Imichelle, Become a Complete Fool
I haven't been to this board for about a week due to a crazy schedule, but I just read the whole thread and I have to tell you that you have already made more progress than most by....
COMING BACK FOR THE DIFFICULT TRUTHS!
I want to congratulate you. Often we see a post on this board, we all rally with ideas and care and encouragement and then the original poster never shows up again to tell us how they are doing...probably because they didn't like the answers we gave.
But YOU, you see the difficult truths and you keep coming back anyway! You can't see me but I'm actually beaming with PRIDE. Go girl!
That said, here's my two cents AND please know that I've learned about these ideas through experience and am still learning...so you are NOT alone which is THEE best thing about this board.
You and your husband have psychological-financial conceptions that you must get beyond in order to make it. You are already taking steps in that direction. Others (xraymd for instance) have suggested some reading for you that will help you to identify some of these things and help to get your financial head twisted on correctly. People don't realize how important that is.
A few things I'd like to point out:
1. Keeping up with the Joneses does not give you a better life. It just makes you tired...tired of chasing material things down to prove that you are good enough. Well aren't you good enough without those "things"? AND if you think that your friends won't like you because you don't have MATERIAL things, then do you really want them as friends in the first place? Let me tell you something, PEOPLE DO NOT SIT AROUND FIGURING OUT WHO THEY LIKE THE BEST BASED ON WHAT THEY HAVE, DO, OR OWN. SELF-LESS people don't do it because MATERIALISM doesn't matter to them and SELFISH people don't do it because they are to focused on themselves and getting MORE STUFF. I'm trying to tell you that keeping up with the Joneses is ***IN YOUR HEAD***. No one is looking at you. To prove it, if you meet someone really great and supportive who you become friends with and admire, do you stop wanting to be friends if they drive an older car or live in a smaller house? NOOOOOOOOOOOOO, instead you want to hang out with and be more like that person because of the person they are.
2. How do you know that the Joneses don't have a bankruptcy waiting around the corner and all the while you are trying to be like them? How about being like YOU? What are YOUR values? The only people that compare what they have to what others have are people that feel so empty inside that they are looking for something to fill themselves up. If you stick around here you WILL get to the point where you feel sorry for those people. Suze Orman says, "Money enables you to make choices, and the choices you make with your money ultimately add up to your values."
3. The two of you are making ALL the compromises for that house. ALL OF THEM. ALL. ALL. ALL. Do you hear me? Is the house that great that you are giving up EVERYTHING else for it? Imagine for a moment if you will that you had a smaller house with every repair made and every blade of grass just so, with clean manageable cars in the garage, and happy children playing on a Saturday with both mom and dad because they don't have to work OT, and all the bills caught up, with college funds off to a fabulous start, an emergency fund, a freedom fund, retirements savings, vacation savings, fun money including for date night and a sitter, no CC debt and everybody sleeps peacefully, sweetly through the night. WOULDN'T YOU WANT TO LIVE IN THAT LITTLE HOUSE?
4. You must remember that your children will pick up every money idea you and your husband have. Ask yourself what you are teaching them? Are you teaching them that it's more important for mommy and daddy to work extra to have a fancy house than it is for them to move into a smaller house in order to have time for THEM? Are you teaching them that material appearances are more important? That it's okay to live beyond your means as long as you are keeping up with the Joneses? That if you take $150,000 in income and divide it by 5, it's only $30,000 but you should still live like a rock star no matter what?
Okay, that's a lot to dump on you all in one message and I hope you see that I'm sincere and I want the best for you. I'm in your cheering section, Baby, so don't give up! This is not boring stuff at all. It's about you, your husband, your children, your time. It's about YOUR LIFE. No it's not boring at all.
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