Author Topic: My SO keeps trimming my mo  (Read 5374 times)

burrow

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My SO keeps trimming my mo
« on: November 05, 2014, 11:24:09 PM »
So I'm 48, married, have two kids, house paid off and pretty close to FI. I've only stumbled across MMM, ERE, Simple Dollar etc in the last few years, but been lucky to have inherited an innately frugal nature. Combine that with an interest in investing from an early age (particularly the stock market) and a well paying profession and I have accumulated a 'stache that would be more than enough to never work another day (living frugally).

So what's the problem I hear you ask? The problem is that my SO is not so frugal, doesn't have an interest in investing and doesn't have a well paying profession (in fact she hasn't worked since we've been together and has no desire to go back). Every time she buys stuff (and slashes our 'stache), it makes me angry inside and the few discussions we have had about our different spending styles usually end in arguments.

Any one else in this situation who has found a way to reconcile?
« Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 11:29:16 PM by burrow »

mxt0133

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2014, 11:55:24 PM »
If I had a nickle for every time this topic is brought up I would be FIREd already.  But seriously you just have to do some "spouse" searches on the forums and blog.  Here are a few that are recent.

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/03/22/selling-the-dream-how-to-make-your-spouse-love-frugality/

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/wife-flipped-out-when-i-brought-up-the-idea/

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/09/06/how-much-is-that-bitch-costin-ya/

Enjoy!

burrow

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2014, 02:46:11 AM »
Thanks mxt0133,

I tried the search function but must have been using the wrong key words - I sort of thought it would have been a well discussed topic.

Ta.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2014, 07:59:36 AM »
No mention of kids, so why does your SO not work?

As the earner, you have the power here - all the way up to "hey, I want to stop working, so you keep to this budget or YOU get a job"

Aphalite

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2014, 08:24:44 AM »
No mention of kids, so why does your SO not work?

As the earner, you have the power here - all the way up to "hey, I want to stop working, so you keep to this budget or YOU get a job"

He says in the beginning that he has two kids

HairyUpperLip

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2014, 08:33:00 AM »
age of the kids?

maybe suggest a part time job at a retail store. she can use her own money and have a discount.

that way hopefully you keep stacking $$.

MrBuckBeard

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2014, 08:42:54 AM »
If nothing else, budget out some spending money to factor in what she buys.  Open up a second checking account, direct deposit the money into that account.  She can spend from there, but not pillage the main account. 

But again, that's "if nothing else" because it's hard to do one thing when your spouse isn't on board (and doing things that actively work against it).  Also, keep in mind this advice comes from a 34 year old w/ no kids, and who doesn't combine money with a SO, and who's SO works full time.  I say keep that in mind, because while I think it's a good "if nothing else" idea, it might come across as giving her an allowance, which seems pretty dated.

Louis the Cat

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2014, 09:19:34 AM »
If nothing else, budget out some spending money to factor in what she buys.  Open up a second checking account, direct deposit the money into that account.  She can spend from there, but not pillage the main account. 

But again, that's "if nothing else" because it's hard to do one thing when your spouse isn't on board (and doing things that actively work against it).  Also, keep in mind this advice comes from a 34 year old w/ no kids, and who doesn't combine money with a SO, and who's SO works full time.  I say keep that in mind, because while I think it's a good "if nothing else" idea, it might come across as giving her an allowance, which seems pretty dated.

As half of a married couple with kids, as long as you don't call it an allowance, this works pretty well. I know lots of couples on these forums use some kind of system in this realm and we certainly do. DH and I each have a separate account that gets $75 twice a month that we are free to spend in any way we choose. The caveat is that clothes and haircuts come out of that money, too.

sheepstache

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2014, 09:27:11 AM »
Thanks mxt0133,

I tried the search function but must have been using the wrong key words - I sort of thought it would have been a well discussed topic.

Ta.

You're not crazy. The forum's search function is quite bad. You'll get better results if you just use your browser's search function for site:forum.mrmoneymustache.com [your search terms]

historienne

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2014, 07:55:35 PM »
If nothing else, budget out some spending money to factor in what she buys.  Open up a second checking account, direct deposit the money into that account.  She can spend from there, but not pillage the main account. 

But again, that's "if nothing else" because it's hard to do one thing when your spouse isn't on board (and doing things that actively work against it).  Also, keep in mind this advice comes from a 34 year old w/ no kids, and who doesn't combine money with a SO, and who's SO works full time.  I say keep that in mind, because while I think it's a good "if nothing else" idea, it might come across as giving her an allowance, which seems pretty dated.

As half of a married couple with kids, as long as you don't call it an allowance, this works pretty well. I know lots of couples on these forums use some kind of system in this realm and we certainly do. DH and I each have a separate account that gets $75 twice a month that we are free to spend in any way we choose. The caveat is that clothes and haircuts come out of that money, too.

I think this works best if both spouses get their own personal budget/checking account.  That avoids the sense that Spouse A controls 95% of the budget, and Spouse B just gets her 5% fun money.  Instead, 90% of money (or whatever) goes into a joint account that is used only to pay for prebudgeted items that both spouses agree to, and each spouse gets their own 5% to spend on whatever.  You can save your 5% if you want to, but parceling it out makes the whole system feel fair.

This works best if her spending is on stuff that's clearly for her; it will require more negotiation if you have very different ideas about how much to spend on joint expenses, like groceries or eating out together.

burrow

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2014, 08:41:16 PM »
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I like the separate account idea for 'fun' spending. I'm also curious about MMM's "check with your spouse for any purchase above $10" idea:

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/09/06/how-much-is-that-bitch-costin-ya/

Anybody had experience with this? How is it going?


fidgiegirl

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2014, 08:58:45 PM »
Thanks mxt0133,

I tried the search function but must have been using the wrong key words - I sort of thought it would have been a well discussed topic.

Ta.

You're not crazy. The forum's search function is quite bad. You'll get better results if you just use your browser's search function for site:forum.mrmoneymustache.com [your search terms]

OT but thanks for this tip.  I hate the search function on here, and then I always can count on someone or other to point out that I should have used it before posting, when in fact I usually probably spend far more time than I should in attempting to do so!  Next time I'll try your trick!

Sorry OP, no help for you, but I'll offer my sympathies on your challenging situation!

fidgiegirl

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2014, 09:01:52 PM »
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I like the separate account idea for 'fun' spending. I'm also curious about MMM's "check with your spouse for any purchase above $10" idea:

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/09/06/how-much-is-that-bitch-costin-ya/

Anybody had experience with this? How is it going?

Not using it ourselves.  Not knowing you and your wife, but I think it would have to be approached delicately so as not to come off as "you tell me what you're spending."  Is there a legit reason you would have to start checking in as well?  I think both people have to do it or there's a bad power imbalance.  And if there's no genuine reason for both people to do it, then it's just a poorly disguised check in for her anyway.

Would like to hear others' experiences with it, tho . . . to be honest I could probably use the accountability more than my DH.

Cookie

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Re: My SO keeps trimming my mo
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2014, 12:57:50 AM »
Quote
Anybody had experience with this? How is it going?

We use the system informally, usually asking the other's opinion on items over $20. It wasn't something we intentionally planned, but we tend to do the necessary shopping together, so anything we would buy separately would be something just for fun. It works great for us because we have an objective person to tell us if we shouldn't buy something.