Financial woes

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So ended up discussing finances with my dad yesterday and the picture is grim. I don’t think our family can afford weddings of 2 girls. So it seems however much I want to get married, maybe putting it off is the thing to do. Of the two of us sisters, I have a more stable career at the moment, seems its best to therefore focus on getting my sister married.  Atleast one of us should have a good family life, she is younger by 5 years, so now is the right time for her to start looking.

I also realised that my dad doesn’t really think I am good enough wife material. I don’t know if I should be sad or angry at this or just take it as generational disconnect. I have got feelers from him before too about how I may studied too much and focused too much on my career earlier. To be honest, this was more my parents’ perception than my actual thoughts. I had wanted to get married at 25-26. I had seen my sisters in law getting married at 22-23 and have seen how now in their late 30s they are enjoying a lot of things, with the children in their early teens. I had always wanted to be a young mother. But that is not going to happen anymore. There are exactly 10 days now for me to turn 30. My sister however can focus on her family life and her career if the family finally agrees with me to marry her off first.

Back to the finances, I think I may have to move to humble lodgings, it would be nice probably to get myself into a working women’s hostel. The rents are becoming prohibitive in my city and the deposits for rental accommodation are even higher. I may have to cut back a little more on my expenses and rent would be a good place to start. If not this new lease, then later. Right now I am still working under the assumption that I may get married someday, but I have to start thinking of what if it never happens or doesn’t happen when I can still afford some aspects of it.

Sometimes I am very bitter about all this. All my 20s I was surrounded by people who really enjoyed their youth, went out, met a lot of people, travelled a lot. Money was a huge issue for me and so I couldn’t do much of that. The only luxury I have allowed myself is accommodation closer to work, not even first class accommodation, just close to work so I don’t have to burn myself out with travel. I lived away once but it had a bad effect on my health. At 30 now, instead of getting a more relaxed and a better lifestyle, I think I may have to downgrade even more. I know it could have been worse and that’s the only thing that keeps me somewhat grounded. I pray to God, it will work out better.

Moving, PMS and other annoying things

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So my lease gets over end of April and my landlady doesn’t want to renew it. That means I have to find a new place by then and so far all the places I have seen are very costly. There is only one that is within my budget but that also I will have to compromise a little on my lifestyle to get into. Its completely unfurnished so I will have to invest in some basic furniture. The house hunt itself has been very humbling, in as much as pointing to the state of my finances.

As you know, boyfriend lives in a different city and he comes from a more privileged background. His move to the new city has also been facilitated in some ways by his folks, they have deeper pockets. Boyfriend earns more than me and has moved to a city which is less costlier than mine. I just feel its all a little unfair because I have worked hard enough and long enough and my life style instead of improving is just declining. The realities of adult life suck. And there are no gold stars or satin ribbons to be earned if you are a functional adult taking care of your own finances and life.

The fact that I may not even have the kind of lifestyle my parents had, when economies were simpler, makes me very depressed. Infact, the cycle of disillusionment with my own career choices has come to such a level I even resent what the boyfriend has. He got so worked up today asked me if I wanted him to live like an ascetic so that I would get company. When put like that I know that its wrong of me to put the burden of my disappointments on him.

However the cost dynamic and every thing else included has made me doubt all my decisions. I don’t know if I can sustain things like lay offs or other economic horrors that are becoming everyday in our country now. It seems like to be relevant at your work place requires much more effort now. The rewards however are smaller.

How do I keep the realities from discouraging me and making me bitter? There is so much that I am struggling with and the only thing I can come up with is I am a self made person. Have repaid the money I borrowed from my parents for my education and do send them money every month. I try to save for myself and have some insurance amount and some locked deposits. I am trying in a lot of ways to be a responsible person.

Then again I know the kind of depression I radiate is not attractive. I marvel at times that boyfriend is still around. I have been a nut case for close to a year now and unless something changes externally in my life, I feel I will become well and truly crazy. I come to my senses for a few days and then PMS happens. Frankly, I just want to stay still and be happy about everything in my life, just some peace and the knowledge that everything is going to be alright.

I also realise part of my current disillusionment is that I dreamt way too high and expected a lot more. I came from a very humble background and I expected to be super rich within just 5 years of working. I expected the salary I currently have atleast 3 years ago. To be honest, I was also misled by the boom climate prior to 2007, when I was just a student. I had heard of many who started earning 6 figures in 3-4 years, but then 2008 happened. I also had always been very clear about expectations like marriage and engagement in my relationships. I did tell my current man I wanted to be engaged within a year. Its year 3 and neither has engagement happened nor have I been able to simply move on. It has now become like a bone of contention. Added to that, his life and career has gone from strength to strength. He completed an MBA, got a good job after a one month wait. I am still at the same job and my increments have been slow. I just feel a little cheated by life at times because I used to be a straight As student, never got into any trouble as a kid and always surpassed what was expected of me. So this adult life, one without gold stars and satin ribbons or even the occasional pat on the shoulder, I am taking it very hard.

Have any of you felt jealous of other more privileged people around you, or even your own partner? Have you ever felt you have put in so much into everything and you are just running on empty but you are trapped? I discussed the possibility of quitting my job and moving back home with my folks and finding something there. It wasn’t well received, turns out the situation at home is also quite bad and my salary is necessary. Suddenly I felt a sense of panic about just how important jobs are for all of us and especially for those who have children to feed. No wonder a lot of kids think their parents are uncool. Its not so much as uncool, its more like the parents are just doing whatever needs to be done and don’t have the luxury of enterprise that the teen has.

Ok, that’s a lot of disjointed thoughts.

James J Need

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