Surprises / presents when only one of you manages budgets
So I'm the one in our marriage who does all the budgeting - my wife gave me access to her accounts so that I could do all the input for both of us and then just discuss spending and categories with her. She has ADHD and dyslexia, so we both agree that works much better than trying to get her to do her own accounts.
However, it made things a bit tricky for my birthday, as I could see what she bought me and when. TBH it's not a big deal, she got me exactly what I asked for and I knew exactly what it cost, but was wondering if others had found a way around this? It also meant I could see exactly what each family member contributed. Again, not a big issue, but thought I'd see what others think.
The only way I can see around it is to each have a separate bank account that's "off the books"?
I don't bother with it. I've simply stopped telling him I've seen the transaction. So he can "forget" it's not a surprise for me. At the same time, I usually have no idea what to ask for presents so all I see is the shop which is usually not enough for me to exactly guess what the present is.
The cost doesn't matter, we both know what is a reasonable amount for our presents.
Most will buy a pre-paid CC/gift card from a grocery store if they really want to hide things. Alternatively, pay with cash.
I'm a bit of a nerd, so I enter manually with an encrypted payee & memo and fix it after the occasion. (I use a normal account to pay.) The Caesar cipher (shifting all letters by some number of letters) is an easy one. 😎