Sunday, March 26, 2023
HomeRelationship AdviceMy (30sM) new wife (30sF) has spent all of our joint savings...

My (30sM) new wife (30sF) has spent all of our joint savings and only just told me.

Hi we have been in a relationship for 4 years, and married this year.
2-3 years ago we opened a joint account, I put in most of my savings, several thousand, my parents gave us several thousand towards our house, but we haven’t bought a house yet so this also went in. I put in a work bonus for another 2-3 thousand, and this year got a second job as we were getting married and all of this went in to our joint account.

I haven’t saved any other money because I live month to month on my 9-5. A few months after we opened our joint account I had issues accessing my online bank account so relied on her.
I didn’t bother checking until this year, because I new besides 3 transactions I didn’t put or take anything from the account. When our wedding was approaching I asked as I knew we would be spending a lot from that account on our wedding. GF delayed saying she was too busy with work and planning wedding etc. We got married, we are busy catching up with work etc, honey moon, and so on until we settle in a few month after so I ask again.

She finally gives me a huge document saying we’ve spent on x bills, and loads of different things, some things I didn’t agree on, like if we agreed to spend 1000 she has taken 1500 out of the account. Also things I thought was still on finance like phone, etc she is saying she paid off from the joint account. Then she says there is nothing left in the joint account and she is actually owed a little bit because she had to pay some of the wedding out of her personal account.

I thought there would be a lot taken out but not all, I also don’t think she has been putting in as much in as she says she has.

TL:DR, Got married this year. Haven’t been able to check our joint account because of online banking issues. Asked GF close to marriage how much we had spend on wedding etc, it wasn’t until months after wedding she finally tells me. I find out she had spent, thousands more on things we didn’t agree on like if we agreed to spend 1000 on something she would actually take out 1500. And she says we have 0 left in joint account and she is owed money because she spent from personal account on wedding.

Now over 2-3 years its not a lot which has been over spent. It’s more how she handled it, like didn’t tell me at time, going against what we agreed etc.
A big part of me wants to say going forward we need to fix my access so I can see what’s being spent and when, and that she should only spend what is agreed.
But a small part of me is really annoyed that she went behind my back to spend money and it feels like she tried to hide it from me, etc, and now not sure whether I can trust her in our marriage etc.

I have hardly spoken to her all day and a bit annoyed.

Should I just tell her that we need to sort the account out and monitor it better in the future, or has she crossed a line?

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  1. “from her personal account”

    So she has her “own” money and she’s spending the money of your joint marriage before spending her own money?

    At the very least, you two need to go over what’s being spent where because if she has a savings account and you have nothing… she’s spending joint money while you live pay check to pay check…

    Either things need to get hashed out and any joint spending gets approved by both before spent… or you guys are in for trouble.

    Whether she has to repay the questionable spending or not is going to depend on how things hash out but at the very least, from your perspective, nothing should be spent going forward without conversations bout it.

    Probably also need some couples counseling as this isn’t going to end without some drama it seems.

  2. I don’t know how a dude can go for months/years not checking a bank account because of “online banking issues”

    Should have gone to the bank or called to fix it immediately. This is so preventable. Don’t put this all on her, it’s clear both of you are irresponsible with money.

  3. Several issues here.

    OP: Failure to accurately define spending rules and budget on the joint account

    OP: Failure to responsibly manage his joint account. “Online issues” is an excuse not a reason.

    OP: Failure to quantify/reconcile joint account before posting here.

    Has partner deceived OP?
    A lot of folks take that view already, and it could well be the case, but given how poorly OP has managed his finances and communications with gf, it would be understandable his cavalier attitude has rubbed off on her.

    To be blunt, OP gives the impression he wasn’t particularly interested in managing that joint account, turned over responsibility to gf, didn’t monitor it for year(s) and now acts suprised when the balance isn’t what he expected.

    OP, FIX your access to the account, download the full statement and reconcile it.

    If it shows gf spent more than was agreed, discuss said item(s), but as for the remainder you’re probably going to chalk that up as an educational experience.
    (This assumes gf was spending jointly. If she was expending for personal items from joint account, it’s not unreasonable for her to pay for those things).

    One has to wonder why did OP open a joint account and then ignore management of it for so long.

  4. After multiple times of trying to get access and her giving you the old “oh man I gotta go walk the fish” routine you didn’t get even a little suspicious?

    Has she breeched trust is your question? Damn man, this lady is gonna have to sell your kidneys before you protect yourself.

    Side note your car’s warranty does not need extended.

  5. Lesson Learnt?

    You both need to be actively involved in the household finances.

    You, now you know the amount is empty, don’t agree with how she didn’t it AND are suspicious she didn’t put in money.

    So…? You don’t trust her, you’re angry with her, you resent her, and you feel all of that even before you logged into the account to check the transfers in.

    There is no evidence here she has screwed up, because you didn’t involve yourself and can’t list out all the wedding costs, her inputs, agreements on costs, etc. Only that she spent more on one thing than you wanted – nowhere near enough to drain the account.

    Sit down, go through the account.

    Go through the payments in, the costs coming out, create a budget for expected household bills, define what it is and isn’t to be used for.


    Have separate small accounts for your own spending purposes IE she mentioned using ‘her’ money and needing to be reimbursed but you put everything into it.

    And. Be. Involved. She paid all the bills, so in your head there was thousands more on the account than there was. Is there a specific reason she had this SOLE responsibility? And if so, your gonna need a quarterly household update on the financial situation so that YOU don’t end up in this same situation again assuming that the account has money in it.

    OR … Go with the emotional response of thinking she’s screwed up, decide she didn’t contribute without evidence, blame her for your lack of knowledge about your own money, and break up because you don’t trust her and that’s relationship poison.

  6. Dude.. banking issues? For months? Have you tried calling the bank and fixing the issue?

    You have been very naive in all this. A simple telephone call could’ve solved the problem probably. Why was your wife able to log in but you weren’t?

    Sounds like you didn’t really want to know. I check my bank account everyday, lol.

  7. Sounds like you put her in charge of the finances while you funded the bulk of the finances and you are now upset that she handled the finances without you even though you didn’t even try to be involved with it to begin with

  8. I am sorry but this is a Joint Account.

    Your login did not work so you left your fiance to cope with ALL the joint payments for a couple of YEARS and are blaming her for not spending it in a way that suits you?


    The only reason you are upset is that there is no money for you to spend.

    If there was still money in the account then you still would not be taking any responsibility for your joint finances.

    The solution?

    Do not have a joint account. Pay each bill directly.

    My husband and I have a joint account but it barely has anything in it. We split up the bills and pay each one directly.

    If we have larger bill that won’t take a credit card then we both put money into the account and make one payment.

    I would suggest that you get your login fixed and get bank statements for the past couple of years.

    Sit down with your spouse and go over the deposits and withdrawals.

    DO NOT accuse your apouse of not spending things the way you would have preferred. You could have been involved in those decisions or looked up your bank balance at any time.


    Review the purchases made and decide on FUTURE spending. Create a budget. Decide TOGETHER how and what you will spend money on.

    If you aren’t willing to monitor a joint account and assume your portion of responsibility – then don’t have one.

    Money issues are one of the most common causes of divorce.

  9. So she’s been doing all the work for 100% of your shared expenses for years? You never bothered to pay a single vendor for the wedding, she has to set up payments for everything as well as budget it all out. And she’s done the same for every trip, home repair, etc. She has the full documentation for every dime that was spent. Again, of your *shared* expenses.

    And people here are having the nerve to call her a golddigger or act like she needs to apologize to you for something?

  10. Sounds like you wanted a mom instead of a wife. Who in the hell doesn’t monitor their own damn banks account? I have no sympathy for you.

    If the spending was legitimate for things you both needed, let that go, go to counseling and grow the hell up. If it was for bs, you may want an annulment.

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  12. Go through the bank statements with a fine tooth comb, list exactly how much each of you paid in, and how much she used for joint expenses, unauthorized joint expenses, and her own expenses – and then see how much *she* has to pay *you* back. And get your own account for your own money, and only transfer your half of the joint monthly expenses into the joint account. No more trusting her with finances!
    (Alternatively: check if you can still get an annulment.)

  13. Keep a separate account each and put into a joint account the monthly bills to be paid with both of you having joint account access.

    You dropped the ball on the account and that is on you.

    Was she 100% truthful? Only you can decide that.

  14. Online banking issues? You can call every bank’s customer service number and find out your balance, not to mention getting your password reset or whatever minor glitch was preventing access.

    OP, you’re got to do better at this adulting thing.

  15. You left it to her to organise and not take any part in, which is on you. I would also say that expenses for large purchases should be checked in with, just like “this costs xx, just letting you know” is communicating with your spouse about things, so I do understand that she said one thing and then too out more and yes you have every right to know where it all got spent on”

    Fix the access, or just ask for a statement to look at, if you have open communication then what is the issue here, just ask to see it and whatever the access issue is get on with fixing it already.

    Stop sulking and communicate, says things like “I didn’t realise the wedding was so expensive, I am interested in what the money got spent on so we can plan a budget going forward with our joint finances, can we sit down and do that now?”

  16. Oh my God. Yes, she has crossed a line. Deliberately, too, it would seem. I would think your problems accessing your account are more get restricting your access because she didn’t want you to see what was happening.

    And to suggest she is owed anything is ludicrous. You need to go to the bank, get your access restored and then spend some time reconciling the account with her documentation. I think you might be surprised by what you find.

  17. Honestly this is 100% on you. You are angry with her you were too lazy to fix your online access issues for years and relied 100% on her to manage the account. You say she should have kept you better informed? NO! YOU SHOULD HAVE.

  18. You trusted your wife to handle your joint account and really showed no interest in it. She used her best judgment — which may be different from yours.

    So this is on you. You’ve essentially said “do what you want, I can’t be bothered with it” and then turn around and say “you did it wrong”.

    One thing though — even assuming you have agreed to have separate accounts, whatever she spent on the wedding needs to be compared to the several thousands you put into the account over the years. Unless she put in an equal amount, she isn’t owed anything.

    I’d suggest the following system going forward:
    1. A shared account for day to day payments, bills et c. Your salaries go here.
    2. A shared savings account.
    3. You each have your own account you get to do with as you please.

    Once you have that set up, you decide what kind of costs should be shared (e.g. rent, food, gas, car et c) and what each partner pays for themselves (going out for a beer with friends). Subtract the shared costs from the total income every month. Whatever is left, you split evenly and put into your respective accounts.

  19. The amount of people thinking anyone but you is responsible for this failure is astounding. You all but give over the reigns to your partner to be fully responsible for ALL joint expenses including bills, a whole WEDDING, and budgeting and then have the gall to come crying about how “not that much is missing but principle waah” is ridiculous.

    OP you couldn’t be bothered to fix a simple login issue for THREE YEARS, haven’t followed up what’s going on with the account until now and think you can bitch about it? Fix your login, TALK to your partner about expectations going forward and learn this lesson.

  20. It’s unclear who paid for the wedding but if you had $10,000 in there and the wedding cost $12,000, it’s understandable that it’s now gone… She should’ve communicated better but I think you could’ve too.

  21. >sort the account out and monitor it better in the future

    yes, you’re going to need to do that


    >or has she crossed a line?

    Of course she has. You should watch your accounts like a hawk. However, you are newly married, don’t make a huge fuss over it, but instead, take responsibility for monitoring the accounts yourself.

  22. It’s shitty but in all honesty, you seem to have been lazy about…everything. I know she should’ve communicated better but that goes for you too. Weddings can get stupidly expensive and for you to not even glance at that account, in apparently months, makes no sense. Get your access back and make sure the money at least went where it was supposed to be going. Then take an active role in your finances. Maybe what would’ve been plenty to an individual was only a little for a couple paying for an overly expensive wedding.

  23. Honestly, I think both of you are to blame.

    Weddings are wicked expensive and it’s not odd for things to be more expensive than you originally planned for, for expenses to escalate. I would even say that is normal. It was also your wedding, but seems she did it all; why weren’t you more active in the wedding planning and actual set-up process? I find it pretty lame that you put that huge burden – it’s a lot of work! – on your partner and now are upset that it came out more expensive. Next time, when there’s a huge celebration for the TWO of you, maybe show some more interest in actually helping out.

    She should have told you that it’s costing more than originally planned, though. That was a bad decision on her part. I wonder why she made it. She could be just financially irresponsible or feel entitled to money, and if so – yikes! That’s bad news bears.

    It could also be that she saw how the wedding planning was on here and you were not helping, so decided that extra responsibility also means extra decision-making privileges. Which is something worth discussing with your SO, but not a completely absurd idea either.

    But at the end of the day, when you don’t do your share of the work, people may take advantage of you. It is possible she did take advantage of you and sucks, but you put her in a place to do so because you just wanted her to take care of something you both should be heavily investing your time and effort in.

    Edit to add: Full disclosure: this take is inspired by my issues with men putting all wedding planning/efforts on women. If you couldn’t tell. So i may be really biased here and not objective.

  24. Also, I recommend a financial counselor to be sought out around the time couples therapy begins or this will get worse. Also, here is a link that might be able to help but not to be in place of financial counseling This link is by the same people who offered financial peace through churches.

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