There is no getting around it, making a family and supporting it is expensive. More so than I ever imagined actually, made a bit more difficult by me pretty much paying for everything. A lot of that approach was expected, it is generally the man of the house who provides. And I did provide, but the demands of life and constant unexpected bills assisted with the debt build up.
As the debt built, the more I hid it. I say hid it, I was actually paying it off but it led to less and less spare money to play with. My wife noticed this lack of funds, generally as I couldn’t get things when they were wanted (which was asap in most cases) and I had no real answers to where the money was. Sadly, we never got around to speaking about it as she had moved on to the affair, claiming the money worries were a catalyst. I dispute this, any normal couple would speak about it, not start an affair but I digress.
My children are close in age, having two in nursery at the same time, then in school is hard. Both require the same things, from clothes to toys. Holidays are expected, but these are such a ridiculous amount of money outside school terms that I could only manage one. And, if you readers will recall, I was self-employed so if I went away, I didn’t get paid! Oh the Catch22, you take a break to forget the money worries but actually create a worse one! What I did, if a tip was needed was book it on week 5 of a 5 week pay month, so in effect I only got 4 week pay cheques each month. The point of the 3 (average) 5 week pay days a year is it gives you additional funds to pay something off. However, I never saw the benefit.
I guess you want your partner, and children, to see you as a hero and a success. I did manage to provide everything but suffered myself, there were some weeks when I worked away I survived on beans on toast and Chipsticks each day so there was money in the account at home. I just needed money for fuel. I took that hit because I was too ashamed to admit the HMRC debt and spiralling credit card debt.
Here is a real shocker, in the time of the marriage I actually paid off my wife’s credit cards!!! You see, it is all part of the front I am afraid. You try and do things for people, to appear normal, but in reality you are in massive trouble. I carried on paying everything because I thought she would leave out of shame, but as it pans out she left anyway hence it irritates me that I was so affluent to keep her happy and content.
The divorce added to the debt, but not directly. I was quoted £1500, but my ex wife delayed it so much it cost £4500. Now you can’t buy a divorce on credit now can you so I had to somehow free up that money from my pay. How I could have put that money to better use though, at least one loan would be cleared.
There is a silver lining here, I never missed a mortgage payment or bill. Even if it meant selling my things or super scrimping, I paid everything. I paid everything except the actual debt. Like I said, the façade continues.
I also have my children, even if I have nothing I am a father. Debt or no debt, that still makes me a rich man.