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Has anyone else not told their partner about their debt and got through it?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Debt-Free Wannabe
32 replies 16.6K views


  • I feel for you I really do. My husband told me yesterday that he has debts of 50K, you can imagine my surprise, lol. Carrying the burden of the lies has been horrific for him and by trying to protect me things spiralled totally out of control. He knows how I feel about debt which made it so much harder. I know the circumstances are not the same, you seem to have gained control of your debts and are doing something positive to address the problem whereas he wasn't. What I'm saying is that my god I'm glad he told me, yes I was angry to start, and yes I suppose I still am but I'm also sympathetic to him too. However I feel right now, he's feeling ten times worse. Honesty worked for us. My anger was more about trust than money.

    This may not work for you but think about it. Consider what may happen if he found out about it by some other way.

    Good luck, I hope this all works out for you and well done again for taking the postive steps to get debt free.

  • GlitterariGlitterari Forumite
    597 Posts
    My OH was always aware of my financial situation although not necessarily the extent.

    One day I decided it was time to work out how to get rid of it as quickly as possible. I remember very clearly sitting down with him and telling him the limit on my cc. He started working out repayments to clear it in set time frame - I had to write on a piece of paper and hand it to him how much over the limit I actually was...and I cried and cried. That was a tough day. But he was fabulous about it - back then he knew more about money and understood things like APRs and stuff like that and I didn't. That was only in Sept/Oct last year.

    I couldn't have done this without him...I wasn't upset or worried about his reaction - just totally ashamed at myself.

    It really is your decision to make and I know there is a lot of people on here who are managing it all on their own and I really respect that. If you have a supportive OH though - it could really help you through the real tough times. Good luck.

    Carly xxx
    Proud DFW Nerd #62:wink:

    Became Debt Free in Oct 2006 - uni was hard - financially!! Now need to start again.... :rolleyes2

  • If you can't talk tp your partner then you don't have a partner , just someone who lives with you. As a person on the other side of this argument not telling is the worst thing you can do.
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  • Dr.LouDr.Lou Forumite
    266 Posts
    I'm sorry to hear about your problem....I've not been in a similar situation, but if my OH had a problem (whatever it was), I would want him to tell me so we could sort it out together...and visa versa. I know you say he doesn't like debt etc, but if you think about it you could have done something a lot worse to have to confess. If you tell him, perhaps he can help you deal with it in some ways (emotionally and practically)...A problem shared is a problem halved. Good Luck!
  • The advantage of sorting it out yourself is that you will not feel like you have been rescued and as time goes on you will become more confident and feel more in control of your life...there's more to marriage than money. ;) Why worry him if you can sort it out alone. :o
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  • My OH knows about my debts, but he knew my ex who created many of them! He's very supportive which is great!
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  • lynzpowerlynzpower Forumite
    25.3K Posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    If the OP cannot, and I cant see how they can in fairness, keep up all the debt payments then surely the other half will find out at some point. Be it, a conversation " why dont we save up for a holiday" or "shall we have kids" ( thats th sort of things me & my OH talk about at home quite a bit) I wonder what you can say without lying. I dont think lying or keeping secrets is good for anyones mental health, and I remember with fondness what happened when DottyAnne had her Lighhtbulb moment, and I was watching it all unfold, with a tear in my eye and sheer relief for her when it happened & her OH was suportive. I always think if your OH cant support you in times like this, seriously, whats the point of having them?
    :beer: Well aint funny how its the little things in life that mean the most? Not where you live, the car you drive or the price tag on your clothes.
    Theres no dollar sign on piece of mind
    This Ive come to know...
    So if you agree have a drink with me, raise your glasses for a toast :beer:
  • Just wanted to say that you shouldn't feel pressured into telling your OH but do think it would be a good idea for you to have someone to offload onto. I recently went through an IVA process as I had debts of around £45,000. I live with my parents but I couldn't tell them and they still have no idea. Instead I confided in one of my closest friends and they have been a great support. Sometimes just knowing someone supports you can be a massive lift and can give you the motivation to start things rolling. Once your finances are looking a bit healthier or you have a plan of action that might be the time to speak to your OH. At least they will be able to see that you are committed to sorting things out.

    Good luck with everything..
  • jesster_2jesster_2 Forumite
    393 Posts
    I have debts and I'm clearing them. My OH has debts - or rather HAD - he's recently declared BR.

    We've both been totally honest about our debts with each other. In fact, I have been totally honest with everyone I know about my debts, to the point of broadcasting them live on the radio station I work for! That's my little bit of help at breaking the taboos!

    I'm not saying it's the right thing for everyoneto be totally open, because as lots of people have said, sometimes OHs for whatever reason are utterly unhelpful or even destructive at supporting you through paying them off.

    I think it's a personal choice - you know your OH best, and if you know for sure that it's NOT going to help telling your OH and you're GENUINELY BETTER dealing with it on your own - rather than just scared - then i can understand keeping it secret. And I really really feel for people in this situation, because you must feel really alone.

    But I've met a lot of people with severe debts problems. And for the vast majority, the problems got worse when they tried to keep them secret, particularly because for a lot of people the truth had to come out in the end. Nothing's more destructive than NOT telling someone who WOULD help you, and then it all coming out once the problem's gone past the point of no return, and they hear it from the bailiff, and then feel betrayed and let down that you didn't feel you could tell them.

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  • Thanks so much for all the posts. Its hard I just don't know what to do:(
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