Different people can have very different perspectives on how to manage money. For one woman on Reddit, she and her ex’s different approaches to money has sparked conflict over how she spends the child support he pays for their son.
In a post shared with Reddit’s AITA (Am I The A**hole) community, a mom jumped right into the issue she’s having.
“AITA for making my son live ‘cheaply’?” she asked.
“My ex gives me a generous amount of child support every month and I use about 20-30% of it maybe,” she began. “I’m very good at budgeting since my mum raised me on her own and we always stuck to a strict budget.”
Her ex didn’t have the same experience as she did growing up.
“My ex grew up being overindulged and knowing he would never have to worry about money in his lifetime,” she explained, “so we have different ideas of what living cheaply looks like.”
She further explained:
“Recently my ex wanted to have a word with me because he didn’t like the fact that I made our son walk home from school. He wanted to know why I wouldn’t buy a car and offered me money to get one when I told him cars were expensive and I thought it was a waste of money. I told him no since I would rarely use it.”
“He then told me to take an uber home instead of making him walk. Again, I told him no and he brought up all of the other ways he thought I was making our son ‘live cheaply’.”
“For example: I didn’t buy him new football boots or a goal when he started getting into football (he is only 4), I buy him ‘cheap’ clothes, I rarely take him to eat out and if we go to a toy shop, I only ever let him get one thing and it can’t be super expensive.”
“My ex wanted to know what I was using all of the money he gave to me on if I was raising our son like this, so I explained I never used most of it but kept it in a separate account for either a rainy day or for our son.”
“Now he’s angry at me for making our son ‘live cheaply’ and essentially told me to stop saving and actually give our son the things he wants now because he had already made sure our son would be fine in the future.”
She wasn’t thrilled with his critique, and that’s why she asked Reddit users to weigh in.
“All that money should be used to support your son not ‘put away for a rainy day,’” one person replied. “Put any [excess] money in a college fund or something for his future. This is not your money, it’s for your son.”
“Child support is for the child,” another commenter wrote. “If you aren’t using it for the child, maybe he should take you back to court to renegotiate how much money he is giving YOU and instead buy your son stuff.”
“As long as the kid gets everything he needs and you are not skimping, it’s okay,” felt another person. “He may be thankful later for having saved him some money, in fact.”
“Sounds like you are raising him not to be a spoiled kid. Kids don’t need brand new every, or every toy they ask for,” someone else replied. “Long as they have supportive parents. Would be interesting to know what the parenting break down is for custody. And I assume [you’re] in a city and that is why you don’t want a car.”