Abusing abuse, When the concept of abuse is used by a manipulator

Relationships are filled with abuse of one form or another and sometimes it’s hard to make out what actually is going on.

Sometimes there are clear cut cases mainly because the abuser is a narcissist and without investigating further its pretty obvious.

In some situations it’s so much harder to work out, especially if one part if the abuse cycle isn’t honest, self accountable or transparent.

Three years ago I was arrested for punching my wife in the face. So there at a high level I’m a domestic abuser and violent  Fine, I accept what I did wrong and I accept that the way I delt with the situation that lead to it was wrong.

For years my wife has been abusing our money. it’s a shared resource, its shared between me, her, and two children. Add in there are other entities in the ‘relationship’, bills, expenses, the roof over our head. So we look at it two ways, I see it as “ours” basically a shareing of our shared resource. She sees it as “mine” as in hers.

This causes a real mismatch in how money is handled for the good of all of us.

Just before the punch in the face, she’d got herself into a real financial mess and then dumped on me to fix. She was in full denial, just wouldn’t openly accept what she’d done and took no steps to fix it.

What an absolutely terrible person she is.

So she went along to a domestic violence victims group, where they gave her the space to convince herself that she was being financially abused by me because I was sorting out the problem she’d dumped on me. If I was wired differently I should have walked away from her problems, letting her sort them out. Instead, I placed myself in harms way.

I accept I did the wrong thing by punching her, I accept that the way I went about trying to sort stuff out looks like financial abuse. I’ve made so many mistakes over how I’ve managed this situation. It’s basically been down to wanting to do the right thing for all of us.

But all its done is to make me angrier because no matter what I do, we don’t do it together.

So here we are two toxic people together, now how do we clean up this toxic mess and create a environment that allows healthy behaviours to thrive?

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Ask yourself this simple question to avoid overspending: Amount, Benefit, Time I want to spend £x … Because I’ll benefit … This way, over this amount of time.

It’s a simple question to solve a difficult situation, overspending or frivolous spending is a killer for anyone or any family.

We had a situation recently where s lot if money was haemorrhaged during half term, on nothing. We had this stupid idea to treat the kids and funfairs and films and toys eat a huge amount of cash.

So now we plan to ask a question when ever spending occurs.

We want to go to the funfair and spend £190 (amount) because the kids will have fun (benefit) for a couple of hours (time).

By saying that out loud it gives you an opportunity to really hear what you are spending your cash on.

We need to find d a way to stop being bullied by the kids into spending stupid amounts on tat.

More anxiety, drinking in a family home

I’m not having a good morning when it comes to anxious thoughts. DW, my wife, drinking is slowly escalating again, presently she’s consuming 10 to 14 units of alcohol on average per evening. That’s between five to seven pints of lager or a half bottle of vodka.

Over a week, that ends up as around 70 units, over a month 300 units, over a year 35,00 units. At an average cost of 20p per unit for over the counter shop retail prices that’s £700 a year (thank fuck! she’s not a pub or wine bar drinker as you could quadruple that cost).

Fuck me that’s a lot of money. Add in the smoking too, that adds a further £2500 per annum, that’s around £3000 (I’m being generous by rounding down costs) up in smoke and down the toilet every year. Throw in inflation and tax increases, that’s an annual retirement savings plan.

Brilliant, I’ve just given myself money anxieties as well as health and alcohol misuse anxiety.

Today I must stop thinking. 

Big bill week arrgh!

This week its a set of bills to pay, weekly monthly, quarterly and annual all in one hit,

Rent £290 weekly
tv license £145 annual.
Sky £110 monthly.
Water £135 quarterly.
Energy £395 quarterly.
Council tax £202 monthly.
travel Dw £36. Weekly
travel me £25. Weekly
Debt£50 weekly

Equals £1278

That’s all of DW weekly pay plus expenses in one fell swoop, bang cash gone (except for the bit I’ve squirreled).

And this is for a modest ordinary London lifestyle. Nothing outrageous their, just the basics.

Frankly, I don’t want to pay it, most of the above goes either to the Government in tax or to companies that make huge profits for shareholders. Really, it’s not on, the utility companies will still make tasty amounts for their stock holders, the Government notional austerity is a bit of a piss take as taxes keep on rising. Every month DW has to part with over £6000 to the government every month, maybe if Waltham Forest cut back on the translator bills (it supports 36 languages) and stuck to English (a rather popular global language) they wouldn’t spend so much. Perhaps we should adopt the American dream for immigration, make money and be part of something, rather than the English dream, take money and not be involved.

As I get older, I dislike immigration more and more and more, even though my family are post war Franco-Russian immigrants themselves, but I’m third gen London integration. The only Franco-Russian stuff I hold on to it a bit of language, a taste for bortzch and garlic and that’s it.

I won’t talk about my inner racist demons because I’m ashamed I feel that way. I grew up thinking that Blue Minks Melting Pot was the best thing ever, but the more immigrants into London and their lack of integration pisses me off. If I went to Lahore, Mumbai, Lvov, Kalinigrad or Lagos I’d forced in the native way (that is if I wasn’t going as a wealthy expat), not in London though our post-colonial guilt makes us bend over backwards to allow the sods to game our system.

Grrdd!!@ angry racist rant, I’m off now to give myself a politically correct scourging.

Clearing debt, what it was and what it is now.

We had a stroke of luck, our energy provider wiped our bill. We received a bill from them a month ago which nearly caused heart attacks. Nearly four thousand. We hadn’t received a bill in three years even though I kept on chasing for it. We had our metres read and I asked, I rang the call centre and asked, even sending a letter.

When the bill did arrive it wasn’t in our names, it turned out that a rather nasty au-pair we had three years ago had changed the name on the bill as it was in her name. So our energy provider had made a mistake by not confirming who was the householder etc. Next issue was that we hadn’t received a bill in over twelve months . If your energy provider hasn’t billed you for greater than twelve months then OfGen requires that they write off the amount prior to twelve months. The final aspect was that they had been notified by us and Macmillan Cancer (who advocate on behalf of cancer victims) that we would be having payment difficulties during treatment and remission. We employed the au-pair as help post my wife’s cancer treatment for some family help when she did the name change.

So all in all it was a catalogue of mistakes and errors on our energy providers part, so in a gesture of goodwill and faith, they wrote down the whole amount. They have booked to read the metres next week which will be the start of the new billing period. All I can say is WOW.

So as it stands, we have 360 in one debt to pay off which will be cleared November. Two mobile phone bills of roughly 250 each and my wife’s pay day loan which is being reduced weekly at £50 and currently stands at 1000. Finally an outstanding broadband bill of 120.

There is the other usual stuff such as council tax around 700, tv licence 150ish and other bits and bobs that amount to a couple of hundred, but frankly now we are into the home stretch of being debt free.

Phew.

My wife’s former employer is trying to stiff her over her last weeks pay, which is a typical bastard thing of zero day contract employers. But she stared a new contract today earning £100 more so fingers crossed we’ll be able to sort things, once this weeks over and the rent paid. I’m managing (just) to push rent money forwards but I need to build up a bigger surplus rather than just a weeks worth. It will be difficult but I think I can do it, it just needs us both not to have money resentment. DW resenting earning it and not having it to spend, me resenting having nothing of my own. A tricky situation to be in, plus two young kids who think Disney toys grow on trees.

We’ve been through eighteen months of financial hell, it looks like we’re about to leave the tunnel and enter daylight. My negative souls says watch out for tunnel collapses and we are quite fragile at this moment. The last weeks wage bastardary of DW former employer nearly gave us a money shock wipe out, but I’d planned for such an outcome anyway.