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Vintage Vicki: He's Taking Out Mysterious Loans

Ms. Vicki

Dear Ms. Vicki, 

I am a military spouse. My kids and I relocated with my husband July 2014. Since the moment we moved my husband has used the BAH to purchase a vehicle. Every month we have been here, there have been eviction notices on the door from the apartment complex. Also, our utility bills are not being paid.

I found paperwork that stated my husband has taken out over $2,000 in loans, but he could not tell me where the money went. He has now taken out an interest free loan from the Army to meet October's rent.

I tried to reach out to the finance department at the base. I wanted to see if they could just stop placing the BAH on his check. But they told me they were not allowed to discuss that with me, and suggested that I Google my questions.

My family and friends are thousands of miles away, so I have no one here to offer me any financial support. I am thinking of leaving my husband, but I have no way to make it on my own.

Do you know if there are any resources that I can utilize from the Army that can help me if I chose to leave my husband? Would he get to keep the BAH even if me and the kids decide to leave? I pray this message reaches you. Any info you can offer me I would be grateful for.

Sincerely,
JD

Dear JD,

This is a difficult time because you are young in your relationship and you are a blended family. Your marriage can survive but financial stress can ruin any relationship.

You are saying that your husband is overspending and major bills are not being paid. This is stressful for you because you are home and you are the one who first receives the eviction notices and other bills. This is stressful. So stressful that you just want to leave your husband.

You raise another good point: if you leave you won’t be able to financially support yourself. For this reason, I think you and your husband should go to budget and financial counseling that’s offered on base.

Also, this is a good time for you to consider full or part-time work and continuing your education. There are many certificate and diploma programs when completed can lead to a good salary and career.

It may be difficult, but I suggest that you and your husband pick and time to discuss all of the bills and his income so you can give a better account of where all of the money is going.

Now, you mentioned that you discovered that your husband has taken out another personal loan. In this case, he is adding fuel to the fire by hiding things from you and increasing your debt.

This is not good. Because of this I would recommend marital therapy. Start by calling Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647. Hopefully your husband will agree but if he doesn’t I think you should still ask for individual therapy to help you sort through some of your concerns.

Sincerely,
Ms. Vicki

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Contributor

Ms. Vicki is a native of Dallas, has been the Dear Abby for the military community since her column began in 2005. A licensed therapist and licensed clinical social worker, Ms. Vicki holds a Master of Science in social work and a Master of Arts in clinical psychology.

Ms. Vicki appears regularly on Military.com and in the Fort Campbell Courier. Her column has also appeared in the Washington (D.C.) Times and in the Heidelberg (Germany) Post Herald. She has been featured on CNN, CBS, ABC and NBC.

Looking for advice about your military life? Email Ms. Vicki here. Find Ms. Vicki on Facebook here.  Find Ms. Vicki on Twitter here.

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