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I bet the title of this blog post got your attention! I thought that it was a very fitting title for a real life event that occurred recently in my life.
I’ll share with you all of the details about why I walked away from $50,000 dollars.
It’s the end of September 2019, as I am writing this, I’ve been on my own again for a little over a month. I left my abusive husband for good in August of this same year.
Years ago when we were together, my ex (forgive me I use ex and husband simultaneously throughout) had gotten a separate life insurance policy on himself. It was one of those policies where nurses come to you at your home or office and drew blood and got a urine sample and asked lots of health related questions.
His policy had a big but not a huge payout in the event of his death and he set up his beneficiaries and how much each one got. Once we got married he changed some of the payout amounts around again. And then when we found out that he had stage IV brain cancer and that it was terminal, he made some more slight changes.
I was grateful that he still had the plan and that he included me as a beneficiary and granted me $50,000 upon his passing.
After his shocking cancer diagnosis and being given 12 months to live, my whole world changed and everything in it took on different meanings and value.
For the next few months after we found out about his dire situation, I made it my mission to try everything that I could think of to find something that would help him, a magic cure, an experimental drug or program, anything that may prolong his life. I researched until my head was spinning and until it hurt or I couldn’t keep holding my iPhone in my hand anymore.
I wasn’t giving up and I was going to fight this alongside him. Even though he quickly started saying that he wanted to give up and die because he felt so bad while he was going through his chemotherapy and radiation treatments. His quality of life quickly declined in a matter of weeks and then months.
I tried to keep pushing him and motivating him to try to get as much as he could out of his time. To try to be positive and to think about things that he could do now that would make him happy and bring him peace. He didn’t get on board unfortunately or didn’t know how. This caused a major issue with us.
No one know exactly how long we have to live on this amazing planet. Even if a doctor says that you have 12 months or any specific amount of time left to live, they are only estimating. I’ve come to learn that there is no expiration date on any of us. We die when we do, not when someone says or guesses when we will. Well, unless someone has a gun to your head! Even then, I’d go out fighting or trying to run away.
I digress, coming back to the main point of this blog posting, let me explain more about why I gave up $50,000.
Over the span of 5 months from my ex’s surgery and diagnosis, my marriage had become a place where I felt utterly trapped, tortured and shit on continually. There wasn’t much good left and I felt like I was a prisoner, although I didn’t break any laws or deserve to feel that way.
Sadly, I reached a point about three months into “our new and fucked up life,” that I stopped wearing my wedding ring. I didn’t feel like I was married any longer and so I silently started to “check out” of the relationship. It took me a few weeks of being distant, feeling super depressed and avoiding him but then I decided to be completely honest and upfront with my deteriorating husband and let him know how sad I was and that I thought that our life together was unbearable. I wanted to leave a few months before I actually did and almost did around this time.
I confided in him during this conversation and told him that I had been thinking a lot about how we should want what’s best for each other and for both of us to be happy, especially given his diagnosis. I told him that I felt that it would be better if I moved out, got an apartment nearby for 6 months and would come and help him during the day when he needed help. I didn’t want to not be there to help and I really felt in my heart that this would have been a good solution for us both!
I wasn’t happy! He wasn’t happy either but he didn’t want me to leave. And we still loved each other somehow throughout all of this, but love wasn’t enough because there was some major issues going on. It took a few days to figure out what to do.
Then, I figured out an option that I thought could work, I asked if we could act like roommates and friends, instead of as husband and wife because I hadn’t felt that way about us for months. I wasn’t interested romantically in him but I really wanted to see this through and help continue to take care of him and to be there for him as a friend and as a caregiver. And might I add something important here, fuck titles! Who cares what you call someone, as long as it’s with respect and love, that’s what really matters.
This situation worked for us for a little while but then it became painfully apparent that I didn’t enjoy spending any time with him and because of this I didn’t want to do things with him like he wanted. I tried, it was sad, negative and didn’t feel good, so I just gave up trying!
I decided that if I was going to keep staying there and continue living with him, that I was going to die, perhaps before he did.
I also was in the middle of my own cancer treatment when all of this was going on for my breast cancer. I had surgery and radiation treatment as well!
I’ve heard it said that “in hard times couples are supposed to pull together and be there for each other,” even with these massively critical life events going on in our lives individually and collectively, we instead pulled away from each other, sadly. That was a common theme in our relationship when there was a major issue. Instead of work together and support one another, we ignored one another, we distanced ourselves and stopped being affectionate and caring.
I know that when people have brain injuries and disabilities that they may act, talk and behave differently than how they would before their injury, but domestic violence had been going on in our relationship for years. This just heightened everything and I was able to see things through a microscope type of lense.
After admitting what I was feeling and what was happening to my own family when they came to visit us, they thought that I should try to stick it out and hold on.
Who leaves a dying spouse?
That’s a big question that I used to feel guilty about during the times that I was thinking of leaving.
I asked myself a MORE important question of who stays in a situation that is impacting their own life so negatively that it is making them sick or is slowing killing them.
I chose life and want to live, so when I left him, I also left not knowing if his life insurance policy would be changed to exclude me and the $50,000 that I was supposed to receive.
Money causes a lot of issues when it comes to someone passing away. I’ve heard from everyone that I’ve talked to that there are always problems when someone in the family dies or someone that they were married to and typically the executor of the estate (if there is one or a will, which my ex didn’t and wouldn’t do while we were together to help protect me) gets greedy and does whatever they want instead of what the person who died requested.
I make good money and am extremely proud of the fact that I wasn’t financially dependent on my ex at any time when we were married. In fact, the opposite was the case, I felt like the man in the relationship often, which I didn’t appreciate.
I always wanted an equal partner, someone that pulls their own weight, pays their half of shared expenses, makes enough money to support their lifestyle and is able to be responsible to pay their bills so they have good credit. I didn’t have this fully in my marriage and I let myself be taken advantage of in all ways that matter for years. Sadly, I settled but I finally saw the light so to speak and wised up!
Oh and let me point out that I have a “Daddy complex” because my ex is 18 years older than me. He is 61 years old and me 43, yuck! We were an odd couple to say the least and I found it embarrassing when people thought that he was my father. Talk about give a girl a complex.
I learned that it isn’t worth any amount of money to stay in a fucked up situation, with someone who doesn’t treat me well and risk my health, my happiness and my well-being.
I CHOOSE ME!
Latest posts by Ex-Welfare Mom (see all)
- The Calm After the Storm - October 12, 2019
- Why I Walked Away from $50,000 Dollars - September 27, 2019
- How Do You Live When Someone You Love is Slowing Dying – Part Two - September 24, 2019