To wish people would understand when you say "I can't, I've got no money at the moment..."

(101 Posts)
GetStuffezd Thu 25-Jul-13 16:46:28

You actually mean "I really do have no money at the moment!"
I'm just having a frustrated rant.
I've moved house this week and even with my parents kindly lending me a deposit, it has wiped me out for this month. I have £18 to last until the end of the month. No biggie, I can do it. However, a group of friends I went to uni with, who live in the city about 25 miles away, have been nagging repeatedly for me to go out with them for their big reunion. I would LOVE to go. But I can't physically cannot afford it.
Result = stupid FB messages telling me to drive and drink coke, hop the train and drink whatever is on offer, etc. Finally, a snotty message from one person saying my no-show was pretty poor.

It's frustrating and embarrassing to have to repeatedly explain how little money you have. AIBU to wish people could be a bit more sensitive?

Makqueen Thu 25-Jul-13 16:48:35

I don't think people get the difference between 'I don't have enough to stay out all night and buy a thousand drinks/dinner' and 'I can't come out, I am scraping by just to eat'.

I have had this before and it's irritating to say the least.

RandomMess Thu 25-Jul-13 16:50:40

I would actually reply saying "I have £18 for anything and everything until August and owe my parents £x - I really cannot afford to come out am gutted to be missing out"

InGloriousTechnicolor Thu 25-Jul-13 16:52:42

YANBU - some people genuinely don't get what it's like to have a completely finite amount of money until (say) the end of the month. I think if someone says they can't afford it, you should just leave it otherwise you are going to embarrass them. But people seem to think it's OK to nag.

SleepyFish Thu 25-Jul-13 16:55:03

Oh I hear you. It's my birthday next week, it's a biggie and I am sick of telling people I'm not doing anything coz I'm skint. Have literally just been asked again 5 minutes ago. As you say it's embarrassing.

Borisboohoo Thu 25-Jul-13 16:55:29

I know exactly what you mean. It frustrates me when they say "but it's only £X'. When you have NO money £5 or £5000 is equally unobtainable. Or they go ON and ON forcing you to repeat yourself which is embarrassing and none of their business. Or they don't believe you when you buy/go and do something else not understanding that you make choices about where your little bit of money goes and most of the time treats/nights out/their child's birthday present is not top of your list.

Groovee Thu 25-Jul-13 16:55:42

I have some friends like that! I just say no now with no excuse as I shouldn't have to have to explain myself.

GetStuffezd Thu 25-Jul-13 16:58:09

randommess that's exactly what I've just had to message. It doesn't feel great! I should add, a group of these friends came to my old city a couple of months ago and at one point were a three minute walk from my house. They didn't invite me and in fact posted lots of lovely pictures online of themselves... So they can't have wanted to see me that much.

RedPencils Thu 25-Jul-13 16:58:25

I had this with a friend of mine. Organising a big girls night out, involved an overnight stay in posh hotel. Normally I'd be first in, but I had lost my job four months previously and had nothing else on the horizon. I said, 'I'm not working so I can't afford it' but she went on and on about.
I wasnt embarassed about not beem having a job, it happens. But It was humiliating to have to say over and over again 'I can't afford it'.
YANBU - I do wonder what some people's idea of 'no money' is.

GetStuffezd Thu 25-Jul-13 16:59:28

Yes Boris if only people realised that sometimes people have to prioritise to minute degrees!

Tee2072 Thu 25-Jul-13 16:59:32

Just keep saying no. Stop explaining why.

If your friends put pressure on you like this, then I'm sorry to say it, but they are not real friends. A real friend will find something that you can join in, that won't cost anything at all (eg. if it's your birthday and you can't afford to go anywhere then it becomes "their treat", no fuss, just a statement), or will just drop the subject.

exexpat Thu 25-Jul-13 17:00:51

I think a lot of people assume you can just put it on a credit card/run up an overdraft and worry about it later. They don't realise that some people either can't (don't have credit cards or overdraft facilities, or are already maxed out) or don't want to go into debt. YANBU.

GetStuffezd Thu 25-Jul-13 17:02:36

Ironically justforlaughs it's starting to hot home that they're not proper friends. I think I'm kind of the "laughing stock" figure within the group, and while that was fine when we were 21, I'm a bit sick of that now.

Also, I had a lovely message from a good friend in my old town offering to come round for DVDs and a wander round new village. Totally free and a great catch up. I'm going to stop feeling guilty now.

saulaboutme Thu 25-Jul-13 17:04:48

Yanbu. I never used to say I was skint but I've had to now.
We were friends with a couple, (note WERE) who every couple of weeks wanted to meet for nights out, dinner, drinks etc and one it twice yes we met.
In the end we were making excuses and I just had to say no, can't afford it. Wife of couple just couldn't understand!! Needless to say they are now divorced...she bled her DH dry.
There will be other nights out. Just ignore them. Sometimes it's like this.

MissMarplesBloomers Thu 25-Jul-13 17:06:28

Oh spooky I was just going to start the same thread myself!! grin

"We're going to the pub" .....Sorry I'm broke

Come on only for the quiz ( last time they said that it was 3 bottles of wine)

NO!!!

or just today ...me, contemplating my flat tyre & the new spare currently doing the job "Ah well the tyre will have to wait till I can afford a new one"

Helpful Neighbour" You should get it changed, you might need it, "only" about £50 at Quickfit"

ME trying to joke... " ah well that's about £49.99 more than I have spare right now"

HIM: Well you should prioritise your safety y'know and cut back on something else.

ME; Ok so I'll tell the kids no food for a week then eh?

<head...wall>

I manage to be quite Pollyanna about it most days but today I am SO pissed off with saying "Can't afford it" Yet.Again.

ipswichwitch Thu 25-Jul-13 17:09:17

Totally agree that some have a completely different idea of skint. A relative of mine is always banging on about being skint, then in the next breath tells you how she's bought this bag and that pair of shoes, booked another holiday and never gets to go out despite having been out every weekend for the last 4 months.

I get really annoyed when I say I'm totally skint, and she says oh yeah so am I, then proceeds to grill me as to why I can't afford x, y and z. Her rationale is that even though she pleads poverty she always manages to find money for Various extras an can't understand why I can't do the same

pianodoodle Thu 25-Jul-13 17:12:14

Have a good time with your old friend smile

I'm always having to find free things to do with DD during the day and it isn't that hard - we have a good time - but I often have to decline things like "out for lunch" etc... In favour of eating at home and meeting them after. I don't mind and neither do they but if I was getting badgered about it I wouldn't think they were very good friends.

Also, people over use "I'm skint" and quite often it just means they can only afford drinks not dinner rather than being down to their last few pennies...

RabbitFromAHat Thu 25-Jul-13 17:16:39

Yep, I get it. On Tuesday I had to count out change from the penny jar to buy potatoes to feed myself with until payday tomorrow. The last thing I needed was to get a passive-aggressive mail from someone complaining that I was missing their last-Thursday-of-every-month AGAIN. Err, yes, I think you could perhaps see a pattern there. grin YAsoNBU.

farrowandbawl Thu 25-Jul-13 17:44:30

You are not being unreasonable in the slightest. These are not friends. Friends would have understood and left it at that or even maybe even paid for you to go out as a treat.

Just think of this as something to look out for in future as a warning flag.

FacebookWanker Thu 25-Jul-13 17:48:33

It annoys me beyond belief.

OP, I hope you have great time with your real friend thanks, who knows, she may even bring a bottle of wine to share wine

Turniptwirl Thu 25-Jul-13 17:51:21

Yadnbu

I declined lunch with the girls from my office last week coz I couldn't afford it. I had someone offer to pay for me, offer (without asking anyone else!) to split my cost between everyone etc. If it was a close friend I might have agreed but not for a work thing. I don't want to be the one relying on other people

A few years ago a friend lent me £50 so I could go on a night out with her that she desperately wanted me to go to. But I've since learned my lesson about borrowing and ghat if I can't afford it this month why do I think I can afford to pay it back next month?! Unless I know I have extra money coming from a bonus of overtime I won't borrow anymore and certainly not for a night out!

They should feel embarrassed for being so insensitive and ignorant. Do they realise you've just moved? Have they ever done that themselves? It took me months to financially 'recover' from moving costs when I was renting.

Having no money sucks and shouldn't be made worse by annoying 'friends' and their guilt trips.

Rant over. And apologies for all the inverted commas.

Have a lovely evening.

Sorry to hear you are having a tough time, but am I allowed to be excited you've moved quite near me (if I have the right person....) gringringrin I love finding local MNers.

weisswusrt Thu 25-Jul-13 18:36:53

I hate it when you are enticed out on the promise of them paying for drinks, for them to forget they are sort of your sponsor for the night and have to sneak out humiliated because you have no drink and look like a knob.

ArgyMargy Thu 25-Jul-13 18:39:38

YANBU. If a friend of mine said this to me I would offer to treat her, and if she declined I would leave her alone. These so-called friends of yours are very insensitive, IMO.

SwishSwoshSwoosh Thu 25-Jul-13 18:42:25

Maybe time for a friend cull. Anyone who describes you not being able to afford to go as a 'poor show' is no friend. Just dump them, spend your money on real friends.

Boomba Thu 25-Jul-13 18:43:19

they aint your friends

Just to be clear, that when I said a friend might offer to pay for you, it was in the context of a birthday present, rather than a loan. We always used to go out for everyone's birthday, but the birthday girl never paid for anything at all, the bill was totally split between the rest of us. I've also given friends hard cash when we have gone out, without anyone else being any the wiser and only what I can afford to give them, so maybe £10 or £20 for the evening. They have their budget in their hand and it's up to them whether they blow it on one cocktail or 8 pints of coke.

phantomnamechanger Thu 25-Jul-13 18:47:57

er, the car tyre thing is bad actually- you cannot drive with no spare tyre!

But YANBU OP- someone I know was flogging black-tie-ball tickets, for a local charity, and she just can't get that some people do not have that sort of money (£35 each)to fritter on a night out - factoring in drinks money, baby sitter, taxi, we would have been looking at £180 for a night out. never mind buying or hiring something very posh to wear, new shoes etc - No way. And we have a good family income, afford lots of things others clas as luxuries (eg kids have music lessons) so she thinks we are rolling in it - erm, no, we just have to be careful what we spend on - £180 for one night out, or a 6 weeks worth of music lessons for 3DC. Never mind that some familes cant spend that on food for a fortnight

Oblomov Thu 25-Jul-13 18:49:51

If you messaged/text what random said, then only a fool would not understand.

Secretswitch Thu 25-Jul-13 18:56:19

YANBU. Having no money is our way of life at the moment. people really just seem to "get" it, do they? Today is my five year wedding anniversary. People have been ringing and texting all day to ask what romantic plans Dh and I have. Well, we thought we would have rice and beans for dinner and maybe sit by ourselves in the garden after our five year old has gone to bed. Our toilet seat broke on Monday, forcing us to spend money on a new one. We joke that we shall just tell people we are renovating the loo for our five year anniversary...

YouTheCat Thu 25-Jul-13 19:02:06

You could start a new trend for anniversary gifts, Secret. I know paper is for first and now loo seat can be for 5th. grin

OP, they aren't friends. Stick with the one suggesting dvds and a wander.

Drives me mad. I've known so many people over the years who have responded to "I'm broke/skint" with, "oh yeah, me too, can only afford a few drinks tonight".

Oh.. only a few.. uh huh..

Do want to hand them a dictionary.

Luckily my friends are much less self centred nowadays.

PaulSmenis Thu 25-Jul-13 19:04:11

If people say they can't afford it, it's rude to badger them.

My pet peeve is the people who seem to think that everyone has a few hundred pounds to just chuck around.

MissMarplesBloomers Thu 25-Jul-13 19:05:43

Phantom I can actually, have been for 4 days, it ain't satisfactory & probably illegal but I physically Have.No.Cash. till some clients cough up at the end of the month.

grin you have just proved my point!

Caster8 Thu 25-Jul-13 19:05:48

When some people say they are skint, they mean they dont have much left after they have paid into their isas, pensions etc.

EeTraceyluv Thu 25-Jul-13 19:06:43

Absolutely agree! DH's car has had it, totally had it - we cannot afford to get it looked at let alone fixed: cue helpful people 'oh I know a bloke who is selling his old car for £500' or 'take it to xx garage they're cheap.' A group of us go to a pub quiz fortnightly - I literally had no money last time but didn't say so, just said I couldn't make it. Everyone was saying 'oh, I'd have bought you a drink,' or 'oh you could have just had a couple' NO I ACTUALLY Couldn't!! And I hate taking drinks off people. It's horrible being poor sad And what really pisses me off (on a roll now grin ) is people saying how skint they are 'until the end of the month' then saying 'oh, I think I was paid last Friday, I didn't check' You would have had to have checked if you were that bloody poor! Rant Over....

MissMarplesBloomers Thu 25-Jul-13 19:07:39

Caster quite...to me that is getting tight, hard saving or rainy day stuff.

Skint is having beans & pasta for most meals & making a £5-er last a week. Again.

PaulSmenis Thu 25-Jul-13 19:07:45

"When some people say they are skint, they mean they dont have much left after they have paid into their isas, pensions etc."

And they also have the right to refuse things on the basis of being skint!

BikeRunSki Thu 25-Jul-13 19:11:50

I had a group of friends like that OP. After I' d turned down quite a lot of invitations for evenings out, weekends away and so on, they stopped inviting me. I no longer stress about how to afford their lifestyle and much prefer the company of my real friends who share a bottle of wine, mug of tea, walk in the park....

exexpat Thu 25-Jul-13 19:12:07

(off topic: there is no legal requirement to have a spare tyre - a lot of cars these days don't even come with one, they have an emergency repair kit instead. https://www.askthe.police.uk/content/Q602.htm)

BikeRunSki Thu 25-Jul-13 19:15:20

You can drive without a spare tyre, but if you do have one it must be legal.

Secretswitch Thu 25-Jul-13 19:15:33

YoutheCat, the funniest part was hearing my five year telling her nan on the phone " We've just bought a new seat for the toilet. I think mum's big bum sitting down caused it to break"
I think tonight I shall write a blog detailing the new anniversary gift for the really truly skint..

livinginwonderland Thu 25-Jul-13 19:34:27

YANBU OP, we're in the same situation and have been all week.DP has £4 to his name to last until payday on Wednesday and we've pretty much run out of food.

Secretswitch Thu 25-Jul-13 19:37:50

I'm very sorry to hear that livinginwonderland. My heart goes out to you.

RalphGnu Thu 25-Jul-13 19:56:54

YADNBU.

My brother complains he is skint all the time, but he means after paying for the four, yes four, family holidays he goes on every year, filling both cars with petrol and meals out with friends. To me, skint is having to eat toast until payday and hoping the coins in your purse will stretch to another loaf.

He got cross with me for not being able to chip in for our uncle's birthday present ( I love my uncle but not enough to chip in sixty blimming quid fgs). He told me to just not go out this Saturday night.

I haven't been out on a Saturday night for over two years!

I know how it feels livinginwonderland. Couldn't afford to go food shopping this week so we've had some really random meals using up the little we had in the freezer and cupboards.

Ezio Thu 25-Jul-13 20:10:38

I just had this, me and my 2 close friends have birthdays within 20 days of each other, my DDs birthday also falls in this time too, so i cant do much for those birthdays because my DDs 6th means me to me.

Ezio Thu 25-Jul-13 20:11:12

me = more

Secretswitch Thu 25-Jul-13 20:14:17

Ralph, you sound like me! Sadly, it has to do with the multitude of birthday parties my five year old is invited to. She is thrilled with every invitation but my heart sinks. She is thinking cake! Ice cream!..I am think, "Oh, God where am going to find money for a gift"
Already thinking of the holidays and getting that horrid stomach feeling..

Laurier88 Thu 25-Jul-13 20:18:22

Think everyone has their own idea of what skint means to them, depending on personal circumstances, and people should respect that.

NoComet Thu 25-Jul-13 20:33:00

Whether you are skint due to paying private school fees, saving for a holiday or like the lad next door in and out of temporary jobs and flat broke until the job centre pay up, it's your business.

It's unspeakably rude to question people's spending priorities.

I might say yes to a ball as DH and me both own black tie outfits, but curse a wedding that means clothes for two DDs who've grown out of there posh outfits and shoes.

My kitchen has been falling apart for 14 years. Holidays are more fun and two cars are essential, cupboard doors can wait.

thebody Thu 25-Jul-13 20:39:59

hear you op and agree, it's bloody rude.

phantomnamechanger Thu 25-Jul-13 20:42:08

MissMarple - you really ought to be ashamed of yourself & yes it is illegal. People "can" drive while drunk - is that OK then?

people driving round in cars with badly worn tyres or poorly maintained in other ways pisses me right off - they are taking a huge risk with other peoples lives

you have no cash for a new tyre - fair enough - so don't drive till you have! if you absolutely HAVE to drive, there really is no other way (lift, bus, walk) then surely someone you know can lend you the money if you explain the need.
But you' d rather take that risk hoping you wont get caught?
Driving a car is a LUXURY, not a necessity, and goes hand in hand with responsibilities of keeping it in safe working order and sticking to the rules of the road.

phantomnamechanger Thu 25-Jul-13 20:46:27

fair point about the repair kits for modern vehicles, yes, I half take it back -- but the poster in question did not say she had one. if your vehicle needs a spare, you should have one and in good order. same as not all cars have wing mirrors but if they are supposed to be there, they need to be there .

mrscog Thu 25-Jul-13 20:50:01

YANBU, especially as a really good friend who really wanted you to go might message you offering to pay your train fare and sub you a few quid so you can have a couple of drinks which is what I'd do if I really wanted to see one of my friends if they were skint equally, I wouldn't mind if they were too proud to accept. But interesting they've not offered you a tenner.

ratbagcatbag Thu 25-Jul-13 20:59:35

Phantom - I read it as the spare tyre is on (which is legal and fine) in place of now flat tyre, issue is there is now no spare,not that the poster is driving round with illegal tyre on. She will replace flat tyre when she can. Which makes sense to me.

HeyIJustMetYou Thu 25-Jul-13 21:23:08

I dont have money probs because I am stupidly well off but if a friend of mine says they can't come out to play because of lack of funds i would just bring them over to my gaff for a slap up feed. I certainly wouldn't harass them - yanbu! I do have some friends who plead poverty when in fact they are very rich though. Don't blame them - I do the same - its such an easy way to get out of things when you can't be arsed. I just complain of lack of liquidity because I'm currently tied up in palladium.

MissMarplesBloomers Thu 25-Jul-13 21:53:18

Thank you ratbag that is exactly right and has allowed me not to tear one off phantom who could not have struck a more sensitive nerve at the moment.

you have no cash for a new tyre - fair enough - so don't drive till you have! if you absolutely HAVE to drive, there really is no other way (lift, bus, walk) then surely someone you know can lend you the money if you explain the need

Just a little thing called pride sweetie, but being already hock deep in debt to my loverly family (due to a bastard ex running up legal bills another thread) I try not to.

But you' d rather take that risk hoping you wont get caught? Thankfully as the kind poster above put that link on I am assures its not illegal so nto sure what I am going to get "caught" for. The spare tyre is new.

Driving a car is a LUXURY, not a necessity, and goes hand in hand with responsibilities of keeping it in safe working order and sticking to the rules of the road.

I don't think I have read a more patronising and insensitive post, (to me at any rate)

A car is a lifeline when you live in the country as I do, I am a LP and we are not on a bus route. My work is freelance and I depend on my car daily to keep a roof over my head. Some luxury.

I don't see why I should explain to you or anyone but how fucking dare you be so judgey.

MissMarplesBloomers Thu 25-Jul-13 21:59:45

Sorry for the hijack OP. sad

MissPricklePants Thu 25-Jul-13 22:08:17

Woah back off Marple, she is a LP not on a bus route so how the hell is she meant to work and support her dc's?the car in her case is essential!! I do not drive, I cannot afford a car but I live near a bus station and rail station so manage ok.

Snoopytwist Thu 25-Jul-13 22:36:40

Miss Prickle, I think you mean back off Phantom, Marple was just quoting her... anyway, back to Op's issue, invite them round for a dish of pasta and baked beans (seems to be a bit of a staple dish at our house at the moment) sad and see if they begin to understand what having no money actually means.

ananikifo Thu 25-Jul-13 22:51:52

OP I completely agree with you. I'm now selective about the people to whom I'll admit I can't afford things. Some people judge you and look at you like you just over shared a shameful and private secret, others just don't get it (like your friends) and only people who've ever been in that situation actually understand. When I get invited to something I can't afford I now tend to give a vague excuse.

I also don't have a spare tyre, £50 is way more than I can afford right now. But guess what, according to the AA, "You don't have to carry a spare and it does not have to comply with the legal requirements while it is stowed away. However, when fitted to the vehicle (for example, following a puncture) it must then comply with the law."

PaulSmenis Fri 26-Jul-13 08:05:08

Real friends don't give a toss about your finances imo and are happy to just spend time catching up and having a laugh.

Nice people realise that going for a picnic, having a bbq or a few drinks at home can be just as fun.

I get fed up of saying that I can't afford things. Weddings are the worst things for this. Night away, travel, cash for bride and groom, possibly outfit as I don't go to posh things. If it's a real friend or close family member who I like, I'm happy to spend the money. I do resent it when it's one of those duty situations and you don't actually like the people SIL.

SpiderCharlotte Fri 26-Jul-13 08:14:31

I hate this. Lots of our friends are much more wealthy than we are and though most of them are fine when I say 'sorry we're skin' one woman in particular always saying oh it'll only be 50 quid, like I can magic it out my back pocket.

Trills Fri 26-Jul-13 08:15:29

I don't think you can blame them entirely for not understanding.

I would only expect people to understand that "no money" means "no money" if it was always used to mean that.

If they know people who say "I've got no money" when they mean "I've got less money than usual" or "I don't think it's worth it" or "I can't be bothered" then it's not unreasonable for them to not understand that in your case it means "barely enough to eat".

xylem8 Fri 26-Jul-13 08:16:15

yanbu and it is domething schools can't get seem to understand either

BillyGoatintheBuff Fri 26-Jul-13 08:38:05

no proper friend would be so horrible to you.

ArtemisatBrauron Fri 26-Jul-13 09:15:31

I hate this too! I also have a couple of "friends" who always always always manage to avoid paying the bill when we go out, so everyone has to pay more - I tried bringing along lots of change and leaving the exact amount plus tip for my food and drinks but then they just sat there calmly while the bill was short and we all had to put money in.
I try to avoid eating out with them now - they even did it on my birthday - paid for their food but not drinks so I had to put in an extra £20.
EVen when someone says "XY are you sure you put in enough" they just smile and say yes even though we all saw them putting in way too little angry

I hate this too.

Im going to have it next week, theres a big team night out, i was going to go, but now cant afford to as im going away later in the month ( a surprise trip for me) and i need my money for that.

A night out isnt just the drinks, but also taxis and ill need to get something to wear as its clubbing and ive not been clubbing since about... well, it was a LONG time ago.

I know noone will understand, people will nag and then they will think i dont want to be there, i do but i just cant afford to be sad

Trigglesx Fri 26-Jul-13 09:50:29

A couple of my friends and I are all regularly skint. Thankfully, that means we accept "I can't afford it" very quickly with no fuss. We've all been there.

Trigglesx Fri 26-Jul-13 09:52:14

In fact, I'll point out that a couple of us are planning an outing for our DCs this summer (not hugely expensive, but obviously needs to be budgeted for), so we sat down with a calendar and figured out when the best time was for both of us financially to go. So much less pressure that way.

MammaTJ Fri 26-Jul-13 10:20:00

Triggles, me and my friends are like that. Sometimes we lend each other money, sometimes we just accept it. Mostly we just do cheap or free stuff.

grumpyoldbat Fri 26-Jul-13 10:43:22

Did. I agree they are not proper friends.

I'm currently getting ratty with all the charity requests 'but it's only £x'.

Disclaimer I'm not against giving money to charity but I can't give them what I don't have and won't leave my DC to starve so I can give, they have to come first.

PlatinumStart Fri 26-Jul-13 10:50:04

An sorry it can be tough cant it?

I fell out with a very good friend of mine years ago because she just couldn't accept that with 2 very young DC I simply could afford her £500 hen weekend. I tried talking to her, explaining that we couldn't afford a family holiday at that time and so there was no way I could spend family money (I wasn't working) on myself.

We've barely spoke since and I do wonder now she is a mother herself whether she ever thinks she might have been a teeny bit unreasonable.

Drquin Fri 26-Jul-13 12:14:26

My take is that part of the problem, when discussing this with friends and family, is that very few folk genuinely do actually mean they've got "no" money when they say they've got "no money".
What most us mean is that we've not got a lot of money, less money than usual, less money than we'd like, less money than we need to buy what we consider necessary.
It's then very easy to make judgements / assumption about people's lack of money / being skint / can't afford it ...... Because there's a point at which it's not that you can't afford "it", it's that you are choosing to prioritise spending (ok, sometimes it won't seem like much of a choice ...).
I had a friend suggest we stopped exchanging Christmas presents - not a ridiculous idea - but it was because she was "strapped for cash", after buying a large house with new partner. Obviously I don't begrudge her the house, or the potential lack of presents (!) but "being skint" then becomes rather relative!

Upshot is, it's rather rude of a friend to harp on about it - we all go through phases of having no / not a lot of cash, and times of being slightly flusher at different points from each other. An empathetic friendship should reflect that.

daisychain01 Fri 26-Jul-13 12:23:12

Why don't people realise you don't WANT to go along to the pub and only be able to drink one measley coke and have to catch the bus (and all the other innane drivel they suggested!)

You actually want to go along at a time when you have a few quid in your pocket, so you don't then get sucked into a crap discussion about "no I can't put into a whip because I only have enough for 1 drink" - yeah, that will really make you feel good.

Just think about how it is all worthwhile because you have your own place - that's a brilliant achievement and worth the sacrifice. If I could, I'd buy you a house-warming bottle of vino so here's a glass of something instead wine or brew xx

ICBINEG Fri 26-Jul-13 12:27:18

I think the problem is that the definition of 'skint' has changed so much recently...

It really did mean, "I can't afford to eat out at a restaurant but a burger in the pub is all right".

Now it means "I was actually genuinely happy to discover a tin of potatoes I had forgotten about in the back of the cupboard" which someone on MN really said recently sad

cushtie335 Fri 26-Jul-13 14:19:56

I work with people who seem to be a lot better off than me. The money they spend on a works night out is unbelievable and I couldn't consider spending all that money on a night out with WORKMATES when I have plenty of proper friends I can scarcely afford to see. I got really annoyed recently when there was a collection for a secretary's 50th birthday. I hardly know this woman and have possibly spoken to her 3 times in the last year. I was asked to contribute £10 to it but at that precise moment had £22 left in the joint account to last us until the end of the month. I got so fed up with the snidey passive aggressive remarks about me not contributing that I showed the main perp an account enquiry to explain why I wasn't prepared to drop my budget to £12 for the last week of the month for the sake of saving face.

NobodyPutsTomArcherInTheCorner Fri 26-Jul-13 14:31:13

sad How insensitive they sound. You are right to stick to your guns of course. It's always wobbly for a month or two when you move.

I do think there is a trend nowadays for 'can't afford it' and 'budget' not to be taken too seriously.

How many house hunting programmes/wedding/makeover etc programmes are there on tv where people have a budget and then whoops, they go over that by goodness knows how much to rueful smiles all round.

I'm yelling at the tv when I see that. To me the budget is the limit. The end.

MaxPepsi Fri 26-Jul-13 14:54:37

Like everyone else has already said, the word skint has different meanings to everyone.

I have been skint this month, I've had 21p in my bank account for the last 2 weeks. HOWEVER all the bills were paid, there has food in the house (albeit no fresh produce) and wine in the wine rack and I've had enough fuel in the car.

I've been unable to pop to the pub for a quick drink with my friends or get a takeaway etc.. so for me that means I am skint.

I have no idea though what it means to be truly on my arse and would be devastated to find out that any of my friends were struggling with no food in the house. I know it is a matter of pride but I hope those of you who are in that situation on a regular basis can get to a position where you can ask your friends for help.
No real friend would think any less of you and would gladly help you out.

GetStuffezd Fri 26-Jul-13 15:42:02

Thank you all for understanding. It's awful to see so many people in the same position, and clearly there are so many others who really don't "get it." Oh and yes Stealth, I do live near you!! :-)

I think this lot have proven themselves to not be genuine friends at all. They've tagged me in every single picture they've put on stupid FB along with silly "where's stuffez?" comments, and not in a nice way. Then, at 3am when presmably pissed, one of them sent me a not too lovely message calling me a rubbish friend. angry

Luckily, my old friend is coming over this evening and she really won't give a shit that own brand tortilla chips, dip and diet coke are the nibbles!!

I think the problem is that the definition of 'skint' has changed so much recently...

But this shouldn't matter. If a friend said she can't afford to do whatever then as a friend you should accept that and not try to pressure them.

FacebookWanker Fri 26-Jul-13 17:27:32

My friend laughed at me the other day because I told her I'd started buying Christmas presents already. She almost didn't believe that I buy 1 thing per month because I can't afford to buy a load of presents in December. She's never strapped for cash so she just doesn't get it...

Trigglesx Fri 26-Jul-13 17:29:22

Facebook I do the same thing - buy little things throughout the year so I'm not hit with one huge outlay of cash in December. Loads of people do it - has your friend been hiding under a rock? hmm

FacebookWanker Fri 26-Jul-13 17:30:47

I think she must have been. I know people who are very comfortable that do the same.

PaulSmenis Fri 26-Jul-13 17:33:21

GetStuffezd, that is horrible. They sound like a really unpleasant bunch. sad

I would never expect a friend to spend money if they didn't want to and money is tight and especially not if they are totally broke. They sound lie vile shits to be completely blunt.

Secretswitch Fri 26-Jul-13 17:37:38

GetStuffed, this what I really like about MN. Lots of support to be found. I think some of the loveliest evenings I have had with friends is hanging out in the garden. Some little nibbly things and a good chat!

farrowandbawl Fri 26-Jul-13 18:22:39

GetStuffed, you need to block them off FB now.

If they want to slag you off then that's up to them but using FB to bully you is not on. Espcially as they are old enough to know better. Ignore the text. Delete them without reading them if you can.

Your night in sounds ace to be honest. Can I come? It's been ages since I've been able to do something like that.

Like Secretswitch, most of the best night I've had have been round mates hosues. Never out in town.

GetStuffezd Fri 26-Jul-13 21:21:01

Ha, you could have come, farrow, but it's over now! My lovely friend came armed with a bottle of wine for me (she was driving) AND a bottle of Mojito!!! In return I've gone though her latest job application letter and tweaked it. (She's amazingly bright - PhD, but dyslexic) We've had a brilliant catch up in the evening sunshine and I couldn't be happier. Yes, I really do need to do a FB cull of these horrible people.
Even worse, my mum rung me earlier asking if I had been out in Newcastle. She wouldn't have been cross, but I owe her £1000 due to move so in my eyes it would have been really shit to go out on the piss like that.... All because she saw the bloody pictures the idiots tagged me in angry

CalamityJ Fri 26-Jul-13 21:36:45

This thread hits home as we are skint at the moment. A friend today says she's skint and can't afford to do the exercise class I do (paid by cheque in a block when I wasn't skint!) but then says she can't afford a big food shop because she's going skiing and on a beach holiday! Then suggests I sign up for a yoga class she wants someone to go with! I was saying I'd love the group of friends to meet up more often but instead of in coffee shops as the weather is so nice go for walks and have picnics (free!) She said that was a good idea as she couldn't afford coffee shops either because she wanted to have lots of spending money for her holidays! Seriously! I had a week in the UK with my parents which they paid for as it was as cheap to hire a 2 bed as a 1 bed and no other holidays planned for at least a year until my DH finishes his course.

Your real friend is awesome and you should spend all your time with her as she gets what being skint really means. Hope your situation improves soon smile

In a conversation recently about buying maternity clothes someone said to me "Oh you should get a couple of pairs of maternity jeans from such and such a place - they're only £40 each so it doesn't matter that you won't wear them for long."

It didn't feel possible to tell her that £80 was likely to be rather greater than my entire clothing budget for the nine months in question.

To put this in context, I'm currently saving up for an eye test because pregnancy hormones have brought my astigmatism back, and I've just found a voucher online that means I can have the test for £10 at Boots. Thank fuck because if it gets much worse I won't be safe to drive.

Forty pounds for a pair of jeans indeed.

Splitheadgirl Fri 26-Jul-13 22:09:22

I always say that I don't have neither the time nor the money and the answer is NO!!!

Don't explain your circumstances OP. Just keep it short and sweet so they know they are wasting your time and theirs if they proceed.

BikeRunSki Fri 26-Jul-13 22:14:45

Are eye tests not covered by the NHS maternity exemption card Horry ? I know specs aren't but I thought tests were. I may be wrong, youngest is nearly 2 and DH wasn't made redundant until she was a month old, so my memory of pg eyetests, might not be too accurate.

Goooooooooooooooooooooood Fri 26-Jul-13 22:18:53

HorryIsUpduffed.
No need to pay for eye tests there are several opticians offering Free Tests at the moment including SpecSavers and Tescos details HERE

Tests aren't covered by the mat exemption and because I'm a SAHM I can't get a test through work.

Thanks for the free test tip off though! Another tenner back in the pot smile

Goooooooooooooooooooooood Fri 26-Jul-13 22:49:34

Horry. If you watch the MoneySavingExpert website they also have threads on cheap online perscription glasses. I usually only pay about £20 for complete perscription glasses including delivery. You have to watch or subside to this thread and wait for a good deal to come along.

I have bought about 6 pairs like this and have not had any problems with them. I don't have any of the 'extra' coatings but the basic packages are perfectly ok. They are brand name frames.

AudrinaAdare Fri 26-Jul-13 23:03:27

cushtie335 r.e works nights out, my thoughts exactly! I remember when I was newly-qualified and had bought a starter house (on my own) trying to explain to my line-manager that I really couldn't afford to go on yet another one.

She patronisingly explained that I must, because it was "good for team-building"

This lady lived in the most expensive part of town, cleaners and people to do her ironing and didn't even really have to work because generous parents and ILs helped, but I couldn't see my BF in London for two weeks let alone my actual friends. Just so I could go bowling and not eat, but pay for dreadful food in a shite restaurant with people I worked with every day and wouldn't otherwise cross the street to piss on if on fire

Terrific way to team-build hmm

She used to comment on me not eating / buying lunch at work, the subtext being that I was a stupid young woman desperate to stay thin. I wasn't. I just didn't eat lunch or have time for it and my spare change went to the vulnerable children that nobody else seemed to give a shit about angry

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