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    Just Me
    I don't know how to get round this
    • #1
    • 19th May 08, 10:07 AM
    I don't know how to get round this 19th May 08 at 10:07 AM
    People assume that because DH and I are in well paid jobs that we have money to burn. Of course it doesn't help that we live in a big house, have two cars (one is a company car) and lots of nice things (hence the £70k debt ). The thing is we don't want people to know the mess we're in, its none of their business but what do I say when someone asks me to sponsor them for a charity run or if I get invited out to lunch or if someone asks why my girls didn't go to beavers/cubs. For example I am going out with my mum and my girls next week and she automatically assumes we are having lunch out. If I tell her I can't afford to she might question me and she is the last person I want to tell about my problems.

    Can I just add I'm not ashamed or embarrassed I just don't think its anyone else's business.

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    Last edited by Former MSE Andrea; 21-05-2008 at 7:52 AM.
    Lightbulb moment: 14 May 2008
    Debt free date: April 2014
    DMP Mutual Support Thread Member No 188
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Page 1
    • wen3
    • By wen3 19th May 08, 10:09 AM
    • 155 Posts
    • 1,249 Thanks
    • #2
    • 19th May 08, 10:09 AM
    • #2
    • 19th May 08, 10:09 AM
    Hey Just Me we REALLY are similar LOL this is just how I feel. As I have said in the other thread we have already paid for a holiday to Florida but we are going with MIL FIL SIL and BIL (OH what fun) and there is no way I want them knowing. We do have some spending money but it will be tight, where as normally we wouldn't worry and just put iton the CC, but not this year. So I am going to have some thinking to do about why we cannot do some of the thigs they will want to do. We got caught on Saturday with te sponsoring thing but we just sponsered for a couple of pounds. Good Luck Hun
    Last edited by wen3; 19-05-2008 at 10:17 AM.
    DMP Support Thread Number 186
  • Lucy1982
    • #3
    • 19th May 08, 10:15 AM
    • #3
    • 19th May 08, 10:15 AM
    I feel you.

    How about suggesting somewhere that does buy one get one free... Tell them that you've heard it's really nice or something.

    Or what about grapping a sandwich and having a nice sit down in a park somewhere?

    Hopefully that will cut the cost a bit and they might not realise something is up.

    Good luck and we all know what it's like.

    Have a dodgy looking hug
    Current debt - 16,300
    Debt at worst 17/03/2011 - 18,067.62
    Not going anywhere else, ever again
  • OliveOyl
    • #4
    • 19th May 08, 10:27 AM
    • #4
    • 19th May 08, 10:27 AM
    Hi Justme & welcome.

    We too were in the same position as you, good income, comfortable lifestyle and big debt.

    A few things we've done to "obscure" our debt.
    • become very green and ethical. Because of this stance we don't waste anything, we cook from scratch, buy local stuff, check out charity shops and recycle. It is also hugely money saving not to shop, but you can just emphasize the moral aspect.
    • Walking more than driving is for green reasons, not to save money
    • Non-expensive and free activities with children - my children are adults now, but it is those activities that they remember. DS2's favourite memory is being allowed to climb trees (his friends weren't)
    • OH currently works abroad, so I tell people that the extra money he earns is entirely used in paying for our flights. I exaggerate the cost slightly He has taken this job for career advancement, not extra money
    • As for charity donations, sponsorships etc. I choose carefully what charities I support and give them my attention and charitable budget. (Currently only one charity, but I don't admit this) So I don't endlessly sponsor other peoples charities and dilute my budget. Or that is what I say, not admitting that my budget is miniscule.
    • I took up Mystery Shopping as a "challenge" to make my car insurance "free". I've kept it up because it is fun. Or that is what I say.....
    As this last year has gone on, I've admitted our debt to more people (I really push MSE, and that is how it comes up) and the more I touch on the subject the more I discover how in debt people are - people who I'd never expected to be, are struggling.

    I'm not sure how you get around the lunch issue, unless the weather is good, and you have a picnic. Or you are on some wacky diet (invent one?) that means you need to go home to eat what you are allowed to eat.

    Good luck. The best money saving advice I have though, is keep looking on here.
  • floss2
    • #5
    • 19th May 08, 10:29 AM
    • #5
    • 19th May 08, 10:29 AM
    Why not adjust the time you pick your mum up to after lunch-time, and if she asks why, just say you've got other stuff you need to do.

    Also, maybe just a "throwaway" comment like how your mortgage has gone up, or your housekeeping / bills are going up - maybe people will realise that your lifestyle isn't all it appears & that's where your money goes.

    Can I assume that at least 1 of you falls into the higher tax bracket too? As thats another thing to "moan" about to deflect the expectations, how the Chancellor pinches a lump of your salary before you get it
  • Lucy1982
    • #6
    • 19th May 08, 10:30 AM
    • #6
    • 19th May 08, 10:30 AM

    Those are GREAT!!!

    Thanks x
    Current debt - 16,300
    Debt at worst 17/03/2011 - 18,067.62
    Not going anywhere else, ever again
  • embarrassed about my debt
    • #7
    • 19th May 08, 10:41 AM
    • #7
    • 19th May 08, 10:41 AM
    Another one you could throw in is that you just had a big bill for your car? (dont know how new it is)
    Debt Now~Total-14,366.72~CC-1,600.00~Sofa-1,349.01~Loan-11,417.71
    Debt@Oct 12~Total 15,674.60~CC-1,636.40~Sofa-1,648.77~Loan-12,389.43
  • onamission
    • #8
    • 19th May 08, 10:48 AM
    • #8
    • 19th May 08, 10:48 AM
    or just admit it - lately i had the same thing about going on weekend break for a birthday - I said i hadn't booked flights cos i couldnt afford them (yet) and I got "put in on your cc" -and when i said i haven't got one they said "put it on OH cc".. They still haven't realised that we have all the bills, twice the mortgage of them and their income is double ours. I just said i can't afford it and thats the end of it. I'm losing friends over this but then i think that they are not true friends.
    I may look mean but when they get their LB moment I'll be laughing.
    total debt at lightbulb 18th April 2007 42367.60 DFW Nerd No 725. DFW longhauler no 8.:rolleyes: Official DMP mutal support club member no 62.
    • supersavershal
    • By supersavershal 19th May 08, 10:55 AM
    • 1,225 Posts
    • 1,758 Thanks
    • #9
    • 19th May 08, 10:55 AM
    • #9
    • 19th May 08, 10:55 AM
    I have exactly the same problem, I earn more than my siblings and because of that they cant understand why I havent got lots of money.Especialy because up until a year ago I was living the high life on credit.I tell them I am saving and the money gets put into an account where I cant touch it for 90days.
    I did tell a couple of my close friends at work though and was amazed when they admitted they were in a similar situation, they seemed quite releived that they were not alone.
    Everyone is feeling the pinch with the credit crunch, just say you are cutting back and being sensible.
    It is hard but trying to keep up with everyone elses aquisitions of stuff is what got me into debt in the first place.
    • elona
    • By elona 21st May 08, 6:23 AM
    • 11,112 Posts
    • 63,217 Thanks
    Could you say you are having a "no spend day" to save the planet - or on behalf of charity or something?

    About eating out - you could say you are trying to avoid additives and preservatives for your kids health - think "Honeywe're killing our kids!" and pack a picnic.

    My family love the recipes that won Martin's challenge of meals for a fiver -for six people -three courses for under 5 and still ingredients for another meal.

    I have bought myself a breadmaker and have started making my own bread and rolls- the machine does all the work! Officially I am doing this so I know what is in what we are eating but the fact that the end product is one third of the price does not do any harm either.

    The Old Style board on here is fantastic and very friendly and I have saved a lot of money usng their tips for saving money by getting back to basics - food, cleansers etc. Some of the threads there are hilarious as well as useful.

    DH says he always knows when I am trying to save money - we eat better!!!
    "This site is addictive!"
    Wooligan 2 squares for smoky - 3 squares for HTA
    Preemie hats - 2.
    • MrsTinks
    • By MrsTinks 21st May 08, 6:48 AM
    • 14,995 Posts
    • 23,049 Thanks
    My first suggestion is to just admit it... I know you say it's none of their business, but you might find they are struggling too and mutual support is a wonderful thing
    If not then the best suggestion I think is to just say you've had an unexpected bill and you'd rather do something like a picnic in the park etc.
    We try to live green and orgaic where possible, or local produce if not organic and you can hide a multitude of moneysaving under the "living more healthily and thoughtfully" umbrella...
    DFW Nerd #025
    DFW no more! Officially debt free 2017 - now joining the MFW's!

    My DFW Diary - blah- mildly funny stuff about my journey
    • nimbo
    • By nimbo 21st May 08, 6:58 AM
    • 3,356 Posts
    • 9,071 Thanks
    could you say that you are saving for something???

    they never need to know that it's to pay off your credit cards!!!!

    Stashbuster - 2014 98/100 - 2015 175/200 - 2016 501 / 500 2017 - 200 / 500 2018 3 / 500
    • SingleSue
    • By SingleSue 21st May 08, 7:09 AM
    • 10,514 Posts
    • 59,664 Thanks
    Although I have almost negligable debt being a single parent on benefits also means you end up not being able to afford things (despite what some think about what we get).

    Having disabled children can be a great excuse for crying off at some events rather than admitting you can't afford it. If I get invited out for a meal (where we all pay our own), my usual stock answer is " Oh the babysitter is busy that night" or of course there is " Son number 1,2,or3 has a daytrip with the school the next day and I have to get everything ready"

    For trips where I need to take my car and then pay entry at the other end, I always lay the blame on my poor car...although I think it listened to me this last winter. After months of saying it had a dodgy radiator, it developed a dodgy radiator! It doesn't seem to want to listen when I say it does 100 miles to the gallon, is brand new with no dents though!

    It is horrible not having much money while others 'seem' to have...although a neighbour after 'seeming' to have plenty of money to splash around had a LBM about 6 months ago and eventually went bankrupt.
    We made it! One graduated, 2 currently at university, been hard work but it shows there is a possibility of a chance of normal (ish) life after a diagnosis (or two) of ASD. It's not been the easiest route but I am so glad I ignored everything and everyone and did my own therapies with them.
    Eldests' EDS diagnosis 4.5.10, mine 13.1.11 eekk!
  • skintas
    cant you just invite mum around and sit in the garden and chat or something, ir make a excuse like you have someone calling around, thats why you cant leave the house. or tell her you cant eat out this week as you have had a big bill in, something you thought oh had paid or something, even if you tell your mum, im sure she will understand. everyone is tight at the moment, i have had 2 people from my kids school asking if i can lend them money in the last week. just because me and my partner work doesnt mean we have money. it comes in and goes back out again.
    i will be debt free, i will
  • sam89
    Hi Just Me,

    We're in the same situation, both in good jobs and should have a large disposable income. Obviously we don't and I have used the following lines without causing awkwardness.

    > The bills keep going up but the wages don't.

    > We're saving for when the mortgage is paid off (6 years) as OH wants to change career at that point.

    >We're trying to live a more healthy lifestyle (packed lunches rather than bought)

    >Our discounted mortgage ended and hit us really hard

    All these statements are true and are met with understanding as there are more people in our boat than I ever imagined.

    Real friends will be friends regardless of what you can afford, the others were never real friends in the first place.

    DMP Mutual Support Member 138
    Proud to have dealt with my debts
    DMP completed 1/11/13
    • loopylu36
    • By loopylu36 21st May 08, 7:26 AM
    • 499 Posts
    • 566 Thanks
    Hello Just Me

    I know exactly how you feel. Until my LBM, the words "I can't afford it" had never left my lips! I didn't budget for anything and thought I was "entitled" to anything that I wanted, because like you, me and DH both had well paid jobs and in theory, realistic outgoings. However, it is a vicious circle as once you have to start servicing the debt for the things that you bought, that you could "afford" you have and less disposable income and having got into the habit of having whatever you like, it is hard to deny yourself, and you then spend more on credit, and as we all know, this is when the problems start.

    However, although we do have nice things, most of our debt has been accrued through generally being silly with money (perhaps taking two holidays a year when we should have had only one - or maybe none? ) and just "frittering" In that respect our lifestyle is not any different to most of my friends. What I'm trying to say is that a) they may be in just as much difficulty as you and b) my friends are not going to notice a massive change in my spending habits, because I now have a budget to stick to and although they may be a little surprised, when I utter the phrase " I can't afford it" I don't think anyone will really think a lot of it. EVERYTHING is so expensive these days (we spent £97 on diesel alone last week! ) and everyone acknowldeges that.

    Perhaps you could say to your mother, that you are just trying to "cut back" a bit cos of everything going up and you don't want to end up in a mess? You could say you are on an economy drive, cos you looked at your bank account and realised how much money you were wasting, and also that you want to instill good spending habits in your children. I honestly don't think that your mother will be that surprised as everyone is feeling the pinch at the moment.


    L x
    Last edited by loopylu36; 21-05-2008 at 7:29 AM.
    • Bean Counter
    • By Bean Counter 21st May 08, 7:33 AM
    • 1,470 Posts
    • 937 Thanks
    Bean Counter
    but what do I say when someone asks me to sponsor them for a charity run
    Originally posted by Just Me
    Why not just sponsor a couple of quid and say that you have set up all your charity giving as standing orders so that the charity can get the tax back under Gift Aid.
    Today is the first day of the rest of your life
    • sparky0107
    • By sparky0107 21st May 08, 7:41 AM
    • 3,487 Posts
    • 21,429 Thanks
    or just admit it - lately i had the same thing about going on weekend break for a birthday - I said i hadn't booked flights cos i couldnt afford them (yet) and I got "put in on your cc" -and when i said i haven't got one they said "put it on OH cc".. They still haven't realised that we have all the bills, twice the mortgage of them and their income is double ours. I just said i can't afford it and thats the end of it. I'm losing friends over this but then i think that they are not true friends.
    I may look mean but when they get their LB moment I'll be laughing.
    Originally posted by onamission

    True friends are the ones that stand by you no matter what, false friends are the one's who walk away when you need them, you're better off without them. Good friends you can tell anything and they won't judge you.
    Sparky0107 - Sealed pot challenge member #002. Total for SPC3 1,030.57 Total For SPC 4 2247.00 Total for SPC 5 2574.62 Total for SPC 6 4552.91
    LC2 & Jakes-Mum are off their heads :rotfl
    DEBT FREE AS OF 20/01/2012
    • pollyanna24
    • By pollyanna24 21st May 08, 8:17 AM
    • 4,019 Posts
    • 5,483 Thanks
    My mother also thinks me and bf are fantastically well off as we earn £58K between us. And that my brother is the poor one as he only gets £40K to himself!!!!

    But bro still lives at home, whereas our mortgage is £1,000 a month!

    My mother has always thought I'm tight and that we have piles of money somewhere. Although I have a reputation for being tight, people seem to think we are loaded as we have a nice house, newish car, etc.

    But we're not. We have savings (I am pregnant so will defo need them soon), but we just didn't go mad. I'm always looking for a bargain, always pick the penny up off the floor, our holidays are to bf's mum who lives in Europe.

    But we are not rich by any means and our incomings pretty well match our outgoings. If I was meeting up with my mother, we might well go out for lunch, why not?, but it would probably be the only time that week that I did and therefore I would properly enjoy it. So maybe you should go out, but make it just that once for that week.

    I'm not saying somewhere expensive. If my mum met up with me, we would either go to Greggs, a cafe, or Weatherspoons, or visit Tescos and buy posh bread, posh ham and posh cheese and think we are having a treat. I just don't think not spending a lot of money has to be a big deal.

    I couldn't give a monkey's what people think of my spending.
    Pink Sproglettes born 2008 and 2010
    Mortgages (End 2017) - 180,235.03
    (End 2018) - 169,999.96
    (End 2019) - Target 160,000
    • jamtart6
    • By jamtart6 21st May 08, 8:41 AM
    • 8,650 Posts
    • 25,443 Thanks
    If you want to sponsor someone you could always just sponsor a couple of quid, then what I'd do is see if there is anything around the house to sell on ebay to earn the money back for yourself. I did this last year and covered 66% of the cost of xmas presents by selling old stuff on ebay. It made me feel great like I'd hardly spent a bean on presents! I'm doing it again this year for all gifts!

    You can do your bit by sponsoring but I'm sure you'll have something for £5 that you can flog on ebay to cover the cost?

    Being Thrifty Gifty again this year

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