I never thought I would be in this position- asking complete strangers for money online. I’ve always had a strong work ethic, and believed in forging my own path- and being a completely resilient and independent person.
It’s not easy for me to even type these words, as I’m going to get really honest and pour my heart on the line and admit some of the biggest secrets in my life. But it’s because I need help, and I can’t allow my pride to continue being a burden to my family.
For the last 8 years I have been working full-time to support my boyfriend and our two pets- a small dog and a fat cat. I worked a lot of different jobs- sometimes two or three at the same time (everything from serving, film production assistant, liquor stores and more). It was a hectic lifestyle- but I made it work, because my boyfriend was never in a position health-wise to work himself.
We lived with his adopted family (more on that later) for about 5 years (contributing to rent, bills and groceries for the household), before moving on our own. His family is wonderful, and consists of two loving parents, another adopted sibling, and two biological children from the parents.
We moved on our own about two years ago when it became apparent his family couldn’t support us for much longer, due to their own financial hardships. Life was good for us at this point. Despite living in our first rather small & dingy bachelor/basement suite in a large & unfamiliar city- my boyfriend was consistently working for the first time in 8 years.
It was hard for him to work, and he never did for so long, because he was born with a crippling disability that was passed on to him from both of his parents. He never met his parents, they both died shortly after he was born, although he has been with the same adopted family nearly his whole life. His illness makes him tired and feel sore, he can’t gain weight like most people and he has 10 horse pills to take every single day, which leaves him nauseous & clutching his stomach in a ball on the bathroom floor, at times. Not to mention the constant trips to the hospital/ specialists we both frequently go to, to maintain his health.
Despite those hurdles, when we first moved out both of us were working at the same time, for the first time ever in our relationship. He was working doing hard physical labour / contract work with a friend, and I had a good job, on salary, managing a retail store in the city.
I watched him battle his illness and get up everyday to support us and provide us with a good life- testing his limits all the time. It wasn’t easy for him to work, and I often told him he shouldn’t go in when I could see he wasn’t up to it. Sometimes he would take a day, but usually he pushed himself and did it.
We were a good team, saving money and starting to build our own independent life together.
Within six months we were able to move out of that dingy basement suite into a clean and warm apartment (with an actual bedroom!), and everything seemed really good.
Then, one morning last year, we were just waking up & got a phone call from my boyfriends dad. His dad was sobbing hard. I couldn’t hear a lot, but my boyfriend’s face broke and he started bawling. I watched his heart break. And all I could hear was my boyfriends broken cries and his dads muffled ones on the other end.
When they got off the phone (his dad was coming to pick us up), I learned what happened. My boyfriend’s older brother, my brother-in-law, had passed away from a heart attack that morning & we were both crushed.
We spent two weeks with the family, taking that time off of work, and I got two small payday loans to help with the strenuous financial/ emotional circumstances. We did receive a lot of help in that time- my boyfriend was able to leave his contracting job and get a much less physically demanding job offered from their families church & we attended a free counselling session, too.
However, my job was less sympathetic then the church- and while not directly firing me for taking that time off, I was told how bad it was for the company that I took that time off, and was put on the chopping block for it. Within 3 months I lost my job.
We’ve been trying to make it work, but the two loans I got have defaulted (since I couldn’t afford to pay it back after losing my job) and my boyfriend’s job at the church is only part-time and with very random shifts/ pay dates. We’re also struggling with our day-to-day bills & rent.
I have a creditor knocking at my door, and the most work I’ve been getting is part-time serving work, not enough to make ends meet, hardly enough to keep food on our plates. Not to mention the grieving process for both me and him is still quite overwhelming, as the loss was unexpected and still pretty fresh. I can’t imagine what my boyfriend is going through, losing a family member while confronting his own health issues daily. I know for him life feels hopeless, and I don’t want this debt to be an added pressure on him.
We’re not in the hole by a lot of money, $800- 1,000 CAD is all that we need to get our finances straightened out, but anything helps in a situation like this. I know it seems like a small amount, but when you have bills to pay on top of that, and health issues & grievance… It starts to feel like that thousand dollars will always be hanging over our heads. (Posted a photo of some, not all, debts).
If there is anyone out there who is in a position to help a small family who has been through a lot over the last few months, there would be no way we could repay you in terms of what you will have given us emotionally. Thanks to all who read and God bless.