BACKGROUND: Sometimes my DH will get a little frustrated that I check with him about every little thing or want him to make every decision. Sometimes he wishes I would just handle things on my own and take them off his (over-full) plate.
SITUATION: Our 12yr old daughter has been asking for 6 months or so to get braces. I have been putting it off (intentionally...not procrastinating this time!) because I know we have a lot going on financially--a new lake house which needs furniture, we will soon need a new car and maybe two new cars. And there was no real rush with the braces bc the dentist said we would evaluate it again in 6 months, but my DD wanted to get them NOW. So one day a month or so ago when she was asking AGAIN, my DH asked me why I had not done it yet? So I told him it would be expensive and there was no rush, and that I was waiting due to the cost. He told me to go ahead and do it, that we were going to have to do it anyway so it didn't make much difference. [At least I THINK this is what he said...]
MY ACTION: So I finally made the appointment the other day when I was being so productive and crossing so many things off my To-Do list. :) I picked an orthodontist that has a good reputation and is very close and convenient to our home. The appointment for the consultation was this week. After he presented the information and the pricing, they said he could go ahead and put the braces on her that same day if we wanted to. (Of course, my DD started begging.) So I decided to go ahead and do it...it would save me one more appointment to deal with! I was proud of myself for not going through the ordeal that I usually do of evaluating ALL of the choices (every other orthodontist in town) before making a decision. It seems like a great office, it seems like he knows what he's doing, it's a convenient location; there's no real reason that I could see NOT to use him. So I left her there to get started while I took my other daughter on to school. On the way, I called my DH to ask him whether he wanted to do the payment plan or the lump sum up front and get the discount, etc?
HIS REACTION: He got upset and said he could not believe I made a decision like that without consulting him first. Had I checked anyone else's prices? Was this guy's cost competitive with others? Apparently, in his mind, he meant for me to go ahead with the CONSULTATION only and then we would discuss the options. Well, I truly have no idea exactly what he actually said, but I really THOUGHT he told me to go ahead and do it, and I even got the feeling it was one of those things he wanted me to just take care of. Obviously I misunderstood, made some wrong assumptions, or maybe he miscommunicated--I don't know. But I was HORRIFIED, because normally I WOULDN'T make that kind of decision without asking him! He realized the error in his reaction, and quickly tried to backtrack because he did not mean or want to upset me. I told him I could call them and tell them to stop, but he told me not to and that he would transfer the money over to cover a lump sum payment. He tried to tell me it was okay and even said something about knowing that this (his reaction) would be a setback for us now.
MY RESPONSE: I felt AWFUL. I SHOULD have asked him first before spending several thousand dollars. What was I THINKING?! My disclaimer here is that I am NOT an impulsive spender--I do not usually have that problem, although I know some with ADHD struggle with that. I am usually very hesitant, especially with big money like that (hence the reason I was waiting to begin with). I am much more impulsive with the "nickel and dime" kind of stuff which can get us in trouble too, but we ALWAYS talk about big expenditures. But I really THOUGHT we had already talked about it; I THOUGHT he wanted me to go ahead and do it. And I was proud of myself that I had made a pretty big decision by myself without running to him as if he is my Daddy or something. Ugh. Why do I ALWAYS screw up!?! This is why I feel like I can't do anything right, even when I'm really trying. I texted him to apologize again and he told me to quit worrying about it. I wish I could.