Google+ Bree Bronson's Babies: Whose money

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Whose money

Being a home mom isn't really a big cash cow to a job. In Finland we're quite well off though: a parent can stay at home with the kids without losing her job until the youngest child turns three. And there's some financial support from the society as well. But still: now that Daughter is over 1,5 years old I get around 500 Euros per month. That's basically nothing. After all the necessities I have to buy there's no money left for myself.

Husband, on the other hand, goes to work and gets his salary and bonuses. Sure enough, he gets to pay most of our bills and groceries as well but we have never had a common bank account for the family's expenses. I've suggested it, in vain. This makes Husband an ultimate financial king in our family. And me - I feel like a teenager who needs to beg money from the parents for every movie or new pair of socks.

Possessing the majority of family's funds actually gives Husband a position to decide about surprisingly many things: when do we go to the grocery store, where do we travel (if we do) and all in all what is necessary to buy and what's not. And we do not always agree. As I told you, Husband wanted a snow thrower. I thought it was unnecessary and stupid. At the same time Son needed a new bed, he'd grown out of the old one. I wanted to get him an expensive but a stylish one which can be converted for example to a loft bed easily. One that he could take with him when he moves out one of these days. Husband thought it was unnecesssary and suggested a 50 € bed from Ikea.
In these situations I can either shut my mouth and let Husband decide, whine and beg or somehow find the money myself. The last option won this time. Just guess how happy Husband is, I could see it in his face that he thought I made the stupidest purchase ever. I didn't remind him of the snow thrower, I'll save it for later in case the conversation continues.

I'm wondering how other parents solve the financial dilemma. I mean really, what do you do so that another of you (read: the mom) doesn't feel like a slave worker? And how do families solve the puzzle of taking care of small kids in other countries than our small happy Finland? Does the mom always lose her job if she stays at home?

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