We often underestimate the importance and value of preserving our financial freedom, especially when involved in a relationship.
Our naiveness and affection leads us to willingly want to place our trust in our partner and blindly believe that our loved ones will always do right by us. So when they abuse this trust we feel stupid for not having caught the warning signs earlier and often internalize part of the blame, but it's not your fault.
The fall into an economically abusive relationship is a slippery slope.
Its danger lies in the subtlety with which it insinuates into a relationship.
It starts out seemingly harmless where your partner will offer to take care of your accounts because they're more finance savvy or better at saving, but often these situations will then deteriorate and the victims will find themselves powerless and penniless at the mercy and will of the abuser.
In fact, Economic abuse is a form of abuse when one intimate partner has control over the other partner's access to economic resources, which diminishes the victim's capacity to support himself/herself and forces him/her to depend on the perpetrator financially.
Therefore for example, a lack of child support can be considered an economic abuse because they are still in a way controlling and probably using this as, yet again, a form of dependency on them.
So if you are divorced and your ex husband is not paying child support that's economic abuse.
If you are still married and you are prevented from earning an income, that too is economic abuse.
Unfortunately only after divorce we suddenly realize that we should not have given up our job or our career. We do it out of love, but that very selfless act can cost us dearly.
When you are suddenly alone with kids, you have to be able to quickly get back on your feet and if you have been out of the workplace for some years it can be difficult.
We have to regain the reigns of our personal freedom and leave the negative behind. If we wallow in all that is wrong and don't allow ourselves or push ourselves to find the good side in the aftermath of divorce then we will still be holding on to the very chains our relationship used to keep us down.
Become Financially Active
To avoid and prevent being confined in an economically abusive relationship we must reframe our mindset. We must learn to break down this deep rooted idea that in a relationship it is the man's role to take care of all the finances and cater to the wellness of the family. This hierarchy system, based on an antique patriarchal family model, fuels the dangers of financial dependency within a relationship. This is why it is vital that as women we learn how to be self-sufficient, in order to know how to maintain our own personal freedom without giving up our identity. We cannot count on or relinquish our financial well being to anyone else. Period.
We mustn't settle in our ignorance but we must become active in the growth of our financial knowledge. It is paramount that you re-learn how to be financially independent. Learn, teach yourself about finances.
Too often women find themselves frantic, not knowing how to support their family after going through a divorce and for those women who throughout the marriage were stay at home moms the situation is far more worrisome.
Although regardless of your degree of knowledge, divorce pushes most women to become more financially active and involved in planning the finances for the family. The instant financial responsibilities they find on their shoulders, like their retirement, kids' education, holiday funds, and all the other budgeting that any household requires, leaves them with no other choice but to become economically savvy and smart.
Owning their own economic freedom and knowing how to use it becomes a necessary tool for survival.
Be Financially Free
Financial independence for a woman is so important, but we are not yet serious about it.
In todays day and age there are so many services that we can offer to other women, the resources are endless. Especially with the advent of the internet, building an online business is no longer difficult. have friends who at the tender age of over 60 are starting their online business.
With free resources and online learning you can learn anything today.
Fight Your Own Battles
In a post from Paulo Coelho on Facebook he wrote: "The circumstances and the environment influence our lives, but we are the one who are responsible for ourselves... you have to control your acts or they will control you."
With these powerful words I leave you to be fully in charge of what happens within you and to not let anything or anyone control you.
As Michelle Obama once said -- "Don't let anyone speak for you, and don't rely on others to fight for you."
Advocate for an end to Economic and Financial abuse of women. Women need to be financially free. Love your children but don't give up your income.