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To think if you're skint, it affects your children's outcomes in life

(135 Posts)
racetogether Thu 22-Aug-19 15:17:24

We have always been skint. We don't particularly have a good quality of life- very small house, needs alot of work, no Garden, . My kids have never been away on a holiday, they don't have bikes- we can't afford it. We can't afford trips out even it it's free as we need take into account cost of petrol so they are few and far between. Things like going to zoos etc is out of the question. They've been wanting to join a football club for several years but at £40/m there's no chance.

I feel sad for my kids. They don't have the same opportunities as I would have liked to have given them. I have mental health issues and suffer from depression on and off and this also I find affects the way I parent.

I feel I'm really letting my kids down.

Ok the other hand, their friends holiday regular ansn

Ilikethisone Thu 22-Aug-19 15:55:47

Lack of spare funds will always impact children. There is no way to even it up.

I spent the last few years skint. Buts it coming to an end.

Hobbies are now on the table. There are things you can do to mitigate costs. Like our local kids rugby club fundraise so that low income families dont have to pay monthly money for their kids to play and can go on trips with the rest of the team.

I live in what's known as a bit of a grim northern town, but we have done low cost stuff next village along has a fair that's £1 in then ten activities are free etc.

It's harder to provide those experiences that kids get from well off families. What you need to do is remember that your kids are having a different experience but doesnt have to mean they will feel they had a poor childhood when they are older.

I come from a good income family, but it was very abusive. My best friend came from a family that had nothing, but was loved and looks back on her childhood, with nothing but happiness. I get a bit jealous sometimes.

78KitKat78 Thu 22-Aug-19 15:57:58

During holidays check to see if there are any free workshops you can sign up for - our local libraries and museums usually have something on if kids are into arts/crafts/Lego. We have also been to watch the local ladies team play football - cost a couple of quid to get in. Any local outside spaces - parks/woods to play games/scavenger hunts. Time rich and cash poor is not as bad it seems. Also check for local clubs etc I found a soccer skills thing for my 6yo that was 3.50 a session on an as and when basis rather than a monthly direct debit.

MummyJasmin Thu 22-Aug-19 15:59:37

...I feel my upbringing has made me a more better person, humble and understanding.

I've come across people who have never witnessed financial worries and have had everything they've wanted on a plate. Although I may envy them sometimes (I am only human lol) I am so glad I'm not like them, entitled, look down on people who have less etc.

SomeAfternoonDelight Thu 22-Aug-19 16:00:57

I love my mother I do. I grew up with just her, without a father. We were skint. I didn’t get to go on holiday until I was able to pay for one myself. I have only ever visited one place other than my local city. I wasn’t able to go on holidays with the school. I was on free school meals, had a brilliant mother, I did have what I wanted, and not just what I needed - within reason. My mam tried her best, she didn’t have it great. But there is a tiny bit of a pissed off little girl that she didn’t try harder to make our life better. Because being a grown up, and never had the opportunity to do ANYTHING has made me slightly lost. I do not resent my mother as she gave me love and that’s all I think matters really, but she could have tried to get a better job, tried to provide a little more. As a child I learnt to lie to cover the embarrassment. I didn’t do well in education, I was very much council estate, didn’t feel like I belonged, hung around with kids who had a lot more than I did. But I’ve worked since I was 13 yo. Paid for everything myself. Support my mother now. And I drive my dream car, I’ve been to places on others bucket list, just for a holiday. I’m going on my third 2k pp plus holiday this year. So, really, it doesn’t have to effect them.

So, it all depends OP. It’s not easy but if you feel shit, it might be time to make a change. X

SomeAfternoonDelight Thu 22-Aug-19 16:01:43

Not I have I had only visited one place other than my local city - sorry x

Littlechocola Thu 22-Aug-19 16:05:43

We grew up with nothing and it made me determined to not be in that situation with my dc.

pooopypants Thu 22-Aug-19 16:05:54

You're right, it does affect your children but how you deal with life affects them more IMO

Are you being helped with your depression?

Having no money for football clubs doesn't stop you kicking a ball around or going for a muddy puddle walk in the park

DrierThanANunsNasty Thu 22-Aug-19 16:06:12

My parents were skint and my mum had severe mental health issues, including being an alcoholic and a personality disorder (along with depression, etc).

My childhood was certainly not one of the best growing up AT ALL. I was the poor kid in a rich school who had to wear secondhand school uniform. I had secondhand everything and this was all then passed down to my younger siblings.

I now run a successful business and was accepted for a Master's Degree on a scholarship at one of the best business schools in the country.

My younger siblings are all successful in varying degrees and are doing very well for themselves.

If anything, I think it's made us all MORE determined and we certainly don't begrudge our parents for not getting us the latest phones or anything.

Sure, it might be difficult when you're a kid, but I do think it can build certain personality traits that you might not get if you're handed everything on a plate/don't learn the value of money. Just look at all the 'rags to riches' stories out there and you'll see that plenty of people who went through hardship when they were younger use that as motivation to become successful.

And don't ever, ever beat yourself up about it flowers

isseywithcats Thu 22-Aug-19 16:12:37

i agree with you my dad died when i was nine so this meant my mom had just enough money from working to provide the bare essentials, there werent all the top up benefits in the mid sixties, at 11 i was clever enough to pass to go to grammar school, but i couldnt go on school trips, couldnt join girl guides, couldnt do ballet or anything that needed any money, so i lost out there, and i wanted to be a vet from an early age and by the time i was 13 realised my mom could not afford to keep me in education till i was 23 or there abouts so once i couldnt fulfil my dream i did my gces and left school, so yes money did change my life and not for the better

BoJoIsABellend Thu 22-Aug-19 16:15:15

Definitely, as mentioned above, the cycle of poverty 😞

ElleDubloo Thu 22-Aug-19 16:16:37

First of all, I really do feel for you.

However, you’re not letting your children down by not taking them on days out. There’s plenty you can do for free to stimulate their brains improve their chances at life. Borrow books from the library. Read with them. Get them to read by themselves. Research things together, like animals, space, dinosaurs. Go beyond what they do at school. I don’t know if it sounds boring, but this is how I was brought up. My head was in imaginary lands and science experiments all day. We went on one holiday a year (to Blackpool) and didn’t have enough money for nice days out all the time (though we went on a few). But I was awesome at English, Maths and Science and did amazing at school.

Life isn’t about holidays and days out. It’s about quality time spent together every day. Kids can get bored on holiday, but they’ll never be bored if their mind is engaged in learning.

[I know how corny this all sounds, but it’s my genuine experience, and I wanted to give you a different and more positive perspective. Good luck OP.]

RaRaRainbow Thu 22-Aug-19 16:18:30

Of course it does, on a statistical level.

But your kids aren't a statistic. They're individuals and individuals can buck the trend.

Chin up.


feelingverylazytoday Thu 22-Aug-19 16:19:52

I'm a single parent, I've often been skint, that is not my experience, OP. My kids are doing fine.

Jaxhog Thu 22-Aug-19 16:21:04

I have to wonder why you kept on have kids when you were skint? It does seem a shame that by doing so, you've reduced your other kids quality of life. This is something I just don't understand.

IceCreamAndCandyfloss Thu 22-Aug-19 16:21:43

We grew up with nothing and it made me determined to not be in that situation with my dc

Same here. I only agreed to children when I knew we were in the position to afford to give them the life we wanted.

Having been that child growing up it definitely affects you and unless you are a strong person it impacts on your adult life.

Whilst I’m grateful to be here, as an adult I can see my parents should have worked more and had less children.

Frequency Thu 22-Aug-19 16:24:27

That's unfair, Jax. I also don't recall OP stating that has always been skint and always suffered poor mental health. Besides, the kids are here now so berating OP for it when she is already down is achieving nothing but making her feel worse.

ooooohbetty Thu 22-Aug-19 16:25:50

Not always. My exh is from a poor background. Never had a holiday or days out as a child. Stopped going to school at a very young age. He's a millionaire now. Some people can rise above wherever they come from and whatever they start from. You don't need money to be a good supportive parent.

Sunflowers211 Thu 22-Aug-19 16:28:20

No it does not. A relative of mine is skint and all their DC have done fantastic in life and in good jobs. Being skint does not stop your kids being clever, how you guide them is key.

Mummyshark2018 Thu 22-Aug-19 16:31:47

Being skint does not have to affect life outcomes. You only have to look at self made business people e.g. lord sugar who grew up poor. You can instill things in your children that will help them succeed that does not cost money - a good work ethic, independence skills, a love of learning, resilience.

There are lots of free things around that can provide opportunities to experience things without having to pay- museums/ libraries/ parks/ galleries etc. I would look elsewhere for a football club. £40 per month is expensive. There are lots of free football clubs where I am.

Backtosxhool Thu 22-Aug-19 16:32:40

What age are your children OP? Can you not take on more hours!??

Lifecraft Thu 22-Aug-19 16:36:13

@Frequency I also don't recall OP stating that has always been skint

@OP We have always been skint

SweetMelodies Thu 22-Aug-19 16:36:40

Agree with the cycle of poverty.

I was also thinking about how hard to must be to keep children entertained with no money.

Round where I am there is literally a couple of little parks and a green space to walk to as the only means of free entertainment.

All of the other cheaper things I’ve done with my kids has still involved money... 8 quid in return bus fare just to hop on a bus to the town where a library actually is or where there is a bigger park or a museum, petrol money to get to the seaside, a tenner in hobby craft for craft bits and bobs to make crafts at home. I think it’s easy to forget that a lot of these things are unaffordable for some.

TheOrigRightsofwomen Thu 22-Aug-19 16:36:48

My father was made bankrupt twice during my childhood (and once in adulthood but that's irrelevant). We never went on holiday, didn't do clubs which needed subs.
We didn't go w/o basic needs, not at all.

Anyway, me and my siblings are all educated to at least degree level (with a couple of Masters and a PhD as well). We all have professional jobs, mostly own our own homes and are not in any more debt than most (mortgage, bit on the credit card).

My Dad was very foolish but underlying all that love, support, encouragement and a belief in us.

Sallycinammonbangsthedruminthe Thu 22-Aug-19 16:38:18

You are right does affect kids.But that said they are your kids and only you can sort it out.I dont mean that to sound harsh like I am judging you but I was similar and I swore blind my kids werent going to be like me.It is easy to sit and moan but harder to get up and do something about it.If you want to sort out the kids you need to sort yourself first.I hope you are getting all the help you can with your depression,cos it starts with you.You should have seen the crap I did when I was skint for me and my family...I dog walked I ironed I cleaned toilets at 4 am for little money but it was money we needed and I owed it to my kids to do it and it was hard work I could have cried and did many times out of being knackered but no one was going to do it for me.There was no tax credits back then to top us up....find the drive and you find your solution.Doing jobs others dont want to do will make you money,,even if its only 50 quid a week its that commitment that will give your kid the footy lessons...and make them proud of their mum who worked her arse off for forward 20 years and my son even now never forgets what I had to do to make life bearable for us...I dont need to do it anymore but if i had to I would all over again

Slaymill Thu 22-Aug-19 16:38:41

Libraries are good sources of information for trusts and funds and often have free demo days etc.

Your GP can refer you to

My son loves walking in the woods for nature hunts. Teaching your children foraging is fun and they can actually make something. just an example loads to explore.

If they don't like plants geocoaching is fun Most of the things my son does is free when we do out I use every voucher possible to cut costs.

We are lucky as my DP get hotel points when he has to work away and we can exchange these for free nights. Though hotels offer reduced rates just for having loyalty cards. If you have enough for one night at somewhere with a pool there nothing stopping you from getting there early to use the facilities and leaving late the next day.

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