Saturday, May 14, 2016
Money is Power - is it or isn't it?
It’s been awhile since the last post. When I stop writing it’s difficult to get back into the habit and I have no idea if this one will result in a surge of ideas resulting in subsequent posts. But at least it’s a start. The other day I received an email from a friend. Our conversations have moved from one topic to another over the months but in this most recent email the comment was made “money is power” and my friend asked if my views on giving up financial control to Katie is something I still feel good about.
Apparently his wife is taking control of their finances and the adjustment has been just that – an adjustment. It’s hard for me to remember how I felt back then when Katie assumed control. If I recall correctly, it was something I welcomed. I welcomed it because I came from a marriage where I controlled the money but was married to a woman who loved using the plastic regardless of the modest income we generated. I hated that damn card. I hated always being behind the eight-ball and the feeling of never being able to stay ahead. I hated having to tell my children ‘no’ when they asked to do this or that because I knew of the financial implications and the need to try to stay ahead of the next bill. I hated everything about money.
So when Katie wanted control I willingly gave it up. That’s my background b to get to the question posed in the email: is money power? I think the answer is both yes and no. It’s a no because Katie has to pay the bills. Sure, she knows the balance in our checking and savings and I don’t. She knows if we are staying in the black and if our safety margin between black and red is growing or shrinking. That might be power but it’s also responsibility and for some it may be stressful as it did for me. Personally I’m glad to be free or that responsibility. But money is power in that Katie can buy what she wants, when she wants. I don’t have that freedom. In our home she usually tells me what she purchased but does so more after the fact than before. That’s the power. That’s the freedom she enjoys.
On the flip side, not having that freedom is what I asked for when I asked to submit. I wanted to remain dependent. I wanted to not have so many choices. I wanted to give up, let go, and put my trust in her. I wanted all of that because I came to realize by doing so it would promote closeness. I crave closeness and do so through my submission. It’s what I can’t seem to get enough of. It’s the mysterious paradox of the dominant/submissive relationship that makes no sense to those that live with equal power. But remember, the primary reason I wanted to submit was to draw me closer to Katie and in the area of finances I knew that having money meant having control. I find myself resisting control. I want to let go a whole lot more than I want to grasp on and keep for my own because I understand the consequences of that choice.
The peace I experienced by letting go took place because my heart was in a place to let go. I think my friend’s heart isn’t quite in that same place. I’m making assumptions but I suspect he is being forced to give up and being forced to live without while his heart isn’t quite ready to go there and fully trust in his spouse and her decisions.
For the mistresses of the world reading this, there is responsibility in having those freedoms. In the financial realm there is the responsibility to live within ones’ means. Our homes are not like the government. We reap the painful consequences of poor financial choices a whole lot sooner than governments (although in the end there is no joy by going further into debt). Just because you have control doesn’t mean the wallet won’t eventually run dry. And in that respect, even mistresses have to submit to the hard realities of life. Mistresses submitting, mmmm, now there is a thought to ponder!
Am I glad I let go? You better believe it. Do I have second thoughts? Sometimes. Of course there are times when I wish I could get this, or do that, or go there, but I understand the momentary satisfaction of making that purchase risks me losing the greater good of living dependently on her. For me, there is no better place to be because to remain needy equates to remaining intimately close. And that is what I want more than anything else – intimacy.