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Stressing about our money situation. It's affecting my body. What should I do?

I'm getting hemorroids, stomach pains and knots on my neck. Oh, and I can't sleep. I've always been good at managing my money, but now that I'm a SAHM we're super tight with money and I have gone to overdraft more than a few times. I'm having such a hard time with this. I wish I could relax, but it's so hard. I'm putting together a budget to help but I'm still stressing. What can I do to relax???
I can only work a few hrs a week because of all my son's medical needs.

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Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 2:52 AM on Dec. 10, 2009 in Money & Work

Answers (9)
  • You need to find a way to control your situation, rather than letting your situation control you. I would start by looking to cut expenses where ever you can. Turning down the thermostat two degrees can save as much as ten percent on your heating bills; we keep our house at 55 at night and 62-64 during the day; we wear hats and sweaters.

    Make at least some of your own cleaning products. This has the added bonus of bringing fewer toxins into your home! This is what we use for most cleaning (initially used as part of my daughter's 6th grade science fair project). It is cheap (my favorite) and non toxic.
    ¼ cup white vinegar
    ¾ cup warm tap water
    1 tablespoon baking soda
    10 drops of tea tree oil (antibacterial, antifungal, etc.)
    2 drops oil of lavender essential oil (antiseptic and smells nice)
    Stop buying paper towels and napkins. Cloth napkins are more fun! Pick up cheap cotton towels at your favorite second hand shop.
    rkoloms

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:55 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • cont.
    Past the age of 2, the only beverage that humans need is water. Stop buying juice and sodas; buy milks only for cooking and cereal. You can liven up water with slices of fruits and vegetables; make ice cubes with blueberry eyeballs for the kids.
    Replace meats with beans, lentils, seitan, etc. You can save even more money by using dried beans and lentils and making your own seitan.
    Cook from scratch! Home cooked foods taste so much better than the nasty boxed stuff, and you will feel better because you are eating healthier foods!!
    Replace simple grains (white flour, white rice, white pasta, etc.) with whole grains (brown rice, whole wheat pasta, whole grain breads, etc.). While whole grains may cost more, they have more nutrition and are more filling, so they really are the better value.

    cont.
    rkoloms

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:56 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • Frozen fruits and vegetables have a longer shelf life than fresh and retain their nutrition longer; they are often a better, less expensive option than fresh.
    Once or twice a week have breakfast for dinner. Popular options at my house are: yogurt parfaits with frozen berries and whole grain cereal; veggies omelettes with a bit of cheese and whole grain toast; whole grain pancakes with fruit.
    Instead of baking a whole batch of cookies, make and freeze cookie dough balls. No one will be tempted to sneak a cookie(you know who you are) and when you do have cookies they will be fresh baked.
    Only go to the grocery store every 8 days. Before you shop, plan all of your meals and snacks for the next 8 days. Write your list, based on what you need to complete your meal plan. Pull any necessary coupons, eat before you go (never go to the grocery store hungry). Most important, buy only what is on your list.

    cont.
    rkoloms

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:57 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • The specials at the store are not to save you money, they are to get you to buy items that you don't need. If you won't use it in 3 week, don't buy it!

    Send me a message offlist if you would like some healty, tasty, family and budget friendly recipes.

    Good luck!
    rkoloms

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:58 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • Mothering.com has a Finance board, and I see this type of question a LOT.
    happytexasCM

    Answer by happytexasCM at 7:24 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • http://stress.about.com/od/financialstress/Financial_Concerns_Managing_Your_MoneyAND_Your_Stress.htm


    I find my self in the same situation except I'm the one that is sick. Went out last night to a business function even though I feel really bad.  My Husband is being laid off Dec 18 so I try to help out when I can to locate another job. Rest is key, eating healthy, everyone says cut back on expenses have done that, but you need to cut back on doing things that are not important. Rub each others shoulders helps I lot and is the only my all of us fall asleep even your child who is also stressed from being sick.

    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:31 AM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • There's a lot you can do at home. Like a PP has said cutting expenses is like "earning" money.
    Start paying off debts too (if you have any) and that will free up even more of your money.
    You can get on a written budget that is agreed on by both you and your husband. Once you've agreed on the budget, pull out the cash that you would need for things like groceries, clothes, eating out, entertainment etc- and put them in envelopes that are specifically labeled... then when the money is gone it's gone. If you need to pull out monthly, weekly, or bi-weekly so that you don't have to wait too long from when the envelope runs out.

    Anyway check out the Dave Ramsey group on CM if you want more helpful tips :)
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:57 PM on Dec. 10, 2009

  • Thank you all for your suggestions. They are VERY helpful.
    Vero0724

    Answer by Vero0724 at 1:43 AM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • I know how you feel. I have a hard time not getting stressed out about money. Best thing is to make sure that at least once a day you have some me time. Taking a nice hot bath and just trying to relax can help out alot. Having a cup of coffee or tea or cocoa and just unwind seems to help me out alot.

    We have stopped going out as much untill we have no more debt. Recently I started working at home to help ease our financial stress. I know most parents both work but we agreed that I wouldnt go to work and stay at home to raise our children, if need be he would get another job so I could stay at home.

    I know things can seem very trying and hard but try to stay calm and stay positive.

    ameriplanmommy5

    Answer by ameriplanmommy5 at 3:09 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

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