Originally Posted by Sandra87
His wins and losses are inconsistent. Sometimes he may win just a bit, sometimes several hundred, maybe a thousand - but when I track our account activity, over time the yield is not positive. He thinks he makes extra money for us, yet I've shown him that he doesn't.
OK, Sandra. I'll tell you what I think here in general terms. I don't know what country you're from, and I'm not trying to get personal I've dealt with this issue more than once professionally. This will be long so bear with me, reread it and think about it, and let me know if you have a comment.
Firstly, being right about an issue is separate from how you feel about an issue. You mentioned your husband being in (presumably innocent) contact with that other woman. Were you right about that issue? No. But how you felt about it, very strongly, is a separate issue. Instead of arguing about whether who is right, your husband should have simply agreed that it's a minor thing and that your feelings are more important, and cut off that contact. Yes, he was right but that doesn't matter especially when it's about something minor. Your feelings are more important. That little incident tells
me a lot about your relationship. You likely argue about who is right when that doesn't really matter in many many things.
You fight about his poker playing. In this issue, you're right and he's wrong. And you feel strongly about it. But he's turning it into an argument about who's right and ignoring your feelings about it. This dichotomy of right vs feeling is the source of a lot of conflict in a marriage, in many different things large and small (such as whether he's blowing the savings on poker or just chatting with an old acquaintance online who happens to be a woman). This is a fundamental problem in many marriages, and I strongly recommend that you two consider marriage counselling for that issue.
Another interesting point is that he says it's his money he's spending. He's wrong. A marriage is an equal partnership, especially economically. Yes, maybe you together agree that you can each have a certain amount of money from the family budget in your own personal account each month to do your own thing as our lovely and wise admin Dakota above described. But that's still budgetting. All of the money you two earn as a couple is family money. He's not spending his agreed upon share of that money doing his own thing, he's dipping right into the larger family pot. He's wrong and that's not fair. So it's time to confront your feelings about this. Are you ready to put your marriage on the line over this issue? I'm not saying you should or shouldn't, but I wouldn't blame you if you did. Think about that.
So, here's what I recommend. It's time for an intervention, even if it's just you. Tell him that whether he's right or wrong about how much he's losing (and you can prove he's wrong), that's less important than how you feel. Because how you feel will end the marriage, whereas his correctness of being up or down won't.
Give him an ultimatum; either he gives up poker or you're leaving, because he's blowing your nest egg on his addiction. And don't get into an argument about who is right, this is about how you feel. Separate issue. And if he won't quit poker, then you know he's either an addict or he cares about poker more than you, and you should get out of that marriage.
That's pretty severe, I admit. If you don't want to take that step, then scale it back a bit. Say to him: "You say you're not an addict? Prove it by quitting poker entirely for two whole weeks." and see what he says. Make it a challenge. Of course he'll say he can quit any time. Tell him, back to the theme, that this isn't about proving him right or wrong but it's rather about how you feel. If he won't do it, or says he will but doesn't quit, then he's an addict (or at least a liar and doesn't care about your feelings as much as he does about being right) and you have decide what to do next.
If he says he'll quit for two weeks and does so, heap praise upon him and be thankful that he's acknowledged how you felt as being more important about whether he was right. Then get him a couple of books about basic poker, especially bankroll management(!!) and tell him that you're okay with him playing once he's demonstrated that he can turn a profit after doing some more studying of the game. He should start with freerolls
and earn free tickets to qualifying events and play those, before he even starts thinking about spending any money on any cash tables. Reinforce that this isn't "his" money he's playing with. It's "family money" and you have as much say about how it's spent as he does. If he wants to change how you feel about the issue, then he has to demonstrate that you have no reason to be concerned by either turning a profit, or at least breaking even or not losing more a reasonable person would normally spend on a cheap hobby.
If you need to make a point, tell him you've talked to a lawyer about it. I've brought applications for divorce on this issue, and claimed unequal division of the family property on the basis that the other party blew a chunk of the family's wealth on gambling or drinking or drugs or whatever, and that those financial losses ought to come solely out of that spouse's share of the divided assets. That's a legitimate argument. He could be facing your lawyer who says that he's already gambled away his share of the family property upon separation so that you yourself are entitled to the rest.
You say that you're watching the finances closely, so keep track of what money he's putting from where into which poker sites
, and challenge him to show you based on his hand and winnings history (most sites will provide this on request) whether he's gained or lost money in the past 30 or 90 days or whatever. Gambling addicts minimize their losses in their minds. He won't believe you when you tell him he's losing, he needs to gather that information himself and see it for himself. And if he won't even get those figures and look at them, then he's in denial about his addiction for sure.
Does that make sense? I don't want to know if there are children involved or other complicating factors; there always are. I just wanted to focus on this issue, and to tell you that I think that this poker business is a symptom of a fundamental problem with your spousal relationship.