Banking while autistic.

Recently, after much consideration, I undertook this whole process over the course of a week where I moved my banking from Chime to my neighborhood credit union (which I’d initially set up to handle the veterinary fundraiser money), which has a “round-up” savings process akin to Chime’s

Surprise! It’s not akin to Chime’s at all. After sending an inquiry about missing roundups, I learned from a reply today that iQ doesn’t actually round-up everything. If something processes as a “bill payment” it doesn’t get rounded up. iQ doesn’t, however, actually say this anywhere in the terms for their “Easy Saving” plan.

But wait: it’s even worse! iQ did round up when I paid my Sprint bill, but didn’t round up from…buying cat litter on Amazon?

Let me digress for a moment, because this is important: I manually account for everything I spend in a macOS/iOS app, and I do so immediately after any payment or purchase I made. It’s one example of how I offload cognitive work to external devices in order to help reduce cognitive demands and manage cognitive resources. This process is complicated by this new revelation by iQ that they don’t actually do what they say they do in the Easy Saver terms.

Basically, now I’m left with a choice between cognitive hells. Either I have to add cognitive work to every single day, checking to see what didn’t get rounded up and remove those roundups from my own accounting app. This would involve more than just looking at individual transactions, because iQ, unlike Chime, transfers all roundups for the day as a single transaction, so I’d have to do the math to determine which of the roundups I’d accounted for weren’t actually performed by iQ in order to determine what transactions to delete from my accounting app.

Or, I have to go through the laborious cognitive (and grunt) work of reverting to Chime again, methodically reversing every single change or update I’d made to switch to the credit union, one by one by one by one—and do this in a way that doesn’t impact anything I need to purchase or pay for during the transition.

Being autistic is a never-ending, and often relentless, struggle between demands and resources. The everyday struggle everyone goes through hits us harder, and then we also have the demands of sensory and social communication processing, and we use structure and predictability wherever we can in order to reduce as much unnecessary demand as possible. It doesn’t take much to throw this system of attempted balance into disarray.

It’s been more than an hour since the message from iQ delivering this surprise. I have not stopped since the shaking with anger and a lack of cognitive resources to deal.

Addenda

  1. For example: while writing this there was a weed whacker operating outside my window, and when my cat ran up the chair I’m sitting in to get to the cat tree that she doesn’t need my chair to get into, I literally at the top of my lungs screamed, “Stop!” My resources cannot keep up with demands, and my nervous system is frayed.
  2. So I gritted my teeth and girded my whatever and just methodically undid everything I’d done to move to iQ. How big of an impact this will have on my energy levels later today is anyone’s guess.