Someone tell me how to make amends. I spent $260+ on clothes, shoes and a shelf. And a few other things. I knew how much it was and I knew I had to talk to B about it, but he got to our check register first. He was furious.
$260 is a very large sum of money for us. We have little to live on for the rest of the month, for gas and groceries. (We have a lot of food in our larder, don’t send us grocery store coupons.) He wants me to return as much as I can and make amends. He wants me to clean the house.
From what I read on AA webpages, making amends needs to be something linked to the offense. Returning the goods or repaying the $260 are good examples of making amends. Asking “what can I do?” is not a good example because it shows the offender doesn’t understand the nature or depth of the offense. B wants me to scrub the house. I am doing it, but I am neutral. I’m not doing it because I want a clean house. I honestly don’t care one way or another if the house is clean. I’m not motivated by love. I love my husband but I am not cleaning to make him happy. I just feel nothing about this job. It’s true I’ve spent about an hour on the computer when I could be scouring the shower floor, but my knees were hurting. And I hadn’t looked at facebook all day.
He was very very very angry last night. He didn’t sleep well and he was still angry at me when he left for work.
I thought we had arrived at some understanding. When I go on a spree (and this won’t be my last) I move blithely through the store, picking out things I like and things I think I should have. The later is the danger, because I don’t want to take those things back. Sure, I’ll return the things I just like, but the things I need, like the $6.99 swimsuit, are different stories. I got a lot of pants 70% off and I do not want to return them. They fit me, unlike much of the other clothes I have. And it’s only $14 I’ll get back. It seems not worth the trouble to do so. I am really not myself when I’m shopping.
When I come down from the high, I feel really guilty. I am ashamed at what I did. I am convicted that not lying is not the end of God’s instruction, but deception is also condemned over and over again. I hide the things I bought. I take off the tags. I seek out more.
There is an embossing plate collection that I have a 50% coupon for. It’s ten plates, and plates are usually $4.99. After the coupon, they could be $1 each. I want them. I think I need them and have to have them. I know I am wrong! But the drive is in me and I almost feel desperate to own it. I try and think about how I can get the $10. Can I return something so I have the cash? Can I take money from the community change drawer? (If you have ideas, just let me know.)
I don’t know what I’m going to do next. I have to go this afternoon to return the shelf and some clothes. It won’t be enough, I know. I won’t be “allowed” to buy anything for a very long time. I hate being treated like a child. People say that B can be controlling, and it’s true, but I think part of it is trying to manage a mentally ill spouse. He doesn’t know anyone else who has a wife with bipolar, and 90% of bipolar people’s marriages fail. He and I both are committed to our marriage. He needs support but we’re not going to drive an hour + for a support group filled with a bunch of sick people either (a) feeling sorry for themselves or (b) 300 pounds because they take Seroquel and use it as an excuse to drink a milkshake everyday. I was on that path and want to stay as far from it was possible.
Sigh. I wish I could fix things, and I’m sure that I can, but I’m not going to do as good of a job as possible. I won’t blame it on the mania, I’m just too selfish.