My husband gives me nearly $400 a month only despite jointly owning 2 houses

By Mai Phuong   May 28, 2024 | 05:29 pm PT
My husband retains his entire salary for himself and only gives me VND10 million (US$393) monthly for family expenses, despite our co-owning two houses that I purchased with my money.

We have been married for eight years and have two well-behaved and adorable children. My husband, who is five years older than me, is calm, meticulous, and pays great attention to detail.

I lost my mother at a young age, and my farmer father raised me and my siblings on his own. Our family was quite poor, so when I married, my father couldn’t provide a dowry.

In contrast, my husband’s family is wealthy, with plenty of savings and rental properties. Despite their wealth, they haven’t financially supported our ventures, and they place a high value on wealth while looking down on the poor.

When I joined my husband’s family, I was disparaged by his parents and younger sister due to my poor background and lack of dowry. Recognizing the importance of financial independence in having a voice in the household, I left my company job a year after our marriage to start a business at home, which thankfully became successful, increasing my income.

At the time, my husband’s monthly salary was only VND7-8 million, while I was earning 10 times more than him. He gave all his earnings to me to manage our family expenses. I saved diligently and was able to purchase our first house after three years.

Believing in transparency and shared finances, I kept no secrets and made no distinctions about our respective earnings. However, my husband frequently transferred money from my account to his friends and relatives without consulting me, and I only found out when I checked our account and questioned him.

Even as I bought a second house three years later and my husband’s salary increased to VND15-18 million, he continued to contribute only VND10 million each month for household expenses. This amount doesn’t cover all our costs, as just our children’s education expenses consume VND7 million, forcing me to use my own funds for the remainder without seeking additional contributions from him.

When purchasing the second house, my in-laws lent us VND600 million, for which we pay VND3.5 million in monthly interest. As my husband’s salary grew, I asked him to increase his contribution to our household expenses, but he refused, wanting to maintain the VND10 million monthly contribution.

This led to arguments between us, during which I highlighted that I had financed both houses, making them joint assets he benefits from, yet his financial contribution remained minimal. In anger, I told him he should handle his parents’ loan repayment on his own.

Two years have passed, and he still hasn’t settled the debt. He has also become secretive about his personal accounts, including banking and social media, and excludes me from decisions, such as giving money to his parents for New Year’s gifts or to his sister for her wedding, which left me deeply frustrated. We now manage our finances separately without any joint funds.

As a wife, I have lost trust in him, and I’m concerned that if this situation persists, our family might not sustain itself. Looking ahead, significant funds will be required for our children’s education and other needs. If we can’t align on financial matters, I worry about the future well-being of our children.

Additionally, my relationship with my in-laws remains strained, and my husband prioritizes his family over me.

Can you offer any advice to help change my husband’s attitude and behavior?

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