View Full Version : SERIOUS Overspending and DH refuses to let me fix it MY way


kettish
05-29-09, 01:17 AM
Hey guys-

I've been on adderall about six months now but haven't been able to get therapy due to some extremely irritating circumstances. As such, a lot of my problem behaviors have gotten better, but some of them haven't. One in particular-impulse shopping/spending-is getting to be a serious problem.

Well, I say "getting to be"-it already is. We have $8000 in credit card debt that I rang up a lot of, but DH hasn't helped either. We've even gotten a couple of bonuses, and I had it down to $5000, but it keeps going back up.

Part of the problem is the impulse spending itself. Part of the problem is that my husband leaves finances to me because they stress him out like crazy and he's in the Army and thus doesn't have a lot of time. And part of the problem is that he doesn't listen to me when I tell him what I need us to do so that I don't ***** us over again, insisting instead on what he thinks is best, and so I do what he says to do.

Case in point: I spend money if I have money. This wouldn't be nearly so terrible if I had a job (which would keep my occupied), were going to school (which would do the same), or if I was awake during normal hours and got some social contact in. (I get really lonely sometimes and end up going to Walmart or Waffle House to see people or buying stuff online to keep occupied.)

So we got a bonus. I wanted to put it directly on our credit cards. DH nixed that idea, insisting we kept it in our checking account so that if we had to move suddenly (we had just moved so DH could go to training, and if he flunked out we'd have to move again) we'd have money.

While I understand the logic there, I know myself well enough to know that if it's in our checking account, I forget I shouldn't use it. Sometimes I catch myself, but sometimes I don't, or I tell myself it's all good. I know I need to work on that, but it's such an issue, I'd rather put it on the credit cards (which I have by now learned NOT to use) and have it out of my hands.

Am I being unreasonable?

Another example: Once we get one of our two cards paid off, I want to close the account out and cut up the cards. DH argues that it would negatively effect our credit and wouldn't be worth it. I've watched us almost completely pay this 24% interest card off TWICE, only to ring it back up again within months. It isn't worth it to me; I'm tired of being in debt!

From a financial standpoint, could we be reasonably expected to recover from closing one card and lowering the balance on the other (credit-wise)? I think so, but he's so skittish about closing the damn thing out. I'm going to have to put my foot down next time it's paid and be done with it, arguments be damned.


Furthermore, it's just plain hurtful to me. I feel like a failure because I can't make this work like most NTs can, and I resent my husband because he won't let me do what I need to do to get us back on track.

Any advice on how to get DH to help me help us instead of continue to hurt us financially??

blueroo
05-29-09, 07:46 PM
Is there a savings account you can use to compromise? You can't draw from savings willy nilly, so it won't be spent.

You can't rely on bonuses to pay down your credit debt. You need a regular, monthly plan and a goal. Are you going to keep all the cards when they're paid off? Why? When will everything be paid off? Do you need to close the cards? Why? Is there harm in leaving the account open but cutting up the plastic?

bookwurm2
05-29-09, 09:26 PM
"So we got a bonus. I wanted to put it directly on our credit cards. DH nixed that idea, insisting we kept it in our checking account so that if we had to move suddenly (we had just moved so DH could go to training, and if he flunked out we'd have to move again) we'd have money.

While I understand the logic there, I know myself well enough to know that if it's in our checking account, I forget I shouldn't use it. Sometimes I catch myself, but sometimes I don't, or I tell myself it's all good. I know I need to work on that, but it's such an issue, I'd rather put it on the credit cards (which I have by now learned NOT to use) and have it out of my hands.

Am I being unreasonable?"

Not at all. Pay down the credit cards to cut your interest payments. If you need emergency funds later, you can always get a cash advance on the card. You'll have to pay interest of course, but you'll only be paying interest on the money you actually need and use.

In the alternative, if he insists that the money be kept in an account, like blueroo says, put it in an account you can't easily access. This can be a savings account or a separate checking account--keep the check book hidden in an out of the way place at home, or in a locked drawer that only your husband has the key to.

"Another example: Once we get one of our two cards paid off, I want to close the account out and cut up the cards. DH argues that it would negatively effect our credit and wouldn't be worth it. I've watched us almost completely pay this 24% interest card off TWICE, only to ring it back up again within months. It isn't worth it to me; I'm tired of being in debt!"


Leave the account open but do NOT carry the credit card. You can cut it up as blueroo suggests. But again, just putting it in an out-of-the way place at home should do the trick. For example, how often would you use the credit card if you had to go into the attic or into a crawlspace and move boxes to get to it? Or give to someone you trust (family member or close friend) for safe-keeping.

Be sure to use the card to buy something small at least every 12 months or they might close the account on you.

FinallyAnswered
05-29-09, 11:58 PM
So we got a bonus. I wanted to put it directly on our credit cards. DH nixed that idea, insisting we kept it in our checking account so that if we had to move suddenly (we had just moved so DH could go to training, and if he flunked out we'd have to move again) we'd have money.

While I understand the logic there, I know myself well enough to know that if it's in our checking account, I forget I shouldn't use it. Sometimes I catch myself, but sometimes I don't, or I tell myself it's all good. I know I need to work on that, but it's such an issue, I'd rather put it on the credit cards (which I have by now learned NOT to use) and have it out of my hands.

Bookwurm pretty much said everything I was thinking.

If you have revolving debt at 24% interest and receive a sudden windfall such as a bonus, the worst thing you can do is put it in the bank "just in case". Your credit cards are your emergency funds. While the money is in the bank earning 2% interest, the same amount on the credit card is costing you 24% interest. You're losing 22% interest by keeping it in the bank.

Your highest rate debt should be your top priority. Find ways to pay more than the minimum and leave the card alone. You can only impulse shop if you have the credit or the money handy.....don't have either.

Also, look around the house for ways to cut your household costs. I LOVED my DirecTv....couldn't live without it......$93 a month it was costing me. I finally got up the courage to cancel it and you know what? I don't miss it. I opened a $8.99 per month Netflix account and use Hulu.com or the network sites to watch my favorite programs.

If you MUST buy something, let it be one of Susan Orman's books on managing finances. You'll be amazed at how simple many of the solutions are and wonder why you didn't see them yourself.

Good luck Ket....

kettish
05-30-09, 02:30 AM
blueroo, the problem is that I've got a problem overspending, and if the account's open, I'm afraid I'll find a way to use it. Plus, I checked out statement-it's 29.99% interest. One third. Argh. Wouldn't it be wiser to at least close THAT account-our other one only has 11% interest?

And we've planned a regular monthly payment schedule-like I said, twice we've paid them down with bonuses, but one time we did pay it down just with payments. Still rang it right back up-and I wasn't the only one doing it, looking back at the statement. We went on vacation after he got back from Iraq and spent waaay too much.


bookwurm2, what's the point in having the account open "in case of emergency" if we don't have a card for it? I'm missing a point here somehow. :( Wouldn't an emergency situation demand having plastic on hand? And as I said with blueroo, I'm afraid I'll still use it.


FinallyAnswered, this was my reasoning for wanting to put that money on our cards. We're cutting household costs as we can, including cutting out cable and internet entirely (there's a place with free wifi near our house, happily enough!) and I'm working on our other costs like heating, A/C, water, and power. Some of these we have less control over since we're renting a home, but most of them we can and are working on.

The credit I'm not as worried about spending as I am free cash, but I still am a bit.

"You can only impulse shop if you have the credit or the money handy.....don't have either."

I know this, and that's why I want to pay the cards off and then get rid of them altogether. Is it hard to get along today without lines of credit and financing or something? I've never heard so many people (not just here!!) who were so against closing cards out. Would it be a managed risk if we kept them open long enough to establish an emergency fund of, say, $5,000, and THEN close them?


Thanks everyone who's helping me out!!

Regina Terrae
06-05-09, 01:52 PM
One cool idea I saw on someone else's blog (sorry I don't remember where, to give credit) -- put the credit card in a bowl of water and freeze it. Even if you have to move suddenly, it can't be so sudden that there won't be time to thaw it out, right? But it takes long enough to thaw out that you won't just use it on a whim.

Another idea is to split your budgeted spending money into separate envelopes by category, IN CASH. Cash gone, spending over, until the next budget cycle. No credit cards.

No credit cards.....