Post # 1
I’m newly married, 4 months in. We’ve been together for over 6 years total. We are planning a vacation for October and were going to use money we got from the wedding to pay for things on the trip. This is a joint savings account that he has access to online and can transfer money out of it into his checking account. I am an athorized user on it so I can see the activty and do things with it but I would have to do that at the bank, no online access to it.
Anyways, to make a long story short I asked him how much was in the joint account. The number he gave me did not add up to what I believed should be in there. I told him I thought that we had got X amount of dollars form the wedding and with the expenses for the trip that I knew were already paid I felt there should be more there. He didn’t really respond to that. After work yesterday I went to the bank to get a printout of activity and there is about $4000.00 that is gone. With him making multiple transfers of money from the savings into his checking account.
I know that my husband gambles…he did it before we were married. I just never thought that he would go behind my back and use our joint account to cover his losses. I’m purely assuming that this is what the transfers were for.
Now last night I was going to talk to him about it but chickened out a little. I asked him again how much was in the joint account and he told me a higher number this time and said “Oh I had some extra money so I deposited it.” Now I believe he lied to me last night as well as the bank was not showing a recent deposit.
I really need to talk to him about this but I know he’s going to be mad that I went behind his back to find out what the truth was. How in the world do I broach the subject. I love my husband more than anything in the world and I know mistakes happen, even big mistakes. I want to work this out with him together and be with him for better or worse. I took a vow and I meant it. How do I talk to him about it without fear that he will want to leave me for going behind his back?
Post # 3
Who cares if he is mad? Its not going behind his back because its a joint account and you have permission to access it AND he lied to you about the balance in it.
You have EVERY right to ask questions about how that money was spent.
Honestly I think its crazy that you dont have access to it online as well.
He will likely try to throw it back on you because it will deflect the real issue. He is using money that he has not discussed with you.
I would sit down and make equal access to the joint account. Then I would make a budget and make sure you both are spending what each other is comfortable spending ,even if you have individual accounts. IE its not fair that you save for retirement while he spends your retirement.
Open and transparent finances are a must for a successful marriage. Its OK to have separate acounts, but nothing should be a secret.
Post # 4
This is something you really need to just talk to him about. It’s a joint account, you all had a plan to use the money for a trip, he should be able to explain where the money went. He doesn’t have any right to get mad at you for “going behind his back” about it, it’s a joint account, meaning that it’s supposed to be for both of you. He’s the one that went behind your back for taking money out and not talking with you about it…
Post # 5
It doesn’t even sound like a true joint account. If it was, you should both be able to do things equally with it.
If you did want it unequal as it currently is, it should be in the reverse, knowing he has issues with gambling.
Post # 6
@Susyflower: This sucks. Give him one more opportunity to tell you the truth. “I noticed that we have less money than we should and I’m very concerned. I am going to figure out what happened, please tell me now if you know where it went.” If he doesn’t own up to it, present him with the printout of the transactions. Request that he show you a printed statement of his account from the bank as soon as possible. If he’s angry, it’s only because he’s mad at himself for essentially stealing money from your joint account. Have some info ready about gamblers anonymous meetings if your suspicions are correct.
You aren’t going behind his back. You have a right to review the transactions in your joint account at any time. Really, he should be concerned about YOU leaving him for taking money from the joint account without discussing it. This is a big problem, but it doesn’t have to be doom for your marriage. You can get through this and become a stronger couple. You’ll need to work on building up trust again.
Going forward, I think you should set up accounts with online access and re-evaluate whether it’s practical to have a joint account at all. If you do want a joint account, I think it requires 100% transparency from both of you. It is completely unfair if one of you is saving all you can while the other is spending it (gambling – even worse!). No more secrets regarding your individual accounts, credit cards, or loans. Use a software tool like mint.com or youneedabudget.com to track spending. Agree to a budget and to discussing all spending over a certain amount (we have set it at $100). It’s okay to have “fun money” but it’s not okay to take money from joint accounts without discussing it.
Of course, if he does have a problem with gambling (stealing money from a loved one to cover losses is a sign of it), it would be beneficial to go to counselling together.
Post # 7
@Susyflower: You have no reason to be concerned about what HE will think of YOU. He’s in the wrong here, not you.
You don’t have to be confrontational about it, but you deserve to know where your money is going. If he is using your joint savings for gambling and lying about it, that’s a huge deal.
Post # 8
If it were me, I would just empty the account because he cannot be trusted not to touch it. Hey, that’s your right to do with joint accounts!
Not having online access sounds really shady to me
Post # 9
I think you should ask for online access.
You didn’t go behind his back if it’s a joint account.
You really just need to have a discussion about this. You didn’t do anything wrong.
My FI gambles once and ahwile (poker) but I control our savings and checking accounts as he would rather I control the budget and money since he tends to be disorganized and forgetful. I also control cash sums as being on tilt is sometimes hard to pull yourself out of the situation. So I pretty much control the flow of money. But FI is on board with me controlling everything. This way I control how much goes out and when it does. If I don’t think it’s a good idea I tell him so.
Will he let you oversee the bank accounts?
Post # 11
If it is a join account, then you BOTH have equal rights to it and you did nothing wrong by trying to find out where $4000 extra dollars went. We are not talking about pocket change here. $4K is a LOT of money to some people. That could cover a slew of things, and he had no right taking it out of that account, especially to possibly support his habit.
I would confront him and talk to him about it. And then I would request rights to online access since it is both of your account.
Post # 12
@Susyflower: He’s stealing from you and lying to you about it and you’re worried about him being mad and leaving? It sounds like your husband is very skilled at blame shifting and avoidance.
Its a joint account. You have every right to know what’s happening with it. You need not apologize or be on the defensive for looking at your own account. It’s not your fault he lied to you and that you discovered it. He violated your trust – not the other way around. Don’t let him make this serious issue about you. He needs to fess up and tell you the truth. If he refuses, or hides behind a bunch of accusations directed at you to avoid the real issue here – which is him stealing and lying – then please take that as a big red flag.
While it’s commendable that you are committed to working this out, don’t let your eagerness to put this behind you blind you to what has gone on here. This is serious stuff that needs a full and honest explanation.
Post # 14
Why do you think your husband will leave you if you tell him you checked the balance of your JOINT account and things didn’t add up based on his story? Woman to woman, the WORST thing you can do to yourself is not be in control over your finances — meaning not having any idea of the money going in and out of your account at all times. Money isn’t everything, but it is a fundamental necessity of life that you need in order to provide and take care of yourself and your marriage. $4,000 is a large sum of money and something you need to talk to your husband about and not sweep under the rug. The other bees gave great advice about having access to the joint account. I know you love your husband, but you really need to get your head out of the wedded-bliss fog and start to look at reality for what it is. If your husband has a tendency to gamble than you ABSOLUTELY must have a talk with him, and if anything, you need to take charge of the joint account before more money is taken out without your approval.
Post # 15
I would freak if $4,000 was missing from our joint account. And, vice versa, he would not allow to just scoot $4,000 under the rug without a valid explanaton.
Perhaps if you are nervous about confronting him you can send him a text that says something like “We need to talk about where this money went. I expect you to be able to tell me the truth when you get home tonight”
That way he has a head ups…..isn’t walking into a lion’s den….and has time to come up with the truth and whole story so he doesn’t blurt out a white lie or anything.
Post # 16
You said it is a joint account so you have every right to be concerned about it. And 4K missing is a BIG deal. I also think it would be a good idea if he would no longer have online access as obviously it is way too easy for him to take money out of it. This problem needs to be addressed! What if this behavior continues and you really need that money for an unexpected household repair?
FH and I have a joint savings account and we never take a dime out without discussing it first.