Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What bankruptcy does to your marriage.

I have much to say about how financial problems can affect a marriage relationship.  My next several blogs will be about this because it is a huge subject and affects so many people.

If you think that nothing like this could or would affect your marriage...think again!  Unlike other tragedies in life like a health diagnosis or a death of someone close, a financial crisis usually will tear a relationship apart.  Why?  One word...BLAME!  There is so much blame that is thrown around when financial things happen that it tears people away from each other instead of bringing them together.  It is like it takes all the bad things in your relationship and magnifies by 180%.

In my case there are many reasons why our relationship was shredded but here are some of the basics.  My husband lost his job and his job was our main income source.  He was unable to find a job that paid even 1/3 of what he was making.  I kept telling him how hard it was for me to make ends meet.  He would get paid and after paying SOME of the bills we would only have $25 to last until the next pay day in 15 days.  He just told me that I would figure it out.  I don't know if he thought I was just being dramatic or not telling him the truth but he really did not help me.  I felt like our financial problem was somehow my problem to fix and that was very frustrating.  I kept telling him that we did not have enough to get by but he just shrugged it off.  Deep down inside, I know that he was mad at me about our financial problems.  He would never come out and say that, of course, because that was an argument he would never win!

So things just kept getting worse.  As each month went by, there were more and more bills that did not get paid because I needed the money to live off of and buy food.  I had two kids to feed and take care of as well.  This went on for about 8 months and our relationship became more and more burdened.  We were barely communicating with each other at this point and I felt more and more alone.  Here we were, a married couple, dealing with a financial ruin and I felt like I was all alone.  I was also desperately trying to keep this our dirty little secret so no one would know.

When the letter arrived from the bank about foreclosing on our house, there was a little part of me that was relieved.  After going what I had gone through the last 8 months, I knew something had to give.  I knew we could not afford to live in this house anymore.  I even knew that we could not afford to sell it because selling it meant that we would have to make some repairs that we did not have money for.  I knew that we could probably find someone to borrow the money from to get us out of foreclosure but we would not be able to pay them back and would soon find ourselves back in the same situation.  Even though I absolutely did not want to lose my house, there was a feeling of some sort of relief.

But now I had to tell him!  As I recall, I knew about the letter several days before I told him because I knew it was going to be bad, I just did not know HOW bad!

More on this in my next post!