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$5k gift

May 1st, 2017 at 08:01 pm

I'm pretty sure I'm gifting a friend $5k. I haven't discussed this with my DH and I'm not sure how to bring it up. I'm not even sure when. I've never before kept a secret from DH but this is not exactly my secret to share but at the same time it's our money.

It's a $5k retainer for a divorce lawyer for a friend. NO there will be absolutely no reconciliation. There is no possibility of it. The reason is because she has no money. They have money as a couple. But she works part-time and the money goes into the joint account. She can swipe her debit card and pay for stuff but no way can she siphon off $5k by thursday and pay the lawyer to be retained.

She found out on Saturday that he's been paying for escorts for years. It's why he tells her they have no money. She found out last week because she tested positive for HPV. She is going in to test for other STDs and to test for cancer from HPV. A supposedly devoted father and family man? This is my 3rd friend this year getting divorced. The others have separated and it's mutual. She's the only one who is going to slam him with the divorce out of the "blue". Hence the money for retainer is needed.

They have 3 kids and are 6 months shy of their 10th wedding anniversary. She's never snooped on his phone when she found his old phone and looked. There is no going back. She's done but she can't tell him yet. He's too much of a liar and he's been siphoning off money from them into other accounts she didn't know about.

He also hasn't filed taxes and she has no idea about the real truth of their financial status. She acknowledges this is all her fault. She didn't take an active part in their finances. She trusted him. A boy she knew from high school. Yes they meet 10 years later and dated and got married. She'll be 40 in September so maybe it's a good time for a new leaf.

I can't tell DH because they are our couple friends. I am having a hard time swallowing that I need to pretend everything is great and invite them over. I can't tell DH because I don't want him to have to pretend to get along.

This is eye opening in so many ways. Financial for sure. I feel a bit like cynical now because I always ask friends especially after doing people's taxes do you know how much money you have? And I have yet to meet a female friend working or not who has been able to answer my question. I have yet to meet someone who knows who holds their mortgage. Or how much they have in savings and which bank accounts they have.

I realize the women reading this blog and on the forum are extremely financially astute. They are the money managers in the family. But is it really such a small percentage of women who really know what is going on? I wonder if I could ever relinquish that much control to my DH?

Could you? Did you? Would you? Is it possible to not be the money manager and still be aware?

13 Responses to “$5k gift”

  1. ceejay74 Says:

    I could see it being pretty easy for some. I maintain total transparency with my spouses; I encourage them to read the blog, ask me questions, etc. But they trust me, so oftentimes they don't really look into or question what I'm doing. Life is busy and if someone else is taking care of some of the chores, it's easy to lose sight of them. For me it's the shredding, filing, litterbox cleaning, etc.; for others it might be the finances.

    Actually we had a meetup with an alum friend of mine about finances this past weekend. She's having a hard time because her husband works out of state 5 days a week and they've got two small kids, one a gifted kid with a learning disability (very challenging combo). She's feeling a bit unsure of their marriage that he thinks this is OK to do month after month. But what really raised a red flag for me is she looked into their Roth IRAs, which the husband's brother has been managing for them, and apparently hers hasn't been added to in years; all the money's been going to the husband's. Not necessarily sinister, but creepy that this is the sort of thing that can happen if you let someone else handle your finances!

    I can definitely see helping your friend out with $5K; it won't impact you guys a lot overall. But I guess I can't see keeping the reason a secret from your husband just so it won't be awkward when the hooker guy comes over. Seems to me that risks creating a trust rift in your own marriage, much more serious than jeopardizing a friendship or social situation. I know that would cause a problem with my spouses, because I've pledged complete openness to them on all fronts. But every marriage is different, so I could be superimposing my relationship's expectations that don't apply the same way to yours.

  2. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    I might end up cracking though I promised not to tell. It's a lot of money to dispose of even if he doesn't pay attention.

  3. LuckyRobin Says:

    My DH really doesn't know everything about our finances. He knows how much money he makes and how much I make, but not too much beyond that. I do try to do a financial state of the union with him every year. And he does have access to my blog, so if he wants to, he could find out. He just trusts me to do the day to day stuff. Which reminds me, I need to update my list of things for if something ever happens to me. I try to keep a current list of institutions and passwords, but it has been a while since I updated it.

    I would not keep this from your husband if I were you. I think you need to make it contingent on giving her the money that you be forthright with your spouse about it. You can give the details without giving away her identity. She shouldn't be asking you to keep a secret like this from your husband. Look how she felt when she found out her husband was keeping secrets from her. Your husband would have every right to feel betrayed by you if you don't tell him and it could lead to damage in your own marriage.

    This isn't like not telling your spouse your friend had an abortion or gave a baby up for adoption. Those kinds of secrets would not be his business. Where the money goes is his business, though.

    At the very least, tell him you need to use some money to help a friend. It's very important and she wants to keep it a secret, but after it is done you will tell him the details. Then he can trust your judgment or voice his concerns, but you will have not possibly damaged the trust between you.

  4. creditcardfree Says:

    I can't imagine not knowing, but again I'm the money manager!

    I also would NOT keep this from your husband. Someone who has been lied to is asking you to lie to your husband? Your friend needs to know that you will tell him, and your husband needs to keep it a secret.

  5. Debt-free by Thir-ty Says:

    I pretty much agree with everyone else. As the money manager, I couldn't imagine not knowing our financial state. And I'd definitely tell your husband. Even if it's in the vague manner that Lucky Robin suggested with the promise of eventual full disclosure. There have been numerous times where I could have just done something with the money and my husband would never know, but I don't go down that road because we try to maintain complete transparency and openness with each other. He's mentioned before that even though he has no interest in a day-to-day role in our finances that he always appreciates the updates because then he at least knows what's going on.

  6. snafu Says:

    I'd give the money in a nanosecond. I'd have to think hard about when to tell DH. I doubt my DH could see his friend and keep the secret. Attitude, not words would give him away. I understand women who totally trust their spouse with money and morals. I'm reduced to pleading for DH to listen to the monthly financial recap. I've compressed it to one printed page and lately the best I can do is talk about it in the car on our way to an event. I am due to have surgery and I'm worried that my loving 'head in the clouds', professorial type spouse will be lost in the tiny world of our family's finance. I left an envelop of facts/figures for DS 1 who works in finance. What would you do?

  7. kashi Says:

    Ugh, that's awful. I would definitely give her the money if I could and I would definitely tell my husband. You mentioned retaining a lawyer on Thursday - when is she planning to tell her husband? Can you cancel your plans with them until she tells him? I'd be inclined to fake illness or work responsibilities to avoid seeing him. If you think that would be impossible for your husband, I do like Lucky Robin's suggestion of telling him that you need to give a friend money and you will tell him why after the fact.

  8. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Considering the fact that her husband is helping my DH right now get a loan for business purposes I am struggling. I may just say that it's a gift and full disclosure later. I'm calling her this morning.

    Kashi she's not telling her husband anything until everything is in place. She needs to find everything out financially before she pulls the trigger. Too much is at stake. Plus I truly worry he'll go unstable and hurt them. I worry about that a lot. Considering they are avid hunter and fisherman. I worry he'll snap. I think she really needs to talk to the lawyer and find out what the best course of action is. I know people say don't leave the house especially since she has no money. But what to do.

  9. creditcardfree Says:

    If you think your husband will later understand the circumstances and appreciate that you didn't involve him, then it may be okay to keep it a secret. Part of the problem the rest of us have is that we don't know your husband or this couple, so what we would do is dependent on specific personalities and circumstances.

  10. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I can't imagine not knowing what is going on with our money ... but, I am the CFO of our family.

    I would probably give DH some vague details with a promise of full disclosure later. Your friend is lucky to have you in her corner.

  11. livingalmostlarge Says:

    She agreed ask him to loan money to friend and full disclosure later. That way he can know but not know all the details. So I'm discussing with him tonight.

    My DH will know I am "loaning" money but I don't know I'll ever see it again.

    But I am unsure about what will happen.

  12. creditcardfree Says:

    I think that is a fair compromise. I hope he said yes. She does need the help. And I think you do have to expect you may not get the money back. Frown

  13. PatientSaver Says:

    Even if I were married, I would want to know where the money's going. What a story. I am so sorry about your friend.

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