Menu

Do people who grow up poor tend to spend less money even when they're not poor

Home Personal Finance and Budgeting Do people who grow up poor tend to spend less money even when they're not poor

  • Avatar benign_user 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 168
    Joined: 01/14/2016

    So my wife and I both grew up relatively poor. Now our combined income is in the low 7 figures but we still tend to be very frugal in our expenditures (ie getting the cheaper meal at restaurants and what not). Are any of you the same way? Being very thrifty since you grew up being poor?

    #233517 Reply
    q-school q-school 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2629
    Joined: 05/07/2017

    yes but clearly does not apply to nba or football players.  🙂

    i think learning to delay gratification during medical school imparts maturity on spending as well.

    however, after twenty years of accumulation, it literally does not matter what you spend it on, you will still die rich.  i am still working on being generous to myself.

    i think there are phases.  you buy some nicer stuff.  you learn what you value, and what was just money being spent for sake of spending.

    then you learn to value time and experiences.

    then you start thinking about legacy.

     

    ddswifey ddswifey 
    Participant
    Status: Spouse
    Posts: 73
    Joined: 04/17/2019

    I consider myself thrifty and did grow up poor. But I see myself has having a very good grasp on the value of a dollar. Also great work ethic b/c I began work  at 14.   I worked 60 hours a week on my dad’s farm when i was a teenager in the summers.    I also struggle with always feeling like “when do we have enough”  because “never enough” was a constant theme in my home.     I was raised by a single mom who worked 3 jobs and we lived paycheck to paycheck but I never did without.

    I'm here to learn

    #233524 Reply
    Liked by jfoxcpacfp, Tim
    Avatar burritos 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 493
    Joined: 04/23/2018

    My wife grew up pretty poor. She is a pretty well paid Hospitalist now. Aside from the forced savings from Keogh/401k her earned income is tagged for spending. I make less that her and I fund her IRA. I grew up high middle class income(in middle school, I was surprised to see other kids living in apartments and mobile homes).Today as an individual, I’d bet that I would medal on this board as a frugalist.

    #233525 Reply
    Liked by Tim
    Avatar SValleyMD 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 462
    Joined: 05/12/2016

    My mother in law was always poor.. then became a widow on welfare. She the married a guy she met online who has a 9 figure net worth (owns short stay rehab centers.. thank you Medicare)..

    She can spend money like you’ve never seen.. he can too.. (they just spent >250k on our last family vacation)

    The new money types (lottery, marriage, athletes) probably are different than the self made millionaire professionals who grinded away.

    #233529 Reply
    Liked by wonka31
    Avatar jhwkr542 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1312
    Joined: 02/15/2016

    I doubt that would hold true over large studies. How many lottery winners, athletes, and entertainers end up broke?

    #233536 Reply
    fatlittlepig fatlittlepig 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1193
    Joined: 01/26/2017

    i actually don’t think there is a correlation

    Avatar danesgod 
    Participant
    Status: Spouse
    Posts: 76
    Joined: 09/12/2017

    i actually don’t think there is a correlation

    Click to expand…

    I agree with FLP. I think its less about whether you grew up poor/middle class/rich and more about the mindset of your parents with regard to money. My parents were fiscally conservative, lower middle class, my wife’s parents we’re wealthy but lived with a scarcity mindset (immigrants). We both finished college in 2009 and saw a lot of people without jobs. We both tend to be conservative fiscally, and tend toward super-saver.

    Certainly someone has some actual data on this…?

    #233541 Reply
    q-school q-school 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2629
    Joined: 05/07/2017

    it depends on what you mean by poor.  there is an abundance of economic data that people on welfare spend as soon as they get money because if they don’t someone will take it.  so might as well spend it on something you want than have someone take it away from you to settle existing debts.  they can’t easily escape that mindset.  it’s like an adult version of the marshmallow test.

     

    #233549 Reply
    Liked by BT, RocDoc, CordMcNally
    Lordosis Lordosis 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1823
    Joined: 02/11/2019

    The spending habits of me and my siblings are vastly different. Same house. Same parents. Same school. Only a few years apart. They are not physicians but are high income professionals.
    Small study size…

    “Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right.”

    #233575 Reply
    CordMcNally CordMcNally 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2817
    Joined: 01/03/2017

    it depends on what you mean by poor.  there is an abundance of economic data that people on welfare spend as soon as they get money because if they don’t someone will take it.  so might as well spend it on something you want than have someone take it away from you to settle existing debts.  they can’t easily escape that mindset.  it’s like an adult version of the marshmallow test.

     

    Click to expand…

    I will usually go through a Reddit Personal Finance binge about every few weeks or so and many of the people in the lower socioeconomic class describe this and how it affects them. It’s a real thing.

    “But investing isn’t about beating others at their game. It’s about controlling yourself at your own game.”
    ― Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

    #233577 Reply
    Liked by q-school, RocDoc
    Avatar wideopenspaces 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1137
    Joined: 01/12/2016

    it depends on what you mean by poor.  there is an abundance of economic data that people on welfare spend as soon as they get money because if they don’t someone will take it.  so might as well spend it on something you want than have someone take it away from you to settle existing debts.  they can’t easily escape that mindset.  it’s like an adult version of the marshmallow test.

     

    Click to expand…

    I mean,  if in the marshmallow test children were told it was the only food they’d get that day and if they didn’t eat it immediately someone else would.  . . I don’t think it’s the same- they aren’t spending the money because they’re impulsive,  they’re spending it because psychologically they can’t wrap their heads around the idea that the money will still be there if they save it. I grew up qualifying for free lunch while my dad was doing his PhD and had 5 kids with a mom that stayed home. We were poor but not living in poverty. So I struggle in a different way– feeling like we have enough saved away,  despite having more savings than most people in the US. It is very interesting to me- the way our childhood follows us throughout our lives and shows up in different ways.

    #233595 Reply
    Liked by Roentgen, Tim, Zaphod
    Avatar Kamban 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2484
    Joined: 08/01/2016
    Being very thrifty since you grew up being poor?

    Click to expand…

    How you deal with being poor will determine what lessons you impart to your kids

    Poor but spending money on latest iphones, SUV, cigarettes, and living paycheck to paycheck – your children will do the same.

    Poor but spending on essentials and not on luxuries and saving even a little out of that meager earnings – your children will grow up thrifty even if they become middle class or rich.

    #233601 Reply
    Liked by wonka31, Roentgen
    CordMcNally CordMcNally 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2817
    Joined: 01/03/2017

    Poor but spending money on latest iphones, SUV, cigarettes, and living paycheck to paycheck – your children will do the same.

    Click to expand…

    Generally the truly poor don’t have the latest iphones or (especially) SUVs. It’s typically the bottom of the middle class that do these things that then cause them to live paycheck to paycheck.

    “But investing isn’t about beating others at their game. It’s about controlling yourself at your own game.”
    ― Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

    #233608 Reply
    Liked by Roentgen
    MPMD MPMD 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2488
    Joined: 05/01/2017

    you buy some nicer stuff.

    you learn what you value, and what was just money being spent for sake of spending.

    then you learn to value time and experiences.

    then you start thinking about legacy.

     

    Click to expand…

    damn i’m tempted to tape that to my bathroom mirror

    #233612 Reply
    Liked by mkintx, Roentgen, Tim

Reply To: Do people who grow up poor tend to spend less money even when they're not poor

In case of a glitch or error, please save your text elsewhere, clear browser cache, close browser, open browser and refresh the page.

Notifications Mark all as read  |  Clear