Author Topic: Relatives who just don't get it  (Read 1743710 times)

dmac680chi

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5250 on: March 20, 2019, 08:23:12 PM »
Do they have 500k?

Sort of, it would be at least a third of not more of their wealth. Honestly I think it’ll be expected that their kids (my mom and her two siblings) to pitch in as well. I’m all about ensuring your parents are taken care of but not at the expense of creating further financial hardship.


That would be a "Hell no!" from me.   You have $300k?  Get a cheap apartment.  Have a nice day.   Don't blow the rest of your money because we're not going to bail you out simply because you choose to be stupid.
Well, if $500k is a third of their wealth, then they have $1.5M, and they can afford the $800k, no?  Unless I missed something.

Also I haven’t heard the entire story so I’m sure there’s more to it


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KathrinS

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5251 on: March 22, 2019, 08:18:47 AM »
My uncle has a tractor. Is he a farmer? No, but about once a year, it snows a lot and he has to plow the snow. With his tractor.

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.

The daughter (20) has a boyfriend who regularly orders things from her phone and accounts, but then doesn't pay for them. Her online shopping accounts have repeatedly been blocked because of this, and my uncle's family is constantly paying off the boyfriend's debt. In addition, she has an online shopping addiction, with new things being delivered every week for the last 4-5 years.

The whole family is just such a disaster, it's actually quite sad.

SwordGuy

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5252 on: March 22, 2019, 09:22:44 AM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is classic wife beater behavior.   He just doesn't have a wife to beat, yet.

That boy needs therapy before he harms someone and ends up in prison.  Won't be fun to do, and most certainly won't be appreciated, but someone needs to tell him and his parents that he needs help.

Sugaree

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5253 on: March 22, 2019, 10:05:31 AM »
In today's episode of The Saga of BIL/SIL: I was previously under the impression that the house they were living in was something that her family had let them use. As it turns out, MIL/FIL have been paying their $1200/month rent every month (it's cheaper than what they were paying when they lived in Europe, I guess). FIL found a job that would be a perfect fit for BIL. And it's at a university where FIL could pull some strings to get him hired. And it's like a 20 minute drive from the farmhouse, which FIL had generously offered to give them. So BIL hemmed and hawwed about it for awhile.  Yesterday FIL asked him if he'd applied either there or to the other school where FIL had gotten his PhD from. BIL told him that he has decided not to apply to any southern universities. That they are "settled" there and don't want to move the boys (the boys are 5 and 3 and the girls are 1). FIL is livid and ready to cut them off. Let them see how "settled" they are when they're on their own. I don't think MIL will let that happen, moreso for the kids sake than anything else, but BIL is the golden child.


Oh....and SIL has decided to "take a break" for awhile from sending out resumes...

RetiredAt63

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5254 on: March 22, 2019, 11:07:12 AM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is classic wife beater behavior.   He just doesn't have a wife to beat, yet.

That boy needs therapy before he harms someone and ends up in prison.  Won't be fun to do, and most certainly won't be appreciated, but someone needs to tell him and his parents that he needs help.

The daughter's behaviour doesn't sound much healthier:
"The daughter (20) has a boyfriend who regularly orders things from her phone and accounts, but then doesn't pay for them. Her online shopping accounts have repeatedly been blocked because of this, and my uncle's family is constantly paying off the boyfriend's debt. In addition, she has an online shopping addiction, with new things being delivered every week for the last 4-5 years.

Her boyfriend is taking financial advantage of her and her family, and her own shopping is out of control.  At 20!

KathrinS

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5255 on: March 23, 2019, 03:30:09 PM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is classic wife beater behavior.   He just doesn't have a wife to beat, yet.

That boy needs therapy before he harms someone and ends up in prison.  Won't be fun to do, and most certainly won't be appreciated, but someone needs to tell him and his parents that he needs help.

The daughter's behaviour doesn't sound much healthier:
"The daughter (20) has a boyfriend who regularly orders things from her phone and accounts, but then doesn't pay for them. Her online shopping accounts have repeatedly been blocked because of this, and my uncle's family is constantly paying off the boyfriend's debt. In addition, she has an online shopping addiction, with new things being delivered every week for the last 4-5 years.

Her boyfriend is taking financial advantage of her and her family, and her own shopping is out of control.  At 20!

I know, the whole family is a huge mess. Neither of the kids have ever had a full time job yet, or gone to university, and they just spend spend spend, without regard for others, for the environment, or for their own health. I think the son saw this stick-bashing behaviour on TV from some of the professional hockey stars, and is trying to emulate them. While he is just rude and ignorant, the girl seems to have serious mental health and self image issues. Hence this crazy spending and dependency on her boyfriend.

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5256 on: March 24, 2019, 08:03:03 AM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5257 on: March 24, 2019, 08:05:49 AM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

Fi(re) on the Farm

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5258 on: March 24, 2019, 04:00:35 PM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

My sister is always harping on us about resale - what colors we paint our walls, what bathroom fixtures we bought when we redid our bathroom. She's broke, lives in a cheap apartment and has huge debt but thinks that the tub surround we bought was cheap and we should have spent more money.  She used to work in a high end home improvement store and that was their mantra. Every time she does this I want to scream. We're not planning on selling until we retire in 4 years and by that point something else will be in fashion.

SwordGuy

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5259 on: March 24, 2019, 05:29:27 PM »

My sister is always harping on us about resale - what colors we paint our walls, what bathroom fixtures we bought when we redid our bathroom. She's broke, lives in a cheap apartment and has huge debt but thinks that the tub surround we bought was cheap and we should have spent more money.  She used to work in a high end home improvement store and that was their mantra. Every time she does this I want to scream. We're not planning on selling until we retire in 4 years and by that point something else will be in fashion.

If you ever get enough tired of it, and polite forms of getting her to stop have repeatedly failed, just calmly say, "I do not take financial advice from people who are not only broke, but are hugely in debt, unless that advice is, 'Do not make the mistakes I made.'   This is the last time I want to hear that particular type of advice from you."

I suspect that will do the trick.   For bonus points, you may not have to talk to her for quite some time.

Just Joe

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5260 on: March 24, 2019, 06:13:17 PM »
Or simply - "we bought what we could afford" and leave it at that. No problem letting people around you think you are poor.

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5261 on: March 24, 2019, 10:18:28 PM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

My sister is always harping on us about resale - what colors we paint our walls, what bathroom fixtures we bought when we redid our bathroom. She's broke, lives in a cheap apartment and has huge debt but thinks that the tub surround we bought was cheap and we should have spent more money.  She used to work in a high end home improvement store and that was their mantra. Every time she does this I want to scream. We're not planning on selling until we retire in 4 years and by that point something else will be in fashion.

My guess is that your sister needs some validation. She's not doing too well, and she's trying to offer what she sees as being her area of expertise. You could ask her opinion on some hypothetical things just to make her feel good - what do you think of this bathroom we saw online type of thing.

Jouer

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5262 on: March 25, 2019, 08:30:36 AM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

Goldielocks

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5263 on: March 25, 2019, 09:54:29 AM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

My sister is always harping on us about resale - what colors we paint our walls, what bathroom fixtures we bought when we redid our bathroom. She's broke, lives in a cheap apartment and has huge debt but thinks that the tub surround we bought was cheap and we should have spent more money.  She used to work in a high end home improvement store and that was their mantra. Every time she does this I want to scream. We're not planning on selling until we retire in 4 years and by that point something else will be in fashion.
FIL gave his opinion about the fact we were re-installing the older metal kitchen sink when we did a kitchen reno.... 'Why are you using that sink.. etc".
What stopped him from more comments was a simple "Because I like it".

Wow.  Simple answers work.

KathrinS

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5264 on: March 25, 2019, 03:34:36 PM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

He keeps moving to new teams because the coaches tell him he should just play recreationally, he's not good enough to go pro. The family consensus: 'Poor boy! Those horrible coaches, they just don't like him. Why can't we find a decent coach?' Then they move to a new team, paying yet another membership fee.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5265 on: March 25, 2019, 06:15:57 PM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

He keeps moving to new teams because the coaches tell him he should just play recreationally, he's not good enough to go pro. The family consensus: 'Poor boy! Those horrible coaches, they just don't like him. Why can't we find a decent coach?' Then they move to a new team, paying yet another membership fee.

Another case of not recognizing the common denominator.
Spoiler: show
In this case, his lack of pro level hockey skills.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5266 on: March 25, 2019, 08:49:20 PM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

He keeps moving to new teams because the coaches tell him he should just play recreationally, he's not good enough to go pro. The family consensus: 'Poor boy! Those horrible coaches, they just don't like him. Why can't we find a decent coach?' Then they move to a new team, paying yet another membership fee.

Another case of not recognizing the common denominator.
Spoiler: show
In this case, his lack of pro level hockey skills.

This reminds me of an old saying: "If you met a guy today who's a jerk, he's a jerk.  If everyone you met today was a jerk, you're the jerk." 

kelvin

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5267 on: March 27, 2019, 12:03:39 PM »
Dad was visiting this week.

"You work a union job now, that means you're doing just fine." Translation: Go ahead and live paycheck to paycheck, because you've got a pension.

True, I have a sweet job with a great pension, assuming I don't f@#$ it up. I think I'll keep my emergency fund and stay living below my means, thanks.

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5268 on: March 27, 2019, 03:23:30 PM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

Same relative today: i can help you out applying for the mortgage! I'm sure you'd get it. (that's true, they work in that industry and could get us a good deal). I think I was clear this time that were are not interested in extending, with or without a mortgage.

Instead I tried to change the topic by excitingly telling them all about the plans we have for the garden that we're working now and how we are going to have a very lovely garden soon and all the ways we're saving money while still having the same end result and how I can't wait to sit in my garden every day this summer. Relative: do you know you can get a mortgage for that, too?

Cassie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5269 on: March 27, 2019, 06:20:55 PM »
I find your relative rude. Itís like going into someoneís house and saying your kitchen is ugly and you need to remodel it. Who even does that?

ysette9

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5270 on: March 27, 2019, 09:26:50 PM »
I’d like to know more about getting a mortgage for a garden.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5271 on: March 28, 2019, 12:54:11 AM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

Same relative today: i can help you out applying for the mortgage! I'm sure you'd get it. (that's true, they work in that industry and could get us a good deal). I think I was clear this time that were are not interested in extending, with or without a mortgage.

Instead I tried to change the topic by excitingly telling them all about the plans we have for the garden that we're working now and how we are going to have a very lovely garden soon and all the ways we're saving money while still having the same end result and how I can't wait to sit in my garden every day this summer. Relative: do you know you can get a mortgage for that, too?

Maybe your relative gets a bonus every time he "helps" someone to sign on a new mortgage.
Just ignore him or her and let it be the thing they feel the need for telling you each time (hun stokpaardje).

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5272 on: March 28, 2019, 05:15:44 AM »
Relative wants us to improve our house and thinks we're poor. They know our mortgage is likely much lower than the value of the house, so what is their great advice to your young family members? Time to borrow some more money to extend the house! Why not build a large extension with a massive kitchen? We don't particularly need the space, the house is big enough. "But the value of your home will increase!!" .

We are not actually poor, but they don't know that. If we were, this would be the worst advice ever.

It's still the worst advice ever. Barring routine maintenance such as cleaning or replacing worn-out items, the only time you need to worry about improving the value of a house is if you're selling it. The new owner is most likely going to paint over the fugly white walls and rip out the real-estate-beige carpet.

Same relative today: i can help you out applying for the mortgage! I'm sure you'd get it. (that's true, they work in that industry and could get us a good deal). I think I was clear this time that were are not interested in extending, with or without a mortgage.

Instead I tried to change the topic by excitingly telling them all about the plans we have for the garden that we're working now and how we are going to have a very lovely garden soon and all the ways we're saving money while still having the same end result and how I can't wait to sit in my garden every day this summer. Relative: do you know you can get a mortgage for that, too?

Maybe your relative gets a bonus every time he "helps" someone to sign on a new mortgage.
Just ignore him or her and let it be the thing they feel the need for telling you each time (hun stokpaardje).

The bonus thing is illegal now in here. They offered to help us apply for an execution only mortgage and look up in the tables how much we'd be able to borrow. It's not unusual to take out an extra mortgage for kitchen, bathroom or garden renovations. I know for sure they are honest, but the whole idea that someone doesn't want to take on all the mortgage the bank says they can afford is just not something they can wrap their head around. The bank says you can afford it! You'd have a fancy house instead of a basic, good enough house! Why wouldn't you?

@Cassie our family members do and not just that person. We hear it a lot especially from the older generation. In our country, it's considered very important that your home looks picture perfect. Most homes are small in this country, the cars are small, no one cares about designer clothes but a perfect house is a must have. Even if you are poor - then you just get your stuff from cheaper stores. Flashy/expensive interiors are frowned upon, but your home has tot be absolutely spotless and decorated in a certain way. Dutch people are forthright to a fault. When we moved in our neighbour told us that we have the wrong curtains, as we are the only home in the street that don't have curtains in a particular style.

eliza

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5273 on: March 28, 2019, 06:16:12 AM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

He keeps moving to new teams because the coaches tell him he should just play recreationally, he's not good enough to go pro. The family consensus: 'Poor boy! Those horrible coaches, they just don't like him. Why can't we find a decent coach?' Then they move to a new team, paying yet another membership fee.

Oh, man.  That's just sad.  There was a family in my neighborhood growing up who were the same way - their son was going to be an NHL superstar! The delusion lasted well past the point of there being any hope - like there is a major junior team in town - there's a very obvious skill differential between those kids and your kid.  When you get to the point that you are aging out of  junior and you've never managed to crack a Junior A roster, it's time to accept that your deep and abiding love for hockey can always remain but you need to find another way to earn your living.  The sheer amount of money wasted was one thing, but even worse was when they finally accepted that the hockey thing was never going to pan out (kid was in his mid 20's), he was just totally lost.  No back up plan.  No ambition to do anything else.  He kind of just lingered around in a state of disbelief not really doing anything for several years.  I've long since lost touch with the family - but I hope he figured his shit out and managed to get his life back together.

NorthernMonkey

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5274 on: March 28, 2019, 08:23:24 AM »
My nephew (14) plays for a pro soccer team here in england, in the u15 team (college sport isnt a thing here, the pro teams are responsible for growing (or buying talent). He gets ALL of his gear for free (like a shit-ton of it, 5 shirts so you always play in a clean shirt if you're in a weekend long tournament)

merula

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5275 on: March 28, 2019, 11:31:59 AM »
My nephew (14) plays for a pro soccer team here in england, in the u15 team (college sport isnt a thing here, the pro teams are responsible for growing (or buying talent). He gets ALL of his gear for free (like a shit-ton of it, 5 shirts so you always play in a clean shirt if you're in a weekend long tournament)

It's the same here. If you're "could go pro" good and over 13, you can get your gear for free. Junior hockey teams, higher level Little League teams for baseball, scholarships to private high schools, etc.

It's kinda like MLMs. Good businesses give their salespeople sales samples and inventory. Bad businesses make them buy it themselves.

Cassie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5276 on: March 28, 2019, 11:48:37 AM »
Wow Imma I had no idea about the Dutch culture. When we were in Italy apartments and condos were small so people expressed their wealth through their clothes, etc.  We are older so our house is nice but when we were young we bought a old house that needed lots of work. We fixed it as we had the money.

KathrinS

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5277 on: March 28, 2019, 04:03:34 PM »

His son (18) wants to be an ice hockey player, so obviously he needs all of the best, professional gear.  He needs new, expensive hockey sticks (over $100) every few weeks because when he loses, he smashes them on the ground in rage.


This is besides the point but if he's still buying his own sticks at 18 (as opposed to getting them from a team), he isn't going to be a hockey player.

He keeps moving to new teams because the coaches tell him he should just play recreationally, he's not good enough to go pro. The family consensus: 'Poor boy! Those horrible coaches, they just don't like him. Why can't we find a decent coach?' Then they move to a new team, paying yet another membership fee.

Oh, man.  That's just sad.  There was a family in my neighborhood growing up who were the same way - their son was going to be an NHL superstar! The delusion lasted well past the point of there being any hope - like there is a major junior team in town - there's a very obvious skill differential between those kids and your kid.  When you get to the point that you are aging out of  junior and you've never managed to crack a Junior A roster, it's time to accept that your deep and abiding love for hockey can always remain but you need to find another way to earn your living.  The sheer amount of money wasted was one thing, but even worse was when they finally accepted that the hockey thing was never going to pan out (kid was in his mid 20's), he was just totally lost.  No back up plan.  No ambition to do anything else.  He kind of just lingered around in a state of disbelief not really doing anything for several years.  I've long since lost touch with the family - but I hope he figured his shit out and managed to get his life back together.

This strikes a chord because I was very into ballet for a long time, but had started at 16 so it was a real challenge to get to a good level. I held onto my dream for a long time and my family spent a lot of money on my training. (Luckily, they also made me go to university at the same time!) I did have potential, and there were teachers who were very encouraging, but by the time I was 22/23, I realised that I'd have to spend another 2 or so years in training, not making any money. So, I changed tracks and am now (at 25) working full time. I'm the first born child of our generation in my family - including all of my cousins - so they sometimes make statements like 'Kathrin also got to live her dream, why shouldn't he?' Let's just hope he also realises at some point that he'll have to earn a living. Or maybe not, and he'll end up living off his dad forever ...

UncleX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5278 on: March 29, 2019, 04:41:41 AM »
@Cassie In our country, it's considered very important that your home looks picture perfect. Most homes are small in this country, the cars are small, no one cares about designer clothes but a perfect house is a must have. Even if you are poor - then you just get your stuff from cheaper stores. Flashy/expensive interiors are frowned upon, but your home has tot be absolutely spotless and decorated in a certain way. Dutch people are forthright to a fault. When we moved in our neighbour told us that we have the wrong curtains, as we are the only home in the street that don't have curtains in a particular style.
Wow Imma I had no idea about the Dutch culture. When we were in Italy apartments and condos were small so people expressed their wealth through their clothes, etc.  We are older so our house is nice but when we were young we bought a old house that needed lots of work. We fixed it as we had the money.
I am Dutch and live in the Netherlands too. Iím not offended or anything, but I feel there is a bit (too much) of generalizing going on here. What @Imma is describing is certainly not what I consider Dutch culture in general.

There are a lot of differences between urban areas like de Randstad and more rural areas like de Achterhoek, the north-east and the south and I am actually generalizing myself considering those differences. But there are loads of huge houses and cars in the Netherlands and as long as I keep my house and car in front of it maintained to a certain level, I don't think anybody really cares. Family wants me to be happy and neighbors want to keep our neighborhood nice, thatís it.

Where I live people are not as straightforward as the stereotypical Dutchman is supposed to be. Sure there would be talk about my ugly curtains, if I had any, but I wouldnít be included in that conversation.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 05:26:17 AM by UncleX »

Hula Hoop

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5279 on: March 29, 2019, 05:16:19 AM »
Wow Imma I had no idea about the Dutch culture. When we were in Italy apartments and condos were small so people expressed their wealth through their clothes, etc.  We are older so our house is nice but when we were young we bought a old house that needed lots of work. We fixed it as we had the money.

This is kind of a stereotypical generalization about Italy too.  I know that Italians are famous for the "bella figura" but in the countryside lots of wealthier people have huge houses.  And my Italian friends have old cars, old phones and non-flashy clothes.
 Even here in the city, people often put a lot of money into renovating their homes.  Not everyone has a huge apartment as not everyone is wealthy but they are often house proud.  Kind of like where i come from in the US (NYC).

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5280 on: March 30, 2019, 04:09:00 AM »
@Cassie In our country, it's considered very important that your home looks picture perfect. Most homes are small in this country, the cars are small, no one cares about designer clothes but a perfect house is a must have. Even if you are poor - then you just get your stuff from cheaper stores. Flashy/expensive interiors are frowned upon, but your home has tot be absolutely spotless and decorated in a certain way. Dutch people are forthright to a fault. When we moved in our neighbour told us that we have the wrong curtains, as we are the only home in the street that don't have curtains in a particular style.
Wow Imma I had no idea about the Dutch culture. When we were in Italy apartments and condos were small so people expressed their wealth through their clothes, etc.  We are older so our house is nice but when we were young we bought a old house that needed lots of work. We fixed it as we had the money.
I am Dutch and live in the Netherlands too. Iím not offended or anything, but I feel there is a bit (too much) of generalizing going on here. What @Imma is describing is certainly not what I consider Dutch culture in general.

There are a lot of differences between urban areas like de Randstad and more rural areas like de Achterhoek, the north-east and the south and I am actually generalizing myself considering those differences. But there are loads of huge houses and cars in the Netherlands and as long as I keep my house and car in front of it maintained to a certain level, I don't think anybody really cares. Family wants me to be happy and neighbors want to keep our neighborhood nice, thatís it.

Where I live people are not as straightforward as the stereotypical Dutchman is supposed to be. Sure there would be talk about my ugly curtains, if I had any, but I wouldnít be included in that conversation.

Obviously there are regional differences in all countries, not just NL. Dutch directness varies - thankfully we're not all as direct as people in Amsterdam or Rotterdam (yes, that's a generalisation, of course not every single person from those cities is extremely direct but the social norm is to be very direct). I'm from the rural south myself and now in a city in the south.

No, not every single person in NL has a small house, especially in rural areas homes tend to be a bit bigger, but the vast majority of people live in apartments, terraced or semi-detached homes on fairly small plots. Not just in the cities, in rural areas like the north many people also live in houses like that. Same goes for cars: sure, lots of people have big fancy cars but the most common cars on the road are models like the VW Golf and Polo.

What you say about "maintaining your house and car up to a certain level" is exactly what I mean. If you drive through the NL from north to south you will see a uniformness that you won't see in a lot of other countries, because there is a very strong social pressure about what a house, car, garden etc should look like. The norms may very from street to street or town to town but they are generally pretty strict. If you don't know what I mean, drive to Belgium and compare. Books from travellers from centuries ago already refer to the uniformness and cleanliness. You can even see it in the landscape.

In your area it might not be the norm for your neighbours to inform you about the curtains issue, but the fact people are taking about the colour of your curtains is in itself insane.

Where I'm from this social pressure also extends to the indoors of a home. My neighbours might gossip a bit about my weird interior but don't actually care that much about it as long as I don't paint my front door in another colour, but my family definitely does care. For example, my mother would never allow any family gatherings in my house because the extended family would see what my house looks like and she'd be ashamed. I have heard the same thing from other friends so it's not just my family being weird. My in-laws are like that too. It might be a southern / rural thing to feel that shame though.

UncleX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5281 on: March 30, 2019, 05:48:32 AM »
Obviously there are regional differences in all countries, not just NL. Dutch directness varies - thankfully we're not all as direct as people in Amsterdam or Rotterdam (yes, that's a generalisation, of course not every single person from those cities is extremely direct but the social norm is to be very direct). I'm from the rural south myself and now in a city in the south.

No, not every single person in NL has a small house, especially in rural areas homes tend to be a bit bigger, but the vast majority of people live in apartments, terraced or semi-detached homes on fairly small plots. Not just in the cities, in rural areas like the north many people also live in houses like that. Same goes for cars: sure, lots of people have big fancy cars but the most common cars on the road are models like the VW Golf and Polo.

What you say about "maintaining your house and car up to a certain level" is exactly what I mean. If you drive through the NL from north to south you will see a uniformness that you won't see in a lot of other countries, because there is a very strong social pressure about what a house, car, garden etc should look like. The norms may very from street to street or town to town but they are generally pretty strict. If you don't know what I mean, drive to Belgium and compare. Books from travellers from centuries ago already refer to the uniformness and cleanliness. You can even see it in the landscape.

In your area it might not be the norm for your neighbours to inform you about the curtains issue, but the fact people are taking about the colour of your curtains is in itself insane.

Where I'm from this social pressure also extends to the indoors of a home. My neighbours might gossip a bit about my weird interior but don't actually care that much about it as long as I don't paint my front door in another colour, but my family definitely does care. For example, my mother would never allow any family gatherings in my house because the extended family would see what my house looks like and she'd be ashamed. I have heard the same thing from other friends so it's not just my family being weird. My in-laws are like that too. It might be a southern / rural thing to feel that shame though.
I donít really have an issue with generalisation, itís just what people do and often based on facts. I agree with most of what you are saying, especially about the uniformness of how houses are built and streets look. When you pass the German or Belgian border you immediately notice a change in landscape and housing. Usually not better or worse, just different in my opinion (there are exceptions).

A certain level of maintenance to me means that you donít make a scrapyard out of your driveway, you mow your lawn once in a while and keep your house from falling apart. I am from the rural south too and I donít really experience this pressure you mention. Maybe Iím just lucky to have non-intrusive relatives. Itís a bit sad that your mother would be ashamed of your choices that make you happy. She should be happy and proud.

Just to be clear @Imma, I donít want to argue with you, itís just conversation about our slightly different views on Dutch culture.

ysette9

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5282 on: March 30, 2019, 06:28:33 AM »
This is fascinating to listen to the two of you talk about Dutch culture. Thank you for sharing. The only time I have been to the NL was when I was a kid, and I wasn’t observing things like house uniformity at that age. :)

What do the Dutch think of Americans and our weird obsession with individualism?

gatortator

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5283 on: March 30, 2019, 07:37:12 AM »
I agree. this discussion on Dutch culture is very interesting to me, since my mom's side of the family is of Dutch descent. (my great grand parents came to the US as kids and the family stayed within the same close knit community until my mom's generation)

some of the stories about relatives now make more sense.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5284 on: March 30, 2019, 09:01:01 AM »
I also grew up in the Netherlands. What I noticed from houses is that many people who live in a street with similar houses, want it paint their wood a different color. The rest of the house is usually made of brick. But wooden elements that were delivered in brown are often painted over in another color, like white. Even if the houses stand in a row against each other and the wooden bar covers several homes. One house paints their's blue, another green and a third white. My parents hated that.

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5285 on: March 30, 2019, 10:47:23 AM »
In my street the houses are all painted according to a very intricate pattern. There are two types of houses in the street and one type all have the same paint colours, the other type have two houses in colour 1, two houses in colour 2, etc. I'm in a house of the last type. The houses were built half a century ago by the same housing association who presumably chose the paint colours, but they're all owner occupied now and have been for years and years. If I were to paint my house in the "wrong" colour I would not at all be surprised to come home one day and find that my neighbour has painted over my door :)  We have been talking about a loft conversion to create an extra bedroom but I know the neighbours would kill us.

Of course some streets have stronger social control than others. In both my hometown and current street, most residents have been around for decades. Other than the paint and the curtains some other social rules in our street are no bikes in front of the house, everyone has to have the same front yard, washing the windows and the pavement in front of your house every week, never opening your curtains completely during the day but also not keeping them completely closed. I'm afraid we break every single one of them. I try to be extra nice to my neighbours and just hope they don't hate me too much. It's not that I do it on purpose, I just lack the time. I have to say our street always looks very neat and tidy but if we ever move, we would probably consider a place with less neighbours.

My relatives aren't even that bad, a friend of mine also lives in a house her parents don't like. Her grandparents live next to her parents and are dependent on them for transport and they refused to take the grandparents when they visited because "they don't have to see this mess" (it's small but not rat-infested or something). They have also gifted her plenty of "proper" furniture for when she buys a "real" house that just sits in storage. Another set of friends got a large gift of money from their parents to buy a house with on the condition they got a big say in which house was purchased and how it was decorated. I guess moaning about a standard white kitchen (woningbouwkeuken) isn't that bad :)

I'm curious to hear about Dutch people across the Atlantic! I honestly had no idea there were close-knit Dutch communities at all. I have relatives in Canada and they all assimilated very quickly. No one speaks Dutch except the ones born here and they all changed their names to English names. I had the impression that was pretty common.

Hula Hoop

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5286 on: March 30, 2019, 11:12:46 AM »
My neighbors would hate me if I lived in the Netherlands.  I guess the reason why I was attracted to Mustachianism is that I'm pretty non-conformist to community standards. 

Here in Italy, the only thing which really pisses off the neighbors in my apartment building is people throwing their cigarette butts on the stairs, people leaving the elevator door open so that it's blocked on one floor and people leaving the front door of the building open.  It would also be taboo to have a loud party late at night as it would keep the neighbors awake but I think that's pretty normal.  For the record, our apartment building is painted pink, the one attached to ours is yellow and the one next to that is greed - no one cares. We all hang our laundry outside to dry in the sun on clothes lines stretched between windows outside. 

Cassie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5287 on: March 30, 2019, 11:26:08 AM »
Wow I cannot believe that neighbors try to micromanage each other. The first thing I do in the morning is open my curtains all the way.  I also cannot imagine being ashamed of where your kids live. Itís nobodyís business.

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5288 on: March 30, 2019, 12:31:29 PM »
The curtains thing is probably because we live close to each other. If they are all the way open people can look right into your house, but completely closed all day looks like you have something to hide. I think I'm a pretty easy neighbour. As long as you don't keep me awake at night, build a drugs lab in the attic or throw bags of thrash in the garden I don't care much.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5289 on: March 30, 2019, 12:52:36 PM »
The curtains thing is probably because we live close to each other. If they are all the way open people can look right into your house, but completely closed all day looks like you have something to hide. I think I'm a pretty easy neighbour. As long as you don't keep me awake at night, build a drugs lab in the attic or throw bags of thrash in the garden I don't care much.

Isn't that why Dutch people like "vitrage" (see through curtains) in addition to normal curtains? Those can be kept close all day while you still let in sunlight.

Hula Hoop

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5290 on: March 30, 2019, 03:35:23 PM »
The curtains thing is probably because we live close to each other. If they are all the way open people can look right into your house, but completely closed all day looks like you have something to hide.

But that's no one's business.  Personally I'd want to hide my messy house from such nosy neighbors.  Also, I don't think we've washed our windows since we moved in more than 3 years ago.  We're total slobs. 

RetiredAt63

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5291 on: March 30, 2019, 04:13:27 PM »
I'm curious to hear about Dutch people across the Atlantic! I honestly had no idea there were close-knit Dutch communities at all. I have relatives in Canada and they all assimilated very quickly. No one speaks Dutch except the ones born here and they all changed their names to English names. I had the impression that was pretty common.

The Dutch family origin people I know here still have the original spelling for last names but generally have more English (or French in Quebec) first names.  That isn't unusual, if you see someone with (for example) an Irish origin last name, the first name will also be anglicized.

OtherJen

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5292 on: March 30, 2019, 08:35:06 PM »
I'm curious to hear about Dutch people across the Atlantic! I honestly had no idea there were close-knit Dutch communities at all. I have relatives in Canada and they all assimilated very quickly. No one speaks Dutch except the ones born here and they all changed their names to English names. I had the impression that was pretty common.

The Dutch family origin people I know here still have the original spelling for last names but generally have more English (or French in Quebec) first names.  That isn't unusual, if you see someone with (for example) an Irish origin last name, the first name will also be anglicized.

My Dutch great-grandfather emigrated to rural Alberta, Canada. My great-grandmother was Scottish and English, though, so my grandfather and siblings all had English names. Our branch of the family moved to Detroit in the 1920s, where my grandfather married my US-born grandma (of Scottish and Irish descent) and the family assimilated fully. Thereís still a clan of people near Edmonton, Alberta with the same surname (distant cousins), and they still use some Dutch language. I assume thereís a sizable ethnic Dutch population there.

UncleX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5293 on: March 31, 2019, 07:35:38 AM »
In the Netherlands often a contractor or a few contractors build a whole quarter as a project and there is a lot of uniformity in these quarters then. The architect decides on everything including colours of the doors etc. (but not curtains). Often when you buy a house in these quarters you have to keep the uniformity intact to a certain level and for a certain period of time. It probably varies from case to case.

As said, personally I donít recognize what Imma describes, so maybe there are even bigger differences within the Netherlands than I realized.

iris lily

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5294 on: March 31, 2019, 07:50:16 AM »
Iíd like to know more about getting a mortgage for a garden.

It is probablynabout big landscaping proje ts and outdoor kitchens and things of that nature.

Goldielocks

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5295 on: March 31, 2019, 05:31:17 PM »
I'm curious to hear about Dutch people across the Atlantic! I honestly had no idea there were close-knit Dutch communities at all. I have relatives in Canada and they all assimilated very quickly. No one speaks Dutch except the ones born here and they all changed their names to English names. I had the impression that was pretty common.

The Dutch family origin people I know here still have the original spelling for last names but generally have more English (or French in Quebec) first names.  That isn't unusual, if you see someone with (for example) an Irish origin last name, the first name will also be anglicized.

My Dutch great-grandfather emigrated to rural Alberta, Canada. My great-grandmother was Scottish and English, though, so my grandfather and siblings all had English names. Our branch of the family moved to Detroit in the 1920s, where my grandfather married my US-born grandma (of Scottish and Irish descent) and the family assimilated fully. Thereís still a clan of people near Edmonton, Alberta with the same surname (distant cousins), and they still use some Dutch language. I assume thereís a sizable ethnic Dutch population there.

Plautdietsch isn't Dutch, and is still spoken in rural areas in the Prairies due to religious cutural communities who tie back to a Dutch minister but are not themselves, Dutch...

...and, I think, is quite different from Plattdeutsch (a version of which which my great grandmother spoke).   Pretty much everywhere in Alberta, low German as well as Scandinavian and Dutch languages were NOT spoken during WWII because to the lazy English ear, they sounded like German, which was strongly discriminated against in the west. (Amazing, given what Holland and the Netherlands went through).   And those communities in Alberta no longer speak German sounding languages.
 It (language spoken) survived in more populous German eastern Canada communities (cities like New Berlin... renamed Kitchener for similar reasons).

markbike528CBX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5296 on: March 31, 2019, 09:12:45 PM »
....snip...

 It (language spoken) survived in more populous German eastern Canada communities (cities like New Berlin... renamed Kitchener for similar reasons).

In New Berlin PA, the pronunciation tends to be New Ber'ln,but the name retained.
1815, New Berlin was the county seat, and had 7 German-language newspapers, 3 English language newspapers.

A town in Indiana, is "Pershing or New Germantown" , really, 80 years later( at the time) and it still is undecided?

Imma

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5297 on: April 01, 2019, 02:46:57 AM »
The curtains thing is probably because we live close to each other. If they are all the way open people can look right into your house, but completely closed all day looks like you have something to hide.

But that's no one's business.  Personally I'd want to hide my messy house from such nosy neighbors.  Also, I don't think we've washed our windows since we moved in more than 3 years ago.  We're total slobs.

The whole curtains issue started because we don't have those see-through curtains Linea referred to. Everyone has them but we. You are supposed to have the see through curtains (maybe a little gap between them so you can look out on the street) during the day. We just have regular curtains and they're open when I'm home and downstairs and want daylight and closed otherwise. If the neighbour is feeling awkward about looking into our house all day then maybe he should do something useful with his life instead of staring out of his own window all day.

The thread about the possible prostitute/dealer neighbour also reminded me about another neighbour, who told my partner I'd had "received several male visitors" while he was away for the weekend. He's so direct he isn't used to people trying to say something politely, so at first he didn't understand she was implying I was cheating. The lady was batshit crazy and would spread around gossip like that all the time, we haven't laughed so hard about neighbourhood gossip since she moved out. 

We were in Belgium today and we took a different route than we normally do. We were looking out of the train window trying to guess whether we were still in BE or already in NL. It takes about 5 seconds to determine that. Funny as BE has only been independent for 150 years and there has only been a real, hard border for a century. My family is from both sides of the border and my grandparents, born between WWI and WWII, remember the time way back when there were little cultural and linguage differences between both areas. BE is definitely on the list for places to retire to.

It's also funny that @UncleX is apparantly from pretty much the same area I am and perceives our culture so differently. What I always thought was one of the most distinctive aspects about the south is everybody being so concerned about keeping up appearances and what will the family think about this? Even though not many people in the younger generation are still actively religious, the Catholic heritage with the focus on the family and parents being shamed if their children do not conform I feel is still there.

I had never heard of Plautdietsch and it's indeed more German than Dutch, but on wikipedia I found the Lord's Prayer in Plautdietsch and it's still understandable to me, even though this language hasn't been connected to standard Dutch or German for centuries.

runbikerun

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5298 on: April 01, 2019, 04:16:52 AM »
My nephew (14) plays for a pro soccer team here in england, in the u15 team (college sport isnt a thing here, the pro teams are responsible for growing (or buying talent). He gets ALL of his gear for free (like a shit-ton of it, 5 shirts so you always play in a clean shirt if you're in a weekend long tournament)

There was a great quote from a professional cyclist who was asked how a teenager wanting to go pro could get the attention of a team. His answer was "win every race you ever enter."

If you're hoping to be a professional athlete and you're sixteen years old, then you need to be the best player on the pitch or the fastest runner or rider on the track every time you lace up. If you've competed against one or two people who were better than you, the odds are already against you.

SheWhoWalksAtLunch

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #5299 on: April 04, 2019, 11:15:17 AM »
New to the forums and enjoying this thread. 

Back in 2008 when the housing market bubble crashed, I mentioned to my SIL that I was refinancing our house to take advantage of the 4+% drop in rates.  She confessed she rather keep her almost 9% rate than show anyone at the bank her full financial picture.  Ten years later the DH and I are debt and mortgage free and planning to RE in a few years.  SIL who makes more than DH and I combined, and who is married to second wage earner, recently complained that she will never be able to retire because of all their bills.

Update on this relative:  My DH was speaking with the SIL last night and mentioned that he recently quit his job because it had become too physically demanding.  No he didn't have the next job lined up when he quit, but we've got a few months saved up in the emergency fund so he has time to get his medical issues straightened out and can be picky about what he applies for next. (He may have also mentioned that he's a little less than three years away from being able to RE anyways - I wasn't in the room for this call.) My DH reports that the SIL blew her top and said "some of us DON'T have our mortgage paid off".

What I forgot to mention in the original post......the SIL works (high up) in the mortgage industry.