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Do you ever feel you have enough money?

(16 Posts)

I have lived through a childhood of poverty and then an adult on benefits constantly counting the pennies and not eating to feed the kids, choosing food over heating etc.

Now I feel we have enough money, DP earns a good wage and we don't have to worry about anything financial.
DP however will always worry about providing and will work hours he doesn't need to just to have the extra money as a safety net.

blueshoes Fri 24-Jan-14 11:18:45

My mother lived through WW2 as a child. She is completely tight with money and good at accumulating it. She won't throw anything away. She hardly spent any money on me and my siblings growing up - no treats.

I think my siblings and I are all pretty frugal and sensible with money but no where as extreme as my mother.

blueshoes Fri 24-Jan-14 11:16:08

There is a point beyond which I will have enough disposable income after making mortgage payments and school fees and other daily expenses to feel that I do not have to watch my pennies re: eating out and holidays.

I have not reached that point yet but don't think our family is that far off from. We are not particularly extravagant and I am used to finding ways to make my money stretch.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 24-Jan-14 10:40:27

Definitely. As someone who had financial problems many years ago and as a lone parent I'm supremely conscious that it would be very easy for it all to go pear-shaped so I tend err on the side of caution, build up savings, don't get into debt etc.

I want the next generation to progress. DS is 13yo and has a lot of advantages if I compare him to myself at the same age. It's not enough for me that he has opportunities however, I expect him to work hard and take advantage of those opportunities. I really don't see hard work as a curse. In fact, I'd be far more distressed to find I'd raised a lazy, entitled or dependent young man that was still looking for hand-outs from his old mum in his thirties.

bonvivant Thu 23-Jan-14 20:49:53

I didn't come from a poor childhood, but probably similar to evertonmint, my family came from nothing and my Dad worked really hard to set up his own business and had hardly any time off - 2 weeks per year max and worked till 7.30 every week night. My grandparents were really poor though so my Mum and Dad had no inheritance or anything like that. I suppose part of me feels like I owe it to them, but possibly more to my grandparents, to do well. My grandparents worked hard and didn't have a bean.

I've noticed though that I was more relaxed with money until I had DC. Now, I feel like I owe it to them too! I don't want them to have to work as hard as I have and certainly much less than my parents and grandparents. I want them to follow their dreams, not to have to worry about the next wage slip. Sometimes I think I'm crazy but isn't that what it's all about really - the next generation progressing? Or have I completely lost the plot?

peggyundercrackers Thu 23-Jan-14 13:20:35

im a bit like evertonmint in that we dont mind spending money to fix things or if we need something we are lucky enough to be able to go and buy it but that i feel i need to save because we are too frivolous although you would never think it if you met us in the street - we dont buy expensive clothes or expensive cars, my car is 13 yrs old fgs - we could literally go and buy nearly any car we wanted to but feel we dont have enough money to do that kind of thing. we dont have any debt other than mortgage but even then we could pay it off tomorrow if we needed to, we just choose not to.

i didnt have a particularly poor child hood, if anything we were spoilt as children but both my parents worked bloody hard to give us what we had and i think its that that humbles me. its not we dont work hard but they done things differently to us i.e. my mum worked at night to be able to be at home with us during the day while dad worked during the day.

Creamycoolerwithcream Thu 23-Jan-14 11:17:54

My DH and i have a mortgage and the house will be paid of in our late 50's so I think when we are older We could definitely down size and or move area and have quite a bit of money if we needed and wanted to. We pay really a lot into a pension which we can't touch until around the same time. So fingers crossed that's retirement pretty much sorted. As for now we save each month, about half does get spent on things such as a house move last year. The rest is for DC or us in the future. Because we have chosen to do these things I feel able to spend now and not feel guilty. I have holidays, meals out, coffees etc and can enjoy them. I think think first of the bigger picture and then work backwards to the smaller details.

evertonmint Thu 23-Jan-14 10:36:58

I came from I guess a typically mc family (dad was an accountant, mum was SAHM) but with a mum and dad who had strived to get there from relative poverty (cotton mill worker parents, both lost a parent young). Dad was a classic grammar school boy done good. He was also born in WW2 and grew up with rationing. Consequently they hoarded any money they had, never really spent it on anything. I rarely got new clothes even though friends did and my parents could afford it. They spend on nothing 'frivolous' like that. My dad still wears long johns he was issued with in the RAF in the 1960s grin. Now in retirement they are sat on, by my estimates, a tonne of money but won't spend it to get the loo fixed (because they can fiddle with the cistern to flush it) or replace handles on drawers (because they can open them by sliding a knife in and hooking them open). They clearly feel it would be a waste of money and prefer to save it, although I'm not sure what for at this stage in their life.

Consequently, I fought against that and spend on things (not beyond my means in the last 10 years at least - no debt beyond mortgage - but definitely to my means) and I certainly won't live with a broken toilet! But then paradoxically I feel I need to save and be frugal and that I spend too much. So I live in a weird world of spending but not being comfortable with it but equally not liking to hoard and live frugally. I am not worried about the future as such - we do have savings, we have a decent amount of capital in our house so could downsize and probably live mortgage free if we had to, and we have good earning potential. But in many ways I am terrified of feeling comfortable because the example from my parents suggests I'm not saving enough, and spending too much etc. So I live uneasily with money. I have got a lot better at facing up to that and actively managing my money in recent months and I'm starting to feel better about it and that we are comfortable, but the spend/save paradox still hovers over me.

The psychology of money is utterly fascinating.

I think that because of how expensive everything is - you never feel like you earn enough. You see your bank account balance drop every month after being paid and it's quite scary really.

I agree with what others have said too about coming from a poor childhood - it makes you value your money more and be scared that it could all go away.

Preciousbane Thu 23-Jan-14 09:47:56

Phoolani did your Gran grow up in WWII or when rationing was still going on? Because I can understand people from that era having the make do and mend attitude.

It has taken me a long time to understand myself, I have terrible food hoarding tendencies due to my background. I can't buy anything I consider a waste of money regardless of if it is a quid or a hundred quid.

Creamycoolerwithcream Thu 23-Jan-14 09:41:38

Perhaps you need to save a bit less and be a bit less careful and try and enjoy your money a bit more. this may help your anxiety.

phoolani Thu 23-Jan-14 00:07:45

Preciousbane - just like my gran!!

phoolani Thu 23-Jan-14 00:06:42

Not sure it is - do you come from (working class) poverty? DH and I both did and we never feel like there's enough despite - relatively - having loads.

Preciousbane Thu 23-Jan-14 00:06:08

I had a poverty stricken childhood and feel very similar to you. We are about to have the huge expenditure of moving and on paper we are fine but I'm finding the whole thing a bit stressful.

I will probably end up being one of those old ladies that dies in a threadbare cardigan living off of reduced kippers but that has a mattress stuffed full of tenners.

fluffygal Thu 23-Jan-14 00:03:21

No idea, do you feel anxious about it? Do you get anxious about other things in life? Why don't you feel you have enough money if you are reasonably stable financially? Could it be something from your childhood, did your parents worry about money? Sorry lots of questions, just gives you a chance to mull over where those feelings come from.

bonvivant Wed 22-Jan-14 21:46:13

DH and I both have good well paid jobs, mortgage nearly paid off, reasonable level of savings etc. But I never feel like we have enough money even though we save quite a bit and spend carefully.

I think I have a fear of not having money rather than wanting to be well off ... is it possible to get out of this cycle?

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