Post # 1
I want to know if I’m being unreasonable here.
My FI and I are on budgets constantly and for the most part we always stick to them. Recently he has been complaining saying that he is always the one that sets the amount on things that we are going to be purchasing. To which I said it’s because you’re the one that handles the finances. Well this got me no were and he pretty much forced me to set a budget for my dress and and the wedding band. He kept pressuring me to give him a set price (note this is before I went to try on dresses) and I said fine $2000 for both. At that time I was sure I wasn’t going to spend so much on my wedding dress but that is now a problem since I have spent $1184 of my budget and I’m left with $816 for a wedding band. I am feeling really upset right now because I think that it’s not fair that he is holding me up to this when he knows that I am really good about budgets and savings. We have the money for the band and don’t have any debt or anything so we can afford it but he just won’t budge. I simply want to go over by $84 and he said NOPE.
This sucks and I feel really frustrated and I pretty much told him to buy whatever ring he wants because I don’t really care anymore. To which he replied…"I thought that weddings were about love not buying stuff."
I can’t believe he said that when I try so hard not to buy stuff we don’t need and I am constantly making sacrifices to save us money.
I just want to cry and I really don’t want to talk to anyone else about this since they probably won’t understand. BLAH!!
I’m also frustrated because if I would have waited one day (actually more like about 10 hours) to purchase my dress I would have gotten it for $150 cheaper (yes, he knows this part too) and we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.
What should I do? I’m I being too childish?
Post # 3
- Wedding: September 2009 - Barr Mansion
I’m sorry that you and your FI are having this argument.
First of all, you’re not being immature. It sounds like you’re being very rational about this whole thing. It also sounds like it’s not really about the money per se, but about the fact that your FI is annoyed by the WIC and the pressure to spend, spend, spend on wedding-related stuff. Maybe spending a lot of money on wedding stuff makes him feel like it’s taking the focus off of what the wedding is really supposed to be about–the two of you. That said, it sounds like you have done a really great job of trying to set an artibitrary budget and stick to it. Going over by $84 is not even a big deal at all! Basically, your FI is just feeling very strongly about this issue, and that’s why he’s not budging.
I think the best thing to do is to talk to him and explain how important having the wedding band you envisioned is to you–after all, it’s something your’e going to be wearing for the rest of your life and it has a lot of symbolic value. Also, you should stress that you feel like this is a decision that you guys should be making together, as you will presumably have to make many more financial decisions together after your marriage. You could express your concern that if he isn’t willing to compromise with you now, what is it going to be like going forward? Above all, make sure he knows that for you the wedding really is about your love for each other and not about material things.
I hope this helps!
Post # 4
I had a guy friend who had a very similar dynamic with his wife: he set the budget and managed the finances, and she did her best to stay within budget. It was always somewhat adversarial, and she always resented him for setting arbitrary numbers and then trying to force her to stay under them.
Then finally he gave up, and put her in charge of the budget. It was revolutionary – she saw things in a completely different way, and he learned what it was like to stick a budget arbitrarily set by someone else.
Maybe if you guys both manage the finances together, you’ll both be on the same page a bit more?
Either way – good luck!!! My only random thought here would be – is it possible to beg your jeweler to cut you a break? My jeweler gave me a discount, because I promised him I’d buy my next major piece of jewelry from him and I’d make it up to him then! A lot of jewelers understand that they won’t make a lot of money off the wedding jewelry… but once they have a relationship with you, they’ll make money off of you as you have more money to spend! Just a thought…
Post # 5
did you ask the dress shop if they would honor the sale price? I know it is a bit late but maybe they will refund the difference since it was so close to when you bought the dress? Maybe you can tweak the wedding band a bit to get it into budget? or can you move $ from a nother budget (spend less) to cover the difference? Ultimately, it is less than 5% of your budget that you want to go over. I say just fund the $84 from somewhere else and your FI can’t get upset because you are staying with in the overall budget. However, I do agree with Mr.Bee that it is helpful to make budgets together and with an educated estimate instead of using arbitrary numbers for the future.
Post # 6
In my eyes the problem is that the budget was completely arbitrary and you had to kind ‘make something up’ based on nothing. I would take him aside and explain that you appreciate being included in the finances, but it is a learning process for the both of you. Part of what you learned from the situation is that you need to do research into relative cost of items before setting a budget. Had you researched this, you would have set your budget at about $2100, what I assume would be a perfectly reasonable amount for you. Maybe explaining it that way will help him see that $2000 was an artificial number and that this is not about you ‘going over’ budget, rather, it’s about you learning valuable information about budgeting together!
Another idea…if you still have more things to buy, maybe compromise and offer to cut the $84 somewhere else from the wedding (honestly, for that amount it would be easy – one less flower in the floral arrangements or something!) Or, if it’s that big a deal, show him a place elsewhere in your non-wedding budget (clothes, groceries, oil changes, etc.) where you can find a better bargain and save that amount of money over a few months.
Post # 7
Also, about wedding not being about buying stuff…I agree, but maybe explain that while the wedding is one day, the ring is the one wedding item that you will actually have and use for the rest of your life. And, something you look at every single day as a reminder of your love and commitment for each other. To me, that is one place where a bit of extra money is totally worth it!
Post # 8
why don’t you take money away from something else if the band and dress means that much to you i.e. DIY flowers, give up the limo; etc….
my reception is the most expensive part of my budget 75% but I saved by DIY flowers, just using my car instead of limo, hiring friends, begging favors from friends to do hair and make-up asking for discounts like mad, shopping for my gown at sample sales, BM sales dresses, finding a cheap videographer etc……for me it’s one day in my life nad I want it to be special so my number one thing was reception
try to go over the numbers and save elsewhere
Post # 9
I am so sorry you’re feeling frustrated. Believe me, I understand. My ex-h was similar to your FI, only to the extreme. His controlling way with me over money was one of the things that led to the end of our relationship. I don’t say this to scare you – only in the hopes that you learn from what I went through.
The last thing you want to do is start your marriage off arguing over money, especially when you’re NOT a child and don’t need to be treated as one. I agree completely with MrBee. You want to handle finances together as a couple, which means you and your FI need to learn how to talk about it and compromise before you tie the knot. Being able to talk openly and honestly about money issues is extremely important.
It’s also important that you talk about everything money-related. How will you handle your finances once married? Will you keep individual accounts, or pool all your money together, or maybe both? I think had my ex-h and I discussed this before we got married, it would’ve been a lot easier on both of us. Be honest about everything – your credit debt and school loans, if you have them. And don’t go into a marriage not knowing the other person’s financial situation, including how much money they make, what their spending habits are like, where are their weaknesses. It’s important to know these things about both partners. Believe me, in the long run, it will save a lot of fights and heartache.
That said, it sounds to me like you’re level-headed and fiscally responsible. And I agree with other posters that it was unreasonable to ask you to set a budget when you hadn’t done any research yet. As long as the total comes in on budget, does it really matter how the money gets spent? Your wedding band is one of the only things that will go with you through the rest of your life – it’s not the place to skimp. Maybe have less expensive food or favors. He may be feeling overwhelmed by all the money talk; I know my FI is having a tough time with the money aspect of the wedding, but the reality is, weddings cost money. I hope that you both will be able to work out a compromise.
Post # 10
I am sorry, but I don’t think you should be running around trying to save $84 because your FI is making you. I personally don’t think he should be acting like he is charge and you need to run around begging people for discounts because of it. To ask your jeweler for a discount because your FI won’t LET you spend a bit more to me is ridiculous. You guys are a team, you make decisions together. Which means, yes, you set a budget together and together you should be able to make reasonable decisions about changing it. And the ring you will wear for the rest of your life is worth the little bit extra you want to spend.
I would remind your husband marriage and successful relationships take compromise. You are a grown woman, finanically responsible and should be able to make reasonable decisions like spending $84 more on your wedding band.
Sorry, but I think his behavior is totally out of line.
Post # 11
Wow, some great points from the pps. The part where he made you set a budget before you knew how much either of those things would be, stood out to me too. And that you only went over by $84. That’s a winner in my book.
At first I was thinking there’s more to it. You’re in debt and a spendaholic. But then saying how money conscious you really are. I don’t get why he’s doing this. I agree that it might be wedding overload that’s pushing him over the edge.
Post # 12
Here’s my theory: Your argument isn’t about love or money, it’s about power. It sounds like you’re making a lot of the wedding-related purchases and decisions, and so he’s getting a heavy dose of the WIC. He feels overwhelmed and like he’s hemorrhaging money (because he probably can’t really envision yet what it’s going to, since you’re the one fulfilling said vision). He’s wondering what the point of all of this is.
He feels powerless to change any of it—powerless except for the one trump card you’ve given him to play—the budget. By holding you to the budget number you gave, however artificial, he is exercising power over you, the only power he has, something he feels like he needs to do or he’ll go crazy and drown in all this wedding stuff.
So your argument is not really about the $84 you want to go over your budget. It’s not about making adjustments and penny-pinching. It’s about navigating this stressful time together and figuring out how to work as a team. It would seem that letting him be the budget-enforcer is not working well for you. Since you are better-versed in how much things cost, I would either do more research before you set a budget, or trade roles. You set the budget and ask him to find things that fit within it. Or share the roles.
Either way, he probably needs some time to cool off. Have you been talking about nothing but the wedding? I drove my husband crazy during our engagement because I wouldn’t stop talking about the wedding and how much it was stressing me out. That just contributed to how overloaded he felt. Help him reconnect with his regular life, his regular fiancee (you, pre-engagement), his friends, and so forth. Then readdress the issue of the rings you like as symbols of your love. I think if you argue the money angle now you’re just going to dig yourselves in deeper. This is really tough, but you’re going to get through it just fine. Good luck 🙂
Post # 13
I’m with Chelsea 100 percent. My xh used to get fixated on imho "little things" but not money but it was all about power and control.
Sorry he’s doing this.
I would discuss this issue and how he’s handling it with a counselor or your minister and see what their advice is. Again, this COULD be only wedding related and he may just be kinda being a groomzilla imho, or it could be something deeper.
Question: Has he exhibited controlling behaviors before? This is important imho.
Post # 14
Thank you Bees for all your advice. We had a long conversation about it last night and I feel much better about it now.
Indie B – I have assured him that the wedding is about us.
mrbee– I can’t ask the jeweler because I’m trying to purchase from Blue Nile
mrbee– Yes I did asked them to honor the sales price and I even contacted their corporate headquarters. They didn’t budge!
Rose999 – I tried asking for that but I’m already cutting stuff out so it wouldn’t work.
So last night after I posted this I felt like we really needed to discuss this issue. We spoke about his concerns about the wedding budget and how it seems to be getting out of control and I agreed to a certain extent. Planning a wedding for 120 people in Southern Cali is not so easy but he did acknowledge that I am trying. He said that the reason he wants to control the budget is because I seemed to be fixed on our wedding date without looking beyond. He told me he is only thinking of our financial future and is trying to get me to see beyond what is happening this year to ten eyars down the line. I agreed with his vision and we discussed what and where we invision to be in the future. We had a very good talk and I feel much better. I think I am just getting overwhelmed with all the wedding details. I did explain to him where I am DIYing things and how much we are acutually saving which he really liked.
Don’t worry bees he is not a control freak and he not using money to gain power over me. We have been dating for 8 years and we talk more than then average couple in my mind but I guess we hadn’t discussed the budget recently.
Anyways thanks for letting me vent out. I’m feeling totally fabulous today.
Post # 15
I personally dont think $84 is alot to go over, but some people would disagree.
Have you already found the band you want? If not, I suggest going to the Diamond District in LA! My fiance and I both got our bands there for a great price. I thought it would be totally shady, like people selling them out of cars, but they are all legit. You can barter to not pay tax if you pay with all cash, or get a discount. My band is a white gold princess cut chanel setting and it was less than $500! If you need recommendations on which places to go, let me know.
I would also contact the dress store and see if there is any way possible they can honor the sale price, or if they will throw in a discount for alterations or something.
Post # 16
I am sure you are on top of these things, but maybe this will help?