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Is being poor better?

When I was growing up my family was pretty poor. There were times when the electricity got turned off, or our phone. And we would run really low on food. Christmas was sometimes pretty slim. But now that I am an adult and I look back, it has made me appreciate things so much more. I now realize that it didn't matter that I didn't have all the name brand stuff like my friends. But my husband and I are significantly more stable and my son gets pretty much whatever he wants. I am afraid that he won't realize how lucky he is and how "things" don't matter. So do you think it's better to grow up without all the luxuries or to have them?

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Asked by GMR at 12:16 PM on Feb. 4, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 2 (10 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • i personally grew up the same way that you did. and i feel the exact same way. the struggle really helped me to appreciate things so much better. it taught me to have a strong work ethic and pride in everything that i have. as far as worrying about your son not growing up to feel the same way, you can help that. even though your stable, you dont have to get everything he wants. thats something we're trying to do with my DD. We want her to understand that things in life aren't just handed to her, and that as she grows she needs to work for them. So that's how we're making it work, considering Im in the same situation as you. We just want her to know that life can get hard, and she needs to know how to earn things and appreciate them

    Answer by Amanduhpanda at 12:19 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • i grew up in an area that was privileged to say the least (3rd wealthiest county in america at the time). though i wasn't brought up in a way where i don't appreciate what i have ( i didn't even know how much my dad made until i tried to apply for financial aid and my mom laughed at me and said "we don't qualify"). i was always told we didn't have enough money for certain things. but i HATED growing up there because i was surrounded by snobby rich kids who would crash their bmw's and get new ones like that. and got allowances for doing nothing. it's all about how you raise your children, but it's hard when the majority of children in their school are spoiled brats who expect everything.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:21 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • I grew up pretty much the same way and so did my DH, my son however is very different, I think it gives you a greater appreciation of things to NOT have them. I tell my son all the time how lucky he is to have what he has, and since when he was a baby he and I were on welfare for a short amount of time I remind him how different life would be without my husband. It is certainly more fun and comfortable to have the luxuries, but I think being poor builds character.

    Answer by goaliemom93 at 12:23 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • I think it's better to be poor. I think kids are less likely to be spoiled brats and will appreciate what they have alot more when they grow up. I told my 18 year old daughter that she needs to take a Personal Finance course bfore she moves out on her own. I don't want my kids to feel sorry for themselves and play the victim card, but to learn from their parents mistakes and make a better life for themselves.

    Answer by amydh at 12:25 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't want to be poor like when I was little. But I look around my house at the things I have and I am truly thankful and appreciative of it all. But I don't think my son does the same. We live in a nice neighborhood and everyone of his friends have a nice house like us. I have been thinking about maybe volunteering (with him) at a homeless shelter or something like that.

    Answer by GMR at 12:39 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • I was raise in a pretty affluent family, both my stepfather and my dad are wealthy men. My husband and I are financially secure, but we live simply and my children do not have the lifestyle I grew up in. I believe with all my heart that they are going to be much more well adjusted than I was and I believe they're going to work hard and appreciate the little things in life more because those aren't things they can take for granted as children.

    Answer by MommyAddie at 1:00 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • I don't think it's better to be poor at all. I grew up the same way but I would never want that for my daughter. We live paycheck to paycheck now and the stress that it creates is awful. I don't know how my parent's did it. I don't want to be rich but being "comfortable" would be nice.

    Answer by drpepper73 at 1:49 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • I too grew up with a poor family and I too feel it makes you appreciate the small things in life! I am trying to imply this on my children! It is not about haveing the best of everything it is being the best you can be in your life!

    Answer by jem102675 at 1:59 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • My husband & I both grew up very modestly. So while the economy is crashing and people are panicking about a recession, we are ok. We learned how to survive on little. My kids no that there is no shame shopping at a second hand store.
    I feel sorry for those that did grow up rich & priviledged and now find themselves without means and the skills to survive on little.

    Answer by motherofhope98 at 3:31 PM on Feb. 4, 2009

  • Everything in moderation. Adversity builds character. I had it pretty cushy when I was a kid. My adult life has been a different story. My kids appreciate the things they get. I think it is rediculous to put a 16 yr old behind the wheel of a BMW. I think kids need to know work before play and hard work is its own reward. Just don't spoil the crap out of your son and maybe make him earn chore money things like that.

    Answer by salexander at 12:39 PM on Feb. 5, 2009

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