Yesterday's close call with having to drive downtown amidst the skyscrapers got me to realizing that if I don't like something I avoid it and/or ignore it, hoping it will go away. I did that for most of my married life with our finances and trying to deal with Dh and his spending. I just tried not to think about it and hoped it would go away. Of course it did not! Funny how that works.
The past couple of years has been a growing experience for me in terms of how to better handle our finances. Dh has never wanted to be in charge of keeping track of it, he just wanted it to be there when he wanted to spend it. In order to avoid dealing with him over it I just let him spend it. He wasn't so much a personal spender (though when he does it's usually something big, which is just as bad) as spending big on his business. He expected me to handle those finances too..and expected the money to be there when he wanted it. When business was good in the summer I couldn't get him to set aside some for the winter when work was almost non existent (yet the finance companies still wanted their payments). So, he'd borrow from his Line of Credit and charge up the credit card...and the cycle would begin all over the next year.
Honestly, I was never so relieved as when his business (and us personally, because he wasn't incorporated) went bankrupt. It was finally over! At the same time this was all happening I had settled into my current decent paying job and we were at least able to live on one income. I am the one who has to keep all this together and not fall into debt again. My two side jobs help give us some cushion and now some money each month towards savings. I will not allow us to get another credit card. I was thinking we should have one because of emergencies, but I know eventually it would get maxed out, so I've come to realize I'm staying away from credit cards. We haven't charged anything for over 3 years (one year before Bankruptcy, during the LONG year it took to finalize) and now the 15 months since. And it feels great!
I'm not ignoring our finances anymore and I'm not ignoring Dh and his wanting money to magically appear just because he wants something. Sure, he's getting mad at me more and more, but I'm holding my ground. I have over $2500 saved up in the past 2 months and I am tracking my expenses. Of course, it would be better if I could tell him about the savings I have set aside, but I'm not that strong yet. If he knew about the money I've set aside in my EF, he would use every argument, pout, big puppy eyes, beg, and then get mad at me trick he could come up with to try and get me to part with it. Mentally, he is a child as far as money goes, and though I never wanted to admit that to myself, he is, and I have to adjust how I handle him and our money because of that.
As for the drive downtown - even though I didn't end up having to do it, I was prepared! I had directions printed both ways, looked into where to park, what floor in the building I needed to go to, I had my debit card and cash with me for whichever I would need for parking, I had 2 company checks ready to take, just in case I messed up writing one. I had no plans to ignore it and hope it worked out getting there and back. Nope, I'm in charge of this trip now.