There was an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie entitled, “The Eraser.” His job was to go in and erase all evidence of a person’s existence. He was to prepare a woman to enter a Witness Protection Program so he got rid of everything that showed her existence including her records like driver’s license, birth certificate; personal effects like a necklace she wore all the time, etc. Once erased, it was as if she never existed.
Sometimes, since I got married, I feel like I’ve been erased. I had no problem taking hubby’s last name. I know some women feel like they lose themselves by taking their husband’s last name. My theory on that is I never had my own last name anyway. I mean, the name I did have was my father’s name so what difference does it make? I was proud to take my hubby’s.
Of course, by taking hubby’s last name, it erased the credit history I had accumulated under my maiden name. Just try to get credit under your married name when there is no credit history associated with that name! It was near impossible back then.
I purchased my own home the year before I met my knight in shining armor. I think it was when we refinanced the house that I began to get inkling that I had been erased. When the paperwork came in, everything was in my husband’s name. I no longer owned a home. We could have argued with the closing company, and had everything changed on the paperwork but I opted not to. It just felt very strange that I didn’t even exist for this mortgage company.
Then I signed up for a daily e-newsletter. I used MY email address to sign up but the letters always start, “Dear Leland.” Some letters from companies we both deal with may come addressed to Mr. and Mrs., but the salutation always starts, “Dear Leland.” Good thing I have a sense of humor ’cause I feel like I’m disappearing!
One time I signed up with a weight loss program. I was allowed to ask a daily question through a comment section on the website and the weight loss guru responds back with a short video. So I asked my first question and eagerly awaited an answer. When I clicked on the video “play” button the first thing I heard was, “Hi Leland, you had a great question.” I immediately emailed that guy and said, “HOW is this possible? It was MY email address, MY name and MY credit card – so HOW did MY husband’s name get in here?” Augh!!!
I tried calling a credit card company the other day to activate our new replacement cards. We each have one with our individual names stamped on it. The guy was very apologetic. “M’am, I see that you are a verified user on this account. However, you are not the primary card holder so I can’t activate this card. Mr. Husband must call in the activate this card.” Now who else is going to have all that personal information about him except someone who has permission to know it? Grrrrrr.
But the worst? I saw I had a message on my answering machine the other day. It was from a company I purchased beauty products from a few years back – about 5 years. The lady on the telephone said, “HI Leland. This is blah-blah from Beauty blah-blah Company. I just wanted to let you know that the products you purchased (and she named the products) are now on sale. Call me!!” Boy, I’d like to call her all right… she just wouldn’t like it if I did. Then I’d go have a little talk with hubby and see if he needs to tell me something!
I’m not sure why this erasing has occurred. I’m not a bad person. I have nothing to hide and haven’t witnessed any crimes lately that would involve the need to erase me so the criminals couldn’t find me before I could testify against them. So why am I being erased???
It is a good thing that I respect myself and no one can erase me without my permission… but still! I know my hubby laughs WITH me every time I share an incident with him of my erasing. And I for sure know we don’t have a life insurance policy wherein he gets millions of dollars if I am erased permanently – so what gives with this thing about erasing me? I’m NOT going down without a fight, do you hear me??
I do exist. I do, I do, I do exist. I do do do exist. I respect myself. I am alive. I am a real person.
Hello??? Is there anyone out there? Am I invisible – non-existent – erased??
Copyright © 2009 Nan C Loyd
All rights reserved. Used by permission.