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Money and guilt

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by WaylonJennings, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. So for years at least I've put off investing. Not because I'm lazy. Not because I'm irresponsible (though that's the net effect). But because, simply, I feel overwhelming guilt about the prospect.

    I'm finally starting to get over it now, thanks to some long - and I'm sure annoying for her - conversations with a very understanding wife. We both come from blue-collar to-the-extreme families - working-class all the way, layoffs always a danger, etc., etc. So of course people always had snide comments to say in these households about "rich people." I vote Democrat and always will, but even that gets in the way of me doing something simple like buying a CD recently at the bank.

    Because, you know, rich people invest money. People like us make ends meet. And that's the more honorable way to live.

    And that's how I feel every single time I think about money and making sure we're OK in the long run. I think, "You shouldn't think that way. It betrays your roots. You're supposed to work hard for low pay and then trust that things will work out in the end."

    So ... the point of all this is.

    Is this fucking normal?
  2. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    If you're eating dog food when you try toretire, it won't matter if you voted Republican or Democratic. For goodness sake, put away your guilt and get to it.

    Please, PM me if you want to talk about it.
  3. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    You mean investing outside of a retirement plan or investing inside a retirement plan?
  4. Clever username

    Clever username Active Member

    You shouldn't feel guilty about wanting to be comfortable and taking care of your family. I've never been interested in making a lot of money, but it would certainly be nice not to have to worry about it if I want to buy a new pair of running shoes or fix the dings in my car. You don't have to be loaded to be able to do that, and it's not like you didn't earn the money you're putting into the investments. You earned it, so let it do something for you.
  5. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member


    Invest in newspaper companies, then. Little change of getting rich. Problem solved.

    Seriously, don't think that you are investing for a trip to the south of France. You are investing for little Waylon one day or maybe to help out someone who really needs it.
  6. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    Investing in yourself is the only way to go.
  7. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    Seriously, you need some professional counseling.
  8. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    Hell no, there's nothing to be ashamed of. My parents were as middle-low class as you can get. I want to have as much money as I can by the time I'm 55 so I can quit working for someone else and do what I want to do.

    I wasn't trying to make it political with my first post. I was simply saying that when you don't have the money you need to retire/send Shooter to school/travel/whatever, it ain't gonna matter for whom you've voted your entire life. The rest of the middle class doesn't give a fuck about you or your retirement, so why should you give a fuck about them?
  9. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    My dad always gripes at me for voting Democrat. I tell him when I have money to invest, I'll vote Republican, like him.

    In all seriousness, WJ, my folks are a pretty good example of a blue-collar folks investing all they can. My dad barely had the proverbial pot to piss in as a kid and didn't begin making decent money until he was 30. My mom grew up on a farm. Having the bare minimals as kids (and newlyweds and new parents) made them more determined than ever to save.

    They've done very well for themselves over the past 30 years, but they've never once carried themselves as "rich" or deviated at all from the plan, which was to save everything they could so that their futures would be better than the present. And even though their present is better than their past, they still budget and save like they did when they were bone dry broke.

    Does that make sense?

    I'll admit, I have a hard time wanting to invest in the stock market because it seems to reward bottom-line beancounting. But a 401K? By all means, if you have the money, you should invest in yourself. Because no one else will.
  10. Gold

    Gold Active Member

    Waylon: I'll bet your father wanted you to get an education - told you something like, "You better do better in school than I did and you are going to college"

    The reason a lot of people who were older didn't invest is because they heard stories about people losing their investments. When it comes to investing money and how that whole thing operates, that might be the biggest class system there is. People who have been upper class have a lot more access to things and are treated a lot better than somebody who has $50,000 to invest.

    That said, this is something to learn about and the sooner you start it the better. What I would tell your father is that in 2007, most people aren't covered by pension plans and individuals have to take greater personal responsibility in planning for retirement. That may not be a good thing and it may not be better than it was in the 50s or 60s, but it is reality. My guess is that if your father owned the family home, there's a good chance he realized money from appreciating property values - and good for him. I would agree with your father about paying more for brand name stuff - the store-brand cereal will do a good job of keeping you from starving.

    I wouldn't say jump into investing, but I would look to learn and improve what you do. There are plenty of good books on the subject. Find what you would feel comfortable doing - safe investments or investments with more risk. Nobody can say one is better than the other - you have to feel comfortable with it.

    Finally, I would say this: Money is not the root of all evil, Love of Money is the Root of Evil. Just show respect for money.
  11. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    This is great advice, Waylon.

    My father graduated from high school in the depths of the Depression. My family is mainstream liberal going back to when my grandparents got off the boat at Ellis Island. One person on either side of my family was a registered Republican (my uncle) and he did that only to vote against someone he couldn't stand in a primary.

    I was raised with a healthy dislike of the ravages of big business... and I am a devotee of the stock market and investing.

    It put me through college, provided two-thirds of the down payment for my first house and has nurtured my father through what has become a lengthy retirement. That I had to drain a $13,000 IRA I spent the better part of a decade saving because I was unemployed is one of my biggest regrets in life.

    Where am I going with this? Merely echoing what was posted before in a different context, Waylon. Don't let your political beliefs deter you from doing the right thing, which is putting aside as much as you can every month into a Roth IRA for you or some kind of a college savings plan for Little Waylon.

    Let me put that into some perspective. Through the magic of compound interest, combined with historical returns in the stock market (roughly 8-9% a year), if you're 21, every dollar you put in today becomes $30 at age 65.

    Wait until you're 40 and every dollar becomes $14.
  12. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    I will add a piece of advice I recently read: If you have to choose, put the money in a retirement plan before a college savings account. Junior can always borrow money for college, but you can't borrow money for retirement.
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