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What should you do when a spouse keeps things from you?

Asked by Qipaogirl (701 points ) June 28th, 2014

The other night my husband and I were out at a party and as the night wore on he ended up giving me his jacket as it became chilly. While wearing the jacket I put my hands in the pocket and found a letter from his ex dated two weeks previously. In the letter she was asking him to pay for some special sports clinic for their one son. He is not a particularly gifted athlete, but he likes sports. This clinic is 25,000. To clarify my husband has two children with this woman. Of the two children, she favors the one, and this is the one she wants these clinics for as a self esteem booster.

There has been a history of spending vast sums of money on this child that neither parent can afford. between the two of them they earn 125k per year, each have the kids equally. They each have accumulated much debt and little if any savings especially for retirement. In short, neither can afford this program.

My husband and I have had talks about finances and budgets because frankly he is 60 years old and has saved nothing for retirement. He knows we need to do this. I have created a budget that permits money for both of the children to have activities, but there is no way his 75k salary plus all of his debt and the bills of life can find room for such an expense.

This type of situation always makes him both upset and guilty. Upset that he cannot just give his kids these things, even though there is no realistic way to expect that either he or his mother could ever afford such things, but both have a history of taking on debt for the kids, especially this child, to have things. He then gets hurt because he knows his son will become wildly upset and reactive and his ex will become angry and insulting towards him.

It really hurts me that he has chosen not to share this with me at all. It feels deceitful. I am not certain whether I should admit I know or keep waiting to see if he decides to share the fact that his ex is expecting him to magically find 25k.

When these situations have occurred in the past we have always discussed them and I have been able to calm him down. So, there should be no fear on his part of me going nuts. I know that he is torturing himself with this, and he is probably going into the space of being a failure as a parent and a loser because he cannot just randomly treat his kids to indulgences of this magnitude.

So two issues, am I right to feel upset that this is being hidden from me, and do I say something or wait and see what he does?

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