Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Furniture, Trust, and $100

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Furniture, Trust, and $100

    So this is kind of personal and I apologize for the weird post but I kind of have no one else to run this past. It's also tangentially financially related.

    We recently moved and my SO is selling furniture from our old house behind my back.

    For some background, my reasoning is that I don't want to deal with the hassle of selling old furniture and I just want to hire a company to donate it away. I'm naturally distrustful and I've taken Bernstein's "treat all financial professionals as hardened criminals" to the next level of "treat all people as if they were hardened criminals" until I get to know someone. My SO is a more normal, perhaps too trusting human being who grew up from a poorer background and believes it's silly to donate old furniture when she can go to Facebook Marketplace and sell a coffee table for instance for $100 (and make my skin crawl in the process). She knows I would disapprove of her doing so but has still arranged a deal to sell furniture tomorrow behind my back.

    So a couple of questions

    1) Obviously I am most upset by the lack of trust/communication. She knows I would disapprove and she does this behind my back. I only know because I caught a cursory look at her text messages. Is there a way that I can confront her? How would that conversation begin? "Hey I've still got decent vision and from a quick glimpse at your text messages, I know you are doing stuff behind my back that I don't like"

    2) If I don't confront her, is it worth intervening? Our old home is in a gated community with a security guard. I was thinking about stopping there on my way to work, slipping the security guard at the front gate $100 to see if he would take the potential buyer's photo and driver's license and forward it to me so that I have some sort of identification in case things go bad. Or am I truly a lunatic? Just step back and let my SO breathe and make this one stupid transaction?

    3) How do I address this moving forward? What is most frustrating to me is that we both work and we make a killing. Enough money to be FI in our late 30s. It is frustrating to me that because she grew up poor, she still has this mentality where she feels the need to squeeze every single dollar out of every single situation. e.g. (After the old house was sold, the first thing she did instead of celebrating a 6 digit capital gain is to return to the old house and push the AC back up. It bothered her the realtors left the AC running at 76)

    I've tried passively aggressively splurging in the hopes of instilling a "you cannot out-save me when I'm willing to spend this much on inane items" mentality but that is clearly not working. What is next? Counseling? Or again, am I making a mountain out of a molehill? Just let it go and realize that we are different people with different mindsets? It just bothers me that we have a 7 digit net worth and she would risk potential harm over $100 of old furniture (yes, I know that the odds of something going wrong are slim but why run that risk over $100?)

    She's going after work with the kids too which bothers me even more. Again, the chances of something going wrong are slim but now she is risking her own safety and my kids' safety. Our kids are young so assuming I do not confront her tonight, I am hoping my young kids are still aware enough to tell me what happened on the way home tomorrow and I figure that will be my launching pad into a spectacular argument that will keep the neighbors up all night

  • #2
    Dude, take a deep breath . .you sound like me before I gave up caffeine. What is really going on here, besides furniture? You DO sound a little bit like a “lunatic”. But I’m guessing there are deeper issues.

    Comment


    • #3
      What the heck is the problem with just using the old furniture/taking it to the new house?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by MoneyMoth View Post
        She knows I would disapprove of her doing so but has still arranged a deal to sell furniture tomorrow behind my back.
        ]
        If that is true, this is the issue that must be dealt with. The other stuff is kinda immaterial, but FWIW, I would try to make some cash on the furniture and I also lost my mind at the energy bill when my house was in escrow.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by CBan01 View Post
          Dude, take a deep breath . .you sound like me before I gave up caffeine. What is really going on here, besides furniture? You DO sound a little bit like a “lunatic”. But I’m guessing there are deeper issues.
          It really is just furniture I don't like that we had a discussion about old furniture, I gave my rather strong opinion, and a few weeks later she goes behind my back to do exactly what I asked her not to do.

          If you are talking about deeper trust issues, I cannot imagine she is cheating (although I'm sure everyone who has been cheated on leads with that). I am not cheating.

          The lunatic thing is fair. I concede I take things to the extreme when it comes to things I perceive as security risks. If the advice is happy spouse happy house, let the deal go through and don't start WW3 over something so stupid, I'll listen. It just seems like something that college kids or medical students would do. How many attendings in their late 30s make $100 furniture deals on Facebook Marketplace?

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by ENT Doc View Post
            What the heck is the problem with just using the old furniture/taking it to the new house?

            We already have new furniture in the new house.

            This is old furniture that I wanted to donate. She wants to sell. I know we disagree but I didn't think she would arrange for a private sale over Facebook Marketplace behind my back.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by G View Post

              If that is true, this is the issue that must be dealt with. The other stuff is kinda immaterial, but FWIW, I would try to make some cash on the furniture and I also lost my mind at the energy bill when my house was in escrow.
              Yes that is obviously what I am most upset at.

              Again, I don't think any cheating is involved. I don't think it goes any deeper than that.

              Comment


              • #8
                Clearly this is bothering given the thought in this post. From my point of view, you are being a bit unreasonable to forbid your spouse from doing something due to your phobia. I understand that you don't need the money and you don't like it. It is an issue that your wife doesn't feel like she can be open with you that she wants to do this.

                From a safety perspective, it would be better to accept she wants to do this and help make sure it is done in a safe way. Let her know you unintentionally saw the message and you would feel more comfortable if you went together. You could have a friend on the phone who can call for help if something goes terribly wrong. I suggest finding a compromise where you can be somewhat comfortable and she can proceed with the transaction.

                I think couples counseling is a good idea. Talk it out. Be willing to listen. People aren't always rational with money and her relationship to money certainly isn't going to change overnight. Hopefully you can both adapt to the other's perceptive. You may need to accept that you may not ever be eye to eye but need to find a way to make it work. It does not appear your current approach is working (I suspect aggressively splurging is probably creating a bigger wedge not leading her to want to spend more as well).

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Gamma Knives View Post
                  Clearly this is bothering given the thought in this post. From my point of view, you are being a bit unreasonable to forbid your spouse from doing something due to your phobia. I understand that you don't need the money and you don't like it. It is an issue that your wife doesn't feel like she can be open with you that she wants to do this.

                  From a safety perspective, it would be better to accept she wants to do this and help make sure it is done in a safe way. Let her know you unintentionally saw the message and you would feel more comfortable if you went together. You could have a friend on the phone who can call for help if something goes terribly wrong. I suggest finding a compromise where you can be somewhat comfortable and she can proceed with the transaction.

                  I think couples counseling is a good idea. Talk it out. Be willing to listen. People aren't always rational with money and her relationship to money certainly isn't going to change overnight. Hopefully you can both adapt to the other's perceptive. You may need to accept that you may not ever be eye to eye but need to find a way to make it work. It does not appear your current approach is working (I suspect aggressively splurging is probably creating a bigger wedge not leading her to want to spend more as well).
                  This is helpful, thank you.

                  I know I've had fights before with my wife where she states I'm being unreasonable. Deep down, I think I know that. It's helpful to hear even from anonymous strangers that I am being unreasonable.

                  Not sure I can arrange any of the items you mentioned in time for tomorrow. I'm assuming my idea with the security guard (slipping him a $100 to photodocument everything about the potential buyer on the way in) is feeding a bad paranoia and something to be avoided?

                  I don't mind that she is frugal and doesn't feel the need to spend. I think it is one of the ways that we have been able to build our wealth. I just want her to recognize the line between being frugal and needlessly cheap. I'd love for her to spend more on herself but I can accept that doesn't bring her happiness. The items that drive me mad are the need to sell any of our old items (and to do it with private buyers because it fetches more) rather than donate and I will concede the constant upward push of the AC drives me nuts too (it's currently set at 82 in the living room, we live in the deep south...)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You do sound like a controlling lunatic. I’m not saying you are one, but it’s how you sound right now. You wanted things one way and she wanted something different and you are angry that she is not doing what you want. You guys need counseling so that you can learn how to communicate. In the meantime if I were you I would mention to her that you saw the text and you would like to go with her or you would at least like her to have you on the phone for the duration. If you are reasonable about this it is more likely she will share things with you more readily moving forward. If you turn it into a major fight she learns to be more secretive.

                    At least someone who wants it will get the table. If you donate it it increases the chance it just gets trashed. I’ve bought stuff used from wealthy people when I was younger. I once bought a rug that was 20k+ new from a wealthy family for about 1k. I certainly don’t think they needed the money but I think they were happy to see the rug go to a home that would appreciate it (which doesn’t necessarily happen when you donate or put it out on the curb). So there may be some of that reasoning too in your SO’s head.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If the buyer turns out to be a serial killer, you can tell her I told you so. If she comes back alive, then let it go.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Anne View Post
                        You do sound like a controlling lunatic. I’m not saying you are one, but it’s how you sound right now. You wanted things one way and she wanted something different and you are angry that she is not doing what you want. You guys need counseling so that you can learn how to communicate. In the meantime if I were you I would mention to her that you saw the text and you would like to go with her or you would at least like her to have you on the phone for the duration. If you are reasonable about this it is more likely she will share things with you more readily moving forward. If you turn it into a major fight she learns to be more secretive.

                        At least someone who wants it will get the table. If you donate it it increases the chance it just gets trashed. I’ve bought stuff used from wealthy people when I was younger. I once bought a rug that was 20k+ new from a wealthy family for about 1k. I certainly don’t think they needed the money but I think they were happy to see the rug go to a home that would appreciate it (which doesn’t necessarily happen when you donate or put it out on the curb). So there may be some of that reasoning too in your SO’s head.
                        That is fair. I was planning on launching into a huge argument tomorrow evening but what you pointed out is very true.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by pierre View Post
                          If the buyer turns out to be a serial killer, you can tell her I told you so. If she comes back alive, then let it go.

                          haha this is also very fair. I realize I'm coming off as a lunatic. in a semi defense, my parents and my wife incidentally are huge fans of dateline nbc, 20/20, unsolved mysteries, and shows of that ilk. Unfortunately, watched a ton of those shows as a kid, or on a rainy weekend with my wife

                          I've always wondered how people can watch marathons of those shows and not think the worst of humanity?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            OK so all this was really helpful, thank you to everyone for talking me off the ledge

                            I think in the short term, the plan then is to ask the security guard to alert me when the buyer arrives (I still feel a little uncomfortable confronting her now by saying I saw her texts), gently confront my wife over the phone at that time and ask that she keep me on the line until the deal is completed

                            and then once home, having a civil conversation about what happened and maybe pursuing counseling since this is clearly a long-standing issue between us (it's not meant to be a joke but I have suggested counseling in the past. Knowing my mindspace I probably need it more than she does. But she refused not because it she thinks it wouldn't work but because... drumroll ... she thinks it would be a waste of money)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Here's something I'm not clear on. Did you actually have a discussion about how to dispose of the furniture or were you just expecting her to know that you would want her to do what she did?

                              If you did have a discussion, then how did that go? Did the two of you agree not to sell the furniture. If not, what was the outcome of the discussion.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X