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Poor Family Support Tribe- NO DEBATE - Page 5

post #81 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by Potty Diva View Post
I'm not sure what Mark is claiming. He does have he and Kailey on his insurance.

I cannot take him and drop him off because I take Kailey to school at 8 and he leaves here at 6:30. Kailey goes to a school out of our district and cannot ride the bus.

We are responsible for paying on the loans each month, we have consolidated but cannot defer. We cannot defer his loan.

We have reapplied for the NC health check health insurance and do not qualify. We makes too much This is what we were told.

We have no income coming in for the summer. Both of us will find jobs. No biggy there. We won't do jobs where one is day and one is night. Mark would end up working the night shift since he is a nightowl, but he would sleep all day, ignoring Kailey. I cannot physically stay up all night- impossible. I have tried to work night shift before and after 5 months still was unable to cope and nearly caused a wreck.

It will all work out in the end. I just need to get through 2 summers and 3 semesters.
I am here in NC, and I hear you about the insurance! It kills you, and the state funded is very stingy about giving it out. We moved from IL for the insurance and now IL has allkids. Of course.

Dh is a professor (comm college), and I hear you about the summer income! Can your dh maybe teach summer school or some college courses?

And cats are forever, I agree. And don't give up school. You should not have to defend yourself here.

Noone here should. I used to barely make it with 2 little ones as a single mom on $800 a week. It can be done! We certainly did not eat very healthy and we did without a lot, but you can make it! I worked nights 70+ hours a week. I honestly do not remember those months. It is so not worth it.

I don't think that we are considered *poor* anymore, but we are certainly barely paycheck to paycheck and I have had my share of living in the car and being dirt poor.

Have you checked out an Aldi's or something of the sort near you?

Maybe some gardening-indoor or out. You can plant some tomatoes, salad greens, etc. inside since those are usually a bit pricey. That definitely helps. You can ask local gardeners for their thinned plants and get some scrap produce from the grocery for compost (sometimes you can find some good eats, too).

If you rent movies or have entertainment money, we have saved a lot by getting the cheap netflix subscription and getting bulk popcorn kernels that you can even make just on your stove.

And I *love* resale shops. Only take in as much money as you want to spend. If I don't have the cash for it, it won't come home with me (I am bad about that if there are really good deals I can stock up on).

School books you can find really cheap online, or put up fliers around campus for used ones.

Dh started claiming 5 on taxes and that brings in a little more money for us.

In the summer, maybe the kids can have a yard sale or you can grow some things for them to sell like tomatoes or make some crafty things to sell? You could also do babysitting or housecleaning/yardwork if you need fast money.

I like to have yard sales, but really can't in this neighborhood (WAY out of town). That brought in $500 last year, though.

I am going to get my CNA again when we move (free tuition is a plus of dh's new job!!!) via night classes and work on the weekends. THat will really tie us up with dh's schedule and mine, but we need the money for the student loans! They are eating us alive!

Dh's income is such that on the surface we can not get any social services help (here at least in NC), and people roll their eyes when they see our income. But that doesn't take into consideration COL, student loan debt (so that we were no longer literally homeless), healthcare costs (health probs in the family-diabetes, allergies, etc.), and moving expenses. Dh's jobs are erratic and we have had to move 1-3 times a year just for him to be employed.

Speaking of dumpster diving, really, it can be worth it. A few of my friends have found some gems in there. Working TVs and DVDs and stuff they can resell and that way it also doesn't end up in the dump (recycling!). If you live near a University, it really can be worth the time and dirt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Azuralea View Post
Actually, if you go by the government's definition of poverty, there are at least a few people here who easily meet that definition. Furthermore, I do not think posters here need to lay out their family income in order to post as a poor family.

It is true that poverty in the U.S. is not financially the same as, say, poverty in Africa, though there are certainly a lot of similarities in other ways. But what good does that do to point that out? It's not helpful. We don't live in Africa.

Also, things that used to be considered luxuries are now necessities for anybody who is trying to get out of poverty, not just resign her and her children to a permanent life of poverty. Sure, in other parts of the world, they would be luxuries, but that doesn't help struggling families here.

Take, for instance, a cell phone. Somebody up above said something about how none of us used to have cell phones and they're luxuries poor people should forgo. It is true that cell phones were once luxuries, but that's not the case now, and employers and other business contacts expect people to be reachable on cell phone now. Pay phones have largely disappeared where I live. Nearly every person I know who works is expected to provide his or her boss a cell phone number. I do not believe that someone trying to work, especially a poor person who will typically have more rigid schedules and more emergencies than a middle class person, can make much employment progress without a cell phone. Therefore, somebody trying to get out of poverty, really trying hard, would be hard-pressed to give up her cell phone where I live.

For the record, we are not in poverty, something for which I am tremendously grateful. I am, however, very familiar with American poverty, both personally and professionally, and I get really irked by some of the assumptions I read about the American poor.
:

We have a cell phone as our only phone. We went without for awhile, but with medical issues in the family, living long distance from family, and dh's job and job search, we *have* to have a phone. We have a very basic cheap plan and no land line (that was $80 month for land line no additions, our cell phone is *much* cheaper). Some of us need internet for school.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaWindmill View Post
I wasn't asking anyone to lay out their family income. I am not talking about Africa, I am talking about people in the US, for example in Appalachia, where people in poverty live without running water, basic necessities of life like electricity, children frequently go without eating (sometimes for days) or healthcare of any kind, and people sometimes freeze to death in the winter for lack of heating oil. There are examples of poverty like this all across this country. I was trying to point out that having to live in difficult financial times does not necessarily mean we are in "poverty," and that being able to sit on a computer and post to MDC means you are already better off than many people who are actually living in poverty.

I'm so not trying to knock anyone's experience - we are very low income, and my husband lost his job last year, putting us in an incredibly precarious position; further, we have no health insurance, no savings, and no particular "assets" - but I think it's disrespectful to call unfortunate and difficult circumstances "poverty," when there are so many who have so much less than all of us do.
My family are the poor, Appalachian, KY mountain folk. Grandma has a 3rd grade education and had 7 kids as a single mom. I know all about dirt floors and floods. That doesn't mean that someone who has it relatively better *isn't* in poverty or poor. We shouldn't negate someone's experience because some people have it worse.
post #82 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnw826 View Post
My family are the poor, Appalachian, KY mountain folk. Grandma has a 3rd grade education and had 7 kids as a single mom. I know all about dirt floors and floods. That doesn't mean that someone who has it relatively better *isn't* in poverty or poor. We shouldn't negate someone's experience because some people have it worse.
I wasn't negating anyone's experience, and it's unfortunate if it came across that way. I also didn't suggest giving up school, cats, or cell phones.
post #83 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaWindmill View Post
I wasn't negating anyone's experience, and it's unfortunate if it came across that way. I also didn't suggest giving up school, cats, or cell phones.
I didn't say *you* did. It's hard to get out who you are talking about, especially when you are speaking in generics.

Othe people did, and I still hear it almost every day about my own situation, and I am sure others do, too.
post #84 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnw826 View Post
I didn't say *you* did. It's hard to get out who you are talking about, especially when you are speaking in generics.

Othe people did, and I still hear it almost every day about my own situation, and I am sure others do, too.
Okay, gotcha. Thanks for clarifying.
post #85 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by daekini View Post
I didn't mean to be condescending, honestly.

That was my clumsy way of saying that if you feel like you are in poverty, then you are. I was trying to be supportive.

Please DO NOT feel like you can't post here anymore! I sooo was not trying to run you off. And I get what you are saying, because what I bolded is 100% true.

Us broke asses can use all the support we can get.
post #86 of 832
You've got mine.

I'm honestly not rich - soooo far from it. We have very modest means but I'm not poor. I agree you need your own support group here so I will bow out. After I say this, though! I've sent dozens of brand new cloth diapers to mamas here who couldn't afford them, when I needed some for my own babies. I've given extra clothes and other items to mamas in need who buy one or 2 things from me on the TP; once I learn they're in need I do all I can with my meager means to help. I think that this is a community where you should be able to get support and not be judged. Why's everyone so ready to jump on everyone here lately? Is it just this frugality forum? I know that money is a stressful issue, but I never read so much bickering on MDC til I started posting here - and I'm guilty of it too!
post #87 of 832
Quote:
I've sent dozens of brand new cloth diapers to mamas here who couldn't afford them, when I needed some for my own babies. I've given extra clothes and other items to mamas in need who buy one or 2 things from me on the TP; once I learn they're in need I do all I can with my meager means to help.
Hmmmm.....Thats a great idea. We could have our own swap in this thread!! LOL
C
post #88 of 832
This is a great idea! For my part, I just thinned Aravine's toy box and closet and have a ton of stuff to get rid of. I had thought about Freecycling it but I'd rather pass it on to someone who *really* needs it. (Not that there aren't people on there who might, but I had gotten rid of a few things only to find them listed on Craigslist a few days later for $30...grrr! No more Freecycling for me.)
post #89 of 832
It took us about 4 yrs to get out of being so dang constanly broke after college, and we were only able to do it because of my Inlaws, who are to this day incredibly generous. (Although my FIL is now dead).

ETA-- I am only here to offer hope. . Our educations, and the help from my inlaws made a huge difference later on for us.

Edited because our i don't think our youthful struggling is the same as actual poverty.
post #90 of 832
Sortof weirded out by the "you're not all that impoverished" stuff in a support/tribe thread... wrote a big old rant about it, because frankly, it upset me a lot. I erased most of it, but I will say a few things.

No, I don't live in a dirt floored trailer. Yes, I am in POVERTY. I also happen to be clever, particularly good with money, and can provide my three children with a decent home and good food with my < 18,000 a year income (and that includes child support)- well below the "poverty line" if it matters. I work very very hard at providing my kids with something that resembles normalcy, in spite of the enormous emotional and physical and financial upheaval that comes with a sudden divorce and with the (for all intensive purposes) total disappearance of their father. I was a SAHM before my ex took off (with his 50K salary) and I'm a SAHM now. I homeschooled my kids before I was the sole custodian of my children, and I am homeschooling now.

I don't think the title of the thread needed to be changed. It is what it is. It is not a matter of opinion.

for all my sister mamas in poverty.

And I love the idea of a swap, and I will be PMing the mods about moving this back to FYT.
post #91 of 832
I love that we have responses on the swap idea!
What kind of swap do you want to do?
I suppose we could list our "NEEDS" and our "WANTS" and then pm the person if we have something they need.

And if this is going to be a "tribe", we might want to introduce ourselves and our families and our circumstances. Although I realize that some of that was done already.

Chandi
post #92 of 832
I lived on about $950 a months for a couple months last summer. It was tough. Rent is $608, (it's going up this July). Other bills came to about $200. So a little over $100 a month for groceries, clothes, whatever. After a couple months, I got a part time job where I can take my daughter with me. Since then I've applied for & gotten a rent subsidy,& picked up another cleaning job. My child support amount dropped slightly recently, but it's ok. I started cd'ing, and that has helped save money.

I think I still officially live in poverty, but I'm ahead of where I'd be on welfare, so that's good. (I wasn't last summer. I finally applied, but got the job before I finished the application process).

I buy alot of our clothes 2nd hand. I actually get nicer stuff that way, though. I get brand names, in good condition, that aren't available new in our little town.

The biggest worry, is that I don't drive, and both of my clients live way to far away to walk too clean for them. My dad is 65, and so far he's able to drive us, (I do pay as much as he will take towards gas). Too far out of town for bus service too. So it'd be a problem if he was unable to drive me.
post #93 of 832
Another resource is http://www.miraclediapers.org/ for families that can't afford the start-up costs of cloth diapering. Just thought I'd pass this along if anyone needs it.
post #94 of 832
Thread Starter 
Mark's car is broke down. He was going out to put water in it cause it was overheating today and it won't start, the neighbor came over and said some belt part is falling off. I wasn't out there long enoug hto hear.

The check engine light has been on a week in my car. Lovely. I have 40 dollars. he has 27
post #95 of 832
PottyDiva, if it's the fan belt, you can use a pair of pantyhose to rig it for a while. (I know nothing about cars, but I did have to do this once and it held for a surprisingly long time.)
post #96 of 832
We live in the city which currently has the higest unemployment in Canada. The past few years have been really hard for us financially, as they have been for many people here. Just about everything here is based on the auto industry, which hasn't been doing very well and there have been mass lay offs, as in many thousands of people.

We're on social assistance--have been since dh's employment insurance ran out a few months ago (he was laid off last August). From that we get only enough to pay our rent and electricity. We have two kids, and I work part-time from home but make very little from that. I also get a bit of money from the government every month (Child Tax Credit), but I have to pay for car insurance and gas (gas is more expensive in Canada than in the States and unfortunately we have a big car) so we have had to make many visits to the Salvation Army to get food. I really hate this, although I am thankful for it at the same time. It's so humiliating getting expired food and smashed packages that the grocery store would have thrown in the garbage. And it's SO hard to feed your family healthy food that way.

On the whole though, I am glad that we have had to go through this experience. It's forced me to learn a lot about frugality. We were careless with our money in the past in ways that we won't be again.

The good news is that dh got a job today. It's low-paying (as a welder) but it will be enough to get us off social assistance, and it looks like it will be permanent, which is really hard to find around here. So we're really happy about that!

All in all I'm so glad that we hit rock bottom like this financially, not only because I have learned from it but because I know that whatever happens to us in the future, we'll appreciate what we have.
post #97 of 832
Thread Starter 
It's not the fan belt, it's some plate that you have to take the entire engine out to replace.

He says he is not going back to work. I have tomorrow off from class because my prof is doing conferences.

He is such an idiot some times. You just don't give up on life! You just don't! He won't call his mom to ask for a loan either. I'm married to a selfish jerk right now. There is no where in town close enough for him to walk if he gets fired for not being able to get to work. He can work at the holiday restaurant if they are hiring, or Dairy Queen, of Food Lion.

Yeah, like that will help.

I am so angry right now.

What a loser I am married to.
post #98 of 832
Thread Starter 
oh and I guess Kailey will be staying home tomorrow since we won't be able to get her to school.
post #99 of 832
Thread Starter 
Ok, now that last thought has me depressed.
post #100 of 832
Ok im confused... why isnt he going to work tomorrow? why isnt DD going to school?? doesnt your car work and your classes are not in session tomorrow... either your car can take dd to school or dh to work... DH needs to swallow his pride and call his mom for cash...

try modestneeds for assistance... is dh part of a teachers union?? do they have any assistance programs? sometimes you need to make a few phone calls but help is available...



as im about to find out... see my post about 'employment at will'
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