“Wiping out” is for surfing, not financial planning
For my divorced readers, it is my earnest hope that your spouse did not control the finances of your family exclusively. You should have had your own savings and checking accounts so that you had some control over your own expenses. Not having access to your own money is a recipe for disaster, if you have become suddenly single.
When a very close friend of mine became unexpectedly unmarried, her estranged spouse allegedly cleaned out three bank accounts that they had jointly, leaving her with a grand total of $6 for the next two weeks before pay day. By removing a check from the middle of the checkbook, she did not notice that one was missing when she picked up the checkbook to pay bills.
She received a call from a friend at her bank the next afternoon; the banker told her that her estranged husband entered the bank, asked how much he had to leave in the accounts so that his withdrawing money would not trigger a special statement ($2 in each account), and took out the rest of the money.
Fortunately, she had thought ahead and had opened a personal checking account and deposited her paycheck for that week in the account, so things were not as disastrous as they could have been. She still had to cover the checks she had written before becoming aware of the situation and she thereby avoided bank charges that would have otherwise been incurred.
I hope that you were not in this same situation; I hope that you had your own money, no matter how little the amount. Do you have your own tale of woe on this topic? I would love to share your story with my readers, without mentioning your name.