Why is Money So Important to My Abuser?

THE TRUTH BEHIND FINANCIAL ABUSE | Samantha has started seeing the patterns when it comes to money.

“He spends freely on himself, like on his toys and fun stuff and trips with the guys, but if I spend money — even on household needs — I get chastised like I’m a child. Like I have a limited allowance. And somehow it’s my fault when we can’t pay a bill on time. How are we supposed to take care of our expenses when he doesn’t leave enough to pay toward utilities or the car loan?” she asks. Then she goes on to say, “But that’s not all. I know of at least three personal loans he’s taken from generous people, and he doesn’t care a thing about paying them back. He took advantage and stole from them, there’s no other way to look at it. Why does he act like he’s entitled to all the money? His, mine, and everyone else’s?”

Financial abuse occurs in nearly 99% of abusive relationships, and is the number one reason victims stay in or return to abusive relationships. (Statistic provided by PCADV.)

Not only does money make the world go round in an operational sense, it lends a broad sense of power and control to those with an abusive nature.

Take your standard narcissist. Life is all about him. Nothing matters more than his wants and needs, that others revere him, and that his ego is served. His wants and “needs” are easier to attain with an ever-flowing cash supply. But money also lends a sense of success, and to a narcissist, respect from others and self-importance follow affluence — real or perceived — before and more than anything else.

[“Needs” is placed in quotes because, for a narcissist, priorities are always skewed.]

But a love for money also goes back to the narcissist’s stunted development.

Narcissists behave and abuse the way they do because something (or multiple things) happened in their formative years which prevented the cultivation of empathy, humility, and selflessness. They never developed past those immature years of self-absorption and instant gratification, which means they thrive only on what is materialistic and superficial. It’s how they define success, and how they measure their worth against that of others.

Then, to bring it back home, if he controls the money, he’s ensuring his victim can’t outperform him, won’t attain independence, and will internalize that he controls her freedom (or lack thereof).

Money is what makes his world go round. That’s why it’s among the things most important to him.

Dear Samantha and other readers: If financial abuse is present, other types are, too. It may be time to take inventory and decide if what you’re living with is acceptable. Please reach out to me if you need help.

To learn more about financial abuse, visit :


To submit your question for analysis and possible publication, email janna@womandetermined.com.

Image Credit to pasja1000–6355831 from Pixabay.

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