Happy Sunday! Snowy day where I’m at, hope it’s warmer where ever you are.
A little bit about me, I have a confession to make. I am a meme-addict. I love them. I surf them on instagram constantly. They’re 90% of the reason I have instagram. A lot of the inspiration I have to write comes from memes I see.
Today’s topic, I want to talk about money and it was inspired by the meme I have attached. This is typically off limits for people. But if you’re here, reading this, likely you are a victim of narcissist abuse. And part of the badge of honor is you were drained of your finances, or the narc made you dependent on them financially as a form of control over you. I think there is no way to come out of the abuse without being slightly if not completely financially destroyed. The reality of life is money won’t buy you happiness, that is truth, but what it will get you is comfort and freedom. Freedom can mean a lot, for some it is the difference between staying in a toxic relationship for years or having the ability to walk out today. Especially when kids are involved, it is really tough to leave if the finances are not there. This is not a female specific problem. I understand narcs are usually 2 to 1 ratio for men and women. For a man to leave when the female is the narcissist is also very potentially dangerous. The woman can use the children as pawn for child support which would motivate them to deny access to the father, and also the case of spousal support. It has the potential to financially ruin anyone.
In my personal situation, it is a bit unique. I was the breadwinner, by a lot. Not because of anything extraordinary in myself, but for the sheer reason my ex used money in another form of abuse to force me to stay longer. Lesson for all you ladies and men, 50/50 is the way to go in this day and age. If you’re the victim, it will mean you can support yourself and also it will help if your narc ever wants to hit you up for spousal support. It’s also good to note that financial abuse can happen in several ways, these narcs are very much the same but their end goal is to control you no matter what.
When we first got together, the income disparity was not much, about 20%. A year into the marriage, he stopped trying completely. He worked only to pay bare minimum of his half of the bills. Result was his income went wayyy down and my career started to take off, due to my hard work and persistence. He would basically tell me that if I were to leave him, I would be screwed as he would ask for so much money and I should stay to avoid financial ruin. The narcissist knows you, studies you, and finds what you think to be important, and uses it against you to control you. It is really awful. I shared with him that my goals in life were to be financially independent so I would never have to endure stress and retire early to pursue travel and passions. It was innocent enough to disclose, then to have it used against me as a blackmail tactic was so hurtful.
I tried my damnedest to make it work, because I worked so hard to scrimp and save for the life I have and did not want it to be ruined by a decision I made with my heart. After about a year, I realized no amount of money is worth being controlled and cut your losses because the way family law works, you can’t win. We have not reached any sort of settlement yet as he is employing every tactic to delay things. He does not want to grant me a separation agreement as that will lead to divorce once the year part is passed, and he somehow believes that being married on paper means I still belong to him.
It is a tough pill to swallow, when you lose half to someone who did not contribute or deserve a penny. I also know there are you ladies and men out there who are in the opposite position, where your narc was the breadwinner and tried to convince you to not work as this is also a popular way to control someone. My narc actually tried to convince me several times I should be a stay at home mom because he didn’t want work to make me miserable. I realize now that he was afraid I had the means to walk away and he wanted to take it away. I am glad I followed my head and was not persuaded by his evil intentions.
I consider myself to be one of the lucky ones (despite what else I have shared which would indicate otherwise). I think getting out, no matter when, you are the winner. Whatever you lost, be it through actual asset division or years of employment where your narc convinced you to not work, it’s never too late. I think financial literacy is especially important now in recovery. I know sometimes you just want to wallow and feel sorry for yourself, but the best revenge is utter f***ing success. Live your best damn life. Save money, learn how to invest. 5 years from now you will never need any man or woman to buy you a damn thing. The next partner you get should not be a soul (or money) sucking leach. You deserve the best, and if the option doesn’t present itself, be the queen (or king) of your own damn kingdom. You do not need to show off your success through silly purchases on social media. I would advise to delay gratification, make a list of the things you want to feel successful, then work your damn ass off for it. Side hustle, do whatever you can so that whatever situation you are in now is the last day you will ever feel stress over money. Make a damn budget, stick to it, and keep finding ways to save and invest. Get to the point where you can make your money work for you, and you aren’t always working for your money.
And never, I repeat, ever, go back to that narcissistic psychopath who put you in the position in the first place.