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To ask if you feel you morally deserve your wealth

(233 Posts)
Nc1028 Mon 30-Nov-20 17:56:45

No judgment, genuinely interested (and bored!)

Read about the idea that people want to have money but also want to believe that they morally deserve the money. For example, those who earned their wealth are more likely to believe they deserve it because of hard work, whereas those who inherited wealth are more likely to feel guilty. Stay-at-home partners also tended to feel guilty if their partners are high earners/have inherited wealth when they haven’t earned/inherited wealth themselves. Everyone try to emphasise on their productiveness, not wanting to be cast as “rich and lazy”.

Wondering what people think?
If you have money, do you think you deserve what you have?
Do you think people who have a lot more money deserve what they have?

(Light hearted. Yes your money is none of anyone’s business but money is such a taboo topic, fun to talk about)

OP’s posts: |
frogswimming Mon 30-Nov-20 17:59:56

I don't think about it that way. Money is bot a reward for being deserving.

RefuseTheLies Mon 30-Nov-20 18:01:16

I inherited a life changing amount from my parents. They worked their arses off for it (my mum particularly). I now don't work, plus my DH is a high earner. I mostly just feel really fucking grateful to be in the position I'm in (although I'd swap it in a heart beat to have my parents back).

user1825894133270 Mon 30-Nov-20 18:02:10

I think that since all humans have an intrinsic need to feel that they are good people and in control of their lives that this is a bit of a pointless question to ask. People tell themselves the narrative that enables them to view themselves as good and in control.

dudsville Mon 30-Nov-20 18:03:40

I had opportunities. I must say I'm not wealthy but I'm very comfortable and live well (with or without a coma) within my means. So I don't think I deserve it or ideas don't. On my trajectory I wasn't due to have chances, they came by, I grasped. Nothing moral about that.

being40 Mon 30-Nov-20 18:04:27

I worked and work hard but so do most people. I don't believe we 'deserve' anything. Grateful yes. And grateful for my health and happiness, my husband my children snd my family. Without those all the money in the world are nothing .

formerbabe Mon 30-Nov-20 18:05:10

I'm not wealthy but I inherited a substantial sum as I lost my parents when I was young...mum as a child and dad when I was a young adult. Yes, I bloody deserved it!

JayAlfredPrufrock Mon 30-Nov-20 18:05:27

I’m not wealthy but I inherited my dads house. My dad was born in 1927 and was absolutely piss poor as a child. He was so proud of what he achieved in life and I’m grateful to him for leaving me a legacy that means I can relax about retirement.

Ilovesugar Mon 30-Nov-20 18:09:35

Middle earner, nothing special but I do feel very fortunate to have had the opportunities I have to allow me to have the job I do / education to get here. I don’t feel guilty but I am aware not everyone has it as good.

Not bragging I haven’t actually told anyone, I was in Asda and the persons card next to me got declined. I paid for their shopping (£28) and they cried. For me that’s not a massive amount of money (I can’t do that every week) but it obviously meant so much to them.

flobbadobba Mon 30-Nov-20 18:11:21

I read that as do your morally deserve your wreath and thought it was about people wanting to look like they had money cos they could afford a wreath 🤷‍♀️😂 i was confused.

Ratched Mon 30-Nov-20 18:12:05

I have inherited nothing, parents and parents in law had nothing to leave.

However, I retired at 55, DH at 60. All due to final salary pensions.
Yes, I do feel a bit guilty. But until I was 30 we were literally living hand to mouth.
30 - 45 ish, struggling to bring up children, working full time, paying huge percentage on mortgage payments. 50 - 55, chicldren up and gone, earning good money and overpaying on mortgage.
Enjoying life now. Feel as though we worked for it ( i have worked since the age of 16 - 55). DH worked from 18 - 60, a lot of the time working on contracts away from home.

We worked hard, but no harder than a lot of people today who will never have our retirement. So yes, I feel a wee bit guilty, but not enough to not enjoy what I have.

Nocaloriesinchocolate Mon 30-Nov-20 18:13:18

For a start, it depends what you mean by wealth. If it means not having to worry about how to pay for a new boiler, being able in normal times to go on holiday when one feels like it (I and DH are retired) and not having to keep track of the supermarket bill then that's me. To answer the question, no, Not really. I was lucky in that I had the skills and the opportunity and the luck to earn a decent amount, as did DH. But I absolutely don't feel I deserve my income more than someone who didn't have the same skills, opportunity and luck.

Answering yes to the question is tantamount to saying that those who through no fault of their own cannot earn what DH and I gave earned also morally deserve their situation, which is wrong and outrageous.

HotSince63 Mon 30-Nov-20 18:13:33

I can't say I've ever thought about it, but now that I am, well yes DH definitely deserves our wealth, he came up with an idea, started a business, built it up and then sold it.

We both still work and both earn really good money, and yes I feel that the skills, initiative, effort and hard work deserve what we are both paid.

I'm mostly just grateful tbh.

We only have joint accounts, DH earns 5 x what I do but we don't have separate money, it all goes in one pot. As soon as he sold his business we paid off the mortgage, bought a nice car each and talked about what to do with the rest and it's invested in both of our names.

Every day when I read about posters who have to go cap in hand to their husbands for a bit of spending money, or even money for essentials, I'm grateful that I've got myself a good 'un.

MrsElf Mon 30-Nov-20 18:14:53

I work bloody hard, and have no wealth. I frequently feel like I deserve a better wage!
Saying that, I have everything I need (and plenty I don’t need), and have enjoyed good health and a loving family - part of me worries that is undeserved...

Nc1028 Mon 30-Nov-20 18:16:29

user1825894133270

I think that since all humans have an intrinsic need to feel that they are good people and in control of their lives that this is a bit of a pointless question to ask. People tell themselves the narrative that enables them to view themselves as good and in control.

True. Still it’s very interesting to read about people’s narratives and how they tell their stories

OP’s posts: |
flaviaritt Mon 30-Nov-20 18:17:23

We’ve worked for what we have and we are not bad people. As far as anyone might ‘deserve’ it, I suppose we don’t not deserve it. 🤷🏻‍♀️

ComtesseDeSpair Mon 30-Nov-20 18:17:30

I don’t think morality really has anything to do with it, to be honest. At a very basic level, I worked hard at school and university, opted for a career path with decent earning potential, chose not to have DC, and bought a flat early on when many friends were choosing to rent because it meant they could live in a nicer area, and am reaping the reward of having made those good choices. I don’t feel I need to pretend that whether you have money or not is “all luck” because it isn’t all luck.

That’s not to say other people who make good choices and end up poor deserve it, or that people who make poor choices and end up wealthy don’t deserve it. It’s just how things work out.

Diverseduvet Mon 30-Nov-20 18:17:32

Did your parents not want you to work RefusetheLies?

TrialOfStyle Mon 30-Nov-20 18:19:39

I have read on MN (usually in reference to tax) about people saying they’re ’worked hard’ for their wealth and it does irk me a little bit as it comes across a bit like those who are not wealthy aren’t working as hard.

On the flip side, I have family members (who haven’t worked a day in over a decade) complaining that they’ve ‘paid their dues’ and deserve to be compensated.

I am not wealthy. I am comfortable. I feel like I lucked out more than anything else, and I’m incredibly grateful for that. If anything happens to my dad, I am his sole beneficiary so I will be significantly more comfortable but I certainly would never feel ‘deserving’ for it. I didn’t do anything other than have a good relationship with a parent who cares about me.

Ilovesugar Mon 30-Nov-20 18:19:59

@Ratched yeah my pension is rubbish and will never be as good as it was for your generation. I’m talking if I retire at 55 with 15% added of an alright salary I get 4K a year 😂🤣

However you never asked to be born when you did and neither did I, so never feel guilty. Enjoy it and go on some amazing holidays!

BasiliskStare Mon 30-Nov-20 18:20:27

I don't think anyone "morally" deserves their wealth. Hard work can earn money - sometimes more , sometimes less. If you mean - high amounts of money given to someone - then that may be different

flaviaritt Mon 30-Nov-20 18:21:57

* I have read on MN (usually in reference to tax) about people saying they’re ’worked hard’ for their wealth and it does irk me a little bit as it comes across a bit like those who are not wealthy aren’t working as hard.*

I never think that. We don’t have loads, but I know that people work variously hard for what they have. Some rich people work 30 hours a week behind a desk, some poor people (probably many of ‘em) work many more hours in jobs that will drive their bodies to rack and ruin. Life is unfair. But I think when someone says, ‘I worked for what I have’, I think, well, fair enough.

TrialOfStyle Mon 30-Nov-20 18:22:57

I read that as do your morally deserve your wreath and thought it was about people wanting to look like they had money cos they could afford a wreath

😂😂 - last year I won a living wreath worth £150 and definitely didn’t morally deserve that. I did spend a few days feeling rather smug (though I didn’t dare actually tell anyone the value of it).

CovidCrazy Mon 30-Nov-20 18:23:50

I’ve worked hard all my life, tried to do the right thing & made decisions that I thought were the right thing to do at the time.

I’m sure there are many, many people in different circumstances from me who have done exactly the same.

I am incredibly fortunate to have had wealthy parents & grandparents & will likely inherit a substantial sum, I don’t think I deserve it anymore than anyone else who has worked hard - just feel very lucky for the privilege that is not available to so many others.

Applesonthelawn Mon 30-Nov-20 18:24:47

What do you mean "morally deserve"?
Inherited nothing, don't come from a family with high aspirations educationally, started career at a time when women were still treated like rubbish in the office, raised a child 100% alone with no input financially or emotionally from his father, but I toughed it out and just focused on always delivering.
I have more money than I'll ever need and I think I am fortunate that I was born with the qualities needed to take advantage of the tiny fragments of luck that came my way in the early years, and power through the equal amounts of bad luck. I think I could have earned more with a few more lucky breaks, or could have earned much less if I'd made a few different decisions or just had more bad luck. Mostly though, the plodding through day after day relentlessly, that is a question of "earning" it, so in that sense I "deserve" it.

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