It’s me, Sammy. I’m writing to you today because I’m ready to break up. Our relationship is abusive, and I’m not the only woman you treat this way.
First of all, you are always having to be in my business decisions—this includes joy with my grandkids and everyday living. If my decisions aren’t the best, you have a way of kicking me in the ass.
If my decisions are good, there are no rewards with you—it’s an endless battle.
I hope when I express to you the anxiety you bring, we can work this out so I can enjoy you and go on with my life without thinking about you every second of the day.
I get up in the morning thinking about my future—I have 20 years, maybe, tops. I worry constantly that I could run out of money.
You make me nauseated, enough that it interferes in my everyday life.
If I don’t balance you out, I’ll be a broke old woman—God knows I’ve heard this enough.
My late husband was always worrying about you, Money. I remember watching his face wrinkle because of you—it was the same look my father had. My son has it now.
It was about you, Money.
I never wanted to know why the looks caused such unhappiness, but secretly I knew.
I did not want to deal with you.
I’ll have to say they always balanced you out.
Now I ask myself: how is Money working for you, Sammy?
I understand we have to have boundaries to pay our bills and to enjoy you—because you are in every bit of life.
But I’m looking for balance with you.
If I live 20 years, will you be gone before then?
But what if I’m not dead in 20 years? I’m in good shape mentally and physically.
My son has a fear of me being broke. I see an underlying anger because there’s not enough of you.
He’s upset that my husband didn’t leave me enough money. He fears that I can’t make it work. He does not want the burden of me.
I get that.
He doesn’t have to express it—I see it, that familiar look you give to us all.
So here again you need to back off and not get involved with my son and myself.
Life should not have to revolve around you.
I’ve never been able to make enough money for myself. I use my high school education for an excuse. I used my learning disability as an excuse.
I did try a swimwear business. I pedaled my swimwear to the surf shops. The manufacturer used faulty thread so I had to take the suits off the market. I didn’t know enough about thread. I concentrated too much on the fabric and the design. I put too much faith into the manufacturer. I accepted the loss and went and picked up all the swimwear.
I felt like a failure. I was trying to take care of myself.
In between my marriages, I got a hostess job to help with the income.
Now that I’m older and wiser, I see that my marriages were about money. I was looking for a survival kit.
Looking for somebody to help me enjoy life, with you. I will gladly admit this.
Now I’m on my adventure by myself. I am a writer now. I never thought about writing for money. I was looking at writing as a form of therapy for grief and to dig deep inside of myself.
I do not know what the future holds for me. But I have got to get a grip on you. And to do that, I’m not going to let you treat me this way anymore.
Get out, Money. Your bags are by the door.
Sammy is a white widow who grew up in the racist south of the 1950s. After the death of her husband, she began a journey of healing from her history. Learning to see the realities of gender, race and class inequality allowed her to claim her own deeper, spiritual power and pass these lessons on to younger generations of women.