Budgets inspire a meltdown. Unexpected expenses have me panicking and shaking for days.
This is the result of nearly a decade of abuse around money and budgeting. I would budget. He would blow it. I would budget around that, He would blow it. He wouldn’t allow any surplus in the budget, He had to get the next thing, He had to get another big expense, He had to buy more things. I distinctly remember a discussion where he wanted a new car and I said if we got the large purchase he wanted on finance, we would have no wriggle room in the budget at all, and he replied with “that’s fine, we don’t need it anyway!”.
I’m talking no savings, no ability to go anywhere or do anything other than survive. Literally living paycheck to paycheck. In the end, when it had gotten really bad, we were on a combined income of nearly $200,000. He spent every cent and more. He would bully me to get a credit card, and put things on it. I had to, to make ends meet, and then, despite budgeting to put it back on the card, he would spend it.
He would spend it. He would spend it. He would spend it. He spent it all. Because he wanted to Keep Up With The Joneses. He was obsessed with the idea of wealth, of having it, and the approval he would receive from it.
It has taken me years to get a healthier relationship with money – I can actually put money aside and not compulsively spend it. But I still want to vomit every time I work on my budget. Unexpected expenses may always send me into a panic. But the most difficult thing?
He is still doing it. Through a series of decisions and a complex situation on both our parts, I am still somewhat reliant upon him to provide a small amount of money to pay off the debts I incurred at his behest. And he’s not. He was great for a while. Now he’s not. He’s spent it all, and I am once again scrabbling to make it work. Except I no longer have any sway, I no longer have a way to cover for it. So I become somewhat catatonic.
Which basically just involves me lying on the couch staring blankly at the TV while I’m at home, and spending minutes at a time staring blankly at the paper in front of me when I’m at work, and just generally wanting to not exist.
The day I no longer rely on him to pay off that debt will be the happiest day of my life.