I count the times I notice my husband’s dysfunction with money. For years and years I have superimposed a dream husband on top of the actual one. The dream husband is capable and level-headed. He can manage multiple bank accounts and credit card payments, loan repayments, monthly and daily expenses. He juggles the finances, and much as his father was an economist, so is he able to foresee expenses and budget for them.
However, the reality is totally different. My husband’s father may have had been a doctor of economics but he did not leave anything for his children when he passed away. Every investment he made went bad and the family suffered the consequences. There is a very good chance that my husband’s father had BPD, too.
My husband loses his stuff all the time. Checks are one of the things he misplace most often. He is constantly looking for one envelope or another. His mind is as confused as his body – which is never relaxed and constantly twitching.
He is not balanced with finances and bill payments. He has gone for weeks without giving me or the children any spending money. He cannot foresee when there will be a dry period. And then, when he finally gets paid, he spends it all in one week and is super generous with the family. But when there is no money, he gets all riled up if someone buys themselves a donut.
There is no way to know what our financial situation is. The children are confused. I am left without and always blamed by my BP husband.
He is guilty of domestic theft, too. He has told the children on more than one occasion that he is taking money from their private savings accounts in order to pay some large bills. He acts as though he is asking them but the children know that if they put up a fuss, it will all just come back to them. He will start the blame game for making him work so hard to support the family…. and who wants to be blamed for their parent’s financial misfortunes?
When I hear him talking to outsiders about the cost of living and everyday expenses, I realize that he knows perfectly well which expenses are normal and expected. However, when it comes to his own family, he acts like we are living in the 1800s and we are supposed to get by on nickels and dimes.
Since my husband must always be right, and everything is either black or white in his eyes, I cannot have a normal conversation with him. If I initiate any discussion regarding spending or budgeting, I become an instant target for a deluge (or dumping) of blame and rage.
I am learning not to depend on my husband for financial support. I must build my independence. I had enough of hiding, pretending and suffocating. There is vitality and hope and abundance out there.
G-d is my Employer and I turn to Him for comfort and support.
In Part 2 I will write more about my skewed perception of my husband’s abilities and address the question: if this dysfunction existed throughout my marriage, why did it take me 20 years to take note of the facts.