Sometimes I think it is really a problem of discipline

Sometimes I think it is really a problem of discipline. For instance, when I was working and living at home, I gave my parents $160.00 a week for room and board (they sacrificed to pay for our educations — I also have a sister– so that we could start our working lives without loans to pay off). (By the way, she has four children, one of whom has a disability, two in parochial school, lives in her own house – she put the downpayment on it but her husband pays the mortgage….and things seem….from all appearances…to be working for them.) She doesn’t work outside the home either, at this point.

My parents lived (and live) very frugally, but we always had enough to eat and wear and we didn’t get harrassing telephone calls from creditors. Now that they are retired they (finally) have a little place of their own (mortgage paid off) and (as they have always taken care of their health) they are in their seventies and very active.

The rest (after what I had given my parents) went into investments and I had weekly, monthly, and yearly budgets. Each pay raise raised the amount I was able to save/invest. My one indulgence was buying books. Still tended, even when I was working, to look for clothes in charity shops/Salvation Army since I grew up doing that…and I’ll probably start doing that for my two boys.

However–re: discipline–and this is kind of a silly example, I guess – but my parents gave us a box of candy for Easter….you know, those Russell Stovers selection boxes. Well, very shortly after it was open I found that it was three quarters gone. I’m not a big candy eater (I’m trying to watch those empty calories) but it left me feeling kind of taken aback….like…maybe he could have offered me a couple just to be polite.

Little things like that bother me sometimes, especially when my main priorities are: taking care of the boys, the marketing (trying to do meals economically and healthfully), keeping the apartment neat and habitable (which is kind of hard sometimes….with two little boys in constant motion), keeping up with the laundry, doing the paperwork, telephone calls, et cetera, trying to advocate for my older boy while trying to make sure my younger boy has “play dates” and doesn’t feel left out or odd because his brother has difficulties. I mean, what I do may not be considered work, but I am doing my best at it and it is difficult sometimes. It’s lonely and I’m frightened for my son’s (both my son’s) futures.

Then my husband comes home and just wants to sit and watch Law & Order (even reruns) and ER and when I want to discuss something serious he really resents it. He either doesn’t want to discuss it (let’s talk about it later) or, if I have an idea about how something could be done (let’s reduce or get rid of cable, et cetera) I’m being mean and unreasonable.

I’ve tried saying let’s sit down on X day at X time but that doesn’t seem to work either. I get frustrated because he just seems like he can’t be bothered sometimes. I’ve tried a stern approach, a nice, gentle approach, but nothing seems to work.

Then, if (as sometimes happens) I get depressed, he gets mad at me when I go to bed early and, frankly, just don’t want to talk to him.

I spoke to another mom today (at my son’s music therapy class) and she has gone through similar issues….so it was a relief to talk to her. My parents also know about the situation, and have given sound advice, I think, but they do not want to meddle. This is my battle and I have to stick up for myself and for my sons.

Thanks for all your input. It does help.

In a way, he is hiding from the facts

In a way, he is hiding from the facts. YOU bailed him out before, and he’s looking to you to do it again. Nothing much will change until you go ‘on strike’ and make him see there are consequences to his actions. If he throws it at you to go to work again, perhaps you should. Let HIM stay with the autism and all. If not, just remind him you DID work, and what did he think got him out of the last jam he was in, your looks? This guy is being an evasive, non-supporter in this regard.

I figured that when I read in another of her posts that her husband gives her a $40.00 weekly ‘Allowance” (while e is still expecting her to bail him out?!!??). Uh, 1940’s called, they want their sentiments back.

Have you thought perhaps you are enabling your husbands bad behavior? If so, you are making it impossible for him to change. Do what is best for you and your children, even if it means leaving him and staying with your parents til you can figure out a plan. I am not questioning whether or not you love him, but show some tough love! It doesn’t make any sense to be dragged down by someone elses irresponsibility! You could have a formal, legal contract written up to charge interest even.

First off HUGE HUGS. Secondly I have been where you are and so understand. I dealt with this kind of behavior for 11 years and I could not take it anymore. Living paycheck to paycheck. Now we both worked and I got paid weekly / No kids in daycare / all kids were in school. He thought that money grew on trees and would spend it on whatever he wanted , I finally took away all banking stuff adn did it myself. He had an allowance of 50.00 a week and always was broke by Tue. I sat down and created a budget and told him either you stick to it or I am out of here.

I have been happpliy divorced for 4 years now and am doing better. Dont get me wrong it was tough adn still is at times. BUT I manage the money adn I pay the bills.

Maybe sit down and show him ALL that is paid every month. I wish you good luck and if you need to vent or complain or just talk and I will listen.

Does he know autism is carried on the y chromosome? Which means it came from him?

I think my asking him to repay the money

I think my asking him to repay the money would make me feel (somewhat, but not much) better about having to give AMEX 16K. You’re right…I have no way to ensure compliance. I can’t sue him like AMEX would.

Right now he gives me an allowance of $40.00 per week (this I save up for Christmas presents, birthday presents, clothing – most of what I buy for myself is used – Salvation Army or charity shops….most of the children’s clothing is gifts from relatives). If this were increased to $100.00 per week the debt would be discharged in 160 weeks, three years and two weeks.

Our rent is $1425. The payment (excepting AMEX) will be, he tells me, $860. per month. The car, he tells me, will be paid off in October, so that should free up some funds. He tells me that MMI will charge a flat fee of $90.00 to take the case (but that AMEX has to be paid off first since they will not deal with anyone).

I have told my husband in just this language that I don’t feel safe, I don’t feel secure, I feel a terrible sense of insecurity and hopelessness about the future (the way things stand). I have asked him if he loves me and the children and he says that he does.

It’s difficult enough for me as it is, dealing with my own mood problems (depression, stress) and with my older son’s difficulties (which are challenging….I never thought I’d be hearing from a teacher that my son tried to bite someone…..). I am really heartbroken sometimes and it feels so difficult right now.

I’m hoping for a sea change, a total change, in my husband’s attitudes towards me, towards money, and the responsibility (I feel) he should take for his actions/inactions and, first and foremost do his utmost to take care that this doesn’t happen again….and that our financial future and security should be a priority for him.

Thanks for listening. It really does help me.

If you really love this guy and want to make it work

If you really love this guy and want to make it work, he is also going to have to step up to the plate. If this means living on Mac and cheese for a time, so be it. Counseling should be an option, and heck yes, I’d speak with mom and dad. They I am sure, would not want you to be used in this manner at all.

The thing is….I DO love him and I DO want things to work out for ourselves and for our family as a whole.

I spoke (briefly) this morning with my parents, just to let them know what is going on, not for assistance, certainly, since this is our mess to clean up.

I’m just so tired of pretending that everything is o.k.. I also shared the situation with a CSW who handles some of my (autistic) son’s stuff (we get reimbursement for diapers up to $100. a month since we haven’t been able to toilet train him yet and he’s six but operating at a one-year level).

I agree that counseling would be a good idea, marriage as well as financial counseling.

After we got married I tried to sit down with him and work out a budget, but he wasn’t interested (similar issues with going to the Dr. / Dentist…..I see my GP & OB/Gyn once a year and dentist twice a year but, in seven years, I haven’t been able to get him to go to the Dr. for an exam or a PSA test — he’s 46).

MMI, by the way, say they will charge $90.00 to take on his case.

How do I get him motivated to do the things I feel he must do in order to do what is in the best interest of our family? I just don’t know. I talk and talk and it is like I am talking to a wall. He says that he understands how I feel. That’s it.

I feel so angry/confused/despairing right now.

Thanks for your comments. They DO help me…..I am just having trouble sorting all of this through my mind and trying to figure out how I can do damage control.

I wish I had something better to tell you

I wish I had something better to tell you, but what is going to make him be able to pay you back at $100 a week?? Will he even be able to do this consistently? My concern in bailing him out would be 2 things, first this is the 2nd go round with bailing him out, and 2nd he doesn’t WANT to live within your families means. It’s really tough to do, but you do have to give things up. We haven’t had cable in over a year. I haven’t given up the internet, but have considered it, and it might go before it’s all said and done. I have looked up all kinds of recipes on the net for Frugal meals but have some nutrition. So you don’t have to live on Mac and Cheese, but I couldn’t tell you the last time we had a steak either.

I have followed your threads here through the months. You HAVE to do what is going to keep you of sound mind. What feels right to you, in a way that will make you feel safe. To be honest from what you have posted in the past, you are VERY concerned with the future and your children’s futures. I think YOU know the answer to what you want and need to do for your peace of mind. What will happen when you bail him out again? Will there be a 3rd time, if his reason for the debt is he doesn’t make enough money to live in the way he wants to live? Maybe it’s time for a 2nd job, or time to go back to school for another degree. Something that will bring in the income that he desires to spend.

I know this has been an issue for you for several months now. How about some money management counseling before you go into debt for the 3rd time. How is he planning to make these other payments (with you bailing him out, + the management place $$), without changing the way you live? I really feel for you, but if you don’t solve the problem, then the problem will just “rear its head again”, no matter what you decide to do. Attitude towards money seems to be a much larger problem than how much money you have or don’t have.

Going to court may not be the worst option

Going to court may not be the worst option. I am head over heels in debt, really I am bankrupt.

One of my creditors has brought a judgment against me for a medical bill of 5K. I have to go to court in a couple of weeks. I am in the process of making a list for the judge of all my debts and current payments. This includes a student loan in default which has grown from 35k to 43k since un/under employed; however, I do make very small payments on this loan (less than $50 a month although it grows by $300 a month because of interest. In court I intend to explain my state of bankruptcy to the judge and offer the creditor a small payment. There is no other option. The only other possible solution is applying for a personal loan with fast and almost guaranteed approval from websites like or – these are the best, but you may also google for more.

What I am trying to say is: If you go to court and explain what that agency did and ask to maintain your current payment plan, it may well work.

Also, what that agency did is called bait and switch. You were lured into a payback plan and then the terms were switched. I had a dentist doing this to me once. I had expensive dental work done and she agreed to a payment plan. The dentures were made and I still owed money. She did not want to release the denture and insisted on full payment. Luckily I was able to get a lawyer; It only took one visit. The lawyer wrote a letter to the dentist pointing out the “bait and switch”. The upshot: I got my dentures and did not have to pay the balance. That dentist did not want legal trouble. There must be Federal agencies that deal with illegal collection practices, consumer protection agencies. You may want to contact your state attorney’s office to see what they have to offer re: consumer protection.

Good luck!

Does anyone on here know of any legitimate free work at home places?

I have 3 small children and me and my husband both work full time and have second part time jobs. In order to make our budget (which is trimmed so far that it is impossible to trim it anymore) we need to make anywhere from $200 to $500 a month (i’d prefer the $500 so that we could actually start saving for a house!) Does anybody have any ideas?

I know some people who do phone work at home…let me check with them and I will send whatever info I can. Probably won’t be until tomorrow since I am out the door to MY second job :-). It can be done though, there are legit co’s out there.

I work with west at home but I also worked with them when I lived in va. As long as you dont mind dealing with customers not to hard and you are usually paid by the minute.

Could you give me alittle info about West, like exactly what you do and pay scale? I have signed up and am ready to start my basic training online. iappreciate any info.

I am also interested in working from home to get out of financial debt. Could you let me know if they have a website I can visit, please.

I just feel really disappointed too

I just feel really disappointed too. I don’t think I can file for bankruptcy. I do have some assets from when I was working (401K, Childrens college funds, opened when they were born) so I’m not sure how that would help.

He says he doesn’t tell me things because it makes me upset and depressed and I stop talking to him for awhile.

I have this terrible sense of fear and terror (which my husband feels is unjustified…..he says “it is only money”) and I wonder whether we can really afford our groceries and I’m watering the milk down already and I worry that I won’t be able to afford the vitamin supplements for our autistic son.

Then he says maybe he should stay at home and I should go to work (I was in work, for 10+ years before we married) and see how hard it is.

I’ve kept this from my parents for a long while, but I really need to speak to them, I think. Not for advice, and certainly not for financial help, but so that they know what I am going through here.

I just hate to see the nest egg I saved over ten years swallowed up by his lack of foresight and planning.

I’ve been thinking, maybe, I might feel better about loaning him the money with the stipulation and a formal agreement that he would pay it back to me at the rate of $100.00 per week (for three years). Could this work, do you think??

URGENT…… need advice……….terribly upset……..


Sorry if this is a double post, I am having trouble with the computer. It’s been a week or two, I think, since I last posted….

My husband finally spoke with MMI (Money Management International – we got their contact information from a booklet put out by the US Government). Anyway, they tell him that AMEX will not work with them. Is this true?? The other debts can be repaid with a payment of $860.00 per month, once the interest rate has been adjusted to 6%.

We are in New York State.

My husband does not want to file for bankruptcy. He does, however, seem to want me to pay AMEX the 16K. Apparently MMI will not work with my husband on the other debts unless this happens first. I already paid, in 2001, 40K worth of credit card debt. This will bring the total up to 56K. I don’t understand why he is doing this to our family.

I am already coping with an autistic (non-verbal) six year old son….I trusted my husband to handle the financial stuff while I looked after our two boys and this is what happens….. I am so sick and depressed of it all I cannot tell you…. Any advice, input, feedback would be much appreciated.

Many thanks

More than debt is playing out here. I’m sorry, but he is doing this to you, because he has been allowed to do this to you. I know it is not my business, but I would re-evaluate your whole relationship here. Debt is seemingly only a part of the trouble. You are feeling betrayed and helpless. You know, you can file bk separate from your husband.

Thanks for your message; I appreciate it. He says it’s because his income is short 5000-6000 for the area we are living in and because I am not working. Childcare for our autistic son would be problematic and would likely cancel out whatever income I made, if I was working outside the home.

He doesn’t buy “stuff” (consumer goods) and doesn’t (from what I can tell) have any expensive habits I am not aware of.

He says he doesn’t tell me things because he knows it will upset and depress me (and this sort of situation does depress me).

I have always wanted to work with him to live within our income, but (as he says) he is not willing to live on macaroni and cheese.

Now I have to get the children ready for school and act like everything’s normal. Thanks for your response……

Just some more thoughts

I am wondering if there are any couples out there, on this board, who have successfully surmounted and managed to get past problems of this nature?

If so, I would be so grateful to hear about the process you went through to get there.

I honestly don’t want to divorce. I have two small children, and I do love my husband. I want to make things work. I want him to want it to work.

What I feel, right now, is a kind of paralysis. I don’t want to bring up these issues with him right now, this weekend, but I did send him two very calm and clear emails (to his work email) stating how I feel and what I feel is necessary for us to get back on track.

I’m praying a lot right now, too. Many many thanks, again, for all your responses and feedback. It helps.

Depends on what you mean by success. I give or send emails to my husband all the time and he acts calm – even happy. Then I wake up one day and am told he doesn’t like to come home to me and I am controlling his life. These guys don’t think that straight. And they do not like to feel “pussy” whipped or controlled. They don’t want or respect your opinion – this was confirmed in my case a few days ago. He’ll either start changing or you will start hating or both.

I don’t believe I said all men were like that. In a few of my emails I went out of my way to say both women and men can be abusive. But this woman lives with an abusive man and she needs advice and help. And part of what she needs is to recognize he is abusive and dangerous and he is not going to respect her input – not for very long anyway.