When The Cost is Just Too High

Published May 19, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

‘The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them’ –
Maya Angelou


Not long ago, I wrote about helping my ex and his girlfriend through a kidney transplant ordeal. He gave her one of his kidneys. Hers failed from years of being diabetic. I house and dog sat the month they were gone. We all get along pretty well. I like his girlfriend. She is good people. This all sounds so nice, doesn’t it? And it was.

Was. Past tense. Here a little back story.

I lost my job and was at a loss about how to get by until I found a new job. I used my tax return to live on, not to buy the little things I had ear marked it for. I had X amount earmarked for my auto insurance, and X amount for a couple of fun things. None of that happened because I was let go (And it was very weird. There is a post about it if you are curious) and had no income.

The ex, let’s call him Jimmy, said he’d help me through the rough spots. If I lost my apartment, he’d give me a place to stay and so on. He went on and on about not to worry about it. He’d take care of the things I needed until I was on my feet. He lent me some money to pay rent and buy food, etc. I told him I’d be willing to work it off. He had a few things he wanted done around his home, and heck, I could do them. It all seemed to be a fair deal all the way around. I began working on the projects he wanted done, tracked my time and gave him detailed invoices showing what was done at what rate, the charges and the balance due. They had bought a Wii system and there it sat for over a year doing nothing. Jimmy said, ‘Take it, use it. We never even hooked it up’. Okay. I’ll play a little Super Mario now and then. It will pass the time when I can’t afford to go out.

Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? And it was. Was. There’s that past tense again.

Then I had to ask Jimmy to help me pay my car insurance. Why? Because I am working part-time and barley getting by. Because I used up all my resources while I was out of work and the money I had planned to put aside went to rent, food, utilities and fuel.

He agreed but wrote:

The first of April I gave you $X and with you working that should have lasted till you paid me back. It sure looks like you are not making enough money to live in the style of having a car and a place of your own to live.

I do think you are a great person and tried to make a life with you.  I still have a life with you, but is it going to cost me money all the time?
WTF?!!?? Are you kidding me? Until now, I haven’t him for anything in the three years we have been divorced.
But this is who he is. Nothing is a ‘gift’. Nothing is just ‘help’. Nothing is as he says it is. He even admitted he donated his kidney so he had something to hold over his girlfriend’s head (She doesn’t know this. He told me this one day while I was taking him out to run errands after his surgery). Jimmy is selfish and self-centered. Anything he does, he does to benefit himself. His promise to help me out has left the building. I should KNOW this. This why I left him in the first place. Jimmy does not follow through with promises made. Ever. The life he tried to make with me, was not with me at all. He was more interested in making me live HIS life. He showed me who he was, and I didn’t believe him. My bad.
I don’t live large. I have a small (but tiny) studio apartment. I don’t have cable. I don’t have a credit card. I don’t owe everybody on the plant money. My expenses, outside of rent, utilities, food, etc., are the internet and my car loan. I know I need a second job. I am looking. The part-time work I thought I had in place fell through. Stuff happens. So I am still hunting for a second income. I’m squeezing by. And it’s a very tight fit.
I wrote back a rather snarky reply to Jimmy, which he has ignored. That’s fine. He did lend me the money for the insurance. I will work it off, or get my second job and pay it back. I have packed up the Wii and will return it to him. I don’t want to be accused of having any fun I may not deserve. I will pay Jimmy back, one way or another, and walk away. The cost of being friendly with him is too high.
He has shown me who he is once again. And this time, I believe him.

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