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Old 05-17-2009, 04:59 PM
 
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How do those with great income and nice things and by all appearances seem to be like any other individual/family manage to continue being frugal when others are "pulling" for restaurant meals, shopping trips to malls, etc? We ENJOY being frugal, but we are not necessarily poor. We find the spending of other's kind of wasteful but we dont judge - its their own choice. But its hard sometimes when they want to do something expensive and we're just not into it as much as going to the park/beach/lake/playing games/free concerts, etc etc. Its almost like the opposite of keeping up with the Joneses.
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Old 05-17-2009, 05:40 PM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,259,218 times
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I hear ya! I'm fairly well off, but live a mostly frugal life. Sometimes my relatives get offended, and try to manipulate us into doing things we don't want to do. A few years ago they went on a campaign to get us to buy new, more expensive clothes and eat out much more often than we like to. Not sure why, exactly, it was important to them... but they kept it up for a few months. Finally they lost interest and now they love us the way we are.

One thing that helps is to resist being judgemental yourself. Don't call your friends wasteful, just say that you enjoy living simply. Avoid being snide or pitiful about your position. Just be matter-of-fact, confident, and have alternate suggestions of inexpensive things you guys can do together.

I think the truth is, the people who put you down also secretly admire you for being true to your convictions (especially as time passes, and they see you really mean it).
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Old 05-17-2009, 05:52 PM
 
596 posts, read 2,495,190 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by normie View Post
I hear ya! I'm fairly well off, but live a mostly frugal life. Sometimes my relatives get offended, and try to manipulate us into doing things we don't want to do. A few years ago they went on a campaign to get us to buy new, more expensive clothes and eat out much more often than we like to. Not sure why, exactly, it was important to them... but they kept it up for a few months. Finally they lost interest and now they love us the way we are.

One thing that helps is to resist being judgemental yourself. Don't call your friends wasteful, just say that you enjoy living simply. Avoid being snide or pitiful about your position. Just be matter-of-fact, confident, and have alternate suggestions of inexpensive things you guys can do together.

I think the truth is, the people who put you down also secretly admire you for being true to your convictions (especially as time passes, and they see you really mean it).
I wholeheartedly agree. Sometimes it reminds me of the saying misery loves company because some people we know whom I am sure are living beyond their means really want us to spend as they do and chuckle at some of the things we chose to spend our money on. Inside, I do some chuckling of my own. One of our friends spent over $5k on living room furniture this past weekend. I would NEVER do that...I buy piece by piece, second-hand, and will (if needed) refinish antiques myself to create enviable pieces.

Its about to get trickier, however, because we are moving into a new town that has been traditionally reserved for the wealthy. I hope we dont look like the clampits
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,259,218 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jctx View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. Sometimes it reminds me of the saying misery loves company because some people we know whom I am sure are living beyond their means really want us to spend as they do and chuckle at some of the things we chose to spend our money on. Inside, I do some chuckling of my own. One of our friends spent over $5k on living room furniture this past weekend. I would NEVER do that...I buy piece by piece, second-hand, and will (if needed) refinish antiques myself to create enviable pieces.

Its about to get trickier, however, because we are moving into a new town that has been traditionally reserved for the wealthy. I hope we dont look like the clampits
When you visit your friend, be sure to admire her new furniture. Respect her choices, even if they aren't the choices you would have made. That makes it easier for your friends to respect you.
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:20 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
19,884 posts, read 36,400,379 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jctx View Post
Its almost like the opposite of keeping up with the Joneses.
This really sounds like your motivation for being frugal isn't the frugality itself, but some sort of "more frugal than thou" motivation, just as the keeping up with the Joneses is. That makes it hard to "get" that you're not judging others for what you consider to be wasteful and they clearly don't.

When you visit your friend, be sure to admire her new furniture. Respect her choices, even if they aren't the choices you would have made. That makes it easier for your friends to respect you.

This, absolutely.

By the way, I have lived WAY below my means for most of my life. Just never made a big deal about it.
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Old 05-18-2009, 03:29 AM
 
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Iím frugal because I want to get the most value out of every dollar that leaves my wallet. That means I donít necessarily buy the cheapest things if the cost of repeated replacement would be more than a better quality item and I make do with what I have as long as I can.
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Old 05-18-2009, 05:57 AM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
1,820 posts, read 3,899,868 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasHorseLady View Post
This really sounds like your motivation for being frugal isn't the frugality itself, but some sort of "more frugal than thou" motivation, just as the keeping up with the Joneses is. That makes it hard to "get" that you're not judging others for what you consider to be wasteful and they clearly don't.

When you visit your friend, be sure to admire her new furniture. Respect her choices, even if they aren't the choices you would have made. That makes it easier for your friends to respect you.

This, absolutely.

By the way, I have lived WAY below my means for most of my life. Just never made a big deal about it.
I have to agree. We have family members who for years and years ,complained and complained about "not being able to afford" things and now that "frugal is in" they claim that they have always lived a frugal life because they have wanted to,not because they HAVE to.
They always have comments now about how people spend their money wastefully and that they just don't want to do what others are doing...
They are constantly saying things like "it is better to be frugal than broke" and "we don't spend our money like that" "we are smart with our money"...
It is almost like now they are enjoying the fact that they are with the "in" crowd because people are being a little more wise with their money..
Not sure,just know that it becomes a little irratating.
We have never judged them before for the way they have lived but yet they seem to now always be judging the way others are living...
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Old 05-18-2009, 06:23 AM
 
Location: Right where I want to be.
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It's hard sometimes but mostly we seem to be more comfortable with folks who earn less than we do. They would be our lifestyle peers rather than our income peers. We don't have much in common with most folks who earn what we do....no spur of the moment weekend 'get-a-ways' or eating out all the time. If I go shopping at the mall with women I rarely buy anything and it's uncomfortable....like being the only one to pass on dessert or something. But really, how many pairs of shoes or handbags do I need? Not as many as most women it seems, lol, and I'm not buying more just so the other women feel better about their shopping. I'm more comfortable at a back yard BBQ than I am at a day spa...KWIM?

We don't make a point to hang out with folks who earn less (or even discuss income), but rather people who live a bit more simply and many times it seems to be income related. Looks can be deceiving both ways, we know plenty of people who earn less but are living way better than we do. We don't judge or comment on it...just hope they don't regret it one day. We don't really know anyone else 'like us' IRL, who saves more than they spend or lives like they earn 1/3 of what they actually do.
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Old 05-18-2009, 07:11 AM
 
596 posts, read 2,495,190 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasHorseLady View Post
This really sounds like your motivation for being frugal isn't the frugality itself, but some sort of "more frugal than thou" motivation, just as the keeping up with the Joneses is. That makes it hard to "get" that you're not judging others for what you consider to be wasteful and they clearly don't.

When you visit your friend, be sure to admire her new furniture. Respect her choices, even if they aren't the choices you would have made. That makes it easier for your friends to respect you.

This, absolutely.

By the way, I have lived WAY below my means for most of my life. Just never made a big deal about it.
You make a good point. I need to think about that and you're right in that it could be a reverse judgement thing and I wouldnt want to do that at all. It is all a choice, in the end. I guess all adults should understand the consequences of what they're doing and if spending more than you have is worth it, its ok for others.

I will make sure I complement my friend's new furniture - in fact I did over the phone - I told him it sounded super gorgeous (large, cigar-room style chocolate leather couch, etc. Something I would LOVE to have and if I could afford to buy that I would for sure!).
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Old 05-18-2009, 07:20 AM
 
596 posts, read 2,495,190 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCyank View Post
It's hard sometimes but mostly we seem to be more comfortable with folks who earn less than we do. They would be our lifestyle peers rather than our income peers. We don't have much in common with most folks who earn what we do....no spur of the moment weekend 'get-a-ways' or eating out all the time. If I go shopping at the mall with women I rarely buy anything and it's uncomfortable....like being the only one to pass on dessert or something. But really, how many pairs of shoes or handbags do I need? Not as many as most women it seems, lol, and I'm not buying more just so the other women feel better about their shopping. I'm more comfortable at a back yard BBQ than I am at a day spa...KWIM?

We don't make a point to hang out with folks who earn less (or even discuss income), but rather people who live a bit more simply and many times it seems to be income related. Looks can be deceiving both ways, we know plenty of people who earn less but are living way better than we do. We don't judge or comment on it...just hope they don't regret it one day. We don't really know anyone else 'like us' IRL, who saves more than they spend or lives like they earn 1/3 of what they actually do.
You sound like us in alot of what you've said! This is great to read. We are often surrounded by friends that enjoy name brands and gourmet meals, high dollar wines, etc. I do like these things. We do fit in with them, too. However, it is hard when they all want to meet up in the newest martini bar one night and spend $12/martini, etc. Sometimes, we go for a 'treat' but most of the time we do not.

You would be amazed at the numbers of Coach bags you can find at the Salvation Army store if you go often enough. Our Salvation Army sells all bags for $2.99! We placed our education needs above all wants for so many years, and now that our income is great due to the education investment, we will never overspend, I hope. There will be some ways we choose to spend money that might be considered wasteful but it will be affordable (I am going to look for housekeeping help because we have pets, kids, and work - and I will need the help).

Give me a backyard bbq'd brisket enjoyed with all our laid-back friends any day of the week! We do have some great friends in the same income-bracket that dont mind drinking beer out of a cooler and hovering over the bbq with us, or playing poker on a non-poker playing table

I think I'm just nervous to be moving to a ritzy area and maintaining my penny-pinching ways. Maybe I'm afraid I will be swayed to spend like them and have regrets...I guess if it happens once or twice, my buyers remorse would eat me up and I would learn...Thanks for your advice, all!
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