Now making loans in Kentucky and North Carolina!

Staff Notes: Forget About the Pants—Who Holds the Purse Strings?

If you know three women or seven men, one of them has experienced some kind of intimate partner abuse or violence.

The truth is, we all know someone.

Some of us grew up in a family riddled with violence. Others of us stumbled into a relationship that seemed perfect—until it was a nightmare. Occasionally, we didn't stumble, but we were sought, pressured, and eventually succumbed.

The one thing almost all relationships impacted by violence have in common is financial abuse. In fact, financial abuse occurs in 99% of domestic violence cases and is a common tactic used by abusers to gain power and control over a partner. Sometimes it occurs when the survivor is attempting to leave or has left the relationship. Survivors also cite financial abuse as the reason they stay longer because they are trapped by an inability to access funds.

On the Road Lending has provided help for clients experiencing financial abuse since we opened our doors in 2013. Many of our early clients were survivors with severely damaged credit who needed our loan services to help them rebuild their stability from years of abuse.

Over the years, we have seen the effects of the following financial abuse tactics:

  • Concealing financial information, including passwords, expenditures, and balances to limit knowledge or accessibility
  • Using a partner's identifying information without their permission
  • Pressuring the partner to purchase something they can't afford or do not want
  • Threatening to withhold income or take income
  • Threatening to take or break items beyond repair
  • Promising to pay on accounts and purposely not making payments

This month during Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we honor our survivors and thank our community partners who do the important work of supporting survivors through the often-rocky transition to freedom and stability.

CTA: If you or someone you know is experiencing partnership violence, please reach out to your local resource center, call the national hotline at 800-799-7233, or text START to 88788.

Kristen Petricola has worked as a client coach and underwriter at On the Road Lending since 2017. She served on the board of her local domestic violence resource center in southern New Hampshire for six years and currently sits on the advisory council. She was raised in a home where violence and financial abuse were tactics used to gain power and control over family members. She is continually amazed at the courage and resiliency of survivors.