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Treasured Social Butterfly
Posts: 19,204
Registered: ‎12-25-2011

Re: Emergency expenses/funds

Message 11 of 13 (234 Views)

@nyadrn - I had a friend who taught in a tough, mostly minority High School in Paterson, NJ. She was so frustrated that sometimes when a child was bright & wanted to make a better life for themselves, they weren't supported emotionally by their families! Some families felt it was a slap in their face, that their children wanted to get a better education & have careers, than their parents had! Or that the teen was "too full of themself", thinking they were better/smarter than their parents. Talk about topsy-turvy; imagine how hard it is to break free of that kind of thinking in your family & many members of your community!

Registered on Online Community since 2007!
Posts: 34,466
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Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Re: Emergency expenses/funds

Message 12 of 13 (234 Views)

retiredtraveler wrote:

This is a subject that you guys would agree that has endless permutations. The political thread already has a discussion of poverty, although, it's more about arguing  about people not taking jobs that are available and sitting around collecting welfare. There are endless discussions about the role of government, private charities, assistance programs of all types, lack of education, lack of job opportunities, lack of training, etc.

   I've been fortunate enough to never experience poverty. My parents did, but that's the primary reason I didn't have to. A lot of us had parents who lived through the depression. And of course, poverty was very different then with so many people in the same circumstances. My mom always said they didn't know they were poor because everyone lived similarly to them. 

   It is hard to believe that in this country, the middle class has been so decimated, we have such income disparity, such disparity in needs of employers and skills that applicants (don't) have, and jobs are continuing to go to other countries.

   My first career was as a caseworker for the Illinois Dept of Public Aid where I worked in the Chicago projects. I have a whole different perspective on poverty from many people after my years of experience in that. 

I rarely post in politics anymore where there is actually little discussion of issues from a middle perspective imho of course.  The problem is,  I don't see much possible change.

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
Valued Social Butterfly
Posts: 1,240
Registered: ‎10-09-2009

Re: Emergency expenses/funds

Message 13 of 13 (167 Views)

There are many reasons why people may not have resources to cover an emergency. Some are truly those living in poverty with no means to escape. Many are the struggling middle class households that run paycheck to paycheck. But generally speaking, in more recent years, younger Americans have developed culturally into one of greater self-indulgence and living off the credit card. 


My parents raised us to be financially responsible, and to never buy things we could not afford. My dad was one who like to pay cash for everything, and back then, he usually got a cash discount for doing so. The savings comes first, and spend when you have a little extra.


It hasn't always been easy, and I admit that I went through a period of buying too much. Fortunately, my better instincts kicked in, and I started shoveling money into the 401k when I worked, as well as cash accessible savings account. I also save a little extra knowing that in so many months or years, a major replacement purchase (appliances, roof or house repair, HAVAC system, and other big ticket expenses) will inevitably occur.


Because our parents and grandparents lived through the depression, it caused them to impress upon us a culture of saving first and living within ones means. With years of prosperity, that seems to have diminished from the American culture, where in general, it has given way to more self-indulgent lifestyles.