And how to take back control. Holy crap do I have a story for you today.
So, back on March 16 of last year I wrote about debit and control mothers. The gist of that post was on how my mother had a vice-like grip of paying my bills with my money. The majority of my problem was that I blindly trusted that my mom knew what was best and that she valued my input.
Skip to the end of 2011 or early spring 2012 and I finally talked with her about it. At the end she agreed to let me have my bills and decided how much I wanted to put towards each. There was one particular card that I wanted to pay $200 on to get it out of the way in six months and a bigger one that I only wanted to pay the min on until the first was done. I was under the impression that she would stick to my plan.
Fast forward to last week.
I have been kicking around the idea to move out. This meant that I needed to know with out a doubt what my budget was. This meant knowing what I was paying on all my bills. So I found a reasonable posting for a studio apartment to use as a starting point in my dream budget. It was a studio in an excellent location with all utilities and off street parking included, how could I not want to know if I could get it? So I print it out and show my mom. The first thing she said was that I couldn't afford it and she only seemed to be a little shocked when I wanted to know why not. She said she was too busy setting up for our garage sale (never again) and that we could talk about it later.
Friday after the first day of that sale I said I needed to know which cards had a balance and how much much was being paid to each. She refused because she had too much to do. At this point my dad stepped in and asked her to tell me so I could figure things out on my own. It turned out she knew exactly what was being paid with out having to look it up. Exasperating but with the garage sale of doom I assumed it was the stress. I wrote down the numbers and just couldn't figure out why something didn't seem right.
Saturday night I realised what was wrong but it was midnight-ish and I figured I could deal with it in the morning.
Let's just say I'm shocked my dad slept through the yelling.
It turns out that after that my mom decided to do things her way again after one payment was made how I had planed. The one that should have been close or paid off was only getting $100 put on it. The card I didn't want to do more then the minimum? It was getting $200 and another that should have only been minimum as well was having $100 put on it. So now the card that would have been paid would take another nine months at this rate.
I asked her why she didn't ask me when she changed it and she basically said she knew what was best and didn't have to tell me. This was the last straw and when the yelling started. I demanded all my checks, bills, cards and files. She did give them to me but it was a fight the whole way. After I got every thing I put all but the bills that had to be paid 'this week' away and took a nap because I was exhausted from all the arguing.
Sadly this nap cause me to pay late on a bill because apparently by 'this week' (still blindly trusting my mom) she meant 'today before 5pm'. It was my car payment too and she did not answer why she waited to pay it on the last day. So by the time I got to the site to pay it it was three minuets past 5pm. Live and learn.
My parents also seemed to think that while I was crunching numbers (and tyring to figure out when to pay things that I had not gotten the bills for yet) was the absolute best time to talk about all kinds of other things and numbers and just what did I want for diner? They were rather offended that I wasn't answering and the fact that I always tune people out while working on things seemed to slip their mind. I did not help things by stating that this is how I have been for the last 30 years of their life. While this is the fast was to end a conversation, this is not the best way.
So! After all that I now have total control of my finances. It only took 12 years to do but better late then never.