Here's the story:
I’m 28 and my fiancé is 30. We both make 120k/year. We’re getting married in two months. For years, we’ve talked about taking an extended honeymoon of 4 months to travel since we’re both in competitive jobs and taking time off regularly just isn’t possible.
To make this dream a reality, a year and a half ago we agreed to start saving aggressively, pay debts, have a no-frills wedding, etc. My job only allowed me to take 2 weeks off (1 unpaid) for a honeymoon so I said okay but will be quitting instead.
Travel for an extended time is a dream of mine and we’ve been setting ourselves up financially where we can afford for one (or both) of us to not have immediate work upon return. My fiancé’s job told him he can take the (unpaid) sabbatical and can return afterwards. So great, everything is in motion.
Two weeks ago, I suggested we start booking the first leg of our trip. He told me he was having cold feet about me not having a job after return home.
We keep our finances separate so I showed him how it’s financially feasible for me to not work up to 4 months, NOT dip into “emergency funds” and if needed, I have emergency funds for an additional 5 months AFTER trip expenses. After all, that’s what we’ve aggressively set ourselves up to do.
Plus, I’ve been looking for a reason to leave my job and this is the perfect opportunity to have an amazing adventure and come back with a fresh start away from a toxic workplace. I ask him how he’s doing financially and how he’s tracking against our financial goals. Turns out he’s not. At all.
He hasn’t been saving at any rate, let alone an accelerated one and he hasn’t been paying down debt. He’s been spending a lot of money on drinks, toys, and general convenience premiums (Postmates, Uber Eats). Because of his general overspending, he can’t afford to take a destination honeymoon, let alone take 4 months off work for no pay.
All this is fine. We keep our finances separate. This doesn’t really impact me. I was bummed we couldn’t have the honeymoon we talked about and angry he lied but money management has never been his priority.
I told him we can take a honeymoon 4 day trip to Puerto Rico (he said that’s all he could afford) and then I would go on my long travel plans with my best friend who has been planning a trip of her own. He got very upset, telling me I should wait to take our designated honeymoon trip together and that I shouldn’t “replace” him.
As of now, I’m still going. He’s unhappy and says it’s embarrassing to him for his new wife to go travel without him, which I understand but also don’t really think his ego takes precedence over my dream to travel (which he fueled for the last year and a half). So, AITA?
Edit: the entire time he was telling me we were “on track” for this sabbatical and shared excitement, had destination bucket lists, etc.
I didn’t force him and if he would have told me he didn’t want to go we would’ve planned a normal honeymoon and I would have traveled at a later date (not immediately after marriage) or even before marriage (we have talked about doing something like this before engagement even)
NTA, but...are you sure you guys are ready to get married? You seem to have major communication problems, and incompatible ideas about finances. As things stand now, at least one of you (and probably both of you) is going to be starting your marriage with major resentment about the way the honeymoon went down.
ESH. Your fiancé should have confessed that he’s having trouble saving before it came to this. Maybe you could’ve helped him manage his finances better. He also shouldn’t be blaming you / guilt tripping you because of his inability to save to the targets. But I wonder perhaps if they were too unrealistic for his lifestyle.
However, I find it a bit heartless that you would travel without him for 4 months just because you had been planning for it, despite not having booked anything. If it was me, I would’ve expressed my disappointment at his failure to keep to his end but I would’ve waited, because spending time with my husband is more valuable to me than being a tourist.
That bit about how his finances doesn’t affect your life. Clearly it has, so I don’t see why you would say that. And if this is how you want to be in your marriage (tit for tat; you live your life and I will live mine) , I have some doubts towards its long term success.
ESH. He lied, and he hasn't been saving when he could have been. But you're actually contemplating marrying a man, having a quickie honeymoon, and then going on your actual months-long honeymoon with a friend? Do you love this man? Because it sounds like you're more excited about the trip.
NTA Your soon-to-be husband is TA because he lied to you (or changed his mind about what you’d agreed without telling you) about saving for it. What about when you save for a house? Or your first child? Or retirement? Highly suggest you sort out these issues ahead of the wedding, rather than focussing on who you’ll be going on the trip with...
YTA. You’d literally be cutting your husband out of your honeymoon. If he needs a bit more time to get his finances in order and can do something bigger later, that’s reasonable. Personally, if I was going to be replaced on the honeymoon, I’d say why don’t you just have your friend replace me at the wedding too.
NTA but I do not think you should marry someone who can't be honest with you about serious financial matters. Keeping finances separate is fine and something I personally prefer as well but there should probably bit a bit more transparency.
Especially about something regarding extensive travel and there should have been more discussions and check ins about the finances regarding this trip. I don't think two people with such poor communication should get married