I fully understand how you feel. I have rarely written about my current financial situation because it is humiliating as well. The only place that box of horrors gets opened is my therapist’s office.
As a disabled woman who is not on disability, I am dependent on my husband. He’s a wonderful man, but mercurial due to his own mental health.
When he is in a bad mood or has had too much to drink, he will occasionally make snide remarks about being my patron more than my spouse. That always makes me feel like a whore.
I know I only cost my husband money with medical expenses upon medical expenses. I bring nothing in. When he married me, I was a professor who made good money. I became a whistleblower after research data was falsified and that backfired on my career.
Colleagues of the offenders joined the offenders to bully me at the worksite and it tipped off my Bipolar Disorder. During this time of #MeToo, my sexual assault experiences, which include three rapes, did not have the same negative impact on my life as this episode I cannot discuss due to a non — disclosure agreement.
This impotent dependence also hurts my soul because it feels like writing is thus the only thing I can do that is productive. So the more he rags on me about how we will run out of money before we run out of life, the more intensely I try to write.
The more desperately it seems like I should be able to produce money with my research and writing skills, the less effectively I can write. I end up telling him I will just end my life so I don’t cost him anymore money when he starts ranting. He knows I mean it. He found me passed out in August from an overdose and got me to the hospital. Depends on the day whether I appreciate he found me.
Today is not one I am happy I woke up in the hospital. I realized reading your essay that you cannot even get paid asking for what you need. I am not going to achieve my goal of contributing independently. I don’t even ask for what I need.
I remind myself that I don’t really need to get paid. My husband is privileged and he will inherit enough to keep us alive and comfortable for a while. His parents are our disability providers rather than the government. Be thankful I tell myself. If we had to depend on the government, we’d waiting years.
That’s another fun aspect of being a disabled woman from a poverty background. Your husband can be disabled by mania and depression and feel bad about himself for not working — but rely on family money. You have to scurry to write as your only avenue of productivity to stave off his flashes of anger about your parasitic costs, but it has no possible means of generating revenue. Nothing unequal about it but I cannot bring up the dynamic. Just causes a fight. Best to stay grinning and grateful.
I hope your essay opens some hearts and some wallets. I would like to pay you but I don’t have any of my own money and I don’t think I could get permission to donate.