too. FILTHY!
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 03:06:19 PM by dagiffy1 »

Cpa Cat

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #194 on: April 09, 2015, 03:10:13 PM »
The only up and down part was when I THOUGHT she had gone all in. I was very happy and very proud of her making this hard choice. Turns out she didn't, and she just flipped out when I presented my plan to her. We are right now pretty much at where we started: me all in and her not so much. Oh well, you can't have it all.

Maybe you should ask her to come up with a plan and present it to you, instead?

Not in an angry sort of way. Just say, "I realize that my plan went over like a lead balloon. I think it might be better if you come up with a plan, instead, so that I know where your mind is at on this and we can start talking about this. I really want your input on this and I want to tackle this as a team. I think it's going to go better if our starting point is -your- starting point, instead of mine."

You might have better luck getting her on board if you're not just telling her what to do. Let her tell you what to do and then start negotiating.

You did a 180 in your way of thinking and started presenting plans within the timespan of a couple of days. The first real plan turned into an emotional bomb. Ok. It happens. This is a big change. It's going to take a couple of tries.

If her response to "Why don't you make a plan" is to explode, then just say, "Ok. Well, I really do want your input. So I hope you'll give it some thought. But let's not fight right now." And then let her cool down and see what happens.

caliq

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #195 on: April 09, 2015, 03:11:16 PM »
But why are two people using all but a couple rooms in a house that big?  It just doesn't make any sense. 

My husband and I live in a 1500 sq ft ranch with two big dogs (100 lbs and 70 lbs) and a cat, and we don't even have a couch in the living room because we'd rather hang out in our finished basement.  There's three bedrooms -- the master, the 'dog room' with crates/water bowls/food storage, and my office/closet which is constantly closed off and only used for storage, basically...if I go in there to work then I leave the door open, and the animals can come in, but otherwise it's closed. Stays pretty clean that way.

Honestly it sounds like you guys have an extreme case of lifestyle inflation and have been living way above your means for a significant portion of your lives.

We live here for FREE! We are watching it and taking care of it until it sells. It isn't ours.


Yeah, but why are you *using* the whole house?  Do you have like, a sewing room and a reading room and a cat room and an office and a workout room?  I think you said 7 bedrooms -- that ridiculous list would only take up 5 of them, plus one for you to actually sleep in...so maybe a guest room that gets a lot of use?


My point is, why has your use of this house (lifestyle) expanded to the point where taking care of the house is apparently a full time, physically demanding job for your wife? 

If she's turning down paid work in order to clean, then redesign your lifestyle to reduce the cleaning...Yes she's got a thing about cleanliness; so do I.  But that is why I close off certain rooms, why I bought a Roomba so we weren't fighting about vacuuming up dog hair on a daily basis, etc etc.  You have the ability to change the way you do things on a daily basis, and it's amazing how much impact small adjustments can make.  I would be overwhelmed at the idea of cleaning a house that big...I'd probably be in tears before even starting.  It's not really surprising that your wife thinks of it as a major burden.  I'm just trying to point out that there are relatively easy ways to reduce that burden (and I'm *not* saying to run out and buy a Roomba!).

Imustacheyouaquestion

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #196 on: April 09, 2015, 03:17:26 PM »

She is a lady of a fair amount of leisure, and don't let her convince you otherwise.

She was working and saving money, living below her means "in the black" until she married you at age 40. Suddenly, while married, her spending increased to the point where her outlays for things like organic groceries, naturopath doctors, weekend getaways with saltwater pools, etc, were higher than the money she was taking home working part-time. If she is having health problems and lacking energy, this is even more reason to take saving for retirement seriously, if you don't want to both work until the day you die.

The thread swings all over the place. You realize she needs to work more and bring home more money, but then you defend how much work she does around the home. You won't accept divorce as an option, but you are okay living separately and essentially leaving her. You don't know how she spends her time, but you are sure it's "working her ass off." You know your marriage has communication problems, but you don't think there's any way to solve them.

It sounds like she is playing both sides of the card in many regards. She wants a job that is fulfilling and is important to her, but won't accept that her current $12k earnings aren't enough to support the lifestyle she wants. She is CHOOSING to drive to their houses (in an inefficient car that will cost you way more in repairs until you ditch it, no less) to make less than minimum wage, but then wants to complain about how tired driving all day makes her.

So many things in the life you're describing aren't optimal, from a financial or just general happiness perspective. But when people point these out, there's no possible way you could make changes or apply them to your situation. You say you are committed to the MMM way, but I don't think you've really internalized how many changes you will need to make to implement a mustachian lifestyle. Maybe you and your wife need to mull over your life situation (work, contributions to the household income stream, how you are going to spend money, priorities for paying down debt vs. lifestyle experiences, housing opportunities, etc) together and figure out a way forward, instead of you just presenting her with plans that she doesn't want to follow.

Cassie

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #197 on: April 09, 2015, 03:35:29 PM »
Usually when there is a big difference in income & people are divorcing with no kids the lower income earner gets alimony for 3 years to improve their circumstances. That would be a lot cheaper then paying for them forever. I agree with the poster that says there is a way to close off rooms & lower the amount of cleaning that needs to be done.

Cinder

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #198 on: April 09, 2015, 04:09:11 PM »
I explained to her that our paychecks would go into the same pot of money. It wouldn't be "her" money that paid the monthlies, the plan was for her to earn enough so that the net income she brought in would equal our monthlies. Then we would KNOW that all of MINE went to debt relief. But it's all the same pot of money.
...
She can't be reasoned with, I have always had to reach her some other way. She doesn't think logically, more conceptually. The whole IDEA of this seems wrong; therefore, it is. It feels wrong, therefore it is. She's very empathetic, sympathetic, and nurturing and I am not. Yet that is how I can get through to her. I haven't come up with anything she can relate to that way.

I never understood that argument.. I've seen it from both my DW and her mother.  Her mother would give her some money, and 'THAT EXACT MONEY' had to be spent on something specific....

I was like 'it doesn't matter, we can pay for it with our credit card/ check / random other $20 bill, but just because it's not that exactly $20, you have a problem with it?'

Zx

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Re: Just Woke Up To Discover I'm Drowning
« Reply #199 on: April 09, 2015, 04:15:24 PM »

She is a lady of a fair amount of leisure, and don't let her convince you otherwise.

She was working and saving money, living below her means "in the black" until she married you at age 40. Suddenly, while married, her spending increased to the point where her outlays for things like organic groceries, naturopath doctors, weekend getaways with saltwater pools, etc, were higher than the money she was taking home working part-time. If she is having health problems and lacking energy, this is even more reason to take saving for retirement seriously, if you don't want to both work until the day you die.

The thread swings all over the place. You realize she needs to work more and bring home more money, but then you defend how much work she does around the home. You won't accept divorce as an option, but you are okay living separately and essentially leaving her. You don't know how she spends her time, but you are sure it's "working her ass off." You know your marriage has communication problems, but you don't think there's any way to solve them.

It sounds like she is playing both sides of the card in many regards. She wants a job that is fulfilling and is important to her, but won't accept that her current $12k earnings aren't enough to support the lifestyle she wants. She is CHOOSING to drive to their houses (in an inefficient car that will cost you way more in repairs until you ditch it, no less) to make less than minimum wage, but then wants to complain about how tired driving all day makes her.

So many things in the life you're describing aren't optimal, from a financial or just general happiness perspective. But when people point these out, there's no possible way you could make changes or apply them to your situation. You say you are committed to the MMM way, but I don't think you've really internalized how many changes you will need to make to implement a mustachian lifestyle. Maybe you and your wife need to mull over your life situation (work, contributions to the household income stream, how you are going to spend money, priorities for paying down debt vs. lifestyle experiences, housing opportunities, etc) together and figure out a way forward, instead of you just presenting her with plans that she doesn't want to follow.

You are right. If I was single, this would be easy. But I'm not. I'm ready to do anything, she is not. For too many reasons. No amount of advice will change this. No amount of inquiry into our situation, my answers, your further inquiry, my answers, your incredulity, my rebuttal...NONE OF THAT WILL CHANGE OUR SITUATION.

This has turned into a therapy thread, and I made the mistake of explaining our situation over and over again. About 75% of the time you people are misunderstanding and I have to clarify. I AM TELLING YOU HER REASONS, NOT MINE. For me? This is easy. I'm all-in and I'm raring to go. For her? No. And you all want to know why. So I tell you. You answer me...but it does NOT MATTER. SHE IS NOT GOING TO CHANGE, ok? She's been like she is her whole life.

i.e. THE HOUSE IS NOT DIRTY AND DOESN'T NEED TO BE CLEANED. Doesn't matter. MY WIFE WANTS TO CLEAN IT ANYWAY BECAUSE IT IS "FILTHY". Nothing any of you can say will change that fact. NO matter how many rooms you close, how many you use...IT ALL HAS TO BE CLEANED. THIS IS THE WAY SHE IS.

It isn't simple when one doesn't want to change. She needs to make more money, but she won't quit massage. Period. No amount of MMM advice will change that. None. It doesn't matter what I say or do, how hard core I am, what lengths I will go to...SHE is not going to put up with it.

She doesn't want to sell the Landcruiser. I can't make her. It's in her name. NOTHING ANY OF YOU CAN SAY WILL CHANGE THIS. No advice will work. She will not sell it. Move on to the next thing.

You have all made valid points. Sometimes there is not solution. I am married to someone who isn't ready to do this, for her own reasons, which you people don't agree with. IT DOESN'T MATTER THAT YOU DON'T AGREE, SHE DOESN'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK.

And, for the record, I am not TELLING her what to do. I presented her with my idea. She went off like Mussolini from the balcony. How many times do I have to tell you people she will not go for this MMM stuff?

You ALL give great advice, and I'm lapping it up. But I'm married and I'm on my own here. No counseling, therapy, or compromise is going to work. There can be no compromise, we have to go all in!

So I'm not going to post anymore about this. I'll post again after I get the news about the new job, how I'm making progress, and how it all worked out. Until then, thank you for taking the time to respond. I appreciate it.