They say that to truly understand a person you have to walk a mile in their shoes, but socio-economic differences can make it hard to fully wrap your mind around what it’s like to live another person’s life.
That’s why even a peek behind the curtain of what it’s like to live as a poor person can go a long way in encouraging kindness and grace, even if our true understanding is still lacking.
#15. Just to stay above water.
“The mental and emotional weight. It feels like you’re just going from crisis to crisis, expending all your effort just to stay above water, always knowing that something else is just around the corner, and it might be the big one that puts you down for good.
When I finally saved up enough to live on for a couple months, just the security that I could handle a crisis if needed was a huge load off my mind and significantly improved my happiness and mental health.”
#14. The embarrassment.
“The embarrassment of having to remove things from the belt at the cash register.”
#13. Another fee.
“It costs money to be poor. Don’t have enough in your bank account: get charged a fee. Can’t afford to pay rent on time: another fee.”
#12. A big part of it.
“I think hiding the embarrass that can be a big part of it. When your friends want to do things and you can either admit you’re poor, make an excuse to not go, or go and sit there and buy nothing.”
#11. It’s only a dollar.
“When someone says “It’s only a dollar” and you literally don’t even have a dollar in change bc that went into your gas tank.”
#10. Take your pick.
“Picking what bill to pay based on what is about to be turned off.”
#9. The fear never goes away.
“Once you’ve been homeless, the fear of becoming homeless again never goes away. Stability, good credit, a little bit in savings will never be enough to soothe that gnawing stress that an injury or illness could land you there again.”
#8. No good option.
“Choosing between dinner and rent.”
#7. How hopeless it can seem.
“How hard it is to live week to week, and hope you have enough money to cover basic needs until your next payday.
How soul-crushing it can be when you realize do not have enough to make it to next payday, and you have to decide whether or not to get a cash/payday advance, even though you know that will be worse for you in the long run.
How hard it is to get out of it, and how hopeless it can seem. There is usually no end in sight.
How depressing it is, and how worthless it makes you feel, when you cannot make it and need to ask for help – and then have those who have never dealt with the same issue condemn you for needing it in the first place.”
#6. For months on end.
“Ignoring a reoccurring toothache for months on end…”
#5. The cheap stuff.
“Being told that you should invest in more expensive clothes and shoes because they last long than cheap stuff. I could barely afford the cheap stuff.”
#4. Just enough to feed you.
“That it is impossible to save when you haven’t got enough. You can’t accumulate capital when everything you have is just enough to feed you (in the case of invisible poverty).”
#3. They still look so hungry.
“Giving the rest of your food to your sibling cause they still look so hungry and might start crying, which upsets your mother even more. Plus you are already in the euphoric stage.”
#2. Guarantees misery.
“Money does not buy happiness, but being too poor to eat some nights almost guarantees misery.”
#1. My feet still have problems.
“Wearing shoes that are too small. As a kid I got 2 pairs of shoes at the beginning of the school year. One for school, one for gym. Didn’t matter how much I grew, those were my shoes until the next September. My feet still have problems from this.”
So, did you learn anything about being poor? Have any stories about being poor you want to share?
Do that in the comments!