My wife and I have always lived a rather modest life; I work for a nonprofit and she’s a teacher, so our combined income isn’t really enough to live a high life.
There have been some challenges along the way – moments when we really thought we wouldn’t make rent, times when we lived on canned soup or Kraft mac and cheese, and many nights when we couldn’t afford it were able to go to nice bars with friends.
We were one in everything. We definitely had our moments, but I think we also supported each other very well during these difficult times.
I asked my parents for help a few times when things were really bad, and even though they didn’t have much money, they were kind enough to help whenever they could.
But I’m tired of living paycheck to paycheck, so I looked for other jobs. I love my current role, but I feel like it’s time to do something that will allow me to give my wife and our future family the life they deserve.
Dear Jane, I discovered that my wife hid her trust fund from me for years — even though we struggled to make ends meet
So imagine my shock when I opened the mail the other day and came across papers showing that my wife was sitting on a trust fund worth more than $450,000.
My eyes almost popped out of my head. She never said anything to me. I knew she had a really bad relationship with her parents growing up – so much so that she hadn’t spoken to either of them for years when they died – but how on earth did she keep that a secret from me?
I am so angry and upset with her. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think it’s their job to provide for either of us – but there were times when this money could have literally saved us from homelessness.
And she never said anything about it. I was desperately looking for a new job and she was still silent.
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I know I need to talk to her about this, but I really have no idea where to start. Deep down, I’m hoping there’s a good reason why she hid that money – but then so many other possibilities pop into my head and I’m so frustrated I can’t even look at them.
She knows something is wrong – it’s been days – but I haven’t been able to bring myself to start this conversation because I just don’t know where to start.
Dear Distrust Fund,
Money can be the source of so much dissatisfaction as you are now realizing, and I can only imagine how you must feel considering you had to ask your parents for help and have recently looked for other jobs to supplement your income improve .
I don’t know why your wife kept this trust fund secret, but she does.
There could be a number of reasons why she chose not to share this information (and money) with you.
But unless you tell her you know and reveal what you think of all the things you’ve done to keep you both afloat when she could have helped, you won’t be able to , guessing it and not overcoming your frustration.
It’s always a lack of communication that gets in the way of an otherwise good relationship.
In this case, you can first tell her that you discovered the trust fund and that you feel betrayed/ignored/alienated (please insert the adjectives that best describe your feelings) because she does not have this information shares with you.
Whatever the reason for holding back, ask her to be honest with you.
Transparency is the only way you both can move forward, and whatever transgressions either of you may have committed, an open conversation where you can both hear the other is the way through this difficult conversation.
I wish you all the best.