View Full Version : For those of us who earn lower incomes

Zoe Girl
4-14-11, 9:08am
and do something we love or do a job that is important to society or earn less to care for family or others, can we get a boost today?

I had a lovely dinner with friends and it was good but had a 'moment'. The husband has been out of work for awhile and I found a job that is in his area but pays a little less than I earn, and I got the feeling they were not going to have him try for it. I am not sure why it bothers me.

4-14-11, 9:14am
Absolutely you can get a boost today Zoe Girl. I think it's great that you are doing something you find valuable and important.

My main job, SAHM, obviously pays nothing, but it's very rewarding. My other job at a coffee shop doesn't pay much either but it's so much fun I'd probably do it for free.

4-14-11, 12:39pm
I took out my comment after I posted

4-14-11, 12:45pm
I am not sure why it bothers me.

Why pick up another's self-imposed burden?

4-14-11, 2:10pm
Personally, I look at people who are doing what has to be done to make it, even if it isn't pleasant or it seems beneath their skill level, with a lot more respect. The last thing I want to hear from someone is griping about being out of work when they are refusing legitimate opportunities (don't know if your friend does this, but I have experienced it IRL). I know someone who has been out of work for nearly 2 years and who has a CDL from volunteer work at his church...but he won't even consider driving jobs, because those are manual labor and he wants a professional position. People can work really hard at not working, LOL.

I have also learned not to pass on jobs to people very often. I tend to get emotionally invested when I do that. Maybe email them a job if they have asked you to look out, but then don't follow up with them. Its his decision to make a go of it or not. From reading your posts, it sounds like you really enjoy your job! I wouldn't let that guy get you down, because it seems this job has brought a lot of contentment and opportunities for you.

4-14-11, 3:00pm
Personally, I look at people who are doing what has to be done to make it, even if it isn't pleasant or it seems beneath their skill level, with a lot more respect. The last thing I want to hear from someone is griping about being out of work when they are refusing legitimate opportunities

It's actually totally rational for someone trained in a field to refuse to take a job totally outside of it, when they still have hope of getting a job in their field. It mostly amounts to not throwing years of experience and training away (but they could still look for work in their field while flipping burgers? Maybe, it depends on how much such jobs drain in time and energy). True 2 years of active job hunting may be time to throw in the towel on a career.

There's low paid and there's low paid too. There's low paid because you are doing work you believe in, say working in non-profits and believe in the change you are making in the world (such people are usually obscenely over-educated btw), and there's just low paid grunt work that you don't even believe in and that has nothing to do with what your trained to or want to do.

4-18-11, 7:13pm
I'm in this situation, and I feel a bit bothered from time to time, too. Mostly, I'm happy with what I do and how I contribute to the world, but every once in a while, I let others' expectations weigh me down.

My family lives very frugally. We have one car, which hubby takes to work and school. I homeschool my son (13) and, for the past 2.5 years, work three days a week at the thrift shop (Goodwill) at the end of the neighborhood (a 20-minute walk). I'm college educated and have about half the credits for my Master's (though I have no plans to finish). My extended family isn't so happy with my choices, and in a way I can understand why. Hubby, son and I live very hand-to-mouth. Still, it hurts to hear about it so often. Also, Goodwills, at least in the Austin area, are known for hiring the unhire-able - people with drug offenses and various felonies, etc. I'd say at least 75% (maybe as high as 90%) of the people employed at the GW stores here would fit this description. Consequently, customers generally assume I "got caught" at something. Maybe the other employees do, too. I haven't said otherwise, so I would assume they do.... Sometimes, this is a little difficult for me. I don't particularly like being thought of as stupid or low class or criminal - all of which my job sort of implies about me.

However, there are things I *love* about my job. I love being able to help very poor people (who might not otherwise be able to afford bedding or cookware or clothing) function in our gotta-have-it culture. I love extending the useful lives of objects and keeping things out of landfills. I love not having to work for a company that I feel is hurting, rather than helping, society. (For instance, I once worked for a lotions and potions shop whose products all contained at least four parabens - even the "natural" products. There was nothing they sold that I would use on myself or my family.) So, though it's low-paying, it's not a bad job, in and of itself. When people look down their noses at me, though, I have a hard time lifting my head up high....

4-18-11, 8:19pm
I have two bachelor's degrees. I totally love my job working with special needs kids. I make 50 cents an hour more than my own special needs son does working at the grocery store.

Zoe Girl
4-19-11, 10:11am
ahh junco, I know. I got my review and raise at Target and it is still hard (I would have had an excellent review except for lots of tardies after I moved). I am glad that is just my part timer job

4-19-11, 10:56am
I made half of what I used to make in corporate last year....but I only work part time and it pays all of my bills and savings. I am rich in time, fantastic relationships, knowledge (3 degrees), and have my own business. It's not how much you make....it's what you do with that money :)

4-19-11, 11:11am
It probably bothers you Zoe Girl for the same reasons it bothers me - that, unfortunately, many people still define "success" with the amount of money they earn rather than by the job they do. So your friend may find that, solely based on the lower income that job you found him pays, he would consider it beneath him. I have always found this to be both sad and crazy! Most people who do the most good for society seem to be in the lower income brackets - or no income such as a SAHP. Most caregivers, rescue workers, non-profits, teachers, law enforcement, etc... make a much needed contribution to society and should be lauded rather than looked upon with distain because the job isn't galmorous or high paying. And it's even especially sad to see people who will turn up their noses at a job in this economy just because it isn't as high paying as they feel they deserve.

4-19-11, 1:15pm
My dh and I choose to work less and make less for our lifestyles. We are older, so we can just make it on what we make, but sometimes it seems such a low amount of money. Then I enjoy getting our government credit, cheaper prescriptions, and paying hardly any tax.

I enjoy sleeping in as much as I like and hanging around the house reading and gardening and playing flute. there is no amount of income that can equal these benefits.

Just enjoy your work and remember no amount of money can equal doing what you want to do with your life.

4-19-11, 7:22pm
I'm a self-employed artist and have made just enough to support myself and 2 cats for the last 30+ years. (Not the same 2 cats, obviously!) I live frugally and do without a lot of stuff that most people seem to find indispensible, but I love my life and wouldn't change it for more money and/or security in some 9-5 job. The last 10 years or so have been difficult, art is the first thing people stop buying when things get tight, and last year was the first time I didn't have to pay any taxes at all because I didn't make enough money to tax. This year I had to pay some Soc. Sec. self-employed tax so things are looking up! I have high hopes for this summer's art fair season.