what it's like to be poor

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Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#1
Have you ever been poor?
Lets share what its REALLY like for those who've never known hardship. Maybe it will start some empathy.

Here are a few things.

Made fun of because you wear secondhand clothes or handme downs. Not because its fashionable but because you just cant afford new ones.

Not ever being able to afford a place of your own. Landlords who threaten to evict you if you dont pay...aleays the threat of homelessness if you cant find anywhere cheap enougn to live.

Toys made of rags and scraps and bits you find in the rubbish. Lego, whats that, who can afford lego?! Santa Claus, who's he? Christmas is just for rich folks.

always being relegated to dead end jobs even if you are highly qualified, maybe cos of your looks ie. race.

Not having land. Or it is so poor there is no essential services like electicity or running water. Nowhere to go or place to call your own. Not being able to afford healthcare such as dentistry.

can only afford cheap goods on a limited weekly wage which break down sooner and are bad quality.

public or free schools are your only options, who can afford a higher education? or private tuition? If you get a scholarship, you just get shunned by richer kids who live in a completely different world than you and dont need to worry about making ends meet or looking after family.

Car, what car? You go everywhere by public transport. Or if there is a car, its second hand.

Being told theres no room for you at the inn. Well actually there IS but you cant afford it.
 

Runningman

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2020
2,943
1,957
113
#3
Have you ever been poor?
Lets share what its REALLY like for those who've never known hardship. Maybe it will start some empathy.

Here are a few things.

Made fun of because you wear secondhand clothes or handme downs. Not because its fashionable but because you just cant afford new ones.

Not ever being able to afford a place of your own. Landlords who threaten to evict you if you dont pay...aleays the threat of homelessness if you cant find anywhere cheap enougn to live.

Toys made of rags and scraps and bits you find in the rubbish. Lego, whats that, who can afford lego?! Santa Claus, who's he? Christmas is just for rich folks.

always being relegated to dead end jobs even if you are highly qualified, maybe cos of your looks ie. race.

Not having land. Or it is so poor there is no essential services like electicity or running water. Nowhere to go or place to call your own. Not being able to afford healthcare such as dentistry.

can only afford cheap goods on a limited weekly wage which break down sooner and are bad quality.

public or free schools are your only options, who can afford a higher education? or private tuition? If you get a scholarship, you just get shunned by richer kids who live in a completely different world than you and dont need to worry about making ends meet or looking after family.

Car, what car? You go everywhere by public transport. Or if there is a car, its second hand.

Being told theres no room for you at the inn. Well actually there IS but you cant afford it.
I was born into poverty. It is a struggle with ups and downs. Most of it is characterized by having a lack of basic necessities like food and clothing. Almost always had a place to live, but only because the landlord didn't kick my family out for not paying rent. Looking back, we probably mostly survived on charity and leniency. We usually had a car, but they weren't ever dependable; they regularly broke down or became entirely inoperable.

Moral of the story, give food/clothing cheerfully to those who are truly in need. You're helping people get through a very hard time and they will remember your kindness for the rest of their life.
 

JaumeJ

Senior Member
Jul 2, 2011
19,068
5,074
113
#4
Here is an opportunity to share the trials and tribulations of poverty. I will not seize it, however it seems to me, heart and soul, that all people wealthy or not share the tribulations of life. Perhaps our Father gave more to some knowing they can handle it.
 

Relic

Active member
Apr 29, 2020
249
104
28
#5
Being poor is no fun but for me it was a boot camp experience.
I vowed to myself that when I grow up, I will never be poor again.
In mid life Jesus came to me, grabbed me and my life changed.
And I will never be poor again. Strangely from toddler to my
seventies, while most of the time we were poor but someone
was watching me. We struggled but never starved, we didn't
want what we didn't need. And love was always the mainstay.
Now I can say I am not rich but yet I have never been poor.
 

TheIndianGirl

Well-known member
Nov 22, 2019
1,465
1,060
113
#6
I felt "poor" when I was in middle school and high school. We were surviving on a single income which wasn't too high. Instead of getting Christmas gifts, we did shopping after Christmas to take advantage of the big sales (which actually made sense). I got most of my clothes from the sales racks. I got my shoes at Payless. I didn't have a car during high school; I think adding me to the insurance would have been burdensome. We had some plumbing issues in the house which never got fixed. My parents also had fights over credit card bills, or on unexpected costs.

I also felt "poor" during college but that was a different/better feeling. Didn't feel quite as hopeless. But, I had some unemployment after college which was terrible.

Thankfully, I haven't felt poor for awhile and I'm grateful for that.
 
K

Kim82

Guest
#7
Pacing around in the supermarket pretending that you're trying to decide what to buy. When really you're just overwhelmed because things are too expensive.

Sitting all day at the public hospital, waiting for your name to be called.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#8
starvation is a shall we say interesting experience that many richer people dont know about if they do not fast regualrly.

when you are starved, all you can think about is your next meal. Everything else is not important, you have to do everything you can to find that sustenance. There is more pressure on if its not just you, but your family and however many children you have. If you have more children it soon becomes 'another mouth to feed' and you have to labour even more to feed them.

You may be willing take on two or more jobs and work night shift to feed them. It will exhaust you, not time for recreation because you are too tired to even think about that.

Kindness and charity become important...you have no resources of your own to get yourself out of the situation, and being too proud to accept help makes things worse off for you.

Going to church for the free meal while those who would never think about going to church to eat do not even sit next to you. when they hear you are unemployed or looking for work some people stop talking to you.

often when you are poor you feel like you have to lie to richer people just so they dont feel awkward around you, when they are talking about their holidays or what they have planned for the weekend...cos for you, there is no plan except to do nothing but sleep since you have worked your butt off all week trying to get through it...
 
K

Kim82

Guest
#9
I got my shoes at Payless
In my country, Payless is expensive. I was so amazed when my cousin who is in America said some persons there are ashamed to shop at Payless. I was like, what?? are you serious??
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#10
Being poor means you are willing to accept any job even if its below minimum wage because you need the money for your next meal. If you have a job at a restaurant or fast food place, at least you might get a free meal from the leftovers.

You are happy if the uniform is provided for your job cos at least they give you something to wear. Being poor means often you have to wear the same clothes everyday as there isnt enough wardrobe or washing facilities to have clean new clothes everyday.
 
K

Kim82

Guest
#11
Proverbs 30:7-9

Two things I ask of you, Lord;
do not refuse me before I die:
8 Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
9 Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
18,183
4,881
113
#12
When i grew up back in the holler
You had a lot if you had a dollar
Five kids in a four post bed
Still had room for a dog named Fred

There was always music and laughin
Flowing out of our little cabin
I grew up on hand-me-downs
Feeling rich on the poor side of town

We were doing alright
On the wrong side of the tracks
But ya know some times
I wish I could go back
I wanna feel them rails
Bumping on the wheels
Of my Pontiac
We were doing alright
On the wrong side of the tracks

When I grew up, I moved to the city
I did alright, but something was missing
Can't find food as good as Mom's
Can't skip stones on a cement pond

Sure wish I had someone to talk to
Wish I could find some woods I could walk to
You can't look at the train and guess
Which side of the tracks is best
 
K

Kim82

Guest
#13
Being poor is no joke
Only the strongest will survive
I lean on the Lord daily
For sometimes I would faint
Jesus my deliverer
In my time of lack
Daily I would cry
Tormented in my soul
But Jesus let me know
Being poor is a blessing
For unless I was troubled
I wouldn't have known Him
My one blessing is patience
For I know it won't last always
This world I'm just a passing through
With my Saviour as my guide.
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
38,164
15,102
113
#14
My parents raised eleven children on my dad's income from his swing-
shift factory job, and other projects he took on to support his family.
 

Socreta93

Senior Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,126
272
83
#15
Being poor means having to buy low quality brands of food because they are cheaper. Although I always buy krafts cheese because cheaper brands make me throw up.
 

Tinkerbell725

Senior Member
Jul 19, 2014
4,151
1,126
113
Philippines Age 40
#16
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The old woman was so happy she was able to buy a cellphone for her grandson after saving for many months from her meager income selling vegetables. They can barely eat three meals a day but the cellphone is needed for the boy's education (online class) during this troubled pandemic times. Their happiness is incomparable to some rich people who are still depressed despite their riches.
 

Tinkerbell725

Senior Member
Jul 19, 2014
4,151
1,126
113
Philippines Age 40
#17
I sometimes see the same homeless man on my way to work before. Everything he owns is in his overloaded bicycle with sidecar. He also has three dogs. He is amazing because, despite his situation, he was able to take care of three dogs. Well, they take care of each other because the dogs protect him from attackers and they help pull the bicycle.

One day I noticed that one of the dogs had puppies. And the man also had a new member in the pack. It was a chicken. The homeless man did not seem to mind being homeless. He was content. I even saw him once dancing with his dog. They looked really happy to me.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#18
homelessnesscan be preferable to the alternative which is an abusive home or a place you cannot afford.
Not so much in winter though.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#19
Things become more precious when you are poor, to a rich person, expensive trinkets become throwaway items and mere crumbs to be discarded. But to someone who is poor, you want to save every scrap and lick every plate.

someone elses trash is your treasure. when its inorganic rubbish collection time, you go round the richer nieghbourhoods for their cast offs. Rich people second hand goods get sold in expensive antique stores, but poor people go to op shops.

at the supermarket you wait till the bread is marked half off before you buy it at the end of the day. poor people wont think twice about dumpster diving if they are really hungry....if you hang round restuarants enough you can dine on left overs. Before it gets to the pigs.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
12,617
4,516
113
#20
Being poor means often the banks wont lend you money with no collatoral so in emergency situations you might end up going to a loan shark and then get deeper in debt with having to pay obscene interest when you cant pay it back. You cant ask any rich relatives because its likely you dont have any.
you might have to hock something at a pawn shop if you desperately need cash.