‘There’s a lot of awkwardness about money; questions such as, “What’s normal? ” For someone with an abusive tendency, it can be an easy route to control.’Popular online forums are proof of this.
I wasn’t happy, but I was so taken up with motherhood and its adjustments that I let it slide.’Alison’s unease deepened as the months passed.
‘Paul was making decisions without me – where we did the weekly shop and what we bought. He decided where we went on holiday and for how long.
This changed quickly when their income dropped to a single wage.
The UK’s largest study into financial abuse to date, Money Matters, commissioned by domestic violence charity Refuge and the Co-operative Bank, found that one in five of those surveyed had been victims, 60 per cent of them women‘We’d agreed that I should give up work to look after our baby,’ says Alison.
‘I didn’t like suddenly having separate bank accounts, with Paul paying a small monthly allowance into mine, but still querying how I spent it.
I put it down to him feeling stressed about surviving on one salary, even though I’m not a reckless spender.It starts with him offering to take care of the bills and ends with him controlling every aspect of your finances, leaving you isolated and trapped.Financial abuse can be just as devastating as physical When Alison left her job for full-time motherhood, her partner Paul removed her from the joint account into which their salaries had previously been paid.I wasn’t contributing financially so it felt more like his money.And with no salary of my own, I didn’t have many options.The fact that I never had anything left in my account by the end of the month made me even more powerless.’Financial abuse in relationships – defined by the Co-operative Bank as ‘controlling someone’s ability to acquire, use and maintain their own money and resources’ – can be silent, insidious and hard to spot.