What we believe about ourselves is exposed during a divorce. And for a woman divorcing an abusive man, her self-esteem is pretty much shot to hell. You can tell by what she’s willing to give up.
I’ve seen women give up houses, cars, investment accounts, alimony, (thankfully by law they can’t refuse child support!) because they say, “Well, I don’t want to be selfish” or “I’m not out to destroy him financially.”
I know every situation is uniquely different, but some women believe they’re not worthy of more and their husbands have convinced them that they’re down and out and can’t afford to pay them. After 26 years of marriage, a woman I knew refused to pursue alimony from her ex, or to take her half of their 2,500 square foot house. She ended up having to settle with a one bedroom apartment making $12 an hour working in a factory while he lived in the 4-bedroom home and made triple her salary. She reported to me that she just felt “bad” about making him pay her for her half of the house and pay her alimony. As a result, she continued to struggle financially for years after their divorce.
Let me say this as clearly as I can, sweet friends. YOU ARE WORTH EVERY DIME, QUARTER, DOLLAR, CAR, HALF A HOUSE, that is due you! I’m not advocating fighting over toasters and flatware, you can let those things go. But you must remember that you invested in this relationship as much, if not more, than he did and so you deserve to have your fair share.
Don’t use this as an opportunity to get revenge and unfairly take more than what is due you, but you need to believe you’re worthy of getting your part. Don’t believe the lies that this is a chance to take the high road and show unselfish love or that maybe he’ll see the light and “come to Jesus” if you give him your half. No. Just no. He won’t.
Be strong and brave and kind to yourself. You don’t have to be unkind to him, of course, but please don’t let anyone guilt you into giving up more than what is rightfully yours.