Once Again..it's my fault- but this time...it really was :(


So my phone has been disconnected.  Not turned off temporarily but disconnected.  DH told me he was paying the bill LAST THURSDAY after me reminding him every day for 4 days.  Today..no phone.  Ok..so I use my phone for MY JOB.  + I had an important phone appt today so I look like a flake.  I COULD drive to his work and say Hey the Phone.. He in turn will be very angry at me for spending money and it will be my fault plus he will be too "busy" to deal with it.  Yes, I am Cassandra once again.  Telling him daily until he "apparently" lied (yes if it turns out to be the fault of AT&T i SWEAR I will post an apology on this site-SWEAR) to shut me up (usual strategy) When I call him on his stuff it is my "fault" for being ...oh name it.  A B*tch, A controlling person, I get so angry with him he can't stand it (This after he lied about the electric bill-it was cut off and I was in a house with no electricity, no phone and a special needs baby that was sick)  Yup...I sure got angry that time.   It is just the same old same old...over and over.  Now He KNOWs about the phone bill, He's been taking his meds...so what am I to think? 

I am going to clean up the house (throw away the trash from where he ate and left dishes and wrappers lying around for me to toss) and then I will take a shower, clean up and go down there and bring it to his attention. NICELY.

At which point I KNOW he is going to blast me for spending $$.   I found out checking the bank acct that he got paid 800.00 so I went out with the children and bought bra's undies, socks, PJ Cause it was cold and the kids didn't have.  I also bought a 40.00 microwave-cheapest I could find.  When I came home he had checked the bank balance (which he does constantly on his phone as opposed to budgeting)  and was all pained and lip biting..You spent$$ at Wal-mart.  I was like..did you make a budget?  NO.  Ok..well the kids needed underwear, and we has talked previously about a microwave since the kids are old enough to make their own snacks and I'd prefer they not cook.  My aspergers daughter is famous for cooking on her own and then walking away from it! So yes I bought the microwave.  did I know if we "had" the money.  No..in all honesty I guessed we did and thought I could curve out the grocery $ if I had to.  So yes I was wrong..but..we NEVER have the money even if we HAVE the money.  No budget, no $$ ever.  IF my DH spends well it's ok.  We can have all sorts of crappy job equipment fancy stuff in here because "he " decided.. Me?  Oh no it is my fault II am ruining the family.  I also bought the family Toilet Paper...so at least if we are ruined we won't be stinky as well.    This has been going on for years..years.. so I just spend..Not crazy..not like a thousand dollars here and there but yesterday I bought 12.  Curtains at a thrift store...ok Guys..I know I should not have spent a dime.  I know it.  But on the other hand I never know if we have money or not.  He is quite happy for me never to have anything.  It is like he is driven to live like a pauper..oh wait..no driven to have ME live like a pauper.  He hasn't done a budget in years, no matter what I buy it is too much and irresponsible.  PLUS..He was supposed to have paid the phone bill LAST WEEK.  So although it not directly MY FAULT it is disconnected I FEEL GUILTY>   I feel guilty and really really don't want to get yelled at for spending money.  I guess the feeling is.  I don't think I can care anymore about his hand wringing and lip biting because HE NEVER DOES A BUDGET.   So in my crazy brain I think..it is a control thing for him.  He never does a budget but we are always OUT OF MONEY.  He has no idea where it goes, changes the passwords on the online banking daily, tosses bills all over the house.  I have the mail key but he takes it and get mail that I laterI find under a car seat or stuffed in a bathroom cabinet.  But I know I am part of the problem.  Guessing whether I can spend or not is ridiculous, but asking for every penny that I need to spend is humiliating.  no matter what I spend on grocery, he takes the receipt and regardless it is the tightening of the lips.  WE EAT BEANS AND RICE AND SOUP but he can blithely go and buy kids lunch stuff...Youghurt, string cheese, junk cookies and crackers..45+ a week.  When I have cake mixes that I bought so I can make cupcakes to last for the week..My 2.00 strategy vs his 45.00 excess and lets not count the slurpee's and after school snacks cause he's the "cool dad" ..  ARGGKAH GHAHGIEHGHNIEGHANGAIGN


Ok..so I feel guilty, and a little crazy. 

A lot crazy.  This is a difficult day because I am in the wrong.  I shouldn't have spent the money.  I can't breathe living like this.  Everything everything is my fault and this time..it really is my fault.  I can't bear it.  How could I have been so stupid to spend money without making SURE the phone bill and the other bills (whatever they are- DH Refuses to give me a list) are paid.  How can I know what is kept from me.  Everyday a new ugly shoe drops.  I can't relax or look forward to any pleasure without sucking the joy out of it myself.  What's going to be? What's going to happen?  I used to be a happy go lucky kind person...Now I am a worrying, guilty, angry washed up woman.   WORSE I had an appt with a counselor on the phone today.  I feel unable to even try..I just want to put my head under a pillow and hide.  And he is OK living like this.. He is comfortable because if it isn't directly IN HIS FACE it doesn't exist. 

So thank you for allowing me to spew out my misery.  I gotta go and find out about the phone bill from him.  G-d give me the strength to get through this...Please. Please until we hit our CS and I have my OWN financial control.  It is like being knocked over by wave after wave, swirling upside down sideways..never having your feet under you.  I feel sick



Ask yourself...was the little

Ask yourself...was the little bit of spending you did yesterday really the financial ruination of your family? NO, I think not. I think he might want you to feel that way, but it is mostly likely (VERY likely) about control more than anything else. I know what it is like to live on a tight budget, have a few bills past due, and spending extra on anything being a really poor idea...and have done it anyway. It isn't the end of the world.

I am a little confused as to the timeline of everything...are you saying that the spending you did caused the phone to get cut off? (check to bounce, so to speak?) He knows you spent at Wal-mart...so is that what he's going to blame for the phone being shut off?

I'm so sorry..I feel the desperation and frustration in your words. I'm praying for some peace for you and your family.


time line

The phone got a "warning" two weeks ago.  I made pymt arrangement..cause he was working   Let him know the dates and amounts.  1st date came up..he tells me no..its arranged I'll pay next week.  So I started reminding him EVERYDAY.  He gets paid Thur..I know I said something the Sunday before..so then Mon tue wed thur (payday).  On Thursday night I bought the microwave and undie stuff.  Now today the phone is cut off.  he got paid Almost 900.  I find it hard to believe that my 40 buck microwave and undies/clothing sunk us.  Sigh..but I  do not "KNOW".  I think it is more likely that he just didn't pay so he'll try to pay today and I know what I've spent but I don't know what he has spent.  You can bet your bottom dollar though if the money left over doesn't cover the phone bill + Reconnection fee (wasted money there)  Then it will BE MY FAULT>   Of course he will not mention the reconnnection fee as a burden..the microwave Oh yeah.   Yesterday..I bought curtains, a dollar box of nails and food.  Total..50.00 for the week.  So my gross spending out of almost 900. was around 150.00...  Leaving around 750.00 to pay off a 113.00 phone pymt amount.  I don't understand if he is ON meds how he can just blow off the financial stuff UNLESS he is being particulary abusive towards me..ADHD causes him to be democratically abusive to everyone around him...except his boss and the friends HE likes.   The upshot is that this is a familiar dance.  A sick one.  I spend he blames things don't get paid we get disconnects he screams he yells I feel ashamed, I try to scrimp and save and pinch and he walks in with a new shiny bauble he just "HAD to have" and no budget is made, no $$ for emergency, no $$ for the Future.  So help me G-d going to a store with him is ridiculous.  he peers into the cart and frowns and hems and haws..Basically I have to beg for whatever is in the cart.  Be it Menstrual pads or deodorant.  Or his famous..Can't you get it cheaper?  Menstrual Pads?  Really?  Can't you make them and wash them...how much different from diapers can they be?  Yes...I could make and wash and if I livied in 1890 I would HOWEVER since i can get a box of pads at the dollar store for a dollar Guess what?  I'm spending the dollar!  Honest to G-d... but him?  Oh lets buy this faddy thing...let spend 20/30 dollars on whatever cable cord, electric hair trimmer, shoes, pants...whatever his heart desires CAUSE HE DESIRES IT.  Oh Sherri, I am just worn out.  He has this whole money thing and it drives me crazy.  It is a control thing I realize but "I" am not the problem..."HE" is with his inability to sit down and make a budget.  He's been on meds for 2 months and still NO budget!..A promotion at Work YES..Safe financial infrastructure for his kids NO.  The meds just allow him to be shiny at work and I still get the curmudgeon at HOme.  I am working to making some kind of budget for myself that I hope I can hold too with child support payments.  Even if it is very little AT LEAST I'll be able to count on me doing a freaking budget...Sigh..sorry to be so negative mouth..I feels so awful.  WHY DOES HE DO THIS AND HOW CAN I STOP IT?


If the impact on your life

If the impact on your life weren't so terrible you would have pause to ask why he does this.  Because of him your life is chaos and there is no time to wonder about his motivations or disorder. It no longer matters why he does it. What's important is to realize you can't make him be normal. You can't make him stop. The only thing you can do is remove yourself from his influence. His controlling chaotic behavior is not YOUR controlling chaotic behavior. He is free to make crazy statements, but you don't have to be there to listen, do you? 

Why are you going to the store with him?

why go to the store

No I don't...I am heading towards a CS but lining things up.  I cannot take the chaos.  He WORKS in a STORE.  No I don't need to make it my crazy but I have 3 kids and yes they are all special needs.  I have been the stay at home parent/PT worker and everything is in my DH name.  He earns the money etc.. So our power balance is unbalanced, which I was ok with WHEN I believed that we'd work through this rough patch or that rough patch.  Then to realize that DH is creating these rough patches OR his disorders untreated creates these rough patches was very very hard.  To realize that my DH self-medicates with Rage which means SCREAMING AT THE TOP OF HIS LUNGS and Arguing with me which led quickly to Blaming and Verbal Abuse...etc.  I don't have to be here?  NO..I could indeed pack up the kids and take them to a shelter.  You see when he got us evicted last year (the LAST straw as we HAD the $$ and he forgot to pay and this had been such a trend that the complex refused to accept the late payment and gave me 3 days to get out.  Yes I know the law is 30, but then..the court would have collected the rent money for the apt and we would have been given 30 days to leave owing money to the complex for the broken lease without any cash/money in the bank.  I was calculating putting the kids in a motel/tent living.  3 special needs children..3.  ) I tried that.  All Section 8 housing was closed.  The shelters are believe it or not...dangerous.   The projects were open..(hmm my 13 yrold built like a woman mind like a child daughter..hmm) So I learned a very very hard lesson.  I CHOOSE to be here, because it is not only myself.  It is easier on the children to do this in a controlled semi-civilized manner and thus that is my plan.  If you know any autistic kids you have to realize that schedule and sameness is everything EVERYTHING to them, and my kid not doing well means things like head banging and face clawing.  So the calmer I can referee and keep it the better off we are.    However being human things like today catch me off guard.  He did not pay the Phone Bill.  His response was ..Why didn't YOU pay it?  My response was You told me YOU would do it.  I'd had been reminding YOU about the bill and at no time WHATSOEVER did you request me to pay the phone bill..Cause if you had...I would have done it.    Which is childish and the question is why don't you pay the bill.  How much money do we have?  How many checks has he written out?  Who knows..he changes the passcodes daily.  I don't know what about the money AND he refuses to sit down and give me any information whatsover about loans/pymts/bills/ etc.  Most of it is paperless (supposed to help him with organization) BUT guess who CHANGED THE PASSCODES and then will change them over and over. and refuses to give me any security whatsover.  I've begged BEGGED for cash envelopes..just to run the house..food gas kids.  BEGGED.  Nope.  Gotta go to him for every single penny and account for my decisions each and every time. ..Sigh..which is why we are heading for a controlled separation.    I am sorry Chris but the frustration is immense and I want to be gone living in non-chaos but I have been married almost 20 years.  I have no personal savings save 300 for Emergency (food) My DH response was ..oh..well  I gotta eat and take care of myself.  Go ahead an apply for welfare when I'm gone and I guess you'll have to get a job and let the kids watch themselves.  So yes I choose to be here because I don't have many option right now until we get to the CS.  I am going to let the courts decide what his obligation is and then I can work towards doing my share.   BUT until then I am not leaving our home and the childrens security. I've been through that one time and without money you are stuck in a project.  Truth.  Yes there ARE shelters and yes there ARe charities but the ones I called had a waiting list a mile wide.  I cannot put my feelings of rage , helplessness, pain and suffering OVER my kids ability to have a roof over their head.  He just happens to come with that roof.  So yes...I choose.

Sorry to sound bite-ey


BTW if I had family/friends to help I'da been Loooonnngg gone.


I'm sorry, but this just infuriates me. My husband also controlled all the money. I quit my job to stay home with the kids, so I had zero income. I didn't know that I'd signed a vow of poverty! He made plenty of money for our modest lifestyle; he always bragged about how much he made. I had to beg for every cent and nag him to pay the bills. Marriage is a partnership, including sharing money, even if only one person brings it in. Even our marriage counselor, who didn't help with anything else, trounced him about that (so he opened a joint account, then always withdrew money from the ATM without writing it down, so I'd bounce checks. My name on the check, so it was my fault. Sigh; joint anything with an ADDer is a bad idea).

If you are truly done, can you sit him down and give him the "listen here, Mister, I won't live like this anymore" speech? Of course I'm divorced, so take my advice for what it's worth. By the way, my ex contributes FAR more in child support now than he ever did when he lived here, so financially, I've done better without him and his deficit spending.

Food for thought

Lynn I am where you where prior to your divorce - sort of.  I do have access to a checking account but the money covers the bills/groceries/fuel and that's about all esp when DH decides that he is going to nickel and dime the account to death.  But I stayed home with our 2nd (since he took a job across the country without bothering to explain to me how he accepted a job that we both agreed wasn't a good choice - yes for real!) since the move meant I'd have to quit my good job (one that I loved had been there 7 years) do not have a college degree, and 2 terrific kids (who unfortunately get sick all the time) and no real money.

I love your story - it gives me hope that I too can make my way to where you are now. 

why what's wrong?

Hey Lynn...that is what he says//  I won't live like this anymore = to him...what are you going on about now?.   I sure hope when the courts get involved that THEY collect from him and pass it on to me.  Take him out of the loop completely!  He doesn't see that this is difficult.  To him?  He can't see a dish on the coffee table so he sure doesn't see his paper scatters, his food dried on dishes shoved under the bed, his dirty Underwear shoved under the sink until I look there for cleaning the bathroom out.  Yes we also have a hamper in the bath BUT....I've already given him the speech, not that he cares.  He literally doesn't see it.  As far as $$ since we are going to a CS his idea is that he leaves and we apply for welfare cause HEY he has to take care of him.  But to come up with a # and he'll see what he can do.  Of course I'll have to get off my *ss and get a job!  Oh Boy...3 special needs kids AND the house AND a PT job AND starting a career AND him going through like a tornado ripping everything up looking for something that he lost..and of course not putting things back at all much less an orderly fashion.  HA a job would be like a vacation.  The controlling is bothersome.  I attribute it to him being in such a mess all of the time well at least he can control ME. Or that was the feeling.   The sad thing is that IF I would have gone back to work there is NO WAY we could have afforded Special Needs Daycare so I did it.  I also did PT therapy and worked with his dr/s...etc.. Food logs and preparing special foods, working with Easter Seals etc.  He would have had to pay a BOATLOAD of money to Anyone else doing what I did. BUT because I was the wife and mother my contribution by him is regarded as me "sucking the lifeblood" out of him.  Oh he is so ridiculous I can't even go on about it.    Yeah..the bouncing checks, at the grocery and the ATM doesn't even go through...yup.  We have a joint account but he has passcodes and money flies out or one time he surprised the heck out of me by telling me we have no NO $ just before Rent.  I was vomiting for 3 nights because of the stress, the rent came up and I was like..Oh My G-d I can't get evicted again..he's like..Oh we have it.  I put it into the Savings account to make sure you wouldn't Overspend it.  Like he couldn't have told me in English and consider I would have the sense NOT TO SPEND RENT..Nope...Oh er...I pray that I can get to the point where I look back and laugh not look back and feel my blood pressure shoot up!  ACK..Actually this site is helping alot just to be able to say this stuff.  "Non-Adhders" wouldn't understnad this at all.  I can't tell my parents (60's) because how can I explain to them that I live this way and allow my kids to live this way.   I feel a ton of shame about this...like what is wrong with me that this is my life. I am working on it though.  ADHD is his problem but have I enabled it this?  That is the worst.  Wondering am I co-dependent?  All those years of just cleaning up after him so that he would be more peaceful and less screamy?  But everytime I stopped and waited for him to take up or even notice..he never did.    I had a kitchen sponge sit by the sink..for I know a week.  _I wash them in the dishwasher..He left it and so did I.  then one day I looked at it and maggots were wiggling around and through it.  I threw it  out and disinfected the kitchen and took over All the dishwashing then.  I feel so resentful for the extra work just for him.  I mean the kids are a handful, kid you not.  Add $$ problems on top of that and then a full grown adult male just being a total disgusting slob and if I want to live a general basic level I must clean EVERYTHING.  AND of course he just trashes it up and then leaves.  I mean every morning he leaves the living room full of trash and food.  Never says thank you when he comes home to a clean house.  Never says..hey can you please get that for me- cause I'm busy..No it is just crap it down and walk away.  Resent resent resent.  I need to spend energy on the kids NOT being his handmaid. I find I am really really angry when I think about it so I try not to think of it.  The money is an insult in a bloodwound.  I mean really?  REALLY?  After all I've done, I have to ask for menstrual pads and deodorant. I have to beg and plead and scrape and save my change.  Lynn  How did you work the $$ in your divorce if you had no income?  How did you manage without going back full time and sticking your kids in daycare.  How did you live?  If you don't mind me asking.  I am facing a difficult sitch with him as far as getting $$$ for the kids...If you don't me asking,  please?



"Lynn  How did you work the $$ in your divorce if you had no income?  How did you manage without going back full time and sticking your kids in daycare.  How did you live?  If you don't mind me asking.  I am facing a difficult sitch with him as far as getting $$$ for the kids...If you don't me asking,  please?

First, my ex (who hadn't worked in years) got a really good job as soon as he moved out. I asked for, and got, a good amount for child support and 2 years of alimony until I could get myself together. It added up to $1500/month, and that was plenty for me (after years with him, I learned to be frugal). I have a farm, and it's an actual working farm; over the years, I've arranged it so I can handle it mostly by myself (I had to; he wouldn't help). I raise grass-fed beef and sheep, have free-range chickens, etc. In the summer I have a small farm stand, where I sell vegetables, meat, and eggs. The farm doesn't bring in much money, and after the alimony stopped, money was really tight, but I raise most of our food, shop at Goodwill, heat with wood (no big heat bills) and basically squeaked by.  I just took a leap of faith, getting rid of him, and it all worked out; I think someone was looking out for me.

Last year my mother died (after a long illness that sapped all my strength...I was her only care-giver for a long time). I couldn't do much with the farm while looking after her, so she gave me some money to help out. Then she died, and I inherited enough money to make some improvements and not have to worry so much for a couple of years. This year I'm getting the farm back into production (3 new lambs already this year, and more coming soon!). I have a couple of years until the money runs out (and child support stops...my son graduates HS this year and my daughter in 2 years); by then I'd better have a new plan!

I have never had this happen

I have never had this happen to me, as in being late with a bill and having to suffer because it has been my biggest fear. I have ADD like your husband and bills are one of the enemies. I feel you are a little at fault in this because you just let it happen over and over again. Whether he is making "the big bucks" or is the head supporter it doesn't mean that you don't have equal right to the money. If your husband can't budget, can't pay bills on time then he has to be taken off the responsibility. Auto payment is the best solution, that is what I always have done. I don't have to do anything, the bills will auto charge on my one account and I will get a summary of that account in the mail where all the expenses are. It is so great and I really recommend it.

I understand that you feel guilty, your husband works hard on maintaining the guilt you feel. Maybe it's the only thing he feels like he can have the upper hand in. That he feels his limitations in everything else but at least he can feel big and almighty with the money. Sure you bought a microwave without really double checking, sure you bought some curtains. Neither of those two things very necessary for you and your family, you wouldn't have died without them but it wasn't the microwave or the curtains that had the electricity shut off and your phone disconnected. It is really bad when bills go that far, it can result in blacklisting. You didn't do that. It wasn't because you got curtains. The only wrong thing you are doing is letting him be the boss, not taking responsibility for the economy when your husband can't do it.

To Imdone

Your frustration is familiar to me. Although your husband sounds like he has ADHD (the overspending on junk, etc.), he also has a strong desire to control you (maybe because he can't control himself?!) That is what denying you menstrual pads and deodorant is about and also blaming you for everything.

In the curtains incident, did you spend more than $113 on your microwave and curtains and underwear? I doubt it, and if not, denying you and your children those needed things would not have kept the phone on. He promised and forgot and blamed it on you, the nearest convenient target.

My first husband hasn't got ADHD (sort of the opposite) but did all those things. He didn't want me to work, because he had hated being in daycare as a child and "I don't want a stranger raising my kids." He also refused to allow me to go back to school (I did it 30 years later.) And yes, he could deny me because in those days a spouse had to sign for someone to get a student loan. Then he blamed me for not making any money. He told me stores raised their prices when I came in because I was such an easy mark, and that was how he denied me things like tampons and new clothes. I shopped at Goodwill for myself, his clothes were new because "no one sees you". If I could not get out something he got on his clothes, I ruined them because I washed them wrong, not he ruined them by letting an inkpen break in his pocket or spilling grease on his shirt.

The changing the passwords every day shows an extreme paranoia and desire to control you. You are doing an incredibly hard job (raising 3 special needs kids). Of course, Kippei is right in that it's both of your money but he will never see it that way because he "went out and busted his butt" (sitting in a comfortable chair in an air conditioned office, in my husband's case) and you get to "sit around all day and watch television". He is a bully and bullies rarely see it until someone "makes" them. I assume he won't go to counseling or take meds. A counselor might get him to see it if he'd go. Otherwise, like LynnW says, you might be better off collecting child support from him. At least you'd have some control over it that way.

That's the route I took, but it was a hard row to hoe. Hugs to you, you have to be a very strong woman.

bully or Adhd

Yes, Kippei has a point about 1/2 my money.  I have tried to share the money responsibility and had him go out and take out loans and HIDE the papers behind my back.  When bills went wonky it was because I was too stupid.  Also bill collectors calling All of the time.  I'd make a pymt arrangement and he would either refuse to pay them (No money-though look at my nifty computer) etc.  It is my fault as well.  I should "MAKE" him share the responsibility.  He will not tell me what bills are due?  When we have them?  What loans and purchases he makes?  He simply says No.  So do I bring out the Big Gun. "D" or try to encourage, organize, signpost, sticky not, remind, nag, remind, nag. ad nauseum.  At this point I am hopeless that he will make a budget.  EVER.  I just want to get to a point where we can do a controlled separation and then when the chaos is out and my life calmer, then I move forward.  Right now its from Crisis to Crisis.  Phone bill apparently was 400 behind.  Our bill is 125 a month.   400 behind.  He hasn't been paying and it caught up with him.  Electric Bill is 600 behind...Another payment plan.  I found out and asked him..where was the $$ coming from.  His answer Taxes.  I was like..uh isn't that already earmarked for Title transfer for you truck/ repairs?  He was so surprised.. Oh yeah.. He does take med but the result is spotty.  The Dr is saying maybe he is Bi-Polar but the disorganization, forgetfulness, scatter thought, superfocus etc seems to be textbook Adhd.  Dr isn't sure why meds are working better, but it has only been 2 months and i understand that finding the best meds/dosage takes time.   I think I'm about to hoe that hard row as well.  :(

He also Underearned alot.   He has a terrible time with change and was literally unable to apply for a pt job.  His schedule was working 6am to 2pm and he couldn't FILL OUT AN APPLICATION for  a PT job at night for YEARS.  I could!  I could work pt and make cloth diapers out of receiving blankets and make bread from scratch and onward and onward. 

BTW I too shop at thrift stores, cause "no one see's you"  and he is unbeliving that he works his butt off and I get to "sit" home. ( I work PT and am trying to get a separate business off the ground- to support myself with the kids)   Keeps telling me if I divorce him I'll have to get a real job and "really work".  Oh mi g-d  I understand you get a bathroom break with a job.  No one comes into the stall with you or pounds on the door or stands outside of the door SCREAMING while you go pish.  Can U IMAGINE!!!!!  I am terribly frustrated and can't believe that this man is suffering from ADHD and not A-holism.  I try TRY to keep in mind it is his condition.  We had an open talk today, he wants to stay married etc.  I was like..the constant chaos and living by crisis (that's the rush he loves- he can pull anything when it's down to the wire and the stress is on!)  is too much for me.  So he tells me...about his condition his Adhd :   IT ISN'T YOUR FAULT BUT IT IS YOUR PROBLEM.    The guilt and rage and depression is immense.  I just want his crazy across town where I don't have to deal with his BLACK CLOUD and Tightlippedness.  BTW ..Today he tells me..there is no money to pay the phone.  I was like..well we wait until payday then.  I took the kdis to school and guess what? He paid with an electronic check.  Then tells me..he can you cover the check out of your "emergency Food account"  cause it will bounce otherwise and we are negative 50 in the account right now!!!  THEN WHY PAY WITH A CHECK!  .  So guess what.  I protected the family account.  I deposited the $ so we didn't bounce and covered the shortage...so when he gets paid and I TAKE THAT MONEY BACK and put it into the emergency account..how is he going to react?  Oh..it will be me taking more money "stealing" from him.  No lie...just you wait.

Oh boy...didn't make this so ranty.  I am just am swirling around.  I need to take responsibility for my enabling but I have boundaries for crap.   In time..

No, what I mean is that YOU

No, what I mean is that YOU need to take control. Because this is YOUR economy too. Not you watching him, making him, asking about dates so you can remind him. That's not going to work! CALL the companies, GET the dates, GET auto payments from a main account where all the money should go into. In a marriage you should always sit down and discuss and come up with something that works for both of you but that doesn't go for crisis. If there is a crisis one has to go in and steer the ship. You husband is probably suffering so, so, so much because of this. Being too proud and probably completely unable to ask for help.. but at the same time he can't get the situation floating again. If he has ADHD on top of that then I can tell you for sure that either you yank this all out of his hands and fix it or it's going to be lost.

If your husband was supposed to everyday light a candle but every time he did he accidentally put the curtain on fire, wouldn't you butt in and say I'll light the candle for now on BEFORE the whole house burns down?

Just when you do it, don't belittle him. Just tell him, let's fix this, I'm going to repair it all and then we'll make the money plan so that both of us feel it's fair.


It's really hard to take control when the other person controls the money. When he worked, my husband had HIS check deposited directly into HIS account, where I had no rights. I couldn't write checks, withdraw money, or even see how much he had (all done electronically on his password-protected computer). The bills, however, were all in MY name, so I knew when they were due. The only thing I could do was be a total nag and keep reminding him.  This is when the children were first born; it was our joint agreement that I should stay home with the kids. When I had a job, I had my own money and we had some equality; suddenly I wasn't entitled to even enough money to buy groceries. I felt like a B$%*# and he resented me, but I kept our heads above water. It's a horrible way to live.

BTW, my husband would go ballistic if I ever told him that I was going to fix our problems...for all his irresponsibility, he liked to believe that HE was the man and he was in charge. Even though I, in fact, did almost everything, he thought I was just there to raise his kids and clean the house.

I do understand that it isn't

I do understand that it isn't that easy. Otherwise you would just go ahead and do it, what I am just thinking is that sometimes it might be easy to forget your own rights when you're not the one working or getting lost in wanting to compromise and have an equal relationship so maybe a push would help. I might be to harsh so I apologize for that just maybe in some cases for someone it might help :)

try impossible

It is impossible for me to take "control" when he hides debt, paperwork, lies etc.  Changes the passcodes to the bank accounts etc.  Don't you think I have tried sitting him down, begging, pleading, envelope system, Quicken. etc..Yes, I have said..the big D if this continues...we are working towards a separation right now.  He wants to make sure neither of us are impoverished by the separation.  So yes, we ARE divorcing and I can look forward to dealing with his issues caused by his illness for the rest of our lives because we have children. ( one of which I suspect of having adhd herself)  I've hidden money in a freezer just so I could have a 20 when he spent everything or messed up the bills.  The latest development is the phone was cut off again SAT.  Why when I accessed the emergency account and deposited 100 (to cover bill) in the account.?  he tells me the 100 was to turn the phone back on. (reconnection fee caused by him not paying the bill like he promised he would) not the bill- which of course was NOT what he said when he asked for the money.  He then asked me for MORE money out of the emergency fund to pay the actual bill.  My 100 covered the recon fee only, not the service.    That bill that was due Fri...ok...so did you pay it?  him:  No, I was tired.  PAY IT NOW.cause it is cut off.  He then has to check the bank account to see how much money we have.  ME:  Did you do a budget?  How do you know you can spend anything?   Which turned out to be a moot point because it turns out that our account was zeroed and taken into the negative  by a creditor that he had placed a stop payment against!!  That's right folks we have no money in the bank, in fact  we are neg 400 right now.  Thank G-d I went shopping for food thursday.   We DID have  stop payment so I think the bank will replace the funds BUT BUT BUT I now have 12 $ and 3/4 tank of gas to make it to thursday (payday)  If the bank replaces the funds (we had a stop payment in place) we are good.  If not we will spend most of next paycheck covering the shortages caused.  NOW...is this his fault.?  He did have a stop payment so I have to say no...BUT combined with his lying about the phone bill. It is merely another nail in the coffin.  The frustration is amazing, but what is worse is the complete lack of faith in ANYTHING he says to me.  He is such a liar.  He was glad I wasn't "upset" last night.  WTF??   I was not screaming because I was looking at him and thinking "Figures".  I was not upset because I was not shocked at this new development because I expect misery with him.  Taking control of finances might be possible with someone else.  Frankly I think he is afraid I will find out more stuff and is ashamed to hand it over.  Sad, cause it is causing this marriage to end.   The ironic thing is that I can only access my emergency account on Tues since tomorrow is a bank holiday...So..we go on..rolling, crashing from one crisis to another.  I just want off.  His condition/disease/etc is killing us financially to the point where I have to begin looking at this as a form of economic abuse by him.  G-d knows I can put a check under verbal abuse. he ways he hides the truth from himself is to simply blame me.  So just more of the same crap until we can financially disentangle which frankly I am reconsidering if he can't even maintain general finances until then.  This is simply unworkable.   How am I supposed to do a controlled separation with his crazy still rocking our world.  Today though I will once again fight the worthless fight and try to keep our head above water as our marriage sinks further and further down the drain.  :(

oh..just found out the creditor was a loan that he took out and reneged on.  I didn't even know he had taken a loan out!  yup...happy me.  Kippei you are not harsh but it is not easy to get this information when your husband is HIDING and LYING about this stuff.  I do not have a crystal ball, SADLY..nor a TIME MACHINE...sadder yet...so I get find out when a crisis caused by HIM happens.  I get tired of living this way.  Surely other people have healthy marriages where people work together for the common good of the family?...??somewhere? 

"Surely other people have

"Surely other people have healthy marriages where people work together for the common good of the family?...??somewhere? " I've heard that those kinds of marriages exist.... I also HAD to divorce before we lost everything and ended up living in a dumpster. My ex would have let it come to that if I hadn't divorced him. I never stopped loving him, but it's so hard to have any respect for him....

Believe me, Imdone, you can't do any worse without him! Been there, done that. At least if you know where every penny goes,  you might not have much, but you'll have your sanity.

Yeah...it is sad.  Sanity

Yeah...it is sad.  Sanity trumps Love after 17 years of this.   I am sorry you had to divorce your husband as well.  Are most ADHD's this bad with money?  Is it a trend?  You know you probably called it right in your marriage, my husband had us evicted due to his continual late payments along with myriad times the lights cut off, phones cut off, no money for food.  It is hellish when they simply can't see the slavering wolf in the middle of the Living room.  I would look at him and ask how are we going to survive?  We have kids?  He would just lockdown until the crisis passed or do something stupid to get us out of it, like take out a loan we couldn't afford to payback or borrow money from his 72 yr old ill mother.   Oh you know....sanity is looking pretty spiffy right now.


My husband told me early on,

My husband told me early on, long before the ADHD diagnosis, that he wasn't "good" with money and handed over his paycheck and bills to me almost immediately after we moved in together. Through the course of the years, his "hobbies" have always cost us a great deal of money, but the worst part of his spending was the never ending use of the debit card without so much as a thought to checking and seeing if we even had the money in the bank to cover it. At times he would use it 1-3 times a DAY, almost everyday. Even if it was just $10 here and $15 there, it really added up at the end of the week and caused a LOT of stress (and work) for me to keep up with (thank the Lord for online banking). I was 100% responsible for paying the bills...he had (has) no idea who we owe, when we owe them, what we owe them, etc...and he felt like I was being "controlling" for being upset over his reckless and (seemingly) never-ending spending. I literally almost lost my mind trying to make him understand that it was KILLING me to try and keep up with it all and there were honestly times (although rare) that he'd spend so much that I would have to put off paying a bill because the money to pay it was gone due to his spending. It simply was not fair to make me be 100% responsible, him refusing to discuss our finances AT ALL, yet spend like he did. He gave up his debit card last spring. Although he'll argue that he did it to stop me from nagging him, to stop it from being an issue in our marriage, for whatever reason..he did it. It has helped alleviate the issue by about 90%. I am grateful. If he handled our finances, I cannot even imagine how differently things would have been for us. I'm not perfect at it, but we survive.

My question to him would be..how much has to happen before he admits that he's doing a horrible job with the money and that he has a problem managing it?

I agree, you couldn't be any worse off without him than you are now. My ex-husband was a lot like that...he would give me 1/4-1/2 (when he was feeling generous) of his paycheck to pay bills with...and that wouldn't even cover the light bill most of the time. I left him after my son was born for many reasons, but that one alone (not being financially responsible or FEELING responsible for his family) was the main one. I knew my son would have NOTHING if I stayed with him. That was not OK with me. If we were poor because we worked hard and couldn't make it, that was one thing. If he did without diapers and food because my husband spent our money on booze and car stereos..that was a whole other ballgame.

I understand your pain...and I hope that you soon get some relief.

I'm new to this forum, but...

I'm reading the original post---this stuff has been happening to me for three years. I thought I was alone...and I was the only one whose husband didn't follow through paying bills, therefore, impacting me and my career....

I feel your pain. 


I'm frustrated...he lost his 3rd job in a few years...and trying to get a job search going for him is frustrating...

I'm at that crossroads

Reading your comment was a reality check...we just had a fight today and I told him he is sinking me, financially....how did you know when it was time to leave? We've been in counseling for quite a while, but he still keeps doing this stuff...how did you know when it was time? I feel like it's been there for a while, but I'm afraid that I'm acting rashly. 

I know that I stayed in my

I know that I stayed in my marriage way past when it was time to get out.  We went through 4 or 5 marriage counselors; he'd be lying and BSing them, stonewalling and never doing what they'd ask us to do, so I'd stop going (my fault counseling failed, he'd say).  People, even casual friends, were telling me to get rid of him! I HAD to feel like I'd done everything, turned over every rock to save my marriage. In the mean time, he was spiraling around the drain and getting us deeper and deeper in debt. He had to keep his cell phone, cable modem, separate line for a fax machine, etc. even though we had NO income. He saw his therapist every week, but we "couldn't afford" for me to go to the dentist with a horrible toothache. It was the worst time of my life. I took marriage seriously and never thought we'd end up divorced, but I had to do it for my own (and my kids) survival. I'm convinced that we would have lost everything and ended up on the street.

The strangest part is that he's now super responsible. He has a great job, is paying down debt, putting money away, paying child support (and extras for the kids sometimes) without complaining. It's like aliens abducted the old husband (they can keep him). We are dating again, and I like this new man that he is, but I'm terrified that the 'old him' is in there, ready to pounce.