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I can't afford the trappings of a working class lifestyle

275 replies

defeatedslug · 16/04/2011 19:17

I can't afford xboxes or nintendos for the kids. We don't have a plasma telly of any size. We don't have cable or satellite TV. The kids don't have bikes. We don't have whizzy mobile phones. We don't go on overseas holidays, not even a week on a package holiday, and can barely do youth hostels in the UK. The kids don't have the latest, greatest, trendiest clothes. Their stash under the Christmas tree is pretty conservative. The kids wear hand-me-down clothes including stuff from NCT sales and freecycle. We don't eat out more than a handful of times a year, and maybe have a takeaway every 4 months. We have two very run down and battered cars. We don't smoke. DH drinks maybe 3 or 4 beers a week.

I dress the kids neatly, get them proper fitted shoes, smart school uniform, take them to the library and museums, feed them properly, make sure they're healthy. We both work, and pay a mortgage, and nursery fees. I'm not trying to start a daily-mail-a-thon benefits bashing thread, and I know there will be people that immediately start criticising, but it seems something isn't right that you can be hard-working and be materially less well off than people who don't work - there's not going to be much of an incentive to come off the benefits, is there?

I have namechanged but am regular btw (cod, rivers of sweetcorn, nice ham etc)

OP posts:

BeerTricksPotter · 16/04/2011 19:20

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

worraliberty · 16/04/2011 19:21

but it seems something isn't right that you can be hard-working and be materially less well off than people who don't work

Yes and no really. Some people have bigger mortgages/rents than others...or more debt or insurance policies etc to pay for.

If you feel this way, is there any chance you and your husband can get better paid jobs? Do some training or something?

Sorry, why have you name changed though?


MaisyMooCow · 16/04/2011 19:23

OP, you sound very grounded to me. You know what's important unlike some who feel it is there right to have an X-box etc and will go all out and get into debt to have one. You have your priorities right and that's something to be proud of.


squeakytoy · 16/04/2011 19:23

I find it sad that your kids dont even have bikes :(


crazycatlady · 16/04/2011 19:27

There is one crucial point missing though Slug - debt. You don't know just how much debt (likely at huge interest rates) is being carried by the people you mention in your post who have x-boxes and plasmas galore who you assume are funding it all on benefits alone...


MirandaGoshawk · 16/04/2011 19:28

Not everyone has x-boxes. Or a wii, or a plasma telly, or a whizzy mobile. I bought my phone £9.99 from Superdrug last August and am still on the first £20 Grin

I think it's easy to be seduced by advertising and think that 'everyone' is going abroad/buying a wii/ eating out or whatever. But lots of people aren't.


jojowest · 16/04/2011 19:28

some people have never worked in their lives and have more disposable income than someone who has :(


dolldaggabuzzbuzz · 16/04/2011 19:30

I can't afford to have all those things! Does that mean I'm not working class now?


krisskross · 16/04/2011 19:32

'the trappings of a working class lifestyle'????

couldnt have put it better than beertrickspotters last sentence. Maybe thats why you felt the need to name change?

Can you tar an entire class with the same brush? Not unless you are rather dim.


iknowwhatyoumean · 16/04/2011 19:32

OP I know exactly what you mean. A few people I know are claiming benefits but have xboxes, a bmw, a foreign holiday and a couple of short breaks per year one in particular is my friend and gives ME handmedowns for my DS but often cries poverty. In her case, she is very good at working the benefits sytem and also sells stuff on ebay (her uncle is a security guard and it appears he steals a lot of perfume/aftershave and she sells this on, on ebay. So she makes a lot that way.

Sometimes I feel annoyed, but then i couldn't live like she does, I'd be too terrified of being caught out one day apart from feeling bad about lying and cheating the benefits sytem. I know not everyone on benefits is like this but I think a few I know do do stuff like this. Plus she lives on a council estate where her DS is frightened of a lot of the kids on balance I wouldn't swap the environment my DS grows up in for an xbox and a holiday IYSWIM


SomethingSuper · 16/04/2011 19:35

Before I hide this this thred, I would like to point out that you have confused 'working class' with 'benefit claimant' and you've confused that with some daily mail-esque view of people who claim benefits.

We (like all of our families and friends) work hard, pay our mortgage, save for things like games consoles and live within our means. Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ. Do you think 'working class' people are some homogenous group of scroungers who fritter money on plasmas and fashionable clothes for their kids? Sorry OP, I'm sorry you're struggling financially (a lot of people are) but that is one of the most entitled, myopic posts I've read on here.

Since when does 'working class' mean 'doesnt work'? Fucking hell.


SomethingSuper · 16/04/2011 19:35



TheCrackFox · 16/04/2011 19:36

Have you tried Gumtree or Freecycle for a bike? Our council sells re-conditioned bikes that are very cheap and amzing value.

If you are still paying nursery fees then I guess your DCs are very young - you don't need X Boxes, Wiis or new clothes.

Young children don't care about foreign holidays. How about using those vouchers, in The Sun, for cheap British holidays? I know loads of people who do this and they always seem to have a great time.

In a few years time you won't need to pay nursery fees and your family fortunes will improve dramatically.

I'm saving up my Tesco's vouchers for a new TV.


princessparty · 16/04/2011 19:38

don't understand your 'trappings of a working class lifestyle comment' you don't think kids from professional middle class families have xboxes, big tvs and mobile phones?


beesimo · 16/04/2011 19:39

Are you perhaps one of those silly middle class women we have nowadays trying to keep 'down' with the Jones OP. It seems to me that you are trying too hard to appear badly done to. There is no reason for you kids to do without to this extent you can get loads of things you mentioned very cheaply sorry not buying you're 'poor hardworking us' act.

You can easily get the kids a bike each from a car boot.


Oblomov · 16/04/2011 19:39

No bikes ? Seriously. We bought ds one from a car boot that was pristine, for £5. Sold it for £18, at a car boot, after he had finished with it.
What kind of job do you do ? Because a couple of the things you claim to do without, can be bought very cheaply.


NettoSuperstar · 16/04/2011 19:40

I'm working class and don't have those things, except the bike, which I got second hand and a bit of a nightmare with it (anyone remember my second hand bike thread?)

Nothing wrong with second hand or cheap things, your kids have a great home life, I'm sure, and are part of a loving family.


Deflatedballoonbelly · 16/04/2011 19:40

Poor you.

Gte your head out of your arse, stop feeling sorry for yourself and take your (wrong) judgement away.

Oh and, I know lots of people on benefits, yet dont see all the flashy TVs, holidays etc...

I do work for a rich couple who will do anything to dodge a bit of tax though.... Is it because they are rich/different class? Nope, just scummy!

Good eggs/bag eggs.


ILoveYouToo · 16/04/2011 19:40

What SomethingSuper said.

Is this part of the troll invasion, by any chance?


Guitargirl · 16/04/2011 19:41

Um, since when do 'working class' people not work!?!


NettoSuperstar · 16/04/2011 19:44

I think the OP has been reading the DM.


expatinscotland · 16/04/2011 19:44

'I find it sad that your kids dont even have bikes'

Mine don't. We live in a first-floor flat with no garden and the building's on a 40mph road with no traffic lights that goes to 60mph about 1/2 mile away.

As for the OP, another benefits bashing thread.

And ignorant into the bargain, to assume 'working class' a) means benefits claimant b) all those on benefits have all that crap.

You have a home of your own. Right there, you're loads better off than most.


ItsGrimUpNorth · 16/04/2011 19:45

Knob thread started by a knobber. Should have changed your name to that op.


sungirltan · 16/04/2011 19:45

my very first Biscuit


Oblomov · 16/04/2011 19:46

This doesn't need to be a Daily Mail rant. A few of the mums in our playground are families with both parents not working. And they have a very very good lifestyle, holidays and latest stuff.
This is not just believing the tripe that is in the Daily Mail. There are people personally known to live quite a reasonable lifestyle on benefits. And I know plenty of other people who struggle on benefits, so I think I have a reasonably balanced view of both ends of the benefit spectrum.

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