Money. Just some scraps of copper and paper, but it’s important in our world. It has some value. We need it to live.
My family is of lower middle class, my Dad and Mum work, but the pay isn’t the best. I have a big family and they both try their best and are still going. They earn money. We have a house. We have enough for food and water and heating and groceries and we had enough for clothes. It isn’t the worst thing in the world. I’m fully aware that our situation isn’t the worst out there. We did have help when me and my siblings were little. We never had packed lunches in school. My siblings and I had free school lunch meals from primary to secondary. I am grateful because it could be a lot worse. I was never aware of us having difficulties with money until a certain point of my childhood. I guess it just started in bits really.
I remember shopping for new school shoes and new PE Kits with my parents and siblings and my mum was fussing over prices, which of course is normal. It went from simple price checking in stores to watching my Mum and Dad getting worried about the bills or credit card payments. At this point I thought that you could get money out of the bank and then we are all set. But I was a kid, I didn’t know. And then I just slowly witnessed discussions of my parents talking about debts. One particular convo I remember is them talking about debts over the M&S cards or paying the amount of our new sofa. I kinda got the gist of us having a lack of money. Kids rely on their parents, they depend on them and I did. I depended on my mum to make me food and I depended on my dad to drive me to school and drop me off and pick me up. But when it came to money I kinda just stopped asking for stuff. My dad used to take me to Asda to get our groceries and he would ask me if I wanted a chocolate or a sweet or if he should get the doughnuts for breakfast and I always said no (as I thought I was wasting his money) Every time he took me to a shop and ask me if I wanted anything I would say no. I then went to high school and it just went from 10 years old me saying no to chocolate bar to 13 years old me not asking for money.
I would get invited to Bowling or the Cinema and I would reject the offer because I hated asking my parents for money. I used to get £5 school allowance every week, but sometimes my parents would forget to give me it. It would be an innocent mistake as school mornings for us were hectic. I never reminded them or asked them for the money. I don’t know why, but I just never asked. If they knew I never asked them for it, I know they would be pissed. I just didn’t ask that was just my mind thinking I’m a pest and I didn’t wanna be a burden. It grew with me not asking for the latest gadgets or Adidas Jackets, River Island bags, a phone (these were the stuff that trended in high school and what every teen had) I never asked them for necessities like a new coat or replacing my tattered school bag or new pens and pencil cases.
I rarely ask my parents for money because I feel extremely guilty and always avoid stuff that would cost money. I didn’t ask for anything on my birthdays because I would just feel extremely guilty if my parents spent anything on me. It’s not the fact that my parents would say no to me. That’s the weird thing, I know they would have given me money or bought me stuff when I needed it. Without question they would give me the stuff I needed. It was just my mindset at that time because of all the past and current financial problems of my family like dad always being late paying the credit payments or not being able to pay for these debts which made me extremely fucking guilty for asking money for a “little” thing like going out with friends or a new school bag.
So That’s me. I hate asking my parents or anyone else for money. It may sound odd to some of you because why the hell can’t I ask my own parent for money. I’m pretty sure they would give me money. But I can’t ask them for it. I remember saving a little bit of my school money to save up for my Best Friends birthday present, or saving up to go for a day out. But I never asked and I still don’t like asking for money till this day. It’s a habit I have. A habit none of my siblings have. They could ask our parents for money and it seems so simple to them. I used to watch my Brother ask Mum and she would give my Brother a tenner but I could never do that and I still can’t. It’s just how I am and yes of course I find it annoying, but I can’t change it.
“Anon” asked in the email above to give some advice for a Friend to help the Friend and honestly, I can’t give advice as I still can’t ask for money today. But I understand your friend “Anon” I get it. Apparently Many of us feel shy to ask pocket money from our parents, especially if we are from middle class backgrounds and also responsible children don’t ask money for mundane/ little things. But I can give you this little advice. From my childhood, I have learnt a few things. And the Number 1 thing I have learnt through this “money problem” is that if I have a kid, I will make a huge effort to not talk about money in front of them. My parents fretted about money a lot and I feel like that is why I am like this. So that’s a lesson I’ve learnt.
I saw this Tumblr post posted on Twitter and OMG I so relate to this! Everything on this is so true. I don’t blame my parents for fretting about money in front of us kids. It didn’t affect my siblings, but just me. I understand they were worried and I know they tried their best and they still do, I love them for it, but I do wish I had not witnessed their money discussions.
Thank You to the Anon who sent me the email! I loved discussing this. I am fully aware this email was sent in December and I’m sorry I’m so late! I hope your friend can relate to this and knows she isn’t the only one who feels this way.
Can anyone else relate to this?
Need any advice? Or Just want to have a quick chat about a topic that’s been in your head? I am happy to keep anyone anonymous!
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