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Managing money between a husband and wife can present some real challenges. Have you ever found yourself at the store or gas station ready to pay, only to realize that the last $20 in your purse or wallet is gone? It’s a sickening feel in the pit of your stomach when you realize you can’t pay for something. This happened to my mom all the time when I was a kid.

My parents went from one financial crisis to another and were always short on cash. I recall vividly my mom yelling at my step-dad because he had taken money out of her purse and left her with nothing. She usually figured out that she had no cash just after putting $5 worth of gas in the car (gas was a lot cheaper back then). A resolution to this problem always seemed simple to me, even if it eluded my parents. So here are some tips if you or your spouse are regularly raiding the other’s money supply:

1. Communicate: If you need cash, don’t just take it from your spouse without talking to them first. We all find ourselves without cash from time to time, but taking your spouse’s money without asking (or at least telling) them, is just plain rude. In a pinch, at least leave a note if for some reason you can’t speak to them right away.

2. Plan: Often times, a spouse is out of cash for lack of planning. Occasionally this happens to us all. But if it’s a regular occurrence, then you need to rethink how you’re managing your money. My wife always keeps a $20 reserve for emergencies. If she needs to use it, she makes sure to replenish it as soon as possible.

3. Use a Debit Card: We use a MasterCard debit card that is tied to our checking account. We also have overdraft protection just in case we run a negative balance just before payday. With the debit card, we are never out of money as long as we can get to an ATM or don’t have to pay cash for what we’re purchasing.

4. Carry a Credit Card: We also carry a credit card just in case. I know there are some who view credit cards as evil. I don’t, although we do pay off our credit card balance each month. But carrying a credit card can come in handy during an emergency, particularly when we are traveling.

5. Respect Each Other: Money is one of the biggest causes of strife in a marriage. Taking money from a spouse without communicating with them can understandably be a serious source of conflict. It may be a quick an easy solution to a money shortfall, but the harm it can do to your relationship in the long run is not worth it. In the end it comes down to mutual respect.

6. Keep a Change Jar: We have a change jar where we dump our change at the end of the day. Over time, the amount of money in the change jar can grow and come in handy when you’re in a bind. I sometimes need to pay $5 in cash to park my car at the subway, and I’ve tapped the change jar more than once when my wallet was empty.

Do you or your spouse take money from the other without asking? Cast your vote, and then leave a comment if you’ve had to confront this issue in your marriage.


Update: This article was featured as an Editor’s Pick in the 58th Edition of the Carnival of Money Stories.

Author Bio

Total Articles: 1077
Rob founded the Dough Roller in 2007. A litigation attorney in the securities industry, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife, their two teenagers, and the family mascot, a shih tzu named Sophie.

Article comments

Steve says:

Well, my wife an I have been married for 40+ years. We have separate checking accounts and a household expense checking account. Over the last several years, we agreed to both put in 6,000 dollars a year for the household expenses, 500.00 dollars per month. Our mortgage is paid of and so many other small bills. We both have charge cards and minor personal ills. expenses. I pay “my” car note and “her” car’s note come out of the household account. My retirement benefit checks go directly to the household account. Because it only amounts to about 5300.00 dollars a year, I add the remainder twice a year to make up the balance. However, my wife does not do auto deposit. She writes a check, sporadically, to the household account; in different amounts, sometimes, 500.00, 400.00, 350.00 or something. She will pay her bills out of the household account at times; (she keeps the books and writes all the checks for household expenses.) She will send her siblings money, out of the household account. I had to clear up a glitch where she had lost a check and had to help me to recover it. It was a 250.. dollar check written to her sister, from the household account. When I questioned her, she got angry and shouted, this is some of my extra money that I put in the household account o write her a check. Ok, thats cool, but why didn’t you tell me about it? Later again, she changed the “lie” to tell me her sister’s husband had been in the hospital and she sent them the money to help them out. Ok, still, why couldn’t you tell me and let them know it was from us? No answer! BTW, her sister and brother in law are both retired, living the over the road, new RV life, golf course on their lawn with golf carts, swimming pool, in-house sauna, golfing trips to play pro-golf … and she had to lie about sending them 250.00 dollars. I don’t buy it. Is this stealing. Many times when she buys herself something from her own account or spends “her” money, she will deduct it from her deposit to the household account. It really bothers me that she would steal from us

Tami says:

I’m so glad I read this article, along with the comments. My husband stole $80 from me for gambling, and I was ready to crack him upside the head-then go file for a divorce! He apologized but I’m still angry. Not as much, though, after seeing this article. I guess there’s hope for us?!

stephen says:

My sister who has been married for 40 years took $7,000 from her and my brother in laws checking account. She then “borrowed” $8,000 from my mother, also her mother, and claimed it was for a city sewer payment of which I highly doubt. On top of that she took money out of her sister in laws purse on more than one occasion. She is also a drinker which doesn’t help a thing. I don’t understand the theft at all and will probably never know the real reason why. Now she’s headed for a divorce losing or dividing the house and property down the middle. I am shocked because I would never think of her doing this, she was or as it seemed to me a hard worker but I guess greed stepped in the way and the money became a real fixation to her lifestyle. She to me is just another crook that only cares about herself. I’m not looking for answers here just making comments because it bothers me.

Adam says:

We been married for almost 2 years now.
I am the only one who works to support us.
My wife she steals money whenever she can. When ever I get some cash to the house I would lose some money so I thought it’s me forgetting or just lost it. Until Yesterday I was really sure that it’s my wife stealing it. Though I always tell her to ask me when ever she wants money I was never stingy person and I uselly keep at least $20 bill in her purse for emergencies, but she would always buy things that she just want or junk food although I keep the fridge full of food and fruits so I stopped giving her money because it hurts her health in a significant way. And since I stopped I told her whenever you want to buy something for your school or anything you need just let me know we go together. I give her a ride to school and give her a ride back to home. I always get what ever she needs and her priority always first and before mine.
I often don’t eat out side just to eat with her at home and to save money because both of us lives on my paycheck to paycheck. I also have to pay some of her tuition because she doesn’t get full financial aid.
Literally I can’t afford a dollar to be missed. Yet she steals my money which basically our money because that money what keeps us surviving. Last night I had $3 in my pants so I get out side to get a gallon of gas for my car, checked my pants the money is gone. Although I made sure it was there in my pants last night when I slept.
I love her and I know she can’t live actually she can’t survive on her own. And it just makes me sad and emotionally tired. I had to walk 7 miles to get to my job because I had no money to put gas in the car, and I get my paycheck on Monday.
I don’t know what to do, please help me guys what should I do?

stephen dupree says:

I’m sure you love her and of course did trust her but you were duped as one would not suspect. My sister has done the same thing to her husband and also her sister in law now they’re headed for divorce. You certainly are not the selfish one here. You’ve cared for her and put her before you, a very respectful quality that may be hard to find in someone. Man that’s a hard situation when you feel love for someone but as they say sometimes “tough love” may be the answer. It’s also hard to communicate with someone like that, perhaps it will cause arguments unwanted. Suggest to her counseling, which is to me kind of weak, I went through that and it was useless (my ex may be a completely different person though). If no resolve comes from further meetings with counselors or whatever have papers served to her and move on, she’ll survive I’m sure by finding her own way after hitting bottom. She must care a little bit if she wants to make it right.

Frederick J Wilburn says:

I have busted my hump for the last couple of years getting my family’s financial situation under control. I work at a refinery, and have been working ungodly hours straightening out massive debt. My wifes money management has been embarrassingly inept. We have been together for 21 years. She has never been able to manage her finances. Always owing people. Always being chased by Bill collectors. Always lying to cover up messes usually involving money. She has hurt her children, and relationships with me and other people over her selfish behavior. Recently we had been trying to buy a house. We both come from broken homes, and this would be the first time either one of us lived in house we owed. I was able to save 50,000 thousand dollars. 30,000 of which was are down payment for the house. I was taught to be leery of banks, and the 2008 financial melt down only increased that. I had a safe put in my bedroom, but I only had the key and combination. I have been working this thing called a turnaround at the refinery that’s 7 days a week and 12hr’s a day. This went on for 2 and a half months. Usually I check it every week. But I haven’t been able to because of fatigue and the shifts. I recently check it, and their was only 29,000 in it. I noticed a hole had been drilled in it. I confronted her about it, and she claimed somebody had probably broken in, or possibly a family member or friend did it. There was no forced entry, and photo copy money had been put in to replace the money that was missing. It all seems set up. My children are in school, and I work all day. She goes to work at 3, but is home for most of the day by herself. Many people think I should leave her. They think she has broken the uncrossable bound with in a family. When I let my children(9 and7) know money had been taken, and we wouldn’t be getting the house. My oldest broke down crying. It’s was the hardest thing as a parent i have ever had to witness. It made me have hate in my heart for my wife. I really can’t stand to be around her right now. My children and i are crushed. She goes on day to day as if nothing is wrong. It’s sickening. I’m scared to go to work now out of fear she takes other things. I finally put the remainder of the money in a few bank accounts, but i feel like a prisoner in my own surroundings. What do i do?

I am 77 years old and have cancer. I haven’t died yet but 9 doctor’s say that it’s coming very soon and praise the lord because I will be out of this terrible marriage. I only get enough money to pay our household bills and food. My wife takes money out of my pocket when I am sleeping or taking a shower and doesn’t say anything to me and she won’t be nice to me. She say’s she didn’t do it.
Well thats bull shit because who else wood. My pet dog wouldn’t do it. His name is Littlebit and We love him. I’am thinking about just walking off and leaving town. I could hitchhike away I think. And I would take Littlebit with me. I have been a heating HVAC CONTRACTOR FOR 54 YEARS SO NOW YOU KNOW WHAT I WOULD LEAVE BEHIND. THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN STOCK,INVENTORY, PARTS,SPECIALIZED TOOLS, TRUCKS , 1400 square foot shop and 1600SQUARE FOOT HOME,AND MY DOCTORS. I’m leaving honey.

Wife says:

I haven’t shared my story yet to anyone I have been hiding the secret for 3 years.

My husband started taking his paycheck and going to the casino. And came home with nothing. We were three months from our lease ending apartment and with no income coming in we kept getting eviction letters. I was in college at the time and we had two boys. I had gotten financial aid and that would help with the basics diapers and food etc. I had to and still do hide my money Wherever I could. At the end of your lease we had to move out and no one would except us because an addiction was on a record. We ended up moving in the parking lot of our church in a camper trailer with our kids. We were there for three months while my husband was working and I finished school. Still my husband will come home with paycheck once in a while and I finally got a new job after I graduated. He moved into a hotel by my job thinking that place away from the casino with the best thing. We pay 375 a week. Things were better then my husband got a job finally and had two incomes. Talked about just staying here until he found a place to live. He always told me that the reason why he goes gambling is because he wants to double up and provide better things for us.

After two months of rejection trying to get into a place even though income housing he started to get into a depression and the ritual came back. He would say that his paycheck didn’t come yet, he only got so much on his paycheck and want to show me the paystub’s. I find out from family and friends he’s borrowing hundreds of dollars from them and promised he would pay them back and asking me when we can pay them back. Of course I had no idea he was doing this so I’ll covered up and tell them we will soon. I never wanted to tell family and friends of his problem. He got my bank account number and opened up a Google wallet account. I had to change my withdrawal balance alerts to $10 so I get notified every time a transaction is made. He was transferring hundred dollars here hundred dollars there from our account and deposit it into his Google wallet. He also made an account on the Walmart website and would buy gift cards with my account number, and Western Union.

Just the other day top everything off. I always had my debit card somewhere on me in my bra, pants pocket. This time I left in my purse. I had fallen asleep and didn’t know he left. I woke up in the morning the next day with an alert extending $10. When I looked on my bank account online there was two transactions depositing into my account $100 and $50. I didnt know where he got the checks from and started getting worried so I asked him. He told me he was sorry and he made a steak and deposited two empty envelopes into my count and withdrew money. And of course he wanted to go to the casino and double up. I automatically knew what was going to happen. I was so upset trying to get ready to go to work and take kids to day care and told him he had to take care of it. I got off work early because I cannot think right excuse to my employer. I has been said that he talk to the bank and they won’t give them information since he’s not on the account. So I called the number and spoke to the teller he talk to and they said that he deposited two different empty envelope. Which was fraudulent. It put a red flag on my account. I only had two dollars in my account and with Drew 100. The teller told me since the fire department is closed he can’t do anything about it at that time. But you speak to my branch that I have a relationship with. I thought that if I deposit the money he’s fraudulently put in it may fix things.So I borrowed $150 which he deposited from my mother-in-law and put that in the cash hoping that would fix everything. Well it didn’t do anything. Thanks for closing the next day I. Talk to my branch manager and he said only person that can fix things for me or help me out is where I opened the account up. They were 45 minutes away so I called them. The lady said that because of this mistake and depositing empty envelopes in the ATM and point money out is illegal that they had to close my account. I explained to her that my husband just made mistake because he was drunk, “I didn’t want anybody to know what my husband did. I was embarrassed. ” And I I have deposit deposit going through at midnight from my employer, and I have bills that I have automatic payments the next day. She told me that she will try to open up my account for the check deposit to go throug, and to see if there’s a way she can let me withdrawal some cash to help pay with bills. She called me back and said that the deposit has been going through and I am able to pull out two thirds of my check. And I had to go to a certain bank to withdraw it. So I go to the bank. That she sent me to, and the teller said that she isn’t able to withdraw any money. And she was trying to get a hold of the corporate. Waiting there for an hour trying to see what’s going to happen before I pick up the kids at day care the manager pulled me into the office. He said that because of how the deposit was made and withdraw my money I didn’t have I am red flag with check systems. I can’t withdraw any of my money, but deposit the check from my employer may not go through and they are closing my account for good. This all happened today. I’m sure it would be easy to say I know what to do, if it was someone else. I want to say I love my husband, but more so for the kids. Help!

carina says:

I’m sorry but there is a difference in poor spending habits and “stealing”. If you are married it is both parties money, does that mean they are stealing from themselves? Just because one person is making the money, doesn’t mean it is theirs. It is the couples. That person not making the actual cash is just as valuable. Poor spending can definetely cause trust issues. Spending is not the actual issue here, it’s communication.

KT says:

My Husband is bad at saving money and we have zero credit. I am trying to save for a new mini van we really need. He used to have a high paying job and I never felt the need to control spending. But, always have been sales rack/coupon thrifty. But, given dire economics I budget everything with him out of work and my small income. So he is constantly going in my purse and lying about it. I am more disgusted he is lying to me than snagging 20 bucks we do not have. Then when caught he gets mad if I suggest he uses the 20 he stole (cough) took for some gas. He loves lotto and buying lunches for himself with the treat money. I have saved us 2k so far but had to hide my purse!!!! lol

Dan says:

As horrible as this topic is, it’s nice to know I’m not alone. I make ~3 times my fiancé and pay all the bills (mortgages, car insurance, etc) with the exception of her car payment and a furniture payment ( although both are in my name because she has terrible credit). She is terrible with money, it just burns holes in her pockets. Asking her to help with bills, or even just help keeping them low by not leaving all the lights on just ends in an argument. Im not and have never asked for 50/50 split, not even proportional to you incomes but she refuses. She gets paid every 2 weeks and at the end of it she is always asking for money to tie her over to her next paycheck. She recently got a job but it’s 100 mile round trip everyday so her monthly gasoline bills are high but she drives a big gas guzzling Luxury SUV. I have told her we need to sell it and buy something economical if she is going to drive that much and she bites my head off. Other than gasoline she spends money on clothes, cigarettes, makeup, hair, nothing to help “us”. A few months ago I received a $400 gift card from work. I didn’t want to just fritter it away so I put it up for emergencies (car repairs that kind of thing). My dog fell ill and I had thousands in vets bills. To help get me through the month I was going to use the gift card but it was missing. I asked if she had seen it and she said no but was a little cagey. I continued th hunt, turning the house upside down and she even helped. Eventually I called the company and they said the balance was zero. I asked if they could Send me a list of transactions. I told my fiancé and she still stuck with her story. The statement arrived yesterday and sure enough all the charges were for gas stations and stores around her work. I handed her the statement and she said that she used it every now and again but didn’t realize it added up to so much until the card stopped working. Then she tried to turn it around on me saying that I’m tight with money and dont help her? I am in a commited relationship and am willing to help her financially but I want her to at least try and help herself. If she wasn’t blowing money on clothes and hair appointments but still couldn’t make her bills, I would understand but she just expects me to bail her out each week. Anyway I said calmly ( and I do mean calmly) why she stole from me and flat out lied to me about the card. She said she told her mom about it a while back and she advised her to just replace the card. How I’m not sure seeing as she can’t make it 2 weeks without going in the red. I’ll be honest and say this is not he first time she has taken money without asking but this is the first time I have not been able to afford her doing it. To add insult to injury she has trust issues and always makes comments about me being with other people ( almost always co-workers). To say these acqusations are unfounded is an understatement as I don’t go out anywhere without her, ever. I really have no friends. I go to work, come home and spend weekends at home with her. If there is a young female at work, even if she works in a different department on the other side of the building, she will make comments about me texting her or meeting up with her. I feel like she is the one being dishonest and I’m getting the flak??

Mae says:

Wow, I thought I am the only one victim here, Me and my Boyfriend is in a serious relationship turning on 3 years and living together but these past few weeks after he resigned from his previous job and is waiting for his embarkation for a new job i found out that he was stealing my own money. At home since i am the one earning this time i am the one paying bills, buys foods etc, paying rent for our apartment. One time when i was asleep early i just leave a 2,000 pesos ($45) in my wallet inside my bag when i woke up at 3am dawn i noticed that he wasnt beside me nor at the living room and then i was lloking for my phone to call him thats when i realized he stole my money, because i loved him i forgive him. After 3 days of that incident, i went to the bank to withdraw in a ATM machine with him… he says that he will be the one to withdraw money for me but i insist so when i got to the machine i noticed someone has withdrawn money from my account amounting to 5,600 pesos ( $132) i was really upset with him and start a quarrel… but then he was able to pay me for that after making a loan from a local bank. Just last night he again steal my 1,000 pesos ($22.22) and star a fight again… i ended up throwing punch to him, kicking him…. anything that could hurt him because i was really mad at him, hurting him physically was my revenge but he doesnt fight back. I was upset because the money with me is all allocated for the bills, rentals and food. he doest care. and the common denominator is that he admits of it all that he do it but doesnt tell me how he spend the money. Please advise me what to do… should i separate with him now? i mean …is break up a solution to our problem.. because honestly now i am afraid of him being left at home.. afraid that he would sell or pawn any of my jewelry or appliances just to have money…. Please advise…. Thank you very much..

Cindy says:

My husband steals everything. I used to think it was to drive me crazy because he puts me down all the time. But I just noticed all my pillow cases are gone and I’m always buying clothes. Recently He requested I replace his glasses he said I accidentally dropped and stepped on in the dark one night. I refused because mine are always coming up missing. I did buy my daughter and myself two pair each of glasses coming very close to a thousand $ and low and behold my close-up bifocals are gone ($500). His mother wears similar Rx. I put my money in same bank and now he is not putting any money in the joint account. I was notified by the bank that they were transferring monies from my personal accounts to our joint account now because I have free overdraft protection. He will not comment and refuses to do anything. The bank said something about canceling the joint accounts. He keeps threatening to quit his job that he will lose anyhow next time he goes into withdrawals. His drinking increases until he cannot function and he gets fired or goes into withdrawals. I was told a lawyer would just take all of my savings and presently I do not have a job. I have one minor child now others are grown and little support. Everyone tells me he will die because he drinks so much and to stick it out but his family are such losers I believe everything he owns is in his dad’s name and he’s a piece of crap. I have consulted so many counselors, social workers and I see a psychiatrist who tells me to keep getting educated and applying for jobs and not to leave until I am gainfully employed. If so called spouse has his way I will be broke by then. I have enough now to cover big bills and pay student loan debts. I feel so sorry for my kids. I blew it when I married this guy. All he cares about is the moment and drinking. He is sadistic watches sadistic videos, has asked me to let him duct-tape me all over;yet he says I’m crazy. I guess I am because I married him. At least he doesn’t hit me anymore or the kids they are big enough to hit him back. I hate him.

Crystal says:

Really? what psychiatrist tells you to stay in an abusive relationship?
get out of there ASAP for the sake of yours and your childs mental and physical health!

Clifford K says:

I feel like such A fool.I’m 60yrs old and my wife of 4yrs has milked me for 23000$. over the marriage .Some [majority]of it has been inheritence money.Jackpots stashed has been found and spent friviosly without ever telling me.I had 100lbs of state quarters I saved for 8 yrs.It was taken steadily for 2yrs without me knowing it.Every time I approached her on these incidents,she was sorry and said she would not do this again.I set her up inthe first year with a Mary Kay store[5300$]She turned right around and took another $12000 without telling me to put in MK buisness then just blew theprofits.She may have 1000 worth of stock in invetory.I had to put all my bank accounts in my name only.The prblem seemed to go away untill she had our 2009 tax deposited[refund] deposited 4400$ in her bank.I kept asking her to ck why our refund hadn’t come in yet.She said the IRS was late on all refunds.In feb2011 I went on line to find out it went her bank back in oct2010.She denied bold faced untill I presented the proof.I love this women unconditionally and wonder if I’m just a fool for sticking it out .We don’t run around on each other and have adeep love for each other.I understand she was raised in poverty and abused ,but there has to be trust or else how can you build for the future.My grown daughter had to take my gold coins and put them in a joint saftey box .Thats the only thing monetarily I got left.

meme says:

Im a stay at home mom and i dont like having to explain to my husband why i need money or what i want it for. Im grown just like he is so why shouldnt i spend what i want….he does. He buys what he wants when he wanta and doesnt think twice about it. I feel like this, i need pocket change too. im doing him a favor sacrificing my career to stay home and raise the kids. He is able to have his career and make the money that he makes.

Goggles says:

Then put the kids in day care and go get your career…explaining that you spend money responsibly isn’t asking too much. It’s pissing the money away on crap with no explanation and the attitude of FU I can spend what I want whenever I want isn’t realistic in a good marriage.

My wife steals $500 cash from our safe and I’m the jerk for noticing it and confronting her about it…WTF?

sam says:

Exactly. When one spouse/ partner takes money without discussing and coming to some sort of agreement on what can and cannot be spent just shows a lack of respect for the other and the relationship. I have been dealing with money issues in my own relationship. I’m the responsible one and my credit and livelihood has suffered due to my boyfriend’s lack of financial responsibility. I had great credit until he lost his job and began taking money I made to support us. He cleared out my savings and checking accounts, wrote bad checks in my name, steal my tips from bartending earnings and sold my stuff. I couldn’t pay my bills because of his selfish behavior and now I’m trying to rebuild my credit. I am a person who budgets what I need for bills, savings, emergencies, and fun money. I have a real hard time living with people living by the seat of their pants. I need to know that I can maintain my living expenses and thus relieving stress from day-to-day living. I now have complete control over the money so the bills will be paid. Every once in a while, money goes missing and I’m constantly finding new ways to keep that from happening. I have felt betrayed and frankly screwed over by this behavior. This has developed distrust and has damaged our relationship. I just think that if I was alone, I wouldn’t have to deal with this crap. You take the good with bad in human relationships in order to maintain them. I just don’t want to live my life without trust and a dime to my name because of someone else’s lack of maturity. I hate that money is so important in our society, but it us and people need to respect others right to save their money for a raining day. Just because you have a relationship with another human being, it doesn’t give you the right to take whatever you want. That is not love.

heather says:

well, If men did not horde all the money in the home for thier greedy ass needs like going to play stupid card games and galavant all over the place with thier guy friends. Maybe women would not feel the need to say “F— it” and take some pocket money to be afforded the same oppertunity to go out and do what makes us happy! this ain’t the 50’s where men get to make all the choices and I will be damned if I’m going to be a full time student, full time house cleaner etc…and have just school and home—-home and school. who the hell do you men think you are? Do not get me wrong I do not steal anything from my husband due to the ill feeling of it…its no more diffrent than if i stole cash from my mothers purse if I was a kid. But I think about it sometimes due to anger over being left home all the time when he can go out and use money for his and his friends amusements and I get to make my own fun doing nothing. and before you men say crap about anything….you all know it would be the same damn way if I was the one to make money and horde it for my own ends and went shopping for shoes, nice dinners and drinks with girl friends. like any of you men would not bitch over that how it “unfair” you would be worse than a baby with a skinned knee!

Kate says:

My husband takes money all the time! I admit my husband is not good at managing money and he even gamble money away. I wish he was more responsible at times I want to kill this man honestly. I go out every weekend and I do spend money but my husband likes to go out every chance he gets. It doesn’t have to be the weekend or a special day. He will spend $200 on one night and he won’t even dwell on the money that’s gone. I don’t spend over that per week and I dwell on money. We are a young married couple 21 and 23. I wonder if it was his age but then I notice older couples saying they had the same exact problem. My husband will lie to me about how much money he takes out the account just so I won’t make him put it back. I usually will find out the next day when I notice him splurging. He has a shopping and gambling problem and I don’t know what I should do. I sometimes wonder if our marriage will fail because of this. My husband and I have talked about the problem but I dont think he is getting it through his head that we need to manage money better. I believe in managing money for the future and he believes in spending what you have while you have it even if it is your spouse’s money.

zulaika says:

Well I take money from my husband to buy the girl cloths, food that we may want to eat, gas for the car, etc. But I some times I think it is to much, I am getting tried of see that he gets made because I take his money I know he works and it is his money but i just think I need to work my self to get my own money me and him have always been frighting because of the money problem. And right now the money is not there and he is not working I see my girl and try to give them everthing I can but it is time to but my foot down and say what on my mind.

sky says:

My boyfriend of 9yrs was always very generous in the beginning. Since the economic poop-out however his MO has changed considerably. He used to do little things like pick up my $ or change I’de left laying around without any regaurd to whom it belonged assuming it was his. Not long ago,he started borrowing $ & not paying me back,coming up w/some reason why I had owed it to him(not our original agreement). This was topped by him taking $ out of my wallet w/out asking. He then began getting cash back on my debit card,when he would run &get cgrtts,then say he would give me the $until finally telling me he had given it to his mother. One day imparticular,this had happened I was @a supply store getting some nesescary things 4 my business when I discovered my card wasnt in my wallet. I hadn’t put it back after he had gone to the store. So I asked him for the $10.he had taken,which ofcourse he never planned on giving back. Mind you,I was already upset about $60 dollars he had owed me from the day b4,which was change I was suppost to be getting back from a purchase he had made 4 us,but had instead decided to lend to a friend who was stranded @a casino. Yes my boyfriend also plays the slots,..big surprise eh? Anyhow he knew my financial stresses & still proceeded to take what little $ I did have in my account+ put in an empty envelope to pull $200 I didn’t have,essentially robbing my bank. This is is a credit union & there is only 1 in semi close proxemity. Not having a car makes getting there within bus. hrs difficult,seeing as that my debit privilages were suspended for 6mo. It is also my business account which means all CCtransactions are dir.dep. into it. He has no remorse for anything & does not go out his way to help ease these ever preasent inconveniences.

Kate says:

OMG my husband is this exact same way! I honestly thought that because we are in our early twenties that it was just a his age. But now I am starting to believe that my hubby will always be this way and I am having doubts. He blew $1000 within 1 month. I cant take it because I am very responsible with money and this leaves me feeling very sick to my stomach. I have been with my husband for 4yrs and we’ve been married for 1 yr he did everything for me in our relationship. But this year he has been a real jerk since he lost his job and he takes money without asking. Sometime he is even sneaky about it he will take my card and hand me a receipt stating that he has withdraw $20 but in the end I find out it is $120. When I ask him about it he tells me he had imporrtant plans with it and I have to sit down and have this stupid talk that never works. I don’t like feeling like I can’t trust him with money but I can’t! He is too always bailing his friends out either from a lack of funds or jail. I am sick of it has been going on this whole year this is not what my intentions of a happy married live together were. We don’t have children but if we did I feel like I would have to hide every account, mutual fund, collge saving plan from my husband because he would spend every bit of the money.

Bull says:

This is a huge boundaries issue. Stealing from a spouse is no different than stealing from any other adult or organization. It undermines trust and affection. “Hey, it was just one night” is the same thing, different issue. Agree on a budget, stick to the plan, and if you want to change it, ask first. Everybody’s carrying cellphones now so there’s not reason you can’t rip off a quick text to your spouse to confirm. My hunch is the spouse in each case doing the stealing is NOT the spouse doing the work of balancing the books or earning the majority of the household income.

Tiffany says:

My husband makes twice what I make. From outward appearances, he seems more responsible than I (the artistic dreamer!) Taking money out of my walet, or the debit card, was something he has always done. Five years ago, I discovered he had secretly created a 70 thousand dollar debt between both our names. He drained every savings including my 401K. He was taking payday loans to fill our checking account so I wouldn’t notice. At the time our daughter was an infant, and I was forced to return to work full time to pay off the debt. I managed to do so and also save enough to purchase a house within four years by being about as frugal as humanly possible. Since the purchase of our house, I had been putting aside 20 percent of my salary for a savings, since we had none. I didn’t want to touch it so it would grow.Just recently went to the bank to transfer it to a higher yeild account and-surprise surprise-he has been removing exactly what I put in every other week for two years. My husbands family is rather wealthy and he does not know how to save a thing, down to a bar of soap. (It’s gone in three days.) But I know intuitively that there is more to his story. And should I stay with him, this will be my life. But my kids adore him, and I personally know the cost they will pay if we divorce. So I have started a secret account of my own.

Christine says:

Sounds like my life. I make 3 times what my husband makes. He does not know how to manage his money. I pay for everything. And to save my sanity, I have been relunctant to give him money. No longer is my account overdrawn, but he doesn’t have access to the card unless I give it to him. And then I’m always worried. He uses soap and water, actually anything very quickly. I swear, he couldn’t have been poor. He calls me cheap. I walk around with sweatshirts, mittens and a hat to save money but that’s not good enough for him. He doesn’t understand it’s for us. We have a lot of bills, bad investments, which I’m paying. And of course, his grand scheme will payoff and he will have money. I wait. And I wait. His eyes grow wide when he is explaining a good deal and how he is going to make money. I glaze over and wish I was dead. And too, he is a wonderful father, not a bad husband but I fear this money thing will cause me cancer or some intractable illness from the stress. So divorce although much desired would not be simple and never is for anyone. Oh, how my children would crumble and so I endure. If I can just last until they go to college.

NoOneisPerfect says:

As i read the posts on the site, I can easily resonate an understanding with everyone. Coming from someone who did ‘those’ things to my significant other, I can say that it DOES have a negative impact on the relationship when taking money is done. I did that to my wife for about a year and to this day it has created a huge gap between us emotionally. We share the same goals but our methods we’re just different. I regret doing what i did, I havent repeated it nor will i ever knowing what i know now. In the end, as a husband and now father, i’d rather end up with 5 cents in my pocket than see my wife spend a dime on our home or our son. I look back and see what i did and the only reason i can come up with was (aside from blatant stupidity) fear of being out of control. Control is an illusion and should be checked, along with pride, at the door once married. I no longer make as much as i used to (yet i am working on job prospects that can get us there again) but i will be damned if i cannot provide for my family. The worse thing is that when the ‘stealing’ comes to the surface, every aspect of the relationship gets scrutinized. We went to therapy, counseling and I havent repeated any behavior and my wife knows this yet because of my transgression, it has put a strain on our marriage which i must deal with. Stop doing that to each other and focus on a plan (no matter how long it takes) to get out of your situation and focus on the family – no one else. Then and only then, will the marriage blossom again.

chastity30311 says:

You hit the nail on the head. The thief (typically) is not the bread winner. Checks and balances my butt…no checks being written; no books being balanced.

Mad in Mississippi says:

My fiance’ for the longest has been taking/stealing money from me for as long as I can remember. We have been together for 6years, and with the exception for his neglect to be honest about needing money, we have had no other problems. When we first met we were young living on minimal wage jobs, and he would use my debit card or pawn items in the house he thought I wouldn’t miss. As we grew older we started to make good money(he made really really good money), but he couldn’t manage it well. So once he was out of money he would again use my debit card without my knowing. If I noticed it and mentioned it, he would deny at first then call me miss sherlock holmes and eventually he would say ” I make money I can just replace it.” I think what pisses me off the most is that if he was honest with me, we could pool the money and budget, but because of his past I am afraid to give him access to my earnings, because we may end up with nothing.

DR says:

I wonder if counseling would help. If a couple is not honest and upfront about money, it makes any relationship very difficult to sustain.

chastity30311 says:

I know exactly how you feel. My guy just left the house. I called him back, and asked where my card was. He said, “I can’t hear you.” “Yes you can! It was in my purse, and now it isn’t.” He then admitted that he used $6.54 to get some beer and that he would bring my card back immediately. B.S.! He didn’t come back. So I just put a hold on my debit card, and have to go to the bank to change it. To think that our baby’s due at the end of March…At least that’s the only issue that you all have. He’s just wrong for me. We are on two different levels emotionally, financially, and most of all intellectually.

michele says:

my husband used to squirrel away money all the time and have it in a jar in his shed somewhere. I learned about it after a while and from then on always suspected he kept doing it. he would go to the ATM and take out money which i thought he was using for petrol etc but he would be hiding it. I must state that he thought he was doing the right thing by saving for a rainy day but it was up to him when he thought he should bring it out, it didn’t matter to him whether I was lying awake at night worrying myself to the bones over bills etc which incidentally he has always left to me and never shared the stress of( which is my fault i should have requested that we do this as a team but I didn’t know so much then) Sometimes he would use this money to make some improvement to the home which i was never consulted on and which people later would comment on and say “WOW, michele aren’t you lucky you have a husband who does such nice things…” Initially I thought oh, yeah, i guess i am but the improvemnets were never anything vital, he never does little jobs I ask for,like make a proper fence for my dog who always jumps out if i forget to put her inside for a storm, or fix that bit of wood skirting back so that when i vacuum I don’t knock it loose by mistake, he made a fancy patio when we already had an ordinary patio and he installed a dishwasher when I didn’t even want or need one, lots of stuff that no doubt increases the value of our home but there have been so many times when I have not been able to manage and have been borrowing from peter to pay paul, the toll on my health I have to say has been severe in the past from stress and worry. It has hurt me so much that he could know I was suffering and knowingly keep that money from me that I could have used to pay school fees etc or bills just so he could do his little projects. I personally could never do that, if I knew he or any member of my family or friends were worrrying themselves sick like that and i had the spare cash even if i was saving for something special i would give it to them… life’s too short and it’s only material goods, better to help someone out than save up for rangehoods, patios and rock walls. I don;’t think he does it now as we are better off and the kids have grown up and left home, things are niot so strained, but it wouldn’t surprise me if i disovered he still did. That’s the worst of it.I learned that he would put his desires over my needs if he felt like that. We’ce been married 22 years and I would say have a pretty good marriage, he’s a good husband in many ways but I don’t think I ever will understand this trait of his and I don’t think much of it. When people comment to me about things he’s done to the house I say to them, ” I don’t care a fig about it ” I had a perfectly good patio, stove etc before that, not as pretty but nothing worng with it, and the trauma that all cost me in terms of not beeing able to pay my bills because of it was not worth it, to ME. I always tell people, that it HIS patio and HIS wall and HIS whatever becasue I never got asked diod I want this or did i think it was a good idea. He just did it anyways. I love him but I think this was selfish. I could never do that to anyone.

ideal4investors says:

My husband cleans out my wallet all the time and he even takes my credit cards. I ended up flying to Chicago on a business trip a couple of years ago with no money and no credit cards. I know what I married and now I know to always check my wallet before I leave the house!

investor says:

Why did not you leave him? my husband stole money and jewllery from me.I have given him one chance.Recently he stole money again

Carmel says:

My husband has taken a lot of money saved some money for the children, found out after 4 years he used all of it, stupid thing was I loved @nd trusted him so much, because it was the children’s money I skimped and saved it’s ruined my marriage, it’s really sad I know it over, wish I could ignore it all, I know I can’t , he lied a lot about it, most of all it’s the trust it gone.

Valerie says:

I’ve never taken money from my husband’s wallet. If I need $20, I’ll ask for $40. He’ll negotiate with me down to $20, and be pleased with his bargain!

jm says:

Are you serious? Even when I ask my wife for cash, I actually physically bring her purse to her and ask her to fish it out, even if she says “Just get it out of my wallet in my purse downstairs” because I am *that* uncomfortable with the idea of going through her purse. You do not go through a woman’s handbag.

I would *never* consider ‘stealing’ from my wife, even in an emergency, even if it meant walking home to get my wallet to go back to the gas station to pay for the stupid gas.

Of course it would never come to that extreme because I am good with money.

Mrs. Micah says:

Never. I rarely use cash anyway, if I need some I always ask him if he has any. We have a coin jar that we both take from, but we don’t count on it for anything.