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  • Writer's picture*Bethany*

My Trip with Financial Abuse: An All-Expense Not Paid Vacation

*Bethany* is a BNB Guest Blogger who felt inspired to share story about her narc ex-boyfriend after reading Let’s Talk About Financial Abuse...Did You Know It’s a Thing?

Okay, ladies (and if there are gentleman reading, you too), this is a good one. I kinda figured that financial games were all part of the emotional points system that our narc boyfriends (or whoever) tally up when they play with our heads, but I didn’t really think about financial abuse from a stand-alone perspective.

Oh, I could write a dang novel about the peculiar lies or weird money goings-on that were part of my 3-year-too-long relationship with “Dominic.” Yeah, I’ll call him that because I knew a jerk in high school by that name, so it’ll do. Anyway, Dominic started off being so lavish with his gifts and spoiling.

I mean, how can a girl resist him wanting to take her out for a champagne dinner? Heart-melting romantic, party of two!!

money, travel money, financial abuse, economic abuse, money control
Don't You Love When Your Savings Pay for Their Enjoyment? Photo credit: Depositphotos.clom

Lovebombing 101: If he’s too lavish, too financially attentive, too “impressive” with his money, it is a red flag. Run! Big difference between taking you out for a nice first date dinner to making a good impression versus endless material crap being thrown your way. You’re not that kind of a princess, yet. Let him build up gradually to the glass slipper. He doesn’t need to buy your love, and if he is trying to, he’s overcompensating. Run!

So, back to my little story of naïve Bethany who didn’t know that all this monetary love was going to eventually backfire once the honeymoon was over. Once he had me snared in his love trap, the money issues started surfacing. The gifts died down, which is totally okay, but it was the way they slowed down that was weird. Like, he was making excuses as if he had no income coming in anymore. Which didn’t make sense, because he was gainfully employed.

Now me, on the other hand, am quite a successful corporate girl. Okay, so I work in the accounting department for the Controller (I’m working my way up!) but I still had a decent salary and standard of living. I had my own place, which he really enjoyed coming over to.

Eventually, he asked me to move in with him—as in, together at my place. (See what he did there?)

But he didn’t contribute towards the rent because he said I already had that covered. His rationale was that I would keep covering that (and the gas and electric and cable and…), so his money would be our play money.

Sounded legit at first, like a win-win. Until I was almost flat broke paying bills and he never seemed to have any play money left over after he paid “his” bills. I can tell you right now, that boy didn’t pay his cell phone and credit card bills. Maybe he took care of his car because I didn’t see it repo’d but that still didn’t explain where his money was disappearing to.

But then out of nowhere for my birthday, he gifted me this fantastic, romantic vacation for two to Aruba. Sounds like Heaven, right?

Wrong. You would think then it would all make sense, that our lack of play money was because he had been saving to surprise me with this resort trip to paradise. Nope!! Here’s the kicker: he paid the deposit and in my gift, he left the travel agent’s card and the balance due and told me that he figured we could pay the rest with an upcoming bonus I had due to me this month.

I’m sorry, say what? You got me a gift that I had to finish paying for? Oh hell to the no, Romeo!! At least, that’s what I would say now. However, back then I was still in the throes of a narc-controlled relationship with no conscious idea that I was being manipulated, and so, I did it. I wanted to go on this wonderfully romantic trip with sweet, thoughtful Dominic, so I took my bonus check and finished paying it off.

Happily ever after did not come on that trip; this all-inclusive resort that I paid for wasn’t really all-inclusive. It didn’t include airfare. Or transportation from the airport to the resort. Or any of the deeply expensive scuba excursions he wanted to go on once we got there.

So, yeah, you could say I might know a thing or two about financial abuse and how easily you can be manipulated and controlled with money. But jut like with any experience, it’s made me wiser. And now I smile when I take myself on my own properly planned Aruba trips, while his new supply is poorer than a church mouse and he goes nowhere outside of his hometown city. And that my friends, is karma in action. Thanks, girl!

*Bethany* is a guest blogger who submitted her story under an assumed identity for confidentiality. If you are interested in being a non-identified guest blogger for Brazen Not Battered, please email us at We would love to hear and share your story to inspire others.

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