| | Need to stand up for myself
Married 5 years, SAHM, 2 kids under 5. When we first married I was making 28-30k to his 75-80k. We didn't join finances then, very stupidly of me. Got pregnant 4 months into the marriage, left my job 2 weeks before oldest was born (company was going under anyway). He gave me a credit card for my purchases (pretty much just groceries and baby items), said he got great points off that card, so it was all good. He paid all the bills through his account, for which I had/have no access.
When our oldest was a year he bought himself a really, really nice car. I was driving his older SUV. No problem, I didn't drive much anyway. A month after the car purchase I get pregnant with kid #2 (mostly planned). By this time the economy is getting bad and our insurance costs have doubled. Our deductible with kid 2 was $2000 (twice the first one) and my husband's company froze raises and bonuses. (Still frozen 2 years later.) They had huge layoffs and he was spared, thank goodness, but he's been working 70 hour weeks ever since.
Things pile up - find out a year ago the extent of his credit card debt, embarassingly high and spread out over 6+ credit cards. The credit card I was using is maxed, so he starts giving me little bits (as in "Here's $35 for the grocery store, get what you can"). Electric and water get turned off multiple times. Luckily, his car payment and the mortgage are auto payments so they've always hit first and gone through fine. I get fed up and about 9 months ago demand a certain amount to pay for the necessities. He gives me X amount twice a month and I pay all groceries, electric, water, kids things, some medical payments, gas for my old guzzler and any sundries I need. It doesn't go that far and I'm always down to pennies by the end of the two weeks.
Anyway, his car payment is almost $600, he buys gadgets galore, always has money to meet his friends for lunch and sometimes pick up the whole tab (I've found the receipts), meet friends for drinks after work. I can afford to go out to dinner with a friend maybe once during the two week period. I buy my clothes at resale shops and Target clearance racks. I am frugal as hell.
He has brought up several times in the last 2 years me going back to work, but I've held that I never made more than 30k in a great economy and now we'd have 2 kids in daycare. Don't think it's worth the added stress to our family. Plus, I'd probably still be in the same personal money boat.
And, oh yeah, I'm still not on his account and he WON'T LET ME DRIVE HIS NEW CAR. Even out of town, with his children. I drove the old beater.
Though I've taken the old car out of town 3 separate times now, it really hit me on the trip I took solo last weekend. The brakes had been squeaking terribly for months, I told him it needed checking (and I can't afford it on the amount he gives me). I had a trip out of town planned (6 hour drive) and told him I'd either need my brakes fixed or to take his car. His response: "We'll fix your brakes."
Well, come to find out they'd gone so far that I needed an entire new brake system. Suprise, surprise. But they did get fixed and I drove the beater out of town. Which shook everytime I went over 65mph.
On my way out the door on Friday he yelled at me over something stupid and I ended up crying the entire drive. Something in me just broke. I can't believe I've been putting up with this treatment for so long. We're not a partnership, I'm more like a lowly maid/nanny.
I recorded a long rant on my phone over the weekend and sent it to him, demanding he sell the damn fancy car and put me on his account. He's been cold and avoiding since.
I'm building up the courage for a huge blowout. If he won't do these things - especially the account and letting me drive the new car when I go out of town - then what, is my marriage over? Ugh, it makes me ill. I hate confrontation but this has to happen.