This mom turned to Reddit for help after her husband pressured her to give her stepchildren money from her daughter’s college fund. She doesn’t want to give in, but he said she’s selfish!
Becoming a Family of Two
When OP’s (Original Poster) daughter was only seven years old, she suddenly lost her husband to an “avoidable accident.” Because of his death, her daughter got a trust fund that would be able to provide for her college and even graduate school if it was something she wanted to pursue.
She said there might even be some “left over” for whatever life brings.
Managing Things Wisely
The amount of money her daughter got would be enough for her to have a head start in life if managed wisely.
OP wrote, “She knows about this and has never taken it for granted, given where the money came from. After all, we’d both rather have her father around than the money.”
Six Years Later
Six years after OP’s first husband died, she married “a lovely man.” Her current husband has two children of his own, a 17-year-old daughter and a 13-year-old son.
His eldest child is the same age as her daughter now.
New Family Dynamics
OP shared that her current husband and his two kids lived with them. His children see their mother only during vacations because she lives across the country.
A New Chapter of Their Lives
The year this story was posted, OP’s daughter and her current husband’s daughter were both graduating and will be heading to college.
She was ecstatic to share that her daughter was admitted through an early decision to her dream school the year before this story was posted. OP wrote, “Her father is an alumnus, and she has this old sweatshirt of his that she kept to remind her of him.”
OP and her current husband were proud of her, as they saw how hard she worked to get in. On the flip side, OP’s stepdaughter will also attend a “wonderful school.”
She mentioned that it was a top-ranked school for her interests. However, the problem was that they needed money to pay for her stepdaughter’s education.
Their College Funds
Her stepdaughter and stepson both had college funds of their own. However, it was “somewhat smaller” because her current husband and his ex “got their finances together late in life.”
She said, “There is some money, but with the caliber or cost of attendance of the school that my stepdaughter will be attending, she will still need some loans to cover costs.”
Having Loans or Being Debt-Free?
Because OP’s current husband and his ex couldn’t afford to pay for their daughter’s tuition in full, OP’s stepdaughter would have to take out some loans.
She said it would be around $40,000, which she thought was “still quite modest for the school she’s attending and her earning prospects post-graduation.” Meanwhile, with the college fund her late dad left her, OP’s daughter would graduate debt-free.
Her Current Husband’s Issues
OP’s daughter graduating debt-free suddenly became an issue for her current husband. So, he wants OP to split up her daughter’s college fund between all three kids.
He said, “They could all probably have college fully paid for.”
More Problems Arising
If they push through with this plan, OP’s daughter won’t have much money left and will, in turn, need to take out a loan for graduate school, which she explicitly said she planned on attending.
However, according to OP’s current husband, “It’s okay because everyone will start off on an equal footing post-college.”
That’s Unfair to My Daughter!
OP didn’t want to bend because she believed it was unfair to her daughter.
First, her daughter’s dad “had to die” for this money. Second, the money she’s getting is like her inheritance from her late dad.
He Begs to Differ
Unfortunately, her current husband didn’t see the problem behind his requests. OP wrote, “My husband thinks they are all siblings, and she should be happy to share the money with them if it means giving her siblings a head start in life.”
However, OP explained that she doesn’t want her daughter to be put into a position wherein she would be guilted to say yes even when she doesn’t want to. She mentioned, “I have expressed all of this to my husband, and he thinks that I’m being selfish, that I’m teaching my daughter to be selfish, and I obviously don’t consider my stepkids the same as my daughter.”
OP wants to protect her daughter’s college fund so she can use it as intended. She also can’t bring up her stepdaughter’s option to switch to a cheaper school “because that will be a fresh set of problems given where my daughter will be matriculating.”
The Community’s Two Cents
For Redditors, OP should stick to what she’s doing now and never bend.
A top comment was, “Not the a**hole. That settlement was for your deceased husband’s children, not your future children, and certainly not someone else’s.” Another Redditor agreed and said, “Keep your stance. This is your daughter’s money from her father. The other children have money from their father. To me, your current husband is the a**hole for even suggesting it.”
He Has No Right!
No one in the community took OP’s current husband’s side and said that if he wanted to give his kids more, he should work for it!
“If he wants his kids to have as much as OP’s daughter has, he can get another job to pay for it. Grown-ups have to work for what they get. They can’t just take money from other people. He has no right to that young woman’s settlement money. Not to mention it isn’t even considered conjugal property since it was acquired before the marriage,” said one user.
Some users also suggested OP start thinking about her relationship, and one said, “It’s one thing for the spouse to propose this, which is already gross. He’s pushing this despite getting denied and attacking OP and OP’s daughter, whose father had to die to get this money. I would honestly be questioning who I really married and whether I really know this person. Does this person really care about my daughter and me, or is he going to work to our detriment and hurt us if he thinks it helps his kids? If he continued to push this, I don’t think I could stay in the relationship—for my daughter’s sake, at least.”
Do you think OP’s husband only cares about the money? What should OP tell him?
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This post first appeared as She Refused to Split the College Fund Her Late Husband Left Their Daughter With Her Current Husband’s Kids. She Believes It’s Unfair, but He Demands a Cut for His Own Children! on Quote Ambition.