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Old 01-06-2010, 02:12 PM
Location: Las Vegas
13,471 posts, read 24,327,379 times
Reputation: 24885


Some of the folks who chimed in here are exactly right. You two balance each other. You scrimp and save because you don't know when you will be paid again. You live by the seat of your pants and a prayer while he has the luxury of a regular paycheck. I know what it's like to try and be a successful writer. It's not an easy gig.

His job is to teach you to enjoy today. Your job is to teach him to prepare for tomorrow. If you both remain open to some degree of change you will have a great partnership.
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:01 AM
Location: Chicago
1,948 posts, read 4,307,727 times
Reputation: 916
3 glasses of wine? The only thing you should tell him is to buy a bottle next time.
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Old 01-12-2010, 01:20 PM
3,007 posts, read 3,268,113 times
Reputation: 2002
His work is hard and stressful, so I think he deserves the rewards of that kind of job and if he has the money to spend, he should spend it and you should support him in his choices.

I have some friends who are filthy rich, both professionals, no kids, socking away so much money that the wife told me they will never be able to spend it in their lifetime. Yet, they are CHEAP. Forget frugal -- they are just cheap. It is so uncomfortable even to go out with them now that I just avoid them. They want to go to cheap restaurants (that is if we can even drag them out) then they order a side dish (I'm not kidding!) and then they want to penny pinch the waitress out of her tip. They buy fleabitten furniture off craigslist that looks like crap, and wear second hand clothes. Mind you, I'm a Goodwill clothing shopper myself, but I buy only high quality clothing in very good, like new condition -- she buys the cheapest crap she can find at a second hand store. I could go on and on, but it boggles the mind how far they will go. To me, that is no longer simple living or frugality, that is a MENTAL ILLNESS.

I'm not saying you are that (please don't get offended!), only trying to point out that frugality for frugality's sake doesn't make much sense to me either. Life is to be enjoyed. Your perspective shifted because of the income you lived on and by your description, you weren't lacking for anything. That's great. But your husband has a different perspective and enjoying fine wine is important to him, so, let him. Instead of disapproving, try allowing him the gift of giving YOU some finer things to enjoy as well - savor that expensive glass of wine with him! You would be giving him far more than you would be "saving."
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Old 01-12-2010, 04:27 PM
2,890 posts, read 5,180,523 times
Reputation: 4595
Originally Posted by NYCAnalyst View Post
It's his money, he can do with it what he wants.
Maybe I'm a little old fashioned, but I thought when you got married it became "our" money. Otherwise, you might as well just be roommates with benefits.

My husband meticiulously handles our stock investments. This is a full-time "job." I am the spouse that brings home the paycheck and the insurance benefits.

Marriage involves common goals, both long-term and short term. We know where we want to be by retirement and discussed together what we need to get there. We have a budget and work together to follow it. If we break the rules - we break it together. If we run out of "fun" money by Monday, we don't buy any more "fun" until Thursday. If we need to make a big purchase, we review the budget and find out what we can truly afford.

He is the king of bargaining and finding good deals and we somehow end up with "more" than we could afford for exactly what we can afford.

It's time you sat down and had a goal and budget meeting.

My husband and I balance each other out - sounds like the two of you do also. You need to value what each other bring to the relationship. Just as he deserves a nice wine with dinner, you deserve to know that you will have a safe an secure future. Make sure you also have enough life insurance and a solid will in order.

Oh - and see if purchasing a bottle of wine is cheaper than 3 glasses!
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Old 07-02-2010, 06:46 PM
171 posts, read 377,355 times
Reputation: 102
I think it all comes down to your tolerance level. You married him knowing about the difference, right?

I think you should figure out exactly what is gnawing at you--not having adequate retirement funds--and find a way to address that so your husband REALLY hears what you have to say.

I've been in a relationship with someone who made AND spent a lot of money, and found it VERY difficult. I had to deal with truly compulsive shopping and out of control/damaging spending though. It becomes a trust issue.

On the flip side? I see your husband's point about wanting to enjoy himself now as well. If he's occasionally blowing $30 on a couple glasses of wine, that isn't likely to cause financial ruin or make the difference between a comfortable retirement or not.

I think it's great that you lived well on $12k. Been there, done that, probably doing it again soon. However, I don't think it's quite fair to expect the same from someone when you married them knowing they were used to a different sort of lifestyle. If $30 is representative of a splurge on his part, I'd suggest overlooking. I know I'd HATE feeling like I couldn't spend $30 without another adult's permission.
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Old 07-03-2010, 01:48 AM
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,237,783 times
Reputation: 1866

Like you, I am frugal. My husband is not a big spender, but he does not pause at the "little details" as he calls them. For example, if he takes me shopping (read that as being dragged kicking and screaming to the store ;-) and I am trying to decide between two outfits, he will say "You look beautiful in both. Get them both" regardless of the cost. While I appreciate that he is willing to do that, I think it's wasteful especially if I'm buying something for a specific event where wearing the outfit again is not highly likely. This used to annoy me because (1) I felt guilty for having so much when so many people barely have basics and (2) I felt guilty for doing something for myself when I had spent most of my life putting other people first.

Two experiences from my childhood helped to shape my ideas about money. My parents both had very good jobs. My father is frugal and my mother is a spend-thrift. I remember being trained to go to the car after my dad went to sleep to sneak bags into the back of her closets. My father always kept a separate checking account because he wanted to ensure that all the bills were paid before my mother could spend it on other things. It's not that she didn't care if the bills were paid. She just has no control over her spending habits and having to "outdo" other people all the time. Nobody needs a closet full of fur coats, designer handbags, etc. It's beyond the point of anything rational.

The second one involved my great-aunt and her spouse. She was a SAHM and he worked in a Union job. They were very frugal and saved every dime for their retirement. They skipped almost all forms of enjoyment with dreams of travelling the world once he retired. Retirement came and they were estatic to start their lavish journey. On their first trip, my uncle had a stroke which was followed by complications. The rest of his remaining years were spent with ever-increasing medical bills. My aunt cared for him until he passed away a couple decades later, never really getting to "enjoy" retirement.

I learned financial responsibility from my father and I learned to just "enjoy" things from my husband. Tomorrow is not promised and a $9 bottle of wine or a $300 dress is not going to make or break anything, if it's not a consistent habit. Ask yourself what is important to you and what qualities about this person caused you to marry him? He probably wasn't frugal when you dated him and suddenly changed. So, is it realistic to want to change him now? (The only person that anyone can change is him/herself).

Maybe you two can find a "happy medium" where so much money is put aside for a rainy day and the rest is "play" money. Maybe you could agree to have so many outings per month that involve "free" things like a picnic in the park or an outdoor concert and so many days of the wine and cheese events. Bring back those memories of why you loved this man enough to marry him. There must have been some compromise during that time or he wouldn't have asked and you would not have said "yes."

Tomorrow is not promised to any of us. It doesn't mean blow it all today, but it also doesn't mean sitting around waiting for the "special moment" when it will be okay to relax and just enjoy.

All the best to you.
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:24 AM
Location: OUTTA SIGHT!
3,023 posts, read 2,761,572 times
Reputation: 1899
I have yet to convince my wife that buying tiny bottles of steak sauce and honey (etc) is not in our best interest. I dunno, I grew up with a family that had two full refrigerators and a full pantry. We bought stuff at Sams and Costco like the world was gonna end tomorrow.
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Old 07-04-2010, 04:44 AM
Location: virginia beach, virginia
122 posts, read 168,626 times
Reputation: 91
I think these are excellent ideas. drshang Both can do what they want an still save.

Last edited by PeacenHarmony; 07-04-2010 at 04:48 AM.. Reason: forgot name
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Old 07-04-2010, 09:52 AM
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,237,783 times
Reputation: 1866
Originally Posted by brubaker View Post
I have yet to convince my wife that buying tiny bottles of steak sauce and honey (etc) is not in our best interest. I dunno, I grew up with a family that had two full refrigerators and a full pantry. We bought stuff at Sams and Costco like the world was gonna end tomorrow.
I thought my parents were the only ones who did this. They have two refrigerators in the kitchen AND a deep freezer in the basement. They had the family room divided to build a wrap-around pantry in one part of it.

In my parents' case, they both grew up with families that struggled quite a bit. NOBODY comes through their front door who is not offered something to eat, no matter the day or time. They are certainly prepared to feed an army!

BTW, have you ever tried showing your wife the "per unit" price on the shelves? That almost always shows that smaller containers are more costly, overall, than larger ones? I get both the first time and use the "fifty gallon drum" (as Dh calls it) from Costco to refill the smaller bottle in the kitchen cabinets.
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Old 07-04-2010, 10:00 AM
Location: southern california
55,237 posts, read 72,655,154 times
Reputation: 47469
well he did not marry you for your money. and you are like me when it comes to money.
its going take some outside help. you did not say anything in your post to indicate he is a compulsive spender but you did express things to indicate you might be a compulsive saver.
you 1st must determine correctly who has the problem.
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