“I am fearful all the time: of not earning enough, of being sick and not being able to pay my rent. My health hasn’t been great lately. I am scared that I won’t have enough money to cover health costs.”
“I am spending more than I am earning just on food, rent and utilities. And, I am on my own again and turning 48. I never thought I’d be here at this age”, says Sinéad, coming in and out of focus from her virtual background on Zoom. “I am too ashamed and embarrassed for you to see my room”……
“I don’t trust myself to be able to support myself”
Sinéad is a bright, talented, happy-go-lucky woman who would do anything for you. I feel a lot of joy just being with her. And despite her abilities, she works a 40 hour week earning minimum wage. She recently broke up with her long-term partner and wasn’t covering her monthly expenses.
She continues “I don’t trust myself to be able to support myself. I don’t trust that I can actually bring in the money necessary to meet my basic needs.”
A Common Thread:
I hear similar stories from many women in their 40s and 50s. The details might be a bit different. And some women are in a relationship with a partner and still have the same insecurities in their own abilities to support themselves as Sinéad has. Many struggle with their own confidence, especially when the partner is earning a lot more money. COVID19 has brought these feelings to the surface for many.
So what led to Sinéad feeling very alone and unsupported?
What We Are Taught:
“never taught to take responsibility for herself financially”
As we worked together on looking at her relationship to money and resources, it became very clear to her how she was never taught to claim her power to manage money. She was never taught to take responsibility for herself financially. Sinéad was trained to be a lesser person in service to others’ needs. She learned not to value herself. And, not to expect good behaviour and fair treatment from others.
There seemed to be a total abandonment of her own life energy. The people she cared for and invested so much of her time and energy came and went. Now she’s experiencing health problems with no money in her savings account.
We worked together to get to the point where Sinéad started to get glimpses that there was nothing wrong with her. She realised that this was a script. A script she was following, written by her family and society. And, written by their family and their society, and so on, back through countless generations. You can think of the script as running software. Although it keeps things going it needs to be updated and improved.
Trapped In Our Family’s Script:
“The script was invented”
This kind of repetition of scripts fits in with biogenealogy which explains how we inherit illness from our ancestors via cellular memory.
Biogenealogist Patrick Obissier observes that, “Because our ancestors live within us, we can find the roots of our illness in our family history, in our family tree.” In my experience of working with over 400 clients, emotional toxicity around money is also passed down.
Once Sinéad realized the script she was following in her relationship to money, she realized their contents were arbitrary. The script was invented, crafted, and adjusted over countless generations. It was designed for her to get along and be able to live and work together reasonably well.
The Power For Change Is Ours:
Sinead’s breakthrough began when she saw it was within her power to choose to make changes. She didn’t have to follow the script of believing that she wasn’t allowed to take up space and have her own life. She saw that she didn’t have to build a life that was based on safety at all costs to avoid being abandoned. It’s interesting that the over attachment to safety created a life of loneliness and fear. Exactly what Sinéad didn’t want – rather than a life committed to compassion, loving kindness, exploration and joy.