Side-job money - Talk About Marriage
Financial Problems in Marriage When financial times are tough, it adds to the stress we deal with on a daily basis. This section is for talking about how financial problems affect our relationships and ways to cope.

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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
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Side-job money

My wife and I have a long-standing disagreement on side-money. I do really well with my day job; we arenít struggling and have average bills like most folks. We commingle our paychecks (she does the bills as sheís much better at it).

Occasionally on my free time Iíll do some side work, on average maybe 3-5 thousand worth a year, but small amounts at a time. She really gets upset with me because I see this as my money to do with, as I like. The truth is she has talents and could do the same but chooses not to (completely up to her). A lot of times Iíll use the money to pay off something thatís irritating me or use it to further the side-career Iím working on. She recently implied she might leave if I didnít hand over the extra money, which I thought was totally out of line. I told her Iíd rather just stop doing the side work. Anyway, thatís where weíre at. Iím just curious as to other peopleís thoughts, ideas, strategies, etc.

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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 08:45 PM
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Re: Side-job money

I was taught when I was very young...that every man must have some money "on the street", like side jobs, that are self financed that make money that no one needs to know about. Taking what you earn and continuing to turn it, building on your little side pile.

What you are doing is not unusual at all, it would be more unusual if you didn't do this.

why do you think your wife would make such a serious threat? Over something that sounds trivial....what else is going on?

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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 08:49 PM
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Re: Side-job money

I dunno, that it your money. Do with it like you want. But if she insists, then stoop as you stated, Why do something if there is nothing in it for you. Especially if she could do the same her self. In my marriage, my ex was super talented and could have had far more money than she made working for some one else. But she refused to do. She always thought getting a "paycheck" was more important than making money. Her loss, she could have enjoyed a wonderful life. Now she works 60-70 hours a week to make ends meet, Oh well at least she get a paycheck every week.

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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 08:54 PM
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Side-job money

She's wrong. And wrong to threaten to leave over this. Tell her ok.

That said, is it worth going to war over this? Why not put it aside for a vacation for both of you. Then use the regular money to buy what you need to further the side career.

If you are paying off something then that already makes it commingled money. She is complaining you are paying off debt?

Btw, what does she want to do with the money? Maybe she just wants you to listen to her ideas.
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Side-job money

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I was taught when I was very young...that every man must have some money "on the street", like side jobs, that are self financed that make money that no one needs to know about. Taking what you earn and continuing to turn it, building on your little side pile.

What you are doing is not unusual at all, it would be more unusual if you didn't do this.

why do you think your wife would make such a serious threat? Over something that sounds trivial....what else is going on?
I'm not sure what the threat is for. I agree it is a fairly trivial thing. But, it's also a principle and ultimately investing this money will lead to more and likely another career. I think she just wants control but honestly, she has control over our account and pays bills as she sees fit.
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Side-job money

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She's wrong. And wrong to threaten to leave over this. Tell her ok.

That said, is it worth going to war over this? Why not put it aside for a vacation for both of you. Then use the regular money to buy what you need to further the side career.

If you are paying off something then that already makes it commingled money. She is complaining you are paying off debt?

Btw, what does she want to do with the money? Maybe she just wants you to listen to her ideas.
I think she's complaining because she doesn't have a say in it. Honestly she could do the same and I wouldn't have any issue with her doing with any extra money as she wanted. It's a mystery to me. Worth going to war? No, but she occasionally likes to play brinkmanship.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 09:16 PM
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Re: Side-job money

Threats to leave over this is I think a bit of an over reaction and not respectful of the marriage. However your insisting upon keeping all of the money when she disagrees is not respectful to he marriage either. The way you arrange your finances assumes that the product of either is for both combined. Your wife probably assumed this is was agreed when the finances were set up. You should work to find a compromise on this because without one your marriage will begin to split into hers/mine along with the household chores which she is doing more than you since she is paying the bills. She's working more and you are getting the benefit of the extra money.

In my marriage this would not be tolerated. We are in for a marriage of equality not every spouse for themselves.

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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Side-job money

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Threats to leave over this is I think a bit of an over reaction and not respectful of the marriage. However your insisting upon keeping all of the money when she disagrees is not respectful to he marriage either. The way you arrange your finances assumes that the product of either is for both combined. Your wife probably assumed this is was agreed when the finances were set up. You should work to find a compromise on this because without one your marriage will begin to split into hers/mine along with the household chores which she is doing more than you since she is paying the bills. She's working more and you are getting the benefit of the extra money.

In my marriage this would not be tolerated. We are in for a marriage of equality not every spouse for themselves.
I work a day job with a respectable salary, all of which is put into our joint account which she uses to pay bills. This isn't an indication of work-load by any stretch. I'd guess I do more actual work than she does which is irrelevant to me. I also make over twice what she does which is again, irrelevant to me (I mention only for reference) The side jobs I do are on my own time using resources I gain from previous side work. The extra I see as mine. It's completely voluntary, I wouldn't have to do this work at all. By the same token, she is more than capable of doing additional work on her own time in her field (if she made money doing that, I wouldn't care what she did with it) If that clarifies - I may not have been clear.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:15 PM
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Re: Side-job money

@FlaviusMaximus--you say that you already make enough money. Have you considered that this isn't actually about the money for her?

You don't NEED to work these extra hours, but you are, and in doing so, you're taking away time from her (and your family, if you have kids). And that money isn't going towards the family or towards shared financial goals, so not only is she (And the family) being set aside for unnecessary labor, she feels like she is being further shut out by you when you don't allow her a say in what happens with that money. So you're taking away time from her, AND your taking away her feeling of equality in the relationship.

As you say, yes, she could do the same as you and do a side gig or two and make some extra scratch. But I would venture a guess that she wouldn't do that, because in her mind, she would be taking away even more time from you and your relationship.

How much time do the two of you spend together, really focused on one another? Do you have regular date nights? Spend time alone together without the kids, that isn't dedicated to chores or the like?

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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:18 PM
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Re: Side-job money

Quit the side work, or let her leave. Your choice. You can just spend the communal money as you wish, and no doubt she'll do the same.


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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:33 PM
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Re: Side-job money

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Originally Posted by FlaviusMaximus View Post
I work a day job with a respectable salary, all of which is put into our joint account which she uses to pay bills. This isn't an indication of work-load by any stretch. I'd guess I do more actual work than she does which is irrelevant to me. I also make over twice what she does which is again, irrelevant to me (I mention only for reference) The side jobs I do are on my own time using resources I gain from previous side work. The extra I see as mine. It's completely voluntary, I wouldn't have to do this work at all. By the same token, she is more than capable of doing additional work on her own time in her field (if she made money doing that, I wouldn't care what she did with it) If that clarifies - I may not have been clear.
Well, I personally don't believe in having separate finances in marriage. But her threatening to leave if you don't turn over the money is a real head-scratcher. Pretty extreme, considering you guys are comfortable financially. Is there a back story here?

What does she want to use the extra money for?

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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:53 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Side-job money

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@FlaviusMaximus--you say that you already make enough money. Have you considered that this isn't actually about the money for her?

You don't NEED to work these extra hours, but you are, and in doing so, you're taking away time from her (and your family, if you have kids). And that money isn't going towards the family or towards shared financial goals, so not only is she (And the family) being set aside for unnecessary labor, she feels like she is being further shut out by you when you don't allow her a say in what happens with that money. So you're taking away time from her, AND your taking away her feeling of equality in the relationship.

As you say, yes, she could do the same as you and do a side gig or two and make some extra scratch. But I would venture a guess that she wouldn't do that, because in her mind, she would be taking away even more time from you and your relationship.

How much time do the two of you spend together, really focused on one another? Do you have regular date nights? Spend time alone together without the kids, that isn't dedicated to chores or the like?
Thanks for the reply - it's thoughtful. We have kids, they are grown (although two still live with us) and she works a fair amount of hours (by choice) so I don't believe the issue is hours away from the family. I really wish I had more time with her, certainly the side work isn't more important than that. My comment on her taking some side work is only to illustrate that she can if the extra money is the issue with her.
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Side-job money

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Well, I personally don't believe in having separate finances in marriage. But her threatening to leave if you don't turn over the money is a real head-scratcher. Pretty extreme, considering you guys are comfortable financially. Is there a back story here?

What does she want to use the extra money for?
It's a good question, I'm not sure what or if there is a backstory. The amount we are talking about is fairly insignificant compared to my regular income which is, as I said, put into the bank for her to sort out as she sees fit (I am admittedly not the best administrator of bills). We've never had separate finances as far as are salaries go. But if I do some extra work in my free time, I consider that separate.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 11:01 PM
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Re: Side-job money

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It's a good question, I'm not sure what or if there is a backstory. The amount we are talking about is fairly insignificant compared to my regular income which is, as I said, put into the bank for her to sort out as she sees fit (I am admittedly not the best administrator of bills). We've never had separate finances as far as are salaries go. But if I do some extra work in my free time, I consider that separate.
I would recommend sitting down with her, and asking her to share what her desire is for this extra money. What dream of hers is driving her to pursue this? It's kinda obvious it isn't just the money, so there is some other reason. Ask her to share that with you.

And how long has this been going on? How, specifically, have you responded to her attempts to get these funds in the past?

To be frank, you guys seem pretty disconnected. Your wife is threatening to leave over this, and you don't even know why she wants the money?

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Last edited by BioFury; 11-29-2016 at 11:30 PM.
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 11:16 PM
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Re: Side-job money

Would you say that your wife is controlling, or is this an isolated thing?

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