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Old 11-09-2016, 08:29 AM
Location: Loudon, TN
5,798 posts, read 4,851,439 times
Reputation: 19509


I couldn't go to college right out of HS. No one in my family ever had. On my mom's server paycheck and a step-dad who refused to assist me, it was impossible at the time. I'd grown up very poor and didn't really know how it might have helped me. In the end, it was probably for the best. I moved to L.A. with my boyfriend on my graduation day. I had nothing but a laundry basket filled with my clothes. He left me in L.A. 3 months later. I had no car, and a slightly above minimum wage job, basically I was penniless in a city where my rent would have been my entire paycheck. I lost 20 lbs in 4 weeks because I couldn't afford food. I was 5'5" and below 100 lbs. I moved in with my sister and BIL for a while. Thank heavens they rescued me. I got a job right away, still only a little bit over minimum wage, and contributed to their household expenses. I moved out on my own with roommates after that, still living hand-to-mouth, and then moved back to my hometown.

I went through a series of low-paying jobs, and lived with two other girls in a rented home, when my BIL sort of talked me into joining the USAF. He had been in the service and was going back in as an officer after attending college on the GI Bill. It was peace time and there seemed to be no down-side to joining.

I got married in the AF to another sergeant and eventually we moved back to my hometown when we got out of the military. We had little to our names other than our 2 cars and some furniture. We got jobs that led to better jobs and we were able to buy a house within a year or two on a VA Loan. Ten years into our marriage he left me for another woman. Because he had recently gotten custody of his son, and then lost his job, I let him keep most of the furniture. The house was sold with little profit which I took in lieu of the property, and because I had a car loan that was not do-able on one income. I sold the car at a loss, and spent the little money I got in the divorce on some furniture and a deposit on a rental. I was emotionally at rock bottom, but I had a good job with benefits, so I knew I'd be alright. It didn't pay much, but I was very frugal.

Fortunately, I did well with my job and got promoted over and over. Soon I was able to buy a home of my own with a VA loan. 10 years later I sold that house in the housing boom for twice what I paid. I invested some of that money and put the rest on a down payment. My boyfriend (now DH) had moved in with me 3 years earlier and together we bought a very nice home on 4 acres. We married and 10 years after buying the house, we retired young, sold that home for pretty much what we paid (after the housing crash and somewhat into the recovery), and moved cross country with our dual pensions.

Doing just fine now, actually much better than fine, but I look back with amazement at the years living with roommates with only a mattress on my bedroom floor, and my clothes kept in a suitcase because I didn't own a dresser and never had any money left to buy one after bills were paid. Then getting out of the military with almost nothing, moving cross country and starting over with 2 people and no jobs, fortunately we were too young to know better and had no fear. I couldn't believe that I would be starting completely over AGAIN 10 years later after selling our sweet home during the divorce. I was so glad that I was smart enough to sell the home or DH would have let the house get foreclosed upon, since he was jobless. Once again I was starting with virtually nothing except a dining table, and a car with an upside-down loan I couldn't afford on one income. I've always had confidence in my ability to land on my feet and come back even better than before. I saw every setback as a launch pad for my next success, rather than a reason to wallow in self-pity.
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Old 11-09-2016, 08:33 AM
Location: middle tennessee
1,926 posts, read 993,510 times
Reputation: 6995
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Old 11-09-2016, 08:45 AM
Location: SoCal
13,278 posts, read 6,362,704 times
Reputation: 9903
When my husband and I both lost our jobs, no money, no health care and two kids. Somehow our marriage survived. We spent the down time with our kids, repainted our house and did a lot of things by ourselves. For example, I managed to cut my husband hair, not knowing how to use the equipment, left a big hole in his hair. Luckily he didn't have to see anybody for a while, lol.
Once you survive that, you can survive everything together.
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Old 11-09-2016, 09:37 AM
Location: SW Florida
10,320 posts, read 4,887,924 times
Reputation: 21735
My husband died in 2010 and eight months later I was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to move in with my mother. Had a double mastectomy with reconstruction that took almost a year. The first time I saw my chest after the mastectomy with drain tubes everywhere and my flat chest I didn't kill myself. That was quite an accomplishment for a woman who had dealt with chronic depression most of her life.
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Old 11-09-2016, 10:51 AM
Location: Lakewood OH
21,698 posts, read 23,688,776 times
Reputation: 35449
I've done it several times in my life. The last was when I realized I could no longer afford to live in the town in which I had lived for nearly 40 years. So I moved to a place where I could.
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Old 11-09-2016, 02:07 PM
6,330 posts, read 5,072,656 times
Reputation: 12866
Originally Posted by newcomputer View Post
especially today!!
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Old 11-09-2016, 02:16 PM
1,227 posts, read 1,262,186 times
Reputation: 4310
I don't know that I've ever dusted myself off. Certainly I have had to start over a number of times. I have suffered loss. In all of this, I continue to carry the grief and the lessons learned, and hope that I will handle myself a little more wisely and perhaps more graciously.
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Old 11-09-2016, 03:23 PM
Location: Coastal Georgia
37,144 posts, read 45,694,157 times
Reputation: 61862
Oh, most certainly, yet I feel I've had a blessed life.
Mother died when I was 12, father sort of check out, so I had to fend for myself.
Married young, divorced after 12 years.
Married a wonderful man, 36 years ago.
Lost our 25 year business when the economy tanked.
My last job got "eliminated", and hubbys last 3 jobs before retirement got downsized out of.
We both had to take early retirement. Yet...
After all this, we live comfortably, though not lavishly, we have good health, and all the kids and grandkids are smart and funny.
We are so blessed.
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Old 11-09-2016, 03:40 PM
Location: S.W. Florida
2,222 posts, read 938,342 times
Reputation: 6258
I lost everything in a divorce,and I mean everything. Started over with nothing but an old car and a dump of an apartment. For years I worked every bit of OT I could get my hands on and did without just about everything. I found a better job,still worked my tail off and earned several promotions thru the years,and eventually retired with enough to ensure a great retirement.
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Old 11-09-2016, 06:59 PM
1,040 posts, read 892,912 times
Reputation: 2815
Many times.

In my early 20s, escaped a dangerous cult with almost no assets to my name--a cult I was forced into as a child. I was ritually shunned by all of my friends and much of my family. Went to live with a near stranger.

Lost many possessions in a fire that was caused due to the landlord's liability, while unemployed.

Became a professional job seeker due to employers repeatedly going out of business during Reaganomics.

Before HIPAA, I lost all of my savings several different times due to medical expenses for a congenital disease. (It was legal back then to not cover pre-existing conditions.)

Finally decided I was going to die if I went w/o medical care for the rest of my life (true), and I had to have special insurance that would cover me, which I couldn't get w/o a professional job. So I saved up as much as I could and went to college, had to move into the hood to afford my living expenses. Terrifying. Took way too many credit hours per semester because they only charged you for the first 12. Finished a year early and was financially stable within a year.

It all sucked. Yes, I feel like a badass now for having gone through it, but I do sympathize for others in these situations.
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