HE spends too much money.....

[deleted account] ( 35 moms have responded )

I need some advice! My husband spends way too much money and I don't know how to make him stop. He works very hard and definitely deserves to have some freedom with his finances, but it's getting absolutely ridiculous. It would be different if he actually had something to show for his spending habits, but he doesn't. All the money he spends is at gas stations and fast food joints. I've tried packing his lunches for him and baking items that he would want to eat through out the day, but it doesn't help. It's to the point where he is spending close to $40 A DAY just on junk food and crap. What do I do? He's fully aware that it's putting us in some financial stress, but he just doesn't seem to care.

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Kimberly - posted on 08/08/2010

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My ex was like that. He spent money constantly. If we didn't have it in the bank, he used my credit cards. He had to have everything, dvds, big screen tvs (yes, he had to have two) and turntables and all kinds of crap he never used more than once. Guess what? Now I'm bankrupt. I begged him for years to knock it off with the spending and he wouldn't. So when I found out I was pregnant, I left him. I wasn't going to let my baby suffer because of his spending habits.

Lea - posted on 08/04/2010

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Well unfortunately the only thing that might work is to arrange with him how much is reasonable for him to spend each day or week or pay period, and he gets the cash and when its gone thats it. Thats the only thing that helped my husband learn some frickken self-control and planning skills.

Becky - posted on 08/01/2010

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My husband use to do this. He knew what he was doing but I guess he just could not controll himself to not spend the money. So we agreed that he would not take his ATM card to work anymore. We found a safe place in the house of it and kept it there. That was 4 years ago, we have moved, and he has gotten a great job with lots more money but he still will not take a card to work with him. He will take $20 at the start of the week that way if he really wants a snack or to buy a lunch he can. Since we started doing this we have saved 100's of dollars!

[deleted account]

If he knows he's putting the family into financial stress, he should be willing to sit down and work out a budget. I mean, he seriously doesn't want to lose everything over this does he? He should be aware that the number one cause of divorce is financial issues. I'm not saying your marriage isn't strong enough to survive. But it's a fact you both should be aware of.

We sat down together and made a zero based budget. That means that every penny is designated before the paycheck comes home. We know exactly how much we are going to save, put towards debt, give to the church, and spend on bills, groceries and extras before payday even rolls around.

For spending on groceries and extras, we withdrawal the exact amount of cash we have set aside for that purpose. When the money is gone, it's gone. That helps us be very mindful of our spending.

Sit down and make up a budget that includes everything you need money for in a pay period. See what you have extra. The sit down with him and show him what the extra is. Decide between yourselves, what extra will be for his fast food and gas station splurges. Then he gets that amount IN CASH.

I hope one of these suggestions from these ladies works for you. Good luck.

Jane - posted on 08/03/2010

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It's also hard when HE cashes his check, and only allots me $700 for everything that isn't taking him to work. That means he gets $500 from each paycheck for whatever he wants it to be for, while my $700 is supposed to pay for bills, food, clothes, gas, and everything for our 8 person family. Fair? Not hardly.

And I frankly DO NOT have enough money to do all that I'm supposed to. I juggle bills, I economize, but where is there LEFT to economize? I haven't even bought light bulbs in months, for goodness sake!

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User - posted on 03/19/2012

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I hope someone can help me with this too. My husband always seemed to be very frugal, but since we had a child ive realized he is not at all frugal. Every morning he buys breakfast and then buys lunch. So daily he wastes at least $10. Then to top it off it bought his "dream" car a year ago, a nice acura. Well he alway had a problem of buying cars fixing them up and then selling them to make a profit but he still doing it with this acura and he never actually makes a profit when he sells it, after you add up all parts and time he puts into them. Recently he bought a gun, his second one and then I saw that he didnt pay our cell phone bill the other day and I called him out on it and said he forgot well now its two days later and its still not paid. I pay the Mortgage, water, electric/gas, comcast and oil bills. All he is responsible for is the cell phones and car ins. I also buy groceries etc. I am constantly asking him for more money to pay our bills because he makes more than me but yet he doesnt have any money to give me. I NEED HELP WITH THIS!! He says its my fault that I spend too much on groceries and our daughter, well I cut back way back, and I have been doing so since Xmas and I only shop with coupons and at our outlet grocer now and I still am living paycheck to paycheck.



How do I explain to him he needs to stop?

Rachael - posted on 08/04/2010

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First of all, it's not his finances...the money belongs to both of you! You need to sit down and write a family budget together and agree on spending, saving, giving , etc... Dave Ramsey has a fantastic program called Financial Peace University. It's tough to do but completly works. We are debt free and on the same page when it comes to our finances. It really needs to be a joint effort, it will never work any other way. Good luck!

Tina - posted on 08/04/2010

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plus he is not allowed to have a check card...he actually said that because he knows he can be irresponsible

Tina - posted on 08/04/2010

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my fiance doesnt spend too much on food with him its movies. so we made a deal that at the end of the month after all bills are paid. we see how much we have left last month it was 500 so we took 250 out and he got 125 and i got 125 to spend on whatever. the other 250 we saved for necessaties until payday. some months its only 20-50 per person depending but we make it work

Trinity - posted on 08/03/2010

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Thanks for the question, i feel like i wrote it! My hubby is the exact same way!

Brittney - posted on 08/03/2010

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My husband is the EXACT same way!! I feel for you, unfortunately I don't have any advice except printing out your bank statements and highlighting everything that is bills in one color and "wasted money" in another. Add up the totals and just let him see it. I did it once and you really have to be careful how you approach them or they get defensive but it opened my husbands eyes for about a month haha

Lady Heather - posted on 08/03/2010

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Hmmm. I would pretty much murder my husband if he were doing this everyday. No exaggeration. I'm really cheap.

He went through a phase when we first left university and had real jobs in which he spent too much. I was trying to save a downpayment for a house and he's out buying treats for himself all the time and wondering where the money went. So I just stuck to my budget and showed him my account info and said that clearly the missing money is being spent by him. That woke him up.

If that doesn't do it, I don't know what to tell you. If he knows what he's doing and doesn't stop, maybe you need a third party to drive the message home.

I know my husband buys lunch here and there, but it's more like once a week than once a day. I take my daughter out for lunch once a week, so we both enjoy a treat. It's not so one-sided that way.

Did you ever write it down for him like so:
$40 a day
$200 a week (still sounds like not so much)

$200 a week times 52 weeks in a year = $10400!!!!!!

Has he seen that number? I can't imagine how that wouldn't change someone's tune. That is a lot of money. Heck, that would pay off half my student loans.

Lisa - posted on 08/03/2010

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Stop juggling his bills. If he wants a cell phone, tell him the household budget doesn't allow it anymore and he'll have to pay it himself. Selfiness is no reason to be a jerk to his own children. Just because he "works" doesn't give him extra priveleges. Nothing drives me more nuts than people who think that a SAHM should not be given the same respect as someone who goes to an outside job.
Take what you are alloted and provide food and necessities for you and your children. Tuck a little bit away (even if it's $10 it'll add up) for holidays, clothes, emergencies or as a special treat for yourself and the kids when it's needed.
You're right, it's not fair but that doesn't mean you have to accept it. Pay what is necessary for survival. Food, gas, electricity, heat and if there is extra pay another bill, if not, don't.

Candace - posted on 08/03/2010

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@ Jane- Wow, that is pure selfishness on his part. He can spend his $500 a week on whatever he wants, and gives you $700 a week to take care of all the kids, bills, etc??? I want to make sure I read that right!! LOL! Thats insane. Thats $2,000 a month just for him, what does he need that much money for? Even if he spent $40 a day on junk food, That still leaves plenty of money that should go to you for family expenses. There is no way I could deal with that, ever. Have you talked to him and showed him all of your expenses for the family needs? If he is that self centered, maybe it will take someone outside of the home to open his eyes and let him know that is completely ridiculous, self centered, and unacceptable! Good luck with that, your a stronger women then I could ever be, I could not put up with that for 1 minute!

Jane - posted on 08/03/2010

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Y'know, it's not the food. It's the PS3 and games for the stupid thing. It's the EXTRA munchies, bought at convenience store rather than grocery store prices, it's the $1.50 bottle of pop from the machine at work instead of the $.50 can from home...it's the DVD's every week...

$40 may not be much, but it's a tank of gas in my van, or two in his car. It's 3 home-cooked meals. It's 2 meals out for the family. It's 4 packages of diapers. It's...more money we don't have. That's $160 a month, y'know?

$160/month is a payment on something.

Christina - posted on 08/03/2010

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My husband has issues when he is gone on drill or deployed, its like when ever he is away he doesnt seem to remember he has two kids to support and needs to wise with his money.
he has a bank card that goes to a joint account and i just make sure that all our money isnt in it tell him you have X amount of dollars and i am not putting more money in it till such and such a day... but its different when they are away there have been a few times he has had an "emergency" and i had to make sure he got extra money but when he is gone he almost always has everything he needs and really only needs the extra money for junk like your husband.
i know its fustrating and will keep you in my prayers

Stifler's - posted on 08/03/2010

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But he can take food from home and I always have cereal he likes and toast and milk but he wants to stop at the bakery and bring alcohol home from work, it's ridiculous and unnecessary. I don't mind one day a week but when it's like $60 a week on food just for on the way to work it's stupid.

Kenda - posted on 08/02/2010

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oh man i was the same way. it so bad with his spending every dime we almost lost everything. we have a five year old and at the time one on the way.i pulled us out i got us back on track and i dont even work.i had the money put away and just had do it.ive also had to do it twice more since then and refuse to anymore. i had to lay it to him flat and show him everything we were going through that he didnot want to face.i had him tears but i had too i had already tired everything else.the bank card thing,making his lunches,closing the accounts and keeping the money, do it all myself.....none of it worked.....we are doing great now and he is doing it.i do let him go crazy once a month but there is a limit and every pay check we do one outing so he does not feel he is working and not getting to spend. (i do still watch over everything VERY carefully)

[deleted account]

$40 a day is alot and completely unnecessary. Yes they have to eat but lets get real. 4 years ago I was the only working parent because my ex couldn't find work and I had a $10 a day budget for food and drinks. Your home and family should be priority, it's not hard to eat cheap.

Nichole - posted on 08/02/2010

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Ladies, give your men a bit of a break. My husband spends money on gas station food and fast food, but he works on the road. Sometimes, even if he packs a lunch, it's hard for him to eat when his lunch breaks aren't at the shop. He works hard, and yes, sometimes it does set us back some, but he has to eat. I'd rather be $20-$40 behind than him to be hungry at work. If I have to economize somewhere else, then so be it. I think you have to look at the situation. If he is spending it when it isn't needed, yeah, I can see being upset, but if his choice is eat or don't eat, lets not beat them up too bad.

[deleted account]

My husband handles all the finances now. We were in the hole almost every week at first because he doesn't understand all those small $10 debits add up. But he is getting better finally! I told him he could deal with the kids and I would go to work then he wouldn't be able to say "I make the money why can't I spend it". Now he keeps some CASH out of his check and when thats gone he doesn't buy anything else.

[deleted account]

I went through the EXACT same thing....he accused me of hiding money also. GAH! That's why I finally asked my dad (who he respects a lot and fears just a lil'...enough to make him wake up and listen...lmao) to help us come up with a budget that works. Hopefully you can find some way to make him SEE the error of his ways. I'm here if you need to vent...

Jane - posted on 08/02/2010

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No. And YES, I'm frustrated. Because I don't bring in the income, and because he doesn't deal with daily/weekly/monthly spending, he doesn't keep up with what things cost and acts like I'm spending more on purpose. To piss him off. Or hiding money from him. There's none to hide. NONE.

[deleted account]

You sound REALLY frustrated Jane.....perhaps you can try and find a neutral party outside your relationship to help you guys do up a budget. What you're describing sounds obsurd to me. Can't make you feel very good?!

Jane - posted on 08/02/2010

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My hubby is the same. He spends easily $50 a week on crap at work, and I get $1400 out of his $2880 to buy groceries and my gas, pay bills and support every need of an 8 member family. (yes, we have 6 kids at home, one is on her own now). It makes me insane, and doesn't matter when tell him that frankly, our non-negotiable bills are more than that, and I need an extra $500/month!!! Things are more expensive now (he likes to say, "We made it on $300/week not too long ago" - yes, but that was then. The kids were smaller, they ate less, and I juggled bills like there was no tomorrow because you were on unemployment!!!!!)

Stifler's - posted on 08/01/2010

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I refuse to let him come shopping with me ever. He's like "let's get this let's get that come on we need to stock up the pantry". He doesn't even cook and I just buy what I need for the week instead of having stuff sit there for months, forget we have it and never use it.

[deleted account]

Haha! I tried putting my hubby in charge....needless to say things got much worse before they got better. lmao! I wish you the best of luck.....I guess the FIL fear was enough. My hubby LOVES and respects my dad very much so when I asked my dad for help doing up a budget it wasn't because I couldn't do it but because I had a feeling my hubby would be more receptive to it coming from his FIL.

Let us know how it plays out!

Tracy - posted on 08/01/2010

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You're very welcome! Hope it works out for you; that's the one thing we had to learn--both parties need to be aware of what the finances are like. It's important that both of you feel you have a certain amount of money to spend at your own discretion, but you don't need to be stressing out because there's not enough money for something important later on. Even if his spending isn't actually causing immediate problems, that's money that could be going into savings in case of future need, like a major appliance that breaks down suddenly, or car problems, or even emergency travel.

[deleted account]

Tracy, THANK YOU! You said one small thing that just might do it!
"But you may have to hit him upside the head with exactly how much he's spending before he's willing to work with you on this! Make him do the math--what his paycheck is, what your non-negotiable bills are, and what kind of a dent his spending is making in the rest of it".
I'm always the one who sits down and figures out the finances. I'm taking your advice. It's his turn now. Hopefully he will see exactly how his spending habits are hurting us.
Thank you to everyone else too! We have tried leaving the bank cards at home (I actually don't even have one anymore) and using cash, but it does not work for him. He tried it for a couple days, decided it was "unsafe" and went to the nearest branch to get another card. I would LOVE for that to work, but this man is just to stubborn.

Tracy - posted on 08/01/2010

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I had the same problem for a while with my hubby! I had to pull a bank statement and highlight all his "little" gas station buys. He was truly shocked; he didn't even think about them because they were all less than $10 each, but when you're making four or five stops a day, 5 or 6 days a week, that adds up! So we agreed on a weekly allowance for each of us, and he left his ATM card at home--I took out the allowance money and his gas money weekly. Eventually, he got used to it and he no longer has that issue. But you may have to hit him upside the head with exactly how much he's spending before he's willing to work with you on this! Make him do the math--what his paycheck is, what your non-negotiable bills are, and what kind of a dent his spending is making in the rest of it. Tough love really does work!

[deleted account]

OMG! I'm in the same boat! He makes the money and I TRY and control it.

Things have become EXTREMELY tight over the past year as my boyfriend lost his job and hasn't been able to find steady work since....pay cheques have been sporatic and we've even had to borrow some money to catch up. We've since had my dad do up a formal budget so we BOTH know where the finances are going. Even though he makes the money and works hard he's been given an allowance so to speak. He only gets 25$/week for all his extra spending....coffee's, fast food etc while he's out! We can't spare more than 100$/mo so he just has to make it work until our situation changes!

Good luck!

Stifler's - posted on 08/01/2010

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I commandeered his ATM card long ago and pay rent and bills first. But we never save any money because he spends the rest on crap because he has a card as well.

Stacey - posted on 08/01/2010

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My hubby and I went through this, and the only thing that worked was to actually tell him that if he was gonna continue to spend like this then I was going to leave.. drastic I know.. BUT we are still married and WAY more finanicaly stable because he knows I cannot handle the stress of not having the money to pay the bills.. sounds crazy, but it worked.

Stifler's - posted on 08/01/2010

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Oh dear, my partner is exactly like this. He doesn't even understand and always thinks it's me that spends money on too many groceries and I don't even get my hair dyed, new clothes, new shoes or even eyebrows waxed professionally anymore. I think we should just start spending more money on ourselves!

Kathryn - posted on 08/01/2010

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I know how that is for sure...

My hubby is the nly one that works so he has an 14-16 hr day. But he ends up buying a snack before work, a breakfast somewhere, some snacks for later, and lunch. Normally by the end of the day he ends up spending $30 or so.

I asked him to keep his reciepts for a week. At the end of the week I added it all up. $150+ on snacks and food!! I told him that we were wasting over $600 a month on junk.

We decided that all snacking will be bought on our grocery budget and that cut out a little. A couple times a week I would have him eat something from home. That cut the "food spending" down quite a bit.

Now because you husband is fully aware of the situation and you have talked to him about it. The only thing that could change him is himself. Just be strait up and honest and tell him not only is it putting the financial strain on you guys but that type of habit is very unhealthy. Try to see if you can work out a food schedule and just ask if he would make the effort to try it.

My husband always has said it takes 30 days to get over a habit, after that it comes natural.

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