Just goes to show that all the A'ology chatter about marriage being nothing more than a means allowing women to get a hold of men's money is all a bunch of hooey. It's perfectly possible, apparently, for the man to shield his assets from his wife, to such a degree that he's actually living off of her while keeping all his money to himself.
However, I would have to concur with at least one of your other respondents in noting the likelihood that his money had something to do with the house and car being paid off in full. Perhaps you and he had come to an agreement whereby he would take on those burdens of financial responsibility in exchange for you taking over the ongoing utility bills. If you had struck such an bargain, it should have been for a set period of time; the utilities go on and on and there is no end date, therefore they end up costing more in the long run than a mortgage and car payments. Perhaps you did work that proviso into the agreement, and you've just forgotten. Or perhaps it's time for you to calculate how many more months you need to be exclusively responsible for the bills before you reach the amount he paid for the house and car. At that point, it would be time to sit down at the kitchen table with the man and renegotiate terms.
My fiance and I are pooling our resources, which, in a mutually beneficial household with the mutually lived life of a couple, only makes sense; both of our incomes constitute our income as a couple and a domestic unit -- a family, if you will. One of the advantages to marriage and this pooling of income is that it allows us both to raise our standard of living together. There are two bills that are exclusively mine, which I am bringing into the marriage, and my salary will exclusively pay those off. He has expenses related to his son for which he is exclusively responsible. After those personal liabilities, we will have four accounts between us: our two personal (checking/savings) accounts to which neither of the others have access, a joint savings account and a joint checking account. Our paychecks get divided up between those accounts, and the joint checking account is what we use when we pay bills, buy groceries, go out to eat together and make other sorts of joint purchases that benefit us both as a household/couple. That way, there is no bickering over who paid for what. The only point of negotiation is in how much each contributes to the pool.
- Response by pandorasfault
, A Thinker, Female, 46-55, Teaching