My 30-year-old husband hid income with the help of his mother. When confronted, he said, “I am a liar. I’ve been doing this for 10 years! ‘


My husband and I have been married for 30 years. I thought we were happy. Boy, was I distraught. I just found out a few days ago that my husband has been hiding money, an ATM card, a savings account and a PO Box from me for 10 years.

Here’s how I found out: I had to postpone a trip to California for him due to his mother’s illness. I used his GOOG Gmail,
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account so that he has access to flight information while he is away. It was then that I found out that he was paying money to a company I knew nothing about and had been doing for a long time. I also found a different email address he was using.

When I asked him about all these emails he said, “You caught me. I’m a liar. I’ve been doing this for 10 years! If you want a divorce, that’s fine with me. Do it.”

He received extra money each month from commissions and profit sharing from his work, and he earned extra money from retraining. He only gave me part of it and lied about the rest. He got ripped off by a company he said would make him money.

Her mother blamed me

He asked his mother to hide money from me. She sent him the funds to open an account and explained how to do it. No big surprise there. Her mother blamed me for moving out of state for over 20 years. I don’t like it, and that was just another reason not to. We could have paid bills instead of fighting and had to withdraw money from my inheritance.

He said he was tired of working and had been unhappy with me for 10 years. I was dazzled. I was hurt and shocked. He raised arguments that had been resolved a long time ago. I’m still in shock, and I go over everything that’s been going on in my head since he left for California, and I started to get angry.

He said he didn’t think it was worth $ 2,500 because I said he couldn’t have a scooter. What does it mean? I am disabled and cannot find a job to earn money. I don’t know if we’ll stay married, but I want to protect the last of my inheritance and two money market accounts currently in my name. Should I withdraw money from this account and put it in another bank where he cannot touch it?

Stunned wife

Dear stunned,

Yes.

Your husband’s behavior is clearly the result of storing years of fear and resentment. Her mother’s involvement suggests not only that she encourages your husband’s damaging feelings, however misguided they may be, but also provides insight into the immaturity of a man who refuses to take ownership of his behavior and grow up. .

You have to face two issues related to romance and finance. I suggest you seek legal assistance for both. You need to know what is legally beyond your husband’s reach and what you can do to protect that instead of a divorce or legal separation. Heirlooms are not the property of the community and should be kept in a separate account.

While your husband is away, you have the time and space to act. Consult a lawyer and determine your next move. Protect your property and document all of your husband’s financial secrets. The more documents you have, the easier it will be for you to unplug your marriage, if that’s what you ultimately decide to do.

You have at least three big questions: Do you want to be in a relationship with someone you can’t trust? Is trust something you can regain with the help of marriage counseling? And does his reaction to these accounts and his lack of remorse even suggest that he wants to stay together?

Lack of responsibility

Yes, he escaped money for 10 years without your knowledge, but he didn’t seem to take enough obvious precautions to avoid getting caught. (With my apologies to the squirrels.) If you were to decide to file a legal separation request, he would be required to provide these full accounts. Given his blatant lack of accountability so far, it seems unlikely that he is 100% true.

Surveys consistently find that people keep financial secrets from their partners (44% of a recent poll). The reasons include the desire to control their own finances (a no-brainer), shame in the way they handle money, unwillingness to share (another no-brainer), addiction and hiding money in case where the relationship would end badly.

But secrets like a debt, a credit card, or a rogue checking account pale in comparison to the relatively sophisticated operation orchestrated by your husband. The level of planning reflects her unhappiness with her wedding and her desire to stealthily put money aside for a rainy day. This is more obvious given that you have a disability and are unable to work.

What did your husband mean when he said he wasn’t even worth a $ 2,500 scooter? Who knows what self-justification he was trying – that he sees his bank balance and possessions as an extension of his self-esteem and ego? That no one, including his wife, will come between him and the bank balance he deserves?

Instead, ask yourself what you deserve. If you listen carefully, you will find the answer.

Want to know more? Follow Quentin Fottrell on Twitterand read more of his columns here.

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