Author Topic: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents  (Read 57614 times)

frugalecon

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #50 on: May 18, 2014, 05:03:43 AM »
They probably don't ask for advice because they know they would not like it. I assume that is why no one in my family asks me for advice, even though I have a PhD in economics and have an obviously well-organized personal financial life.

I am sorry to have to tell you this, but I don't think a PhD in economics is a credential that speaks in favor of your financial acumen. ;)

I am curious what the basis is for this comment. Is it based on actually knowing any people with economics PhDs?

From a purely financial perspective, I'm pretty sure the opportunity cost of a PhD outweighs any future financial benefit in almost all cases. Of course there are many great non-financial reasons to get a PhD, but again, then it remains the opposite of a financial credential.

Ah, I see where you are coming from. It is certainly true that there is an opportunity cost to attending a graduate program, but there are numerous lucrative opportunities that an economics PhD opens up. Plus there is the nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys. Many academics in particular basically view their work as their principal hobby, and they have no desire to retire. Now with the trend away from hiring full-time faculty, that is a little dicier.

Your comment probably applies more to programs in the humanities and softer social sciences. There are really a lot of very lucrative jobs in other fields, such as economics.

Emilyngh

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #51 on: May 18, 2014, 06:20:18 AM »
They probably don't ask for advice because they know they would not like it. I assume that is why no one in my family asks me for advice, even though I have a PhD in economics and have an obviously well-organized personal financial life.

I am sorry to have to tell you this, but I don't think a PhD in economics is a credential that speaks in favor of your financial acumen. ;)

I am curious what the basis is for this comment. Is it based on actually knowing any people with economics PhDs?

From a purely financial perspective, I'm pretty sure the opportunity cost of a PhD outweighs any future financial benefit in almost all cases. Of course there are many great non-financial reasons to get a PhD, but again, then it remains the opposite of a financial credential.

Ah, I see where you are coming from. It is certainly true that there is an opportunity cost to attending a graduate program, but there are numerous lucrative opportunities that an economics PhD opens up. Plus there is the nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys. Many academics in particular basically view their work as their principal hobby, and they have no desire to retire. Now with the trend away from hiring full-time faculty, that is a little dicier.

Your comment probably applies more to programs in the humanities and softer social sciences. There are really a lot of very lucrative jobs in other fields, such as economics.

This is also true for some STEMs.   I have a PhD in electrical engineering.   It took my 3.5 years after my bachelor's to get, I racked up no debt along the way (had tuition and medical covered and a $20k/year stipend), was paid $80k during my postdoc (could've taken an even higher paying job, but this was what I wanted to do), and would never be in the great position I am now without it (just turned 33; semi-retired working PT at my dream job with full autonomy, flexibility, and minimum time commitment; FT SAH spouse; and will easily reach FI in a few years more of semi-retired life).

Seriously, getting my PhD was my ticket to an easy, good life.   It's hands-down one of the best financial decisions I've ever made.

BlueHouse

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #52 on: May 18, 2014, 09:59:22 AM »
crazy Miss Havisham thing going on where she sleeps in various rooms throughout the house depending on her whim, and keeps saying she's gonna get rid of the crummy old furniture in most of the rooms, but then realizes that so doing would leave like 3/4 of the house empty, so she just keeps it, and has a cleaning service come every couple of weeks to do almost literally nothing besides dust all the stupid unused rooms. Sometimes she'll have the upstairs and downstairs thermostats working in opposite directions because she likes her "hanging out" temperature to be different from her "sleeping" temperature.
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garg33

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #53 on: May 18, 2014, 12:29:49 PM »
They probably don't ask for advice because they know they would not like it. I assume that is why no one in my family asks me for advice, even though I have a PhD in economics and have an obviously well-organized personal financial life.

I am sorry to have to tell you this, but I don't think a PhD in economics is a credential that speaks in favor of your financial acumen. ;)

I am curious what the basis is for this comment. Is it based on actually knowing any people with economics PhDs?

From a purely financial perspective, I'm pretty sure the opportunity cost of a PhD outweighs any future financial benefit in almost all cases. Of course there are many great non-financial reasons to get a PhD, but again, then it remains the opposite of a financial credential.

Ah, I see where you are coming from. It is certainly true that there is an opportunity cost to attending a graduate program, but there are numerous lucrative opportunities that an economics PhD opens up. Plus there is the nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys. Many academics in particular basically view their work as their principal hobby, and they have no desire to retire. Now with the trend away from hiring full-time faculty, that is a little dicier.

Your comment probably applies more to programs in the humanities and softer social sciences. There are really a lot of very lucrative jobs in other fields, such as economics.

This is also true for some STEMs.   I have a PhD in electrical engineering.   It took my 3.5 years after my bachelor's to get, I racked up no debt along the way (had tuition and medical covered and a $20k/year stipend), was paid $80k during my postdoc (could've taken an even higher paying job, but this was what I wanted to do), and would never be in the great position I am now without it (just turned 33; semi-retired working PT at my dream job with full autonomy, flexibility, and minimum time commitment; FT SAH spouse; and will easily reach FI in a few years more of semi-retired life).

Seriously, getting my PhD was my ticket to an easy, good life.   It's hands-down one of the best financial decisions I've ever made.

3.5 years from bachelor's to PhD is quite impressive and by my understanding much faster than average, so really good job on minimizing those opportunity costs. I'm curious, do you really think the great job you have now is something you couldn't have gotten without an equivalent amount of work experience to the degree? I'm all for the "nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys"! I wonder how often an advanced degree is actually necessary for this, however, unless the work that you in enjoy is in academia?

frugalecon

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #54 on: May 18, 2014, 02:45:56 PM »
They probably don't ask for advice because they know they would not like it. I assume that is why no one in my family asks me for advice, even though I have a PhD in economics and have an obviously well-organized personal financial life.

I am sorry to have to tell you this, but I don't think a PhD in economics is a credential that speaks in favor of your financial acumen. ;)

I am curious what the basis is for this comment. Is it based on actually knowing any people with economics PhDs?

From a purely financial perspective, I'm pretty sure the opportunity cost of a PhD outweighs any future financial benefit in almost all cases. Of course there are many great non-financial reasons to get a PhD, but again, then it remains the opposite of a financial credential.

Ah, I see where you are coming from. It is certainly true that there is an opportunity cost to attending a graduate program, but there are numerous lucrative opportunities that an economics PhD opens up. Plus there is the nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys. Many academics in particular basically view their work as their principal hobby, and they have no desire to retire. Now with the trend away from hiring full-time faculty, that is a little dicier.

Your comment probably applies more to programs in the humanities and softer social sciences. There are really a lot of very lucrative jobs in other fields, such as economics.

This is also true for some STEMs.   I have a PhD in electrical engineering.   It took my 3.5 years after my bachelor's to get, I racked up no debt along the way (had tuition and medical covered and a $20k/year stipend), was paid $80k during my postdoc (could've taken an even higher paying job, but this was what I wanted to do), and would never be in the great position I am now without it (just turned 33; semi-retired working PT at my dream job with full autonomy, flexibility, and minimum time commitment; FT SAH spouse; and will easily reach FI in a few years more of semi-retired life).

Seriously, getting my PhD was my ticket to an easy, good life.   It's hands-down one of the best financial decisions I've ever made.

3.5 years from bachelor's to PhD is quite impressive and by my understanding much faster than average, so really good job on minimizing those opportunity costs. I'm curious, do you really think the great job you have now is something you couldn't have gotten without an equivalent amount of work experience to the degree? I'm all for the "nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys"! I wonder how often an advanced degree is actually necessary for this, however, unless the work that you in enjoy is in academia?

I can only speak to life among the Econ. There are many opportunities available to someone with a PhD that are not available to someone without one. My organization would not even consider someone without a PhD for an economist position. That is because a PhD program teaches qualitatively different skills than a BA program. Top consulting, public policy, and, of course, academic jobs basically require a PhD. You are very sensible to consider the opportunity cost, and I think for many disciplines the grad students are insane, or at least ill-informed. But for quantitative disciplines, the techniques and information learned in grad school are actually useful.

Emilyngh

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #55 on: May 18, 2014, 07:16:54 PM »


I'm curious, do you really think the great job you have now is something you couldn't have gotten without an equivalent amount of work experience to the degree? I'm all for the "nonpecuniary benefit of doing work that one enjoys"! I wonder how often an advanced degree is actually necessary for this, however, unless the work that you in enjoy is in academia?

Yes, I'm 100% sure I could not have gotten my great job without my PhD.   The terminal degree is required; they would not have even considered my application without it.    And while, yes, my current work is in academia, my PhD was just as required for my previous post-doc and the specific job I had following it as a research scientist (I would not have been eligible for the research scientist position without the postdoc, actually).   There are jobs where no amount of work experience is considered equivalent to the PhD, and IME, they have the best mix of high pay, autonomy, and flexible hours (at least in my field).   



« Last Edit: May 18, 2014, 07:18:37 PM by Emilyngh »

Kaminoge

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #56 on: May 19, 2014, 02:17:36 AM »
franklin I'm sure there's potential for some kind of Modern Family style sitcom starring Jimbo and your mum.

The American Dream!

FunkyStickman

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #57 on: May 19, 2014, 05:22:46 AM »
Only thing I wish I could get my parents to understand: "Stop buying crap for my kids!"
"There is no dignity quite so impressive, and no one independence quite so important, as living within your means." -Calvin Coolidge

"Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities." - Mark Twain

Strawberrykiwi75

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #58 on: May 19, 2014, 05:31:05 AM »
"I'm smarter than you about money, just because you raised me does not mean you're unable to take advice from your son."

+1

(and daughters)

Strawberrykiwi75

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #59 on: May 19, 2014, 05:44:55 AM »
Dad, please stop buying crap just because it's cheap. If you give me another piece of Chinese Jade, I'm going to scream- I've told you I don't want it.
Instead, spend it on updating your piece of shit car that breaks down all the time and costs a fortune to run.
Buy a new mattress instead of complaining that your back hurts in the mornings.
Stop complaining that all you do is sit around the house when I know you have enough money to go traveling, go fishing everyday, take up golf.
Stop being such a cheap ass that you don't get to enjoy your money.
Oh, did I mention- fucking RETIRE!!! You're 74 years old and the only thing you use the money for is buying alcohol- alcohol which your doctor has forbidden you to drink!!!

erae

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #60 on: May 19, 2014, 07:21:08 AM »
dad: you bought the corvette to fulfill some combination of nostalgic 1960's cool and to prove to the world that all those years working so hard and sacrificing so much of your time and energy had somehow paid off.  you didn't understand how the rest of us were ambivalent to your trophy.  then, a couple years later when you tired of it yourself, you sold it during the recession and cringed when you calculated the cost-per-mile.  lesson learned, we all thought. 

until you retired.  as mom warned: "retirement doesn't mean you get a personality transplant; you're the same person, just with more free time."  but you didn't listen to yourself or to your wife.  after decades of turning down invitations to fish with your father and never showing interest in lakes or boating, you moved to an overpriced community on a lake and decided you needed a 30 thousand dollar boat to match the new golf cart and the premium lot you built your new house on - a premium lot that would give you access to the most exclusive golf courses (a topic which you awkwardly work into conversations with guests).  the boat lasted about as long as the corvette and provoked in all of us a profound sense of deja vu.  and your beautiful house in this beautiful community has done little to contribute to your or to mom's happiness.  it took you a couple years to find golfing buddies that aren't scumbags, and mom has yet to connect deeply with any of the women in the area, instead yearning for a lifestyle in which you two can spend the summer up north with your siblings and aging parents.  mom only moved to this middle-of-nowhere dystopia of some sense of gratitude to you for "providing" for your family for so many years and wanting to help you realize your retirement dreams.  but somewhere along the lines your spending stopped aligning with your priorities and started to focus on creating an image.  the image sucks - you're way more badass than this persona you feed, but you don't seem to think so.

when i think about you or talk to my friends about you, i dont talk about your beautiful house or your gated community or your pension - i talk about how much you love mom after 35+ years and what a high bar you've set for my new husband and me; and how i love to see you get so excited, like a little boy, when you talk about classic rock or the latest cocktail you're working on perfecting; or how proud i am of you not being bothered when you were ostracized by two separate social groups for calling people on their racism.  you're a good man.  you're a successful man.  and it has been so painful to watch your insecurities take over as you try and demonstrate your goodness and your success through fancy crap. 

mom: dad's right - there's enough money for summers near the family.  find something furnished near grandma's place and use your money to pursue happiness rather than to provide some false sense of security against your anxieties and fears.  you and your happiness are worth the investment - that's what money is for.





Winston

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #61 on: May 19, 2014, 08:31:17 AM »
^ Wow. If you can't tell your dad that in person, print that post and mail it to him.

Ironfist

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #62 on: May 19, 2014, 11:57:17 AM »
I wish I could tell my Dad to just quit buying crap.  Well, I can tell him but he wouldn't listen.  He always complains about the house being full of junk and being broke all the time but it seems like he's still buying junk all the time.


Adventine

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #63 on: May 20, 2014, 01:05:42 AM »
^ Wow. If you can't tell your dad that in person, print that post and mail it to him.

Agreed.

Counting Down

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #64 on: May 22, 2014, 05:56:39 AM »
franklin I'm sure there's potential for some kind of Modern Family style sitcom starring Jimbo and your mum.

The American Dream!

Seriously Franklin your posts made me laugh so much.

going2ER

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #65 on: May 22, 2014, 08:57:43 AM »
I did get my mother to stop buying my kids crap, she finally caught on to that one.

Now my parents have their paid for home up for sale. They want the money, they will blow through the money, just like their inheritances. Guess what? Reality check, you still need to live somewhere and will likely be paying $800-900 per month in rent. If you don't feel like you can shovel or mow or clean or do whatever around the house anymore it would not cost you $800 a month to hire that out. It is not a large home. I know that they will bitch about the cost of rent, especially once the money from the home is gone, and I give that 6-12 months. Thankfully, my sister is the golden child so I won't get the worst of it.

frugalnacho

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #66 on: May 22, 2014, 10:20:47 AM »
Stop buying me crap.  If it's something I need, or something I really want, and is reasonably priced enough that you could afford it then I already own it.  If I don't then it's because it doesn't fit those criteria and no one should buy it for me.  Just because it's christmas or my birthday doesn't mean you are obligated to waste money on shit I don't want/need.  We will all be better off if you just stop.  Just invite me over for dinner if you want to do something nice - I will appreciate the food and the company, and it won't be a monumental waste of resources.

I have tried to drill this into my parents for the last 10 years.  They don't seem to understand. 

Gin1984

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #67 on: May 22, 2014, 10:25:26 AM »
Stop buying me crap.  If it's something I need, or something I really want, and is reasonably priced enough that you could afford it then I already own it.  If I don't then it's because it doesn't fit those criteria and no one should buy it for me.  Just because it's christmas or my birthday doesn't mean you are obligated to waste money on shit I don't want/need.  We will all be better off if you just stop.  Just invite me over for dinner if you want to do something nice - I will appreciate the food and the company, and it won't be a monumental waste of resources.

I have tried to drill this into my parents for the last 10 years.  They don't seem to understand.
If you do, please post HOW!  I have been trying for about the same time.

Dr. Doom

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #68 on: May 28, 2014, 07:35:24 AM »
Stop buying me crap.  If it's something I need, or something I really want, and is reasonably priced enough that you could afford it then I already own it.  If I don't then it's because it doesn't fit those criteria and no one should buy it for me.  Just because it's christmas or my birthday doesn't mean you are obligated to waste money on shit I don't want/need.  We will all be better off if you just stop.  Just invite me over for dinner if you want to do something nice - I will appreciate the food and the company, and it won't be a monumental waste of resources.

I have tried to drill this into my parents for the last 10 years.  They don't seem to understand.
If you do, please post HOW!  I have been trying for about the same time.

After years of failure, I managed to do it. 

Turns out I was being way, way too nice and rational for way too long.   Simply explaining my position was having zero effect because they weren't listening.   I started yelling at them.  Yes, raising my voice and yelling.  I have to say that this goes against my nature but whatever, got to mix it up when things aren't effective.    I really wanted to fix this problem.

For about a year, here's how it played out.  My mom gives me something, I scream at her and say how could you do this again after I've told you one billion zillion times to stop?  Then I take the item(s) back to her car, place it in the back seat, and say, look, now you're taking that home and figuring out what to do with it.  Have fun with that.

I don't like being mean -- it causes me some amount of guilt and distress to behave this way, especially to my mom, who I am very fond of in general -- but I'll be damned, after several iterations, it worked.  Complete behavioral adjustment.

Some kids, when you tell them to stop being bad, they immediately stop.  Others, you need to shout and count down to punishment.  They need to visibly and audibly register that you're really upset.  I finally figured out which kind of children my parents were.

homeymomma

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #69 on: May 28, 2014, 01:17:56 PM »
Dear Mom,
Just because you hated your job and stuck it out for a little while longer than you wanted doesn't mean you get to f*ck around and do nothing, blowing through your retirement savings, during your last able bodied working years then land on my doorstep when your 75 and ask me to put you up. I hope social security will be enough for you because I don't think it covers online shopping sprees and whole foods.

Love,
Your kid

P.s. You know how grandma lives in this fancy retirement home? She had to plan and save for that, they don't have free housing options for seniors alongside golf courses.

eyesonthehorizon

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #70 on: May 29, 2014, 02:18:15 AM »
Definite text dump. Feel free to skip. I'd skip it myself, but once in a while I find people who need to hear they aren't the only ones.

"I wish I could celebrate with you when I get out from under the soul-crushing student debt I plan to pay off in three months.

I wish you could be proud of me, and be able to share the first time in my life I've felt optimistic about my situation and my own ability to affect it. I wish I could bring over a homemade cake and some cheer to your crumbling and miserable house and we could celebrate the notion that I might just make good, and not have my tentative feelings of hope crushed flat as one of you takes my hard-won personal success as a rebuke to how you didn't do better with the position you know you were handed on a platter, and the other of you sneers that I always had it too easy and I don't know what a challenge is because I haven't cultivated a substance abuse problem.

I wish that I could be honest with you about how encouraging it has been finally being in the black for the first time in my adult life without worrying you'll ask me for another loan from my painstaking savings. I've never refused, and you've never yet failed to pay me back, but the stakes are higher now; I started adulthood a lot later than I planned, and if I'm still taking care of you I may never get to have children of my own.

I wish that both or either of you would do the things that would make your lives better instead of each insisting that since you're in a hole already you can only dig deeper, and that you could take inspiration instead of offense from those who don't believe or behave likewise.

I wish that you would take even little steps like not spending everything you've got on extravagant prepared food as soon as a check comes in, when you're behind on all your maxed-out credit card payments and don't have anything left in the bank to fall back on. I wish I could forget the times I came to visit and watched hollow and salivating and wanted to catch the scraps of good meat you scraped into the dog's dish or the stale heels of artisan bread that went out on the lawn because I'd been eating nothing but oatmeal for weeks on end to save money, and all the times I guiltily turned down food you offered because I couldn't know whether you were actually about to run out of cash again. I worked seven days a week and skipped meals. I wasn't thin to be fashionable, but I worried you were worse off than myself, even then. (I've never been able to tell how much trouble you were in, or where my responsibilities lay or terminated in helping you out of it. I only recognize that it's been wholly self-inflicted.)

Once I could afford real groceries, I wish you'd have let me cook for you instead of going out all the time when you unequivocally can't afford it and when nobody's allowed to enjoy the experience anyway. I haven't had a meal with you in almost a year in any context, because if anyone is happy about anything someone else will do all they can to put a lance through their bubble, and I'm still trying to overcome a whole lifetime of growing up next to that and learn how to feel good about anything.

And I still wish you'd let me cook for you."

Astatine

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #71 on: May 29, 2014, 05:22:57 AM »
^^^ I'm sorry that you've had to experience that. If navigating that level of family dysfunction is impacting you still, you may find the Out of the FOG ( fear obligation guilt) forum helpful. 

Two9A

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #72 on: May 29, 2014, 06:35:32 AM »
Antimustachianism and narcissism tend to go together: at least, in my anecdotal experience of one mother who's always berated my achievements and/or taken credit for them, and is also a profligate spender.

There's also a support group for "adult children of narcissists" on Reddit, which I frequent: if you look for /r/raisedbynarcissists that should point you in the right direction.

NeverWasACornflakeGirl

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #73 on: May 29, 2014, 09:12:34 AM »
I don't know what a challenge is because I haven't cultivated a substance abuse problem.


Wow, that really got me.  Just wanted to say congratulations on all of your accomlishments.  Especially considering your negative background, you really have a lot to be proud of.
Blogging about mindset and making different choices at http://mommywontwork.blogspot.com/

eyesonthehorizon

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #74 on: May 31, 2014, 03:10:15 PM »
Astatine, Two9A, I hightailed it to the FOG forum, burned a couple hours saying "THIS" out loud, and didn't get back properly online for a bit there. I was hoping I'd be able to share something that might make somebody else feel left alone, but I didn't expect to be surprised by direction to good resources!! Emphatic thanks!!
Two9A, I suspect you're probably on to something about antimustachian families of origin. Dysfunction is dysfunction.
NeverWasACornflakeGirl - many thanks! Incidentally, congratulations means more from someone with good taste in music. ^-^

Adventine

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #75 on: June 02, 2014, 02:02:16 AM »
Definite text dump. Feel free to skip. I'd skip it myself, but once in a while I find people who need to hear they aren't the only ones.

"I wish I could celebrate with you when I get out from under the soul-crushing student debt I plan to pay off in three months.

I wish you could be proud of me, and be able to share the first time in my life I've felt optimistic about my situation and my own ability to affect it. I wish I could bring over a homemade cake and some cheer to your crumbling and miserable house and we could celebrate the notion that I might just make good, and not have my tentative feelings of hope crushed flat as one of you takes my hard-won personal success as a rebuke to how you didn't do better with the position you know you were handed on a platter, and the other of you sneers that I always had it too easy and I don't know what a challenge is because I haven't cultivated a substance abuse problem.

I wish that I could be honest with you about how encouraging it has been finally being in the black for the first time in my adult life without worrying you'll ask me for another loan from my painstaking savings. I've never refused, and you've never yet failed to pay me back, but the stakes are higher now; I started adulthood a lot later than I planned, and if I'm still taking care of you I may never get to have children of my own.

I wish that both or either of you would do the things that would make your lives better instead of each insisting that since you're in a hole already you can only dig deeper, and that you could take inspiration instead of offense from those who don't believe or behave likewise.

I wish that you would take even little steps like not spending everything you've got on extravagant prepared food as soon as a check comes in, when you're behind on all your maxed-out credit card payments and don't have anything left in the bank to fall back on. I wish I could forget the times I came to visit and watched hollow and salivating and wanted to catch the scraps of good meat you scraped into the dog's dish or the stale heels of artisan bread that went out on the lawn because I'd been eating nothing but oatmeal for weeks on end to save money, and all the times I guiltily turned down food you offered because I couldn't know whether you were actually about to run out of cash again. I worked seven days a week and skipped meals. I wasn't thin to be fashionable, but I worried you were worse off than myself, even then. (I've never been able to tell how much trouble you were in, or where my responsibilities lay or terminated in helping you out of it. I only recognize that it's been wholly self-inflicted.)

Once I could afford real groceries, I wish you'd have let me cook for you instead of going out all the time when you unequivocally can't afford it and when nobody's allowed to enjoy the experience anyway. I haven't had a meal with you in almost a year in any context, because if anyone is happy about anything someone else will do all they can to put a lance through their bubble, and I'm still trying to overcome a whole lifetime of growing up next to that and learn how to feel good about anything.

And I still wish you'd let me cook for you."

I'm happy for you and your achievements. You're building a better life for yourself. Stay strong and keep making those good choices for yourself.

frugalman

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #76 on: June 02, 2014, 10:17:08 AM »
My Mother in Law was widowed about 17 years ago. There was no mortgage on the home at the time. She has also received about $50,000 cash inheritance from her parents. Unfortunately she developed a hoarder habit. She just kept buying stuff and piling it in her home. Then, she became short of money to do this (and after some expensive vacations) so she started taking out loans on her home. $25,000 was the first loan, now she is all in at about $125,000 in 2 mortgages. Her total cash income is $1,400/mo, the mortgages are priced too high, and she has like $300/mo after paying these. Bad credit score now. Her car gave up the ghost a year ago, and she can't afford to get it fixed. My DW has succumbed to driving her around about weekly to the food shelf, bank, grocery store, wherever she needs to go. We had to buy her garbage service because she was piling it in the basement.

I can't figure out a way out of this - do any of you know if the county or state can somehow take her off our hands? I've explained that if she just quits paying on the loans, she might have 2 years before she is evicted. This would allow her to buy $3,000 car to get around, and save up like $10,000 as a war chest for the apartment fund. She refuses to accept that her house is going to go - since DW is driving her around and buying groceries etc.

P.S. the home is such a hoarder home and in such poor shape I don't think it is worth more, as is, than the loans she has on it.

homeymomma

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #77 on: June 02, 2014, 10:27:55 AM »
If the hoarding is at such a point as to be a health/safety hazard, the public authorities may be able to step in. I dont know about anyone who can "take her off your hands" so to speak. She may qualify for a meals on wheels sort of thing, but that's mostly for people who are physically unable to get food for themselves, not those unable to buy a car or unwilling to ride the bus.

Best suggestion? Move. Far far away.

I'd at least call social services and see if they have any ideas for programs she might qualify for. They are usually pretty strapped and won't assign someone to her case unless it sounds truly dire, but they may have some local options to suggest.

annann

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #78 on: June 02, 2014, 01:04:26 PM »
My Mother in Law was widowed about 17 years ago. There was no mortgage on the home at the time. She has also received about $50,000 cash inheritance from her parents. Unfortunately she developed a hoarder habit. She just kept buying stuff and piling it in her home. Then, she became short of money to do this (and after some expensive vacations) so she started taking out loans on her home. $25,000 was the first loan, now she is all in at about $125,000 in 2 mortgages. Her total cash income is $1,400/mo, the mortgages are priced too high, and she has like $300/mo after paying these. Bad credit score now. Her car gave up the ghost a year ago, and she can't afford to get it fixed. My DW has succumbed to driving her around about weekly to the food shelf, bank, grocery store, wherever she needs to go. We had to buy her garbage service because she was piling it in the basement.

I can't figure out a way out of this - do any of you know if the county or state can somehow take her off our hands? I've explained that if she just quits paying on the loans, she might have 2 years before she is evicted. This would allow her to buy $3,000 car to get around, and save up like $10,000 as a war chest for the apartment fund. She refuses to accept that her house is going to go - since DW is driving her around and buying groceries etc.

P.S. the home is such a hoarder home and in such poor shape I don't think it is worth more, as is, than the loans she has on it.

Given her income and her lack of assets, she may be eligible for subsidized housing.  If so, the rent is usually about 1/3 of her monthly income and this often includes some or all of the utilities.  She may also be eligible for food stamps, subsidized transportation, and assistance with medical insurance.  In some areas there are rather long waiting lists for assisted housing so she may need to get on the list ASAP.  I would contact the Elder Care Agency in your local area to find out what assistance she could receive.  As long as you and DW help her make her current situation work, nothing will change until such time as she fails to pay the mortgages and they forclose on her house.  The kindest thing you can do is help her learn what assistance is available and help her apply for it if she is unable to do it alone.  The worst case scenario is that she is evicted in a forclosure and has no place to go except to come and live with you.  You are the one with the incentive to help her get into the welfare system.

BlueHouse

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #79 on: June 16, 2014, 11:43:10 AM »
Stop buying me crap.  If it's something I need, or something I really want, and is reasonably priced enough that you could afford it then I already own it.  If I don't then it's because it doesn't fit those criteria and no one should buy it for me.  Just because it's christmas or my birthday doesn't mean you are obligated to waste money on shit I don't want/need.  We will all be better off if you just stop.  Just invite me over for dinner if you want to do something nice - I will appreciate the food and the company, and it won't be a monumental waste of resources.

I have tried to drill this into my parents for the last 10 years.  They don't seem to understand.
If you do, please post HOW!  I have been trying for about the same time.

After years of failure, I managed to do it. 

Turns out I was being way, way too nice and rational for way too long.   Simply explaining my position was having zero effect because they weren't listening.   I started yelling at them.  Yes, raising my voice and yelling.  I have to say that this goes against my nature but whatever, got to mix it up when things aren't effective.    I really wanted to fix this problem.

For about a year, here's how it played out.  My mom gives me something, I scream at her and say how could you do this again after I've told you one billion zillion times to stop?  Then I take the item(s) back to her car, place it in the back seat, and say, look, now you're taking that home and figuring out what to do with it.  Have fun with that.

I don't like being mean -- it causes me some amount of guilt and distress to behave this way, especially to my mom, who I am very fond of in general -- but I'll be damned, after several iterations, it worked.  Complete behavioral adjustment.

Some kids, when you tell them to stop being bad, they immediately stop.  Others, you need to shout and count down to punishment.  They need to visibly and audibly register that you're really upset.  I finally figured out which kind of children my parents were.

I tried the good Doctor's method for about 7 years and it didn't work out too well for me.  It seemed to just cause me to feel like a heel on family holidays, especially Christmas morning.  No one should yell at their mom on Christmas, or make them feel like jerks for trying. 
Here's what I did that has been working for the past few years:  It turns out my mom just wants to please me.  And all of these years she's been trying to make me smile or laugh or feel grateful by buying things for me.  That just didn't work.  So I finally started making very detailed and very specific lists of things that she could give me as a gift.  I try to make them interesting enough that she doesn't feel as if she's doing my grocery shopping, but I have no qualms about asking for a specific brand of laundry detergent.  Nowadays, I usually make a list of things I would like done, and she comes through by giving me a set of coupons - for things like waiting at my home for deliveries, the plumber, baking a special dessert, etc.  My next one will be to ask her to hold a cooking demonstration for a few of my friends.  It will make her feel as if she has something to teach others, and the rest of us get a pretty decent meal out of it.  I've found that the more I ask of her, the happier she is about it.  She really truly wants to please, and I think a lot of moms are like that but they've just forgotten that money does NOT equal love. 

Be kind whenever possible, offer an alternative to crap gifts, and the message sinks in better.  Good luck
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Carrie

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #80 on: June 16, 2014, 12:11:49 PM »
to Dad:
Thanks for being frugal enough to live on your pension & SS.  It's a damn shame you got duped by your ex-girlfriend and gave her your (paid-off) house & land.  That sucks.  If you pick up with her again (and she takes the remainder of the land), I'm afraid we'll write you off completely.

to Mom:
There are a few things I'd love to tell you. Two people don't need a 5 BR, 3000 square foot house.  Please clean it up and sell it.  You are not entitled to SS since you never worked a job and since you remarried (so please quit bringing it up. Insisting the gov owes you something makes you sound socialist, but I know you're not because you get all of your info from Fox news).  That is the way it is, and it's not too late for you to find SOME work to do to help support you and your ill husband.  Your kids feel so emotionally damaged from childhood that it'll be tough to find a soft heart to fund your irrational lifestyle. No couple needs two mac book pros plus two ipads, plus a boat, plus a (new) tent & camping/ survival gear (when's the last time you went camping? 20 years?).  Please stop visiting these shopping websites.  You have zero money to spend, and you're past your "survival days."  Please stop stockpiling food.  No one wants to come eat at your house with all the rotting food in the fridge, the expired cans in the pantry and the bugs and flies in the kitchen.  Spend the time cleaning the place up instead of shopping at the bargain shops for things you don't need.

Apples

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #81 on: September 01, 2014, 09:04:45 AM »
Need to vent/

To my MIL, no you can't live your paycheck to paycheck life forever.  You guys couldn't even handle a surprise $350 bill, and you were planning a 2 week vacation for your son's wedding, but called crying because you didn't know if you could afford a hotel room for 4 days just a few weeks before.  No, we're not hosting you the week of our wedding, get your act together.  And now, a few months later, you can't just skip your shift work job whenever you decide to have a migraine (which you have medicine for) or your son is home visiting and you want to spend 2 more hours with him before he leaves, but then you miss an entire 12 hour shift of work.  And then when your husband picks up overtime shifts to make up for it, you going to a restaurant by yourself just to check in on facebook so everyone sees how awesome you are does not help the situation.  Your bought-on-a-whim new Ford Escape from last spring is stretching your budget way too tight, and your previous car was perfectly good.  Please stop calling your son crying every other month because you miss him; we all know you're trying to guilt trip him home, which we visit twice a year and he goes back once by himself.  You are free to visit anytime, and we will host you, but you have to have vacation days to take and the money saved for the gas and restaurant stops.  And now you call crying because your supervisor is threatening to fire you because you've been missing so much work, and you don't have any kind of plan.  What is your son, 600  miles away, supposed to do?  And we're going to visit for Thanksgiving, and do Christmas presents then, and you're going to give us some great gifts while simultaneously making mention of your money problems. Stop spending money every possible way, save some up, and most of your problems would go away.

/vent 

pachnik

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #82 on: September 01, 2014, 09:22:25 AM »
I just quickly read through the last few posts here and am really grateful for my Mustachian parents who are now in their mid-70's. 

They are very frugal and excellent money managers.  I don't have any concerns about the kind of stuff I am reading about here.  The only slight concern I have is for the future.  For example, if they become less mentally aware and maybe get ripped off.  Hopefully, this will never happen.

Sorry for the thread de-rail.

Squirrel away

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #83 on: September 01, 2014, 09:34:28 AM »
I heard that one of my parents is going to make a very expensive decision with her house despite the fact it is worth £600k and it's fully paid for. I gave my advice but I don't know if it will be passed on to her or if she will listen.

To my mother-in-law, stop playing online bingo! It's a mug's game.

legacyoneup

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #84 on: September 01, 2014, 10:38:02 AM »
To Mom : Never let the fox into the hen-house .. i.e. NEVER EVER give dad access to our offshore joint accounts.
Be careful when you blindly follow the masses, sometimes the "m" is silent.

tofuchampion

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #85 on: September 02, 2014, 12:01:55 AM »
I have absolutely zero sympathy for you.  You are not a victim of circumstance, you are irresponsible and ignorant.  Your money problems are your own damn fault, and I hope you don't expect me to bail you out or take care of you when you can't, because I won't. 

You are in your late 50's.  You live paycheck to paycheck.  You have no retirement savings, not even an emergency fund.  Then you tell me that the $60K/year you used to get, with no housing costs (pastor, living in a parsonage) wasn't enough to set some aside?  Bullshit.  You had enough money to remodel.  You had enough to go on vacation every year.  You had enough for cable or satellite tv, all the kids (3 still at home) to have laptops or video game systems or SOMETHING, and to eat out multiple times a week. 

So then you move, and you're deciding between a house with $2100/month rent, or one with $1850/month rent... and you go with the more expensive one, because otherwise you'd be paying hundreds every month in storage fees for the boat and some furniture.  WTF.  Sell the boat and the extra furniture, get the smaller place.  Since you didn't, don't act all victim-y and sad and tell me that you don't always know where the rent money is going to come from, because it's your own damn fault.

Just... don't talk about money to me, ever.  I've made my own mistakes, I've learned from them, and I don't want to hear you blame everyone but yourselves for your terrible situation.  Actually, go ahead; it's more motivation for me to become more mustachian and not end up like you. 

OH, and mom, stop calling dad a "financial genius."  He's not, he's an idiot.  How you can't see this is beyond me.
There are no impossible obstacles, there are only stronger and weaker wills. (Jules Verne)

JetBlast

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #86 on: September 04, 2014, 04:50:58 PM »
Mom: 

Thank you for teaching me basic finance and and providing a good example of investing, saving, and being happy without going shopping all the time.  Also, thanks for passing along your patience and ability to just sit quiet and still and be happy.

Dad: 

Stop buying shit. I know you can afford it but just stop. Spending $500 on handlebars and stem for your bicycle won't make you as fast as my brother. He's 28 and you're 62.

Let Mom buy you a birthday present next year. She joked that she never has to buy you anything because you tell her what you want, then buy it for yourself a couple weeks before your birthday. 

DW and I appreciate you selling us your used ladder for our new home, even if we know the real reason you did it was so you could justify spending $250 on a new ladder for yourself.

Stop asking when I'm going to get a new car. My car now only has 95k miles on and can probably last several more years. And please don't criticize me when I replace it with a used car I pay cash for instead of a $40k SUV.  New cars aren't important to me.

Stuff won't make you happy. Stop spending on crap and go travel with mom. She really wants to and you've mentioned it too. You're both retired and travel free thanks to my job. Go see the world. That's a much better use of your money than the $1,000 you're spending on rims for your bike.

jennigens

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #87 on: February 23, 2015, 12:17:41 PM »
I just *need* to get this off my chest.

I love my parents, but they terrify me. We grew up poor. Mom had very poor health and had multiple surgeries before she was even 30. Dad is a teacher - a wonderful one that everyone adores, but he also does way too much work for free because schools don't place value on employee's extra time. Mom eventually taught as well until she retired about four years ago (medical retirement on disability she put in for because of her health problems). I fought and fought for her to keep working, as she was barely 50, but she had missed so much work over the past couple years, she couldn't face it. Dilemma now - she can work but loses disability, which isn't much but enough and steady. If her illness gets worse, then that job becomes much less plausible - and she doesn't have the best work ethic, in part because of being sick all the time.

Growing up, they were the most loving/fun parents. We never had much, but we never felt like we were missing out. My parents were hardly the types to be spendthrifts; there just wasn't enough money to be that way. In fact, I remember walking away from the cash register whenever we bought anything - the stress of spending anything was too much. For years, we rode around in a car someone from church gave us - it was painted five different colors, but it was free.

Now we are all grown and out of the house. I have made financial mistakes but am on the MMM path. I need to make more money to truly be on my way, but putting nearly half your paycheck in savings ain't bad.

But you guys? Dad's health has gotten worse, but he still has to work. If he ends up needing a heart transplant, I have no idea how you will make it. You take on embroidery projects on your home machine and work so hard to make such little money with it. It can't sustain you, but you want so much to contribute to my and sister's wedding fund and proudly told me you had saved $300 for it last week. Neither of us will EVER take that money and want you to put it in savings.

But you are in this position because you got used to being poor and have never left that mindset. You no longer have three kids at home and haven't in ages. I'm 33. Brother is 31. Sis is 28. We've been out roughly 10 years. Yet your financial position isn't better. Your friends all have husbands who worked at high-income, blue collar jobs. You don't, but you hang out with them and feel you must keep up with the joneses, hosting monthly birthday parties and buying gift after gift for these people who don't need anything. You host parties and go all out - even if you feel you aren't spending much. You bring in such little money, and Dad says nothing. You buy here and there because you feel you "deserve" it after living a life of hardship. That isn't how it works. When we go places together, you want to buy me or sis something. We tell you no because you have no money. We aren't trying to be rude, but your insistence at affording things you can't kills all of us. All three of us worry about having to take care of you because you spend mindlessly. Last week you went to lunch twice in a town 20 minutes away. You can't afford that!

And Dad. You aren't paying attention to what you spend daily. Mom told me she gives you several hundred dollars EACH WEEK for gas and such. Where is that money going? You are diabetic and have a heart condition. You should not eat out ever. She makes you lunches. Eat them. Are you gambling? What are you doing with that money? You are such a good man, but I don't trust you on this, and I hate it.

Together you have never communicated well about any of this. If YOU don't know where your money is going, no one will.

When MawMaw died, I gave up months of my life to help get the house in order, to organize the estate sale, to get the bills in order, to itemize what needed to be paid, what you needed to be paid out of bills, etc. Your attorney that you hired to do this (because HE WAS A FRIEND) should have done this last part but did not. You still paid him way too much money, but you felt you needed to help him because he isn't in good health. No! You need to help yourself. You are in horrible financial health. You must come first. That inheritance amounted to about $10,000. Have you invested this? Have you spent this? I don't know. It is a continual source of stress for me.

All I really want is for my parents to, at one point in their lives, not have to worry about money on a daily basis. This weekend, after volunteering at the local food bank, I asked if they wanted to go to Dunkin Donuts, a rare treat. They said they were tight on money and couldn't. I've been so sad ever since. At this point, I don't know that it will ever happen, and it devastates and depresses me.

infogoon

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #88 on: February 23, 2015, 01:35:10 PM »
To my Aunt-in-law: Stop talking shit about the women who use the food pantry in your neighborhood. You're a high school graduate (barely) who was lucky enough to be born during an era when that could get you a job with a pension and gold-plated health care for the rest of your life. If you'd been born thirty years later, you'd be working at Walmart and standing in that same line.

EfficientN

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #89 on: February 23, 2015, 01:43:13 PM »
"You could have stopped working years ago." Given how exhausted my parents are with working, I think they're slowly realizing how much they regret the lack of forethought. They're frankly fine all things considered, but they could already be retired with having only cut the crap that doesn't actually make them happy.

nazar

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #90 on: February 23, 2015, 05:32:54 PM »
Dad:  No one needs 4 cars, even if you did by them all used with cash.   Make sure your new wife doesn't outspend your budget.  And lastly, I don't expect an inheritance, so enjoy your retirement and don't go without because you want to leave a legacy. 



kendallf

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #91 on: February 23, 2015, 08:47:03 PM »
I have just read most of the replies in this thread, and they simultaneously touch, amuse, and terrify me.  What a group therapy dump!  It seems that we never outgrow family issues. 

It's a good thing we're all so smart, raised by idiots and wolves as we apparently were...   :-)
“In the absence of clearly-defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it.”
― Robert A. Heinlein

zephyr911

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #92 on: February 24, 2015, 07:54:16 AM »
Dear Mom,

I'll probably never say any of this in real life, because I feel so bad for all the awful shit you've been through, but you're lost in a dreamland and I fear someday, maybe soon, I'll have to choose between my own financial freedom and saving you from poverty. You just hit SS age and we had to help you through that final month, because you have no assets and no reliable income - but you cling to your insanely high-cost city, couch-surfing and house-sitting, relishing the cultural diversity and dreaming of a full-time ministry job.

I'm glad you enjoyed your three-year seminary adventure in your early sixties, and I hope you find work that you love as a result, but dammit, you're homeless! Empty the rest of your storage units and settle for some side work while you hunt for The One! I hated my government job for years but I sucked it up and invested so I could create options. Part of the reason was for you - I don't know who will catch you if you ever really fall hard. I hope I can, but there are limits, and I can't see giving up all my dreams because you chased yours without buckling down and building your own support base first.

We don't regret the times we've helped you, because we love you, but I worry about you ending up in dire straights again if you don't take the reins. You'll be 70 soon, your health is fading, and you don't have a strategy or a plan... just faith that it'll all magically work out. What if it doesn't?

You say your dad died broke because he could never make enough money to be satisfied. He made millions, but he always bet the farm on some wild scheme and lost. Your failing is the opposite - you never seem money-driven, and you're betting all your time and effort on doing things for the right reasons and having it all work out. But again... what if? What then? Have you ever considered Plan B?

My little Southern town isn't exciting or sexy compared to yours, but I saw an opportunity here to give myself and our family the material support base we've never had. I stayed, I made it work, and if you ever run out of options, we'll have a place for you - maybe even your own house if I succeed. Just try not to hit that point too soon. :(
I am not a cog. I am an organizational lubricant.

Lia-Aimee

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #93 on: February 24, 2015, 05:43:11 PM »
Mum - thank you for letting me grow up thinking that we were poor, when in reality we just had less than your affluent parents. That made me into a cash-hoarder long before MMM. But in reality, the only reason we lived month-to-month is that you can't stop being a princess.
You're an attractive woman now you looked like a swimsuit model in your 20's. You also like luxury and dislike work. Cool beans. But as a self-defined gold digger myself, I'll give you a tip: a) you have to marry rich, not just comfortable, if you like spending money as much as you do. You can't marry someone earning 70k and expect to maintain the lifestyle that your multimillionnaire daddy could provide. You are not automatically entitled to an acreage and a 5000+ square foot house (for 4 people - 2 now, and you rarely entertain.) It's not something to be proud of to say you never paid a bill in your life, even the few times in your life when you did work. You used to relentlessly complain about your mortgage, but those Frye boots and that crystal ware you bought in your 20's, grand piano in your 40's, and that natural health contraption that looks like a coffin (seriously, I don't know what it is) in your 60's...well, that money could have been put to better use.
Also, if you want to be the stay-at-home spouse and later parent, that means you actually have to take care of the house...whether or not it's fun. You sewed me some badass party dresses and made me some artistic birthday cakes, but basic dinners still need to be cooked and the kitchen floor still needs to be swept.
Oh and stop using instances of previous financial help (all when we were under 18, none of it was money you earned) to manipulate me and my sister. Because of you I have a really hard time accepting gifts or favours of any kind.
OH and stop critiquing what I do with my money, especially when it involves me spending it on sister. Just because you don't like your siblings doesn't mean I can't really love mine. Frankly I dgaf if she's using me.
OH OH and stop telling me that I should be married by now because "I'm too pretty to work," it's just awkward.

Dad - I love you, please grow a pair and stand up to your wife. Just because you grew up with the dinosaurs doesn't mean that women can't contribute to the household at all, particularly when there are no children/grown children. Especially since you've always done more than 50% of the housework. Or start calling the shots about the money you earn, as well as other things YOU want to do in YOUR life; it can be as simple as watching football instead of reality TV.
OH and stop asking me if I have money every time I visit, I know it's hard to understand bit women actually have jobs and I've managed to feed myself for the past 9 years.

KD

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #94 on: February 24, 2015, 05:58:40 PM »
Telling me to go ahead and get a new car loan when I talk about how much I like my paid for vehicles..."Go ahead, everyone has a car payment."  N.o.t. interested. 

Really, doesn't that go against everything you ever tried to stop me from doing just because 'Everyone' was doing it??????

"Would you jump off a cliff if EVERYONE else was doing it?"

"Would I flush my head down the toilet just because EVERYONE else was doing it?"

 
“Economy is a poor man’s revenue; extravagance a rich man’s ruin.” -Lydia Maria Francis Child, The American Frugal Housewife: Dedicated to Those Who Are Not Ashamed of Economy

"The taste of the bait ain't worth the pain of the hook."-Porter Freeman

okonumiyaki

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #95 on: February 24, 2015, 06:39:15 PM »
My parents were/ are more MMM than I am, many of my traits do come from them though.

They kept a 1983 car (bought in 1984 at auction) until it finally died in 2002
Auctiosn were a hobby.  Would (for example) buy 25kg sacks of potatoes & onions and store all winter)
They retired early, with a DIY pension of laddered indexed linked bonds and investment trusts (closed end funds)
Spent money on good, healthy food and wine (weren't frugal on things they liked)
Spent money on interesting holidays (but using almost free airline tickets, as I was working for an airline)
Kitchen garden for home grown food.
Retired to a small town that had everything in walking distance to their house.


They retired on c. 750,000 USD of assets.  When my father died, they were worth at least double.  She did the probate & estate herself.  Funeral was cheapest possible, but money spent on good food & drink for the guests. 
The house is now too much house for my mother, but as the location is so perfect, and she doesn't need to free up money, why sell up?

Adventine

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #96 on: February 25, 2015, 01:51:53 AM »
okonumiyaki, your parents are awesome, and I wish my own were half as great as yours, but you're posting in the wrong thread. Feel free to start your own about Mustachian parents!

iowajes

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #97 on: February 25, 2015, 07:54:18 AM »

Done properly, a PhD is free. I stupidly paid for some lifestyle inflation when I was in grad school, but the degree itself? I got paid a pitiful pittance to get that. Any school that won't pay you to go to grad school is not a school  you want to be a graduate student at.

This depends on the PhD. There are many fields where assistanceships are rare.  Plus, the poster was talking about the opportunity cost, not just the actual cost. 

My husband has a PhD that he was paid to get by the school- his tuition was paid and he recieved a stipend as a research assistant, we lived modestly, and I worked full time, so we were able to increase our savings while he was doing it.  However, if he had worked a full time job instead of getting a PhD, we would have had a lot more.  We now make about the same amount of money, and I don't have a PhD- so the cost of getting his PhD was actually high, he had to give up 5 years of high earnings and accept meager earnings during that time instead.

But there are other reasons to have a PhD than money, so for us it was worth it.

MrsSmitty

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #98 on: February 25, 2015, 08:20:17 AM »
My parents are very frugal for the most part. I do wish I had a time machine though to go yell at my Dad. 10 years ago he was laid off. He didn't really talk to my mom about retiring or what that would mean for their futures. He just never bothered to find another job. As a result my mom has been supporting them on her (much smaller) salary. She's been stressed about money and worried about their retirements for 10 years. Her solution is to keep working forever. And she's been grumpy that Dad has all this free time and she has to work. For 10 years! Dad! Get another job! You're too young and don't have enough saved yet! Think of your wife for once and keep working for just a few more years so you can both retire comfortably. Ugh.

ash7962

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Re: What you wish you could tell your very unmustachian parents
« Reply #99 on: February 25, 2015, 09:07:51 AM »
I've really enjoyed reading the responses in here, and it makes me happy to see so many people reaching beyond what their parents did. 

My parents are kinda frugal, but not exactly Mustachian.  I don't have anything really heart felt to tell them.. Just that I'm kinda nervous my dad will trade away their nest egg in the options market.  I'm not sure if my Dad is actually good or has been lucky enough to make some money in the options market, but I don't think Wave Theory is a good basis for a trading strategy.  The only reason I don't say anything is because its his hobby that he truly seems to love, and he tells me he's making money.  As far as I know he doesn't risk their entire savings either.  As for my mom, she works a job she hates and I don't think she has to.  They have an almost paid off house that is too big and too expensive (in a high COL area), and I think if they sold it they'd have more than enough money for retirement even after buying a smaller house in a lower COL area.  They even have a lot of savings on top of the house.  My mom has all these dreams and I think she uses work as an excuse to avoid actually trying to make them happen.  She's so scared of failing or making a bad decisions.  I want to scream at her to be more confident in herself and to go for it!  She has OMY syndrome at a job that pays something like 35k/yr.  It makes me sad to see her wasting her life on a crappy job when she's in her 50's and could retire by making a few adjustments to her life.  No more eating out all the time (which is even apart of her dream! she wants to grow her own food!), and no going shopping just for fun.  Oh and that reminds me, your house feels small and unorganized because you have too much stuff!!  Urgh she says she loves tiny houses but she never wants to get rid of their stuff.  She says she wants all these things but never is willing to take steps to achieving her desires.  The only thing she does is take classes in her dream field, which I hope will give her the confidence to actually take steps towards her goals.  I worry that taking classes is a way for her to feel like shes working towards it without actually having to make any changes, and when it comes time to actually DO something she will be frozen in fear.  Parents, your expenses would be so low if you stopped buying the crap you don't need, and stopped eating out which would happen if Mom quit her job.  It pains me to know you could both be happy but don't make the necessary changes to achieve what you say you want.  It also pains me because I know I do the same things, but at least I'm working on it and I have a plan. 

Oh, PS mom, you are totally behind the green movement but you drive to work when its about a 15 minute walk... even in summer.