Can you spare a dime?
Yes, you’ve read correctly. My ex emptied out all of my bank accounts. Leaving me with only $0.27 and not a clue on what to do next.
You may be wondering how does someone survive financially, after having all your money stolen and bank accounts emptied? I was too.
How does a college student go from always having at least a thousand in the bank, financial aid disbursements every other month, and a pay check biweekly to being a single, pregnant, teen, struggling, and with only $0.27 to her name?
Let’s back track.
Starting in May of 2014 (during my “FAKE-ationship”) my bank accounts were robbed clean for seven months straight. With over $1800 being deposited every month into my account I thought, “lending him a few dollars here and there wouldn’t hurt.” Wrong! That turned into him asking for twenties, forties, hundreds, my pin number, my debit card, and my checking account number!
You may be wondering, what did he do with almost $2,000 each and every month? Well, in taking my money he’d blow it on drugs, alcohol, a “grill” (because everyone needs a $250 custom made grill from fake gold on their teeth, right?), counterfeit overpriced jewelry, lottery tickets, scratchers, and fast food. Every single month. All of which he’d openly flash on social media (of course never stating how the items were purchased on my behalf).
Since money was running thin every month I had to take a job… and then two. Working two minimum wage jobs for a college student seems like a dream come true, yet for me it was a nightmare. I knew that after all the 25+ hours of working each minimum wage job per week, dealing with rude customers, angry managers, and gossiping co-workers, that I wouldn’t see a dime of what I’ve earned. Every two weeks the $500 that I earned from both the jobs combined, disappeared within an instant.
How did I willingly give away so much money? One word, manipulation. “I just need twenty bucks and I’ll pay it back to you” (never happened!) “Well if you really loved me you’d give me $100.” “What do you mean you don’t want to give me your pin number? You don’t trust me! You must be cheating on me!” (which lead to the destruction of my things, physical violence, then the “I’m sorry” to make it all better again)
These are just a few of the many manipulation tactics my ex would use to take my money until the point where he wouldn’t even have to ask, he’d just take it straight from the source: my debit card. So, when I finally had the strength to leave him, he made sure to rob me blind before he left.
Where do I go from there? So with my huge whopping amount of $0.27 I was single, broke as can be, but ready to start fresh! When January came around, Spring semester started back up I knew I had financial aid disbursements to depend on as well as working. I knew that with every dollar I earned, half needed to be saved. Although I was pregnant and wish that I could splurge and buy everything I needed for myself as well as the baby I knew the first thing I had to do was create a savings. Creating a savings account as an adult is one of the best things you can do for yourself and your future. Most of the time they are free and if you have a certain amount of money in them each month there won’t be any service charges. That’s how I was able to earn my money back from the ground up and continue to earn and save to this day.
I’ve learned from my mistakes and want to advise others not to make the same mistakes I did. Yes, lending a helping hand to someone is great every now and again but when they are forcefully taking your money you must call it quits! Whether that be in a relationship setting, a family member, or a so called “friend”. You are not a walking ATM. Let my past decisions steer you clear from any moochers, manipulators, and money hungry heathens!