Spending money

Tri46guy

New member
So my wife and I have been slowly launching into poly, but after going to the Loving More conference we are both pretty excited about it.

One thing we want to avoid is arguing over money. We are thinking about changing our finances around a bit and setting things up separate accounts for each of us for optional spending on stuff versus our joint account for each other, family and house stuff. We'll just continue to deposit our income in the joint account but setup an auto transfer of the same amount to each of our individual accounts we can access with cards each month. That way it will be up to us how we spend the money and on what or who. Cool as long as we agree on how much comes out of the joint account each month.

Is that how others have done it or are there other good solutions?
 

AlwaysGrowing

Well-known member
We still only use our joint account but have a "personal money" fund for each of us in the budget so we know how much is available for our individual fun stuff. Our dates with each other come out of these funds, too, so we have to decide if one of us is treating or if we're going dutch before making plans.
 

Ravenscroft

Banned
We had a system like that, with all four of us able to access the joint account. (Our bank manager was delighted with us! Not only were we fun & charming, but the household income level looked GREAT for our neighborhood.)

But I would suggest that you intentionally "overpay the pig," because crap happens. It doesn't have to be much of an increase.

And you might be surprised to find out how much your respective definitions of "family and house stuff" don't align.
 
My husband and I have had personal spending money for longer than we've been poly. Once we became poly, we added a little extra money to the personal spending money, mostly because my first relationship was long distance, so we upped our spending money to account for me spending money to go see him. All of our money goes into our joint account and then the personal spending money gets transferred to savings accounts under our main account. My husband recently set up a checking account with his girlfriend, so they could just both transfer the same amount in and stop having to keep track of who paid what, since they try to split things fairly evenly for their dates, so now some of his spending money goes to that account, but they didn't do that until they had been dating about 5 years. For everything else that either of us spend, we usually use a credit card and when I pay it off each month, I transfer what ever each of us spent from our individual savings to our joint checking. We used to use cash, but recently changed, now that my husband is a little better at not overspending his money if he uses a card.

I've found that having our own money to spend on our dating is invaluable. I would be much more pissed off if I felt his vacations with her were taking money from household accounts. But since it's taken from his personal spending money, which we had for years before being poly, it doesn't feel the same.
 

KC43

New member
Hubby and I each have individual accounts in addition to our household accounts. That has nothing to do with poly; it's because when I was married to my ex, he constantly took money from the household to spend on himself and then got verbally abusive with me when I couldn't pay the bills--because the bill money wasn't there because *he* had spent it. He couldn't wrap his head around the idea that just because he'd earned the money at work didn't make it his to do whatever he wanted with, at least not when it meant bills couldn't be paid and I had to beg money from my parents so I could feed my kids. When Hubby and I decided to combine households, I told him there was no way in hell I would deal with having fully entwined finances, that I needed us to each keep a separate account for our own things and just use the joint account for household and kid-related expenses.

Not that that's stopped arguments, because he'll say things like "I spent $60 on shoes I needed for work, and that's a household expense because it's for work," and then get confused when my head explodes because clothes are NOT a bloody household expense unless everyone in the household wears them. But for the most part, he comprehends that it doesn't matter *why* he needs something, if he needs it and it is only for him, it comes out of *his* account, not the household.

Spending on other partners isn't an issue, because Hubby doesn't have any other partners and Woody rarely, if ever, lets me spend money on *myself* when I'm with him, let alone on him. One advantage of being female, I guess, at least with the guys I usually get involved with.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
I think having individual spending accounts is a good idea ... but in my case, I am in a closed V and no dating outside the V ever happens. Snowbunny (the lady/hinge of the V) is good at administration and us guys are comfortable letting her make saving/spending decisions. [shrug] I wouldn't recommend it for everyone but so far it works for us.
 

Alan7388

Member
I think that's the best strategy for any couple. Three accounts: your money, my money, and our money.

How you divide it up between the three accounts can cover all kinds of needs and arrangements.
 

GirlFromTexlahoma

New member
I've found that having our own money to spend on our dating is invaluable. I would be much more pissed off if I felt his vacations with her were taking money from household accounts. But since it's taken from his personal spending money, which we had for years before being poly, it doesn't feel the same.

Same here. My husband and I have had spending money accounts forever, and it makes a huge difference - not just for dating expenses, but for clothes/gadgets/going out with friends. It's really nice to have money to spend without you are taking something away from the household, or preventing your spouse from getting something they want.

Woody rarely, if ever, lets me spend money on *myself* when I'm with him, let alone on him. One advantage of being female, I guess, at least with the guys I usually get involved with.

Now I'm curious if this is the norm for others! I definitely noticed that guys wanted to pay for the first few dates. But once it hits long term relationship territory that would feel weird to me :confused: My boyfriend and I take turns paying, so do my husband and his ladies.
 

Tinwen

Active member
Now I'm curious if this is the norm for others! I definitely noticed that guys wanted to pay for the first few dates. But once it hits long term relationship territory that would feel weird to me :confused: My boyfriend and I take turns paying, so do my husband and his ladies.
Not the norm for me. I wouldn't want to be treated all the time (might make me doubt the reasons why I stay in the relationship to easily), and I don't think anyone I've dated would do that anyway.
(But KC's situation sure is different. )
 

PinkPig

Well-known member
Now I'm curious if this is the norm for others! I definitely noticed that guys wanted to pay for the first few dates. But once it hits long term relationship territory that would feel weird to me :confused: My boyfriend and I take turns paying, so do my husband and his ladies.

Same here. I will add that once it hits long-term, there is less of a 'keeping account' on my/my partner's part. Meaning, if one person has more financial resources available, that person may end up paying a greater share, regardless of gender. In all cases though, both parties share in the expenses. Also, I usually go dutch the first few dates. But, then, I also do not like to feel financially dependent on anyone, even if that means I have to work more hours or spend less money. Likewise, I do not like to feel financially responsible for my partner(s). That is probably a by product from my marriage....I felt financially responsible for my ex. It was very draining and made me feel trapped.

Now I type that and it makes me feel bad, lol. Like I wouldn't take care of someone if they needed me to....or accept care from others when I need it. Which is really not true. I just do not want to feel trapped again...
 
Last edited:

Bluebird

Well-known member
Each of the guys have their own personal checking and savings accounts at the same bank, and then the four of us share a joint account. I have the debit card for the joint, and pay all the household bills. They transfer a set amount each pay period into the joint, so I can take care of things. We have a "State of the Union" meeting once a year to discuss short and long term goals, and talk about strategies to get there. I am not joint on their personal accounts, but we did set things up that if they pass away, I have immediate access to those funds in their personal accounts. It was a single piece of paper at the bank to do that. I really recommend that - you wouldn't want cash that would have been transferred stuck in an inaccessible account for weeks or months!

We do consider clothing a household expense - I go through their closets with them twice a year - once in May and once in October - and make a list what is needed before the season changes. That way, I have time to budget in major purchases. Other things - like PunkRock needing new insoles for his work boots - he just tells me he needs new ones and I ok the purchase. If he doesn't want to bother me with it, he could take it out of his regular account, but my husbands are pretty good at asking to use the household account so I can keep track of what things cost. Gosh though, they are such men! If I didn't go through their closets, they'd keep wearing the same ratty tshirts until they fell off their body!

Other things we consider household purchases - medical care co-pays, car maintenance, gas for cars ($20 a week, anything more than that is on them), utilities such as electric, heat, water and cell phones) and rent. Vet expenses too, since between us we own 5 cats. Life insurance comes out of the joint account as well. Their retirement account contributions are not joint, but we discuss the amounts going into each, every year. Groceries and eating out with me, joint. All vacations taken with me are joint.
 

AlwaysGrowing

Well-known member
Now I'm curious if this is the norm for others! I definitely noticed that guys wanted to pay for the first few dates. But once it hits long term relationship territory that would feel weird to me :confused: My boyfriend and I take turns paying, so do my husband and his ladies.

Boy almost always pays. Every once in a while, I make a real effort to grab the bill before he can, but I have to really plan it to make sure I'm fast enough. Now that I'm pretty poor, I don't even try so I try to limit my "hey, let's go out tonight" suggestions. I cook for him most of the times he comes over, though, so I don't feel bad that he pays when we go out. I figure it evens out.

Usually the only thing he'll let me pay for is dessert. Like, we'll go to dinner and pass by McDonald's or Dairy Queen and decide we want ice cream. He paid the $30-40 for dinner, and I get to pay the $5 for ice cream. lol He enjoys treating me, but knows it's important to me to feel like I contribute so he lets me have the little stuff.

Hubby and I split date nights 50-50 unless one of us specifically says we're taking the other out, which usually only happens for birthdays and such or when one of us can't afford to go out unless the other pays. lol
 

KC43

New member
I don't usually have any money. And I mean none; the most recent balance in my individual account was $1.98, and the joint account is still short of what we need to pay our rent that was due last week. Im disabled so can't work a "real" job, writing might get me enough for a up of coffee a month if I'm lucky, and other attempts to earn money have failed. So for me, havng Woody pay my way is a necessity.

He is a gentlemanly type and prefers paying his partners' ways (times when Highlight and I were both at karaoke, he bought both our dinners as well as Lips's the couple of times Lips was there with Highlight), but he wouldn't stop me from paying if I could actually afford it. Right now I think he insists on paying for me when we go out (which is rare anyway) because he knows I don't actually have the money to spend.
 

A2Poly

New member
I don't usually have any money.... So for me, havng Woody pay my way is a necessity.

Same but opposite for us. It seems harder for Mal (as a male) to be in that position, unfortunately. I think I'll discuss the joint account idea with him next time I see him. He could put what can in, and then it's 'our' money? Well, worth talking about anyway.
 

Norwegianpoly

New member
We all have our seperate accounts. I tried having a joint (as well as a seperate) account with my mono ex, it didn't really give more financial stability as the account couldn't be used for paying bills or be attached to a debit card. I assume we could have gotten a card in a different bank, but it all seemed too much trouble. Perhaps I will feel diferently in the future. Currently, our system goes like this:

My husband pays the regular bills, like our flat loan and rent. I have a set deposit so that I pay half of this (husband and I share the flat). Then we used to have it like we would split up the other bills so that we shared things like electricity, internet and so on. We stopped having a stationary phone so have have our seperate phone bills, and we don't want to connect our cell phones at this point. We used to pay exactly half of grocery bills (check the balance each week), but I have been sick and he was forced to take on lots of the household bills. We lost track of our old system, and so we made it so that for the next few years, I am responsible for paying all of these bills, as long as I have money (and I spend very little on myself these days). We are each responsible for our own loans, expect the flat loan. That means student loans and credit card bills. We have a common understanding that we will do our best to pay all we can on our credit cards, but also husband needs more clothes (and I have more debt), so I am happy that he spends on himself until he has built up more of a full wordrobe. We try to be frugal, but sometimes we go out.

I pay most regarding visiting my long distance boyfriend, for instance plane tickets. We used to rent together in his country when I visited once a month, and husband came to visit us there sometimes. The first time we shared a house for a week (before we started renting), I payed for it. When my boyfriend visited my country (before husband and I bought the bigger flat), husband payed half the hotel bill and some other expenses. When I am with my boyfriend alone, I pay most things. This is simply because I make so much more money than he does, and because the cost of living in his country is cheap compared to salaries in my country. When we rented together, I payed the rent, foood and entertainment, and he payed most of electricity, internet etc. We both got cat food. He pays his own phone and in country travel expenses, like visiting his family. Sometimes we buy things like shoes or clothes together and I pay, but it is really like things we need so it is purchase more than shopping. When he visited me and my husband, I payed all of it as he had no money. I sometimes give or send him cash money to spend, enough to cover small bills or so that he can "buy us" things when I visit. He is not 100 % happy with this arrangement because he feels inferior as a man (and I was not happy because I could not afford it!), so this season we don't rent together (he stays in a small dormatory) and I will just get a hotel room when I visit. Our cat lives under his workplace... We are trying to make sure he can pay most of the debt in his country while I save up so that we can close the distance. He is very generous and will pay for dinner, give gifts etc. when he does have money. I have no doubt that when he starts to earn more, he will contribute more. He works long hours and is also finishing his university degree.

My boyfriend and I don't go out much, perhaps once or twice each visit (some visits not at all) - we have a system where I withdraw money and give them to him before we go inside, that way he can be "the man" and pay, also he knows people so he sometimes gets a personal discount. To me assuming the man should pay is a bit absurd, because I am raised with people going dutch. The way I see it it is a practical matter that I pay because I have money, but I don't mind helping him keep a bit of facade if it makes him happy.

When my husband has visited, we have usually gone out to eat or smoke water pipe all three of us. I think I usually pay most and and my husband chips in, but that we give it all to my boyfriend before entering. It is usual that only one person pays for the meal in his country, so we try to follow the custom.

Long term, I know my boyfriend will want to send money to his family because they need it and he owns a share in the family house and gardens. I support him in this, even if it means less money for us, it will be important for them, and important for his self esteeem that he will be able to contribute. There is no such thing as regular benifits in his country. The family lives off the land and are extremely frugal to be able to get buy and build on their family house to extend it so that his siblings can house wives and kids. I would feel bad knowing we had money and they didn't, so him sending money to family definetely needs to be built into our future economy.

When we get kids, I assume that the three of us will pay for all childrelated expenses, but that is something that needs to be talked about.

We don't have a car (we live very close to the city centre in both places and get buy with feet, bikes and public transport) and we don't plan to get one in the future, but in the past we have been member of a carpooling service and we plan to rejoin after we have payed off a bit more credit card debt. Our long term plans including buying a flat for my boyfriend here (or the three of us buying a bigger flat/house), as well as buying a summer house in his country.

Even though we don't have a strict system, the three of us talk a LOT about money. We talk about purchases we made or plan to make. The most important thing is that it works and that everyone involved are happy.
 
Last edited:

LoveBunny

Active member
One advantage of being female, I guess, at least with the guys I usually get involved with.

Funny, this has become an issue in my life recently. I'm usually with men, and very used to letting men pay for dinners, drinks, and trips, with the occasionally pricey gift thrown in. All the men I've dated the last couple of years made significantly more money than me, so it just made sense. Now, for the first time in many, many, years, I'm in a rather serious relationship with another female. She's lovely, but she's dirt poor. Money is pretty much the only thing we have conflict about, because I end up paying for everything and it's a strain.

She got miffed at me a couple times when she did spend money on me and I just sort of took it as my due. I'm just so used to having my lovers spend money on me! It's definitely an adjustment and something we're trying hard to work out.
 

KC43

New member
For me, I guess that's one advantage of not dating women. LOL (That is a joke...probably a bad one, I'm in a mood today.)
 

nycindie

Active member
I'm solo, so I don't need to work on a budget with a partner or anything like that. Generally, for me, whoever does the asking out pays. So if a guy wants to take me out, he's picking up the check. When I date men my age, that's pretty much a given. Hey, I'll provide the condoms, and the morning coffee. Younger guys always seem to want to go Dutch even if they're the ones who ask me out. I don't get it. You're interested in me, and want to have dinner with me or see a movie together, so you ask me to go out with you ... and then you want me to pay for my meal and/or movie ticket? But this was your idea! You want my company and are hoping it will lead to sex, so pick up the check! I don't need to do anything too fancy or expensive. If the guy I'm dating is poly and partnered (which is rare), I don't concern myself with how he has arranged with his partner how to pay for dates with other people. It's none of my business, and I would think that anyone who asks me out can afford to do so.

If I ask someone out, or want to cook a nice meal for someone, I'll pay.
 
Last edited:

Emm

Stealth Mod
Younger guys always seem to want to go Dutch even if they're the ones who ask me out. I don't get it.
It's possible that your cheapskate dates are trying to avoid coming off as creeps.
You want my company and are hoping it will lead to sex, so pick up the check!
That leads very easily to the idea that if a guy buys you dinner you owe him sex. Most people I know go dutch from the start to avoid that, so having the guy insist on paying would make me wonder if he was trying to get me into the position of "owing" him something. Depending upon how insistant he is about it, that would be enough to put me off, even if I was—up until that point—considering the idea of sex with him.
 

nycindie

Active member
. . . the idea that if a guy buys you dinner you owe him sex. Most people I know go dutch from the start to avoid that, so having the guy insist on paying would make me wonder if he was trying to get me into the position of "owing" him something. Depending upon how insistant he is about it, that would be enough to put me off, even if I was—up until that point—considering the idea of sex with him.

Oh, I didn't mean to imply that someone who is expecting sex that night should pick up the check, basically to "guarantee" he will get what he wants. I meant that the guy has hopes (most of the time) of seeing this date lead somewhere, and that usually would include sex, so why be a cheapskate? Be as generous as you can be if you want to spend time with someone. If you can't afford to pay for two dinners, just ask someone out for coffee. But if that's the case, how will you afford to go out and do things on a regular basis with someone you want to date?

Furthermore, I have no problem saying no to sex even if a guy treats me to dinner. And I have no qualms about getting up and leaving before the date is over if the guy is a dud. I just feel that whoever does the asking should pay. Of course, there are times when I go Dutch but only when we plan that in advance. But normally if a guy asks me out, I am not reaching for my wallet when the check comes.
 
Last edited:
Top