Thanks to you who hoped I had a good night at work last night. It was okay...fairly tedious although I did have a 'poor me' moment this morning at 6.30. Like I said I work in a care home, not as a carer, but I was kinda 'bumped' into covering for short-staffedness by working as a carer for a 12-hour shift. I got some knitting done, watched a bit of Tomb Raider and finished a jigsaw but by about 4.00 I was starting to flag. At 6.30 I found myself in a client's bathroom and at the same time the Kings of Leon 'Use Somebody' came on his radio. All I could think was that a couple years back I was camping at Reading Festival with Red and we were singing along to that same tune with thousands of other KOL fans. Now here I was, washing an old man's armpits. How the f*!/@ did I end up here? Cue plenty of Slavic/Gaelic gloom...
I know how I ended up here. I'm trying to pay off debts incurred by our defunct business, which is why my altercation with Big Man yesterday (things are still rather fraught, btw) seemed so unjustified. I just don't know....can you all please put your Crown Court wigs on...?
It seems to me that, in almost all of the PF blogs I read it's the female partner who does the bulk of the worrying, repaying, figure-juggling and just plain sorting-out of the finances (with Frugal Queen's DB an honourable exception...possibly more too) and mine and Big Man's situation is no different. He pays lip-service to debt repayment but he doesn't have the drive or desire to owe nothing that I do. He puts the big light on in the front room at night when he's just watching TV then gets annoyed when I ask whether it's necessary. He isn't willing to give up his 5 or 6 bottles of wine a week. He never checks the freezer or cupboards before buying bread or mayonnaise or ketchup or whatever he fancies (which drives me CRAZY!!! I always say 'at least it's your own money you're wasting..' That's right, I have our money, he has his money). He has always left all financial affairs to me - this was the most sensible thing to do when he was away at sea - but if you're thinking that I got us into this mess on my own, erm...no. We had a business that failed. I begged Big Man to fold it 18 months before he finally agreed which has resulted in us having to repay an £18k personal guarantee (an overdraft taken out in the period when I wanted us to close the whole show down) and has given Nat West a charge on our house. That's the background.
Big Man's car had to be scrapped and when the hauler came he left a cheque for £150 that wasn't made out to anybody. In December last year I too had a car that was scrapped and I too got £150 that I used to repay a small overdraft. I assumed, rightly or wrongly, that we were in this together and that Big Man's £150 would go towards debts. I didn't realise that when Big Man came home from work he saw the blank cheque. I thought it would be funny to write my name as the payee then show it to him with an innocent face, saying 'look who the man made the cheque out to!'. Which I did. And he was furious.
That was HIS money. That I was controlling. That it wasn't funny. That HE'D paid for that car. I said that it was just a joke, that I'd assumed it was going to go towards paying credit cards down (especially since, despite knowing we...well, obviously it's I; I know that now...were working hard to get rid of the Halifax credit card he put £81 on the card to pay for some extra car insurance. He said that he'd told me he was going to do that but it wasn't true. He was just banking on me not remembering, like people sometimes don't when they are working FOUR JOBS! However I never forget anything to do with money...); that I thought we were in this together. But clearly we're not. I think the thing that upset and yes, insulted me the most, was when he said 'since you've taken it just make sure you pay it all onto the Halifax card'. As if I haven't been working my ass off since the start of the year and paid every penny I've earned against our debts. I don't get wine. I don't buy a M&S Brie and Cranberry sandwich nearly every day. I don't want to buy takeaways every week.
It ended up with me transferring the £150 straight into his bank account from the joint one. And he let me. So am I the effing idiot or what?
Don't get me wrong. Big Man has a lot of good points. I'm starting to realise though that the bulk of this is going to be on me and that frightens and saddens me a bit.
The final 'taking to my bed' spur was Red's problems with her landlord. I went to bed at 9.00 this morning. At 1.30 Red rang to say that she and her oppos were having problems with their landlord over some rent. There are five sharing the house and the couple amongst them have unbeknownst to the landlord moved in a snake, some stick insects, a lizard and a very big lizard. They don't want to antagonise the landlord in case he calls over and finds the Lewisham Zoo in his front bedroom. Red and her two other friends want to move out and quick. After asking whether she had woken me up Red proceeded to chunter for another half an hour. Within 20 minutes the letting agent rang to complain about Red. Well, I think that's what she thought would happen but she hadn't bargained for the now extremely fractious Tiger Mother. After sending her off with a flea in her ear I had another two calls from Red, one from her friend and one from her landlord. According to Red and her friends he is psychotic and needs to be sectioned. After today he and I should get along fine.
So m'learned friends. Thoughts and sympathy gratefully received. Seriously...don't be kind just 'cos you like me....
I'll be in bed if you need anything.