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How can I convince myself that I'm worth spending money on?

(32 Posts)
HadEnoughThisChristmas Wed 11-Jan-17 14:31:10

My parents were very abusive to me when I was a child; my dad is a narcisstic bully and my mum is a narcissist and enabled him. I was never the favoured child and my parents always made out that I wasn't worth ever dressing up or wearing nice things and I would be shouted at/punished/ridiculed if I ever made an effort. My dad hates long hair and nice clothes and thinks that woman who make an effort are 'slags' and so my mum has always had to be a functional dresser with very short hair that looks like it's been cut at the barber's!

As I grew up, my mum would make snidey comments if ever I dressed up or bought myself something new, as if I wasn't worth it. She would call me a tart for wearing trendy clothes, and would go mad if I, for example, washed my hair 2 days running and would say that I was self absorbed. As a teenager she gave me such a hard time if I bought any new clothes and as an adult once I'd moved out.

In the end I cut contact with my parents but I can't get over the feeling that I'm not worth spending any money on myself, and therefore buy myself cheap clothes in primark, charity shops, Ebay, Peacocks and the odd sale item from other shops. I just can't bring myself to spend more even though I'd like to spend more, as I just don't feel like I'm worth it, in the back of my mind.

We're not rich by any means, not even particularly well off, but I can afford a few nice bits seasonally for myself , so I don't understand why I keep buying cheap things that really don't look that nice on me.

How can I start investing in myself more? I've been given £150 to treat myself from a family member but still can't bring myself to buy something more pricey than my usual.

Fuzzypeggy Wed 11-Jan-17 14:34:51

Well I don't know if encouragement from a stranger will help but you ARE worth it. I'm sorry that your parents were so awful to you. You definitely need a treat. us there anything that you would really like to buy?

HadEnoughThisChristmas Wed 11-Jan-17 14:38:45

I'd really love to buy some nice everyday basics for myself such as jeans and jumpers that aren't from Primark or charity shops.

Suzytwoshoes Wed 11-Jan-17 14:40:09

Do you like shopping/browsing in general?
Do you prefer to shop alone or with a friend?
I would get dressed up in your nicest clothes, make an effort with hair and makeup, comfortable shoes for wandering round shops.
Go somewhere that you know will have plenty shops you would be willing to go in, shopping centre / department store etc.
Have a spot of lunch, nice coffee breaks, take your time, try on things that catch your eye even if you wouldn't normally wear it and don't look at the price until after you've tried on, that way if you decide you look nice in it, if it's in your budget just buy it, if not put it back and keep going.
Try not to put too much pressure on it either.
Just go with the intention of spending and see what happens.

Fuzzypeggy Wed 11-Jan-17 14:40:42

Then you should do just that. If you post your size and shape then someone who knows about these things may be along to advise on which shops may be good.
Do you have any good friends who can give you some positive reinforcement about your worth?

ChicRock Wed 11-Jan-17 14:42:10

Can you start by justifying to yourself that spending a bit more on a few good quality items that'll last longer is more cost effective?

Then once you've got the purchase done and you're wearing said items, you need to keep telling yourself "I AM worth it".

MrsOllyMurs Wed 11-Jan-17 14:44:58

I think that's a really good tip above about not looking at prices until you've tried something on. I might try that myself! If you've tried it on and love it, you may be more inclined to go for it. Good luck and enjoy!

Strongbeatsskinny Wed 11-Jan-17 14:45:06

Oh gosh I can't imagine what it's like growing up in that environment. You are worth treating yourself now that £150 is to be spent on you because you really are worth it. Please go and spend every last penny of it on you there's still plenty of sales stuff available in shops so you could get more bargains.

Rubyslippers7780 Wed 11-Jan-17 14:45:27

Have you thought about a day with a personal shopper? Think Debenhams have a free service? Someone who picks stuff out for you and you can get a feel for things you might like instead of practical lower cost don't have to buy the items but a fresh look by someone impartial might help?

cautiousoptimist1 Wed 11-Jan-17 14:51:39

Do you have children OP?

OldJoseph Wed 11-Jan-17 15:00:33

Not from an abusive family but not encouraged to spend money on trivial stuff like looks.

I still don't spend loads but I try to buy quality and look after what I have so I get plenty of use from the items. It makes me much happier knowing that I have some decent clothes in my wardrobe and I don't have to worry about what I am going to wear.

Also supporting hairdressers, beauticians, dress makers (for alterations) and nail technicians is keeping people employed so that's hardly a waste of money.

Lottapianos Wed 11-Jan-17 15:09:37

Well done for cutting contact. That's a huge step towards taking care of yourself and living a happier, more peaceful life. And its not easily done, so be proud.

Lessons learned in childhood are not easily undone when you turn into an adult. Its not like flicking a switch (if only!) as you know. I have had a lot of moving on to do from my own family and I still need a huge amount of self-care to recover from their legacy. One of the things that made the biggest difference to me was professional support - I saw a wonderful psychotherapist who helped me to recognise and value my own feelings, and to recognise the impact of my parents' behaviour on me. I know this is S&B but I cannot recommend professional support highly enough. Its hard work and can be very painful but it will help you to slowly let go of the damaging lessons you learned as a child.

Back to S&B smile What would you say to a friend who felt they weren't worth wearing make up etc? We're often much kinder with other people than we are with ourselves.

I wear make up every single day and have painted manicured nails at all times. I have a skincare routine that I enjoy and stick to religiously. Make up is one of my main hobbies and I get endless pleasure from it. For me, its a way of affirming every day that I am worth taking care of, and a way of building my confidence because I feel so much better when I know I'm looking good. And its fun! Taking care of yourself and indulging yourself from time to time is nothing to be ashamed of.

OliviaBensonOnAGoodDay Wed 11-Jan-17 15:09:51

Just jumping on to say you are worth it. We all are! Would you ever tell a friend or a colleague that they aren't special enough to have anything nice?

Of course you wouldn't, because it would be horrible and untrue. So don't say it to yourself, as hard as the habit is to break.

LoupGarou Wed 11-Jan-17 15:26:13

flowers Well done for cutting contact, its a very difficult thing to do.

I look on Pinterest, for example I love plaid, so I search for "plaid elegant outfit" or search for a colour combination "navy and mustard outfit".
When I've got some ideas and an ideal outfit in mind I go on a shopping treasure hunt to find it. I take the whole day, put some upbeat music on when im getting ready to go out, have a nice coffee break in the morning, then lunch out, then coffee break in the afternoon. I stop by the beauty counters too and test out some new products, treat myself to some new makeup, that sort of thing.
Its pretty rare I do it these days as we live in a extremely remote location abroad, but it is great fun and turning it into a game helps me when I don't want to spend money on myself smile.

Dulcimena Wed 11-Jan-17 15:40:40

I too struggle to spend on clothes, bags, shoes etc, for me I worry about wasting money and unnecessary spend - so perhaps different starting points but the result is the same. For me it's much easier to justify things like a really good haircut - I wear my hair every single day and I know it won't get trashed after x wears like a pair of shoes might. Maybe treating yourself to something like that would help you feel better about yourself immediately, and any acquisitions can follow from there?

sarahnova69 Wed 11-Jan-17 15:46:49

I second booking a session with a personal shopper. You could do House of Fraser/Topshop/John Lewis depending on your age and style preferences or else a lot of shopping centres have them. Make a day of it, take a friend, let the makeup counters have a bash at you and be prepared to take a few leaps of faith. Go with a list of what you want, e.g. 'nice all-purpose jeans', 'jumper smart enough for work' and the shopper can work to that.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 11-Jan-17 16:31:22

I was going to say do a personal shopper day somewhere too.

Just don't keep them for best, wear them every day.

Karcheer Wed 11-Jan-17 17:12:00

Firstly, you are worth it, in fact you are more than worth it. The person who gave you £150 obviously thinks so, and if you think about it spending the £150 is for them rather than you, I'm sure they'd let e to know what beautiful thing you got.

Secondly, cheap clothing is a false economy. I have a leather jacket that I got from a small boutique about 15 years ago, I have worn it thousands of times literally. At the time it was expensive but cost per wear is very, very low. Whereas a couple of years ago I really wanted a blue leather jacket, I decided to get a pleather one from primark, it cost about£12, I wore it twice, the first time the lining split, the second time the zip broke. The cut was infact horrible and was a big mistake. I can tell this story over and over again, jeans with zippers that bust and so on.
I think if you buy expensive think about what you buy, think classic. I've an evening jacket that's moschino that now would be regarded as vintage, I bought it in 1998, but I often still pull it out of the wardrobe and wear it. I also buy dark blue jeans which I wear for more dressy things and as the colour goes I wear them more casually with them rolled up.
So actually, I think I probably spend less overall when I'm buying expensive things than I do when I'm trying to buy cheaply.

imjessie Wed 11-Jan-17 17:23:14

How sad that your parents did that to you . I feel part of my job as a parent is to boost my daughters self esteem in exactly the opposite way that your parents pulled yours down . You are worth it and I hope you do treat yourself . Depending on your style maybe get a personal shopper to help you?

saltydogandme Wed 11-Jan-17 17:50:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

specialsubject Wed 11-Jan-17 19:17:53

You are absolutely worth it. But only spend time clothes shopping if you enjoy it. If you dont, treat yourself to something fun.

ChishandFips33 Wed 11-Jan-17 20:49:22

You ARE worth it for everything you've been through

You ARE worth it for seeing that you need to cut them out of your life - detoxing at its best!

You DESERVE a treat for everything you've been through

You DESERVE a treat for cutting them out of your life and beginning to think more about yourself

Someone else in your family thinks you ARE worth it and wants to invest their money in you and treat you

You fancy some new jeans - take yourself off to a few shops - try lots on. If you think they look nice and they feel nice then buy them and DON'T feel guilty

Don't fret over how they look etc when you get home. Tell yourself they look no worse than your charity shop finds, in fact, they look better - the money is not an issue this time as it was a gift

Ignore the voices (old memories from being told stuff when you wore new things) that will pop up in your head - you'll learn to tune them out/ignore them over time

Wear them round the house just for you

If you like jewellery buy some nice earrings/ring/necklace...doesn't have to cost a lot - just that you like it

Slowly it will come (I was like you but without the abusive background) but you need to keep telling yourself you're worth it and find reasons to reward yourself and then one day you'll just treat yourself for no reason!!

I hope you get past this flowers

therealpippi Wed 11-Jan-17 23:53:24

I agree with Chish, you just have to force yourself in the beginning abd buy somethinh you like even if you feel guilty. Slowly the joy of having/wearing something you like will make you do it again and again untill you do it not just because you may deserve it but because you like it and because you are alive.

HadEnoughThisChristmas Thu 12-Jan-17 14:08:39

Thank you so much for the lovely replies everyone.

I went on ASOS earlier and ordered myself some Jack Wills jeans; they were £50, and I feel really pleased with myself for taking the step and ordering them.

HadEnoughThisChristmas Thu 12-Jan-17 14:13:17

Whoops and now a Mint Velvet black jumper too....

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