This post was sponsored by The Allstate Foundation as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
Do you know what the term “financial abuse” means? To anyone who has dealt with domestic abuse, or knows someone who has, financial abuse is just another way for someone to be controlled and hurt. A victim can be cut off from having access to bank accounts, credit cards, and even cash. A victim can be part of a situation where there is little or no income even available for basic needs – something I have experienced as my mother was a victim of domestic abuse by her “boyfriend”.
This topic is really sensitive for some, so I do want to issue a trigger warning. I also don’t really talk about this – again, because it’s sensitive (and it makes me angry), but it’s something that no one should ever have to endure and we know more awareness to end domestic abuse and financial abuse.
My mom’s “boyfriend” was a jerk. He was an alcoholic and he couldn’t hold a job. Because of my mom’s disability and eventual health issues with cancer, she was unable to work – which meant she had no savings whatsoever. There was no “just leave” for her – she was dependent on this guy who had no interest in steady work, steady income, and rising above. I can’t count the times that I watched my mom try to figure out how to pay bills, only to then get yelled at when she said there wasn’t enough to pay X and asking when would he be back to work.
She was trying to do the right thing and not default on bills. She wanted a roof over our heads, electricity, water, heat. Yet this person who said he would take care of her? He was failing time and time again.
Allstate Foundation Purple Purse aims to end this domestic violence financial abuse through financial empowerment. The Allstate Foundation Purple Purse drives fundraising for local, state and national nonprofits that provide crucial financial empowerment tools and resources to survivors of domestic violence. The same resources that my mom had to rely on for assistance.
I remember going with her. Sitting in an office, she held a stack of papers that including income verification (pay stubs, bank statements) and bills that were difficult or even unpaid and late. They would determine her eligibility and help with what they could. Sometimes that meant the entire bill, for which she was so grateful for and other times because he WOULD have a job for a few weeks, it meant only a small amount of assistance. She felt defeated, I know she did. He was too busy spending that money on cigarettes and alcohol, he wasn’t setting it in savings for things like that. Ha!
To learn more about Allstate Foundation Purple Purse and their mission to empower women through financial education and assistance from local programs so she CAN get out, visit their website. Consider making a donation, or sharing their resources with someone you know. Be a part of this and empower domestic abuse victims. I know it’s difficult, I know some of the stories can make your heart hurt, but this is happening all around you and there are ways that you can help.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse – physically, mentally, emotionally, financially – please Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or TTY 1-800-787-3224 or if the situation calls for it, dial 911. You are not alone and things can and will get better.