Narcissistic abusers are known to be financially irresponsible. After all, he/she has to pay for that perfect image and lifestyle being projected. My ex-husband was guilty as charged. It never got better. He never accepted responsibility. I would have had better luck sticking my head in a shark’s mouth and surviving than my ex-narc changing his ways. I have listed a few examples of the financial abuse I endured below.
Debt Consolidation Loan
A $15,000 debt consolidation loan was taken out before we married. We were both listed on the loan, and it was to be paid out of our joint account. He never paid one red cent on the loan until the divorce. The balance was pretty low at that point, and he still only paid half. That didn’t stop him from griping about it.
The joint account was opened right before we married. The money in this account was for household expenses only. Unfortunately, my ex-husband did not see it that way. He cleaned the account out to take trips with his friends and buy clothes. He lived a carefree life off of the joint account which was for household expenses. He made plenty of withdrawals but no deposits except for the first couple of months after the account was opened.
He would keep the bank statements away from me, and he would tell me how much was in the account when I needed to pay bills. Of course, the balance given was a lie. Checks bounced constantly. The phone and electricity were both cut off at some point for non-payment, and my ex-narc was angry with me about it.
I knew money had to be in the account especially the day my direct deposit hit. I started trying to get my hands on the bank statements since my ex-narc would not give them to me. After much effort, I finally saw one after beating him home after work. The mailman had just put it in the mailbox. I opened the envelope and saw several withdrawals he had made. I had to take a seat. I was livid. My ex-narc literally made withdrawals daily. I confronted him about it, and I received the sorriest excuse. His excuse was (drumroll)…he didn’t realize he was making withdrawals from that account.
I eventually closed the joint account. The account was more than $500 overdrawn when I closed it. My ex was angry and threw a tantrum. He stomped his feet and yelled something about me not wanting him to touch my money. It didn’t matter to him that I had to keep emptying out my personal checking to fund the joint account. At one point it got so bad, I almost lost my car. I had to borrow $750 from my parents to catch up on my car payments. I was also wearing clothes with holes and safety pins in them while he walked around in brand new clothes.
He was a walking financial disaster. He complained constantly about the house once I closed the joint account and started paying the household bills, including his car insurance from my personal account. The only bills he had were the mortgage and his car payment (or at least he claimed).
I guess shutting down the joint account put his image in jeopardy. It also meant that he had to be more responsible with his money. He came up with a solution. He wanted to sell the house. He said the house was an “albatross”. I told him fine, but we will have the same financial issues no matter where we live if he didn’t change his spending habits.” He then told me I loved the house more than him.
The house was sold after the divorce. That was a nightmare in itself. More details to come in a future blog on the house situation.
He tried to stiff my parents out of the $10,000 he borrowed from them. He promised to pay them back with his severance when he borrowed the money. He did not pay them back willingly even after finding another job. By the way, my parents bought him a brand new laptop for his new job even though he still owed the money.
My parents, who are retirees called a few months later asking about the $10,000. My ex had not followed through on his promise. It had been 6 months. No phone calls nor payments had been made. I called him at work (new job), and he reluctantly wrote a check for $4,000. He was angry about it too. He said he didn’t know he had to pay it back. He noticed I was not buying that excuse so he said he didn’t know he had to pay it all back at the same time.
$4000 is the only money my ex ever paid to my parents. It was really unbelievable how selfish and dishonest he was. My parents are retirees and needed their money back. I called my parents and promised to pay the balance once I received my settlement from a car accident.
I received my settlement check a few months after promising to pay my parents back. My ex decided to accompany me to the attorney’s office to pick up the check….surprise, surprise. I cashed the check and set aside the money owed to my parents. I divided the rest of the money up equally between me and my ex. My ex-husband was livid about me giving money to my parents. He said we had bills to pays.
He did not pay one bill with his portion of the money. He decided to go shopping instead. I paid bills.
In addition to the above examples, my ex-husband tried to get me to drain my personal account and bragged about know my social security number. It was quite disturbing.
I remember he would always say to me that there are different degrees of being broke. He would try to get me to drain my personal account and go over the limit on my credit card even though I was footing most of the household bills. All of this just to support his lifestyle and image. By the way, my social security card mysteriously disappeared out of my purse. I never saw it again, but I do have a pretty good idea what happened to it. I will explain in detail in another blog.
Recommended reading on financial abuse: Narcissistic Abuse Recovery: Financial Abuse 101 by Angie Atkinson, Economic and Financial Abuse ~ A Narcissist Dream Plan Exposed by Donna Hines, Were you financially abused by a narcissist? – Tracy Malone