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Random thoughts

August 11th, 2005 at 08:33 pm

No money spent by me today. I have no idea what DH has spent. He seems to resent me tracking spending. He wants to buy things when he wants to buy them. He does search out the best deal and make sure he buys quality, but he doesn't want to give me the receipts, etc. Frustrating.

DH feels we have no control over money. We spend what we spend and that's all there is to it. It isn't worth giving up "things" in order to gain control over money. This, of course, is putting stress on our relationship. I think that if you don't control money, it controls you and we've spent a lot of years feeling very pinched and not getting medical/dental care when we needed it because "the money wasn't there". We had money to go out to eat once/week (usually places like Sam's where all 4 of us could eat for less than $10, but still) and money for cable and cable internet and cell phones and I could go on.

I was talking to a friend last night about my job. I work parttime while the kids are in school. It's great, the hours are good, the pay is better than I ever expected for a parttime job, the work is just challenging enough, but not so challenging I bring it home with me at night (physically or mentally). I mentioned that I could stay like this for years and be fine. She reminded me that when you do that, your pay often barely keeps up with inflation nevermind not keeping up with your increased skills. True. I know the people I work with have been there for 10-15 years and they're resenting their payscale. They don't want to look for a new job, but they want this job to "pay them what they're worth". It's a small office, there is no management ladder to climb, your job title you were hired at is your job title. So you don't see a promotion with a raise. It won't happen.

I told my friend that I understood that, but that I wasn't ambitious and that was fine.

Then I remembered a conversation we'd had about one of the 9/11 widows who was upset at the way she'd frittered her money. Some of our friends were really angry that she frittered it away, some were angry that she appeared to be trying to get sympathy for it, etc. I realized I was resentful that she felt the need to list the things she spent money on. I didn't need to know the details and knowing the details both annoyed me and pissed me off. She spent more money on one purse than I make in a week and more than I probably ever will make in a week. So there's some things I need to work out. I need to make my inner being realize that unless I become more ambitious, I'm not going to ever make enough to buy the luxury items some people buy as a matter of course and I need to let go of the resentment at the way they spend their money (but I do still feel that no one needs to talk about it).

I also realized that I have quite a bit of resentment towards people who inherited their money and make comments like "well, if they'd just work harder they could have money like me" and "well, I EARNED my money". Being born to a rich family does not mean you earned your money or that you worked hard for it. Being in a power position in a company may or may not mean you worked hard and deserved that position. I've seen way too many people who got a position strictly because they had the right connections. I've learned a lot over the past few years of job hunting and realized that it's 95% who you know as to whether you'll get a job. I never would have gotten my current job if it wasn't for my landlady. DH wouldn't have gotten his current job if it wasn't for a friend of his. We deserve our jobs, we have the skills to handle them, but we wouldn't have ever gotten past the interview (if we'd even gotten the interview) without knowing the right people. And that pisses me off a little. I've lost out on dream jobs because someone with more connections was given it. One job I knew for a fact the guy hired was NOT more qualified (it was someone I knew very well). America is absolutely not equal opportunity.

Looking back at that paragraph I realize it "reads" as more pissed than I am. I'm not "pissed" about it, more of a frustrated/what are you gonna do? type attitude. I have it in me to be somewhat of an activist, but I'm just enough pessimistic that I don't think anyone would take me seriously. I think the people who are in those positions are in deep denial about how they got the positions and they will never make changes. Until you can make people aware of inequities, the inequities will always exist. For me, I'm fine. I like my life. But I look around and see so many qualified people working in positions below them and seeing them chafe at the restrictions they face and it makes my heart hurt for them.

Alright, I'm making myself feel resentful, so time to walk away from that.

I finally got smart and shut the shades to the patio door. I don't know why I hadn't done it before. That sun room gets HOT and then heats up the rest of the house. I'll bet having the shades closed will make a huge difference. I'd shut the room off completely, but that's where the cat's bowl and litter pan "live". She has to be able to get to her stuff. We pay a lot in electricity, it's expensive here. I use about the same as I did at my old house and pay about 40% more. But, they say we'll get a credit on our October bill for some of what we spent this summer. Seems odd, you'd think they give you a credit over the spring and fall months to use towards winter and summer bills (since winter and summer bills are going to be higher than spring and fall). I budget $200 for my electric bill, but it hasn't gotten that high (yet). So in about October I'll see what it averaged out to and change my budget.

Okay, this is way too long, time to stop and save something for the next few days.

1 Responses to “Random thoughts”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I'd have to agree with you. I know people from all areas, medical, engineering, secretarial, etc., etc., etc. and the vast majority are in the positions they're in becaue of the networks they have established (or in the case of families, were established for them). The best defense is to build up your own network. I know, too, that this can be difficult. I'm a big defender of my alone time, but there are ways to make time alone and still keep a healthy network of friends and contacts.
    My advice, join a community board or volunteer with your local Chamber of Commerce. It's a GREAT way to meet people if you're so inclined.

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