How Poor Have You Been?

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  1. cobrien profile image63
    cobrienposted 10 years ago

    Have you ever gone hungry so your kids could be full? Have you ever had to turn the power back on yourself? Have you ever had to go to St. Vincent De Paul for diapers? How poor have you been and why?

    1. Laura Matkin profile image68
      Laura Matkinposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, yes and no.  I was on my own at 16 with a baby girl.  I worked at Hardees and a local factory to get by.  Lucky for me I had great family support and never was so bad off that I had to go get charity although I should have looking back my life would have been much easier.  I had too much pride.

    2. Laura Matkin profile image68
      Laura Matkinposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Have any of you ever had a wish sandwich?   I bet you did and didn't know it.. It's 1 or 2 pieces of bread and you wish something was between them or a piece of Bologna or ham and you wish you had bread.   lol   Wish Sandwich!  Old times so I can laugh now!

    3. Shinkicker profile image92
      Shinkickerposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Poorest I've been is sitting in a cold dark house with no electricity during a November freeze-up. Thankfully there was a gas fire and cooker plus I bought candles for light. I went to bed in my coat and trousers. Oh happy days :-) Because in December I was homeless. True story.

    4. profile image49
      Emmanuel50posted 10 years agoin reply to this

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    5. kathyinmn profile image59
      kathyinmnposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Oh, I had my ups and downs, but I have been poor most of my life. I grew up in poverty.
      During the crash, both Joe and I lost our jobs together and we had our Christmas meal via the food shelve. I posted a hub about it and the great need for the food shelves today.
      Well any way, once again I am laid off from work and I have not gotten my unemployment check yet, so I went to the food shelve to get some food for the house.
      I am on my down cycle again but I am sure I will swing the other way some day.

  2. kirstenblog profile image82
    kirstenblogposted 10 years ago

    I have slept rough, been homeless and gone gone hungry. Hungry enough that I suffered stomach problems for years and they still can crop up today if I skip to many meals. I get a really bad pain in my gut that leaves me doubled over. The only thing that has helped is by maintaining a healthy diet. It is getting on for 10 years since I was homeless and hungry.

    1. Keri Summers profile image73
      Keri Summersposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Glad that you got safely off the streets Kirstenblog, and hope that your stomach problems continue to improve.

    2. seanorjohn profile image75
      seanorjohnposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Kirstenblog, I hope you live a happy and full life. People often call me an idiot for giving money to people on the streets. But I always think we just can't walk on by. There are so many genuine cases that we should not be so concerned about the tricksters.

  3. cobrien profile image63
    cobrienposted 10 years ago

    Compared to where I have been, I am doing great now. But, I have had it rough. I am so much stronge for it, and now that my kids ae older, they are more appreciative. Yet, I am still not where I need to be. One minor accident and we could be there again.

  4. SoManyPaths profile image57
    SoManyPathsposted 10 years ago

    Well, through college I was poor eating 25cents ramen, bananas, just cheap food. As an adult not so much but I did have to stay at parent house for a few months when market crashed in 2000.

  5. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image90
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 10 years ago

    Yes, I indeed have gone hungry so my kids could eat. Years ago, I was divorced with two very small children, and an unexpected bill hit one month. For 30 days, I had to monitor food so it would stretch the entire month. At night, I fed my children (not much, mund you, but enough to give them supper), and i ate only if they didn't eat it all. They got a lunch at daycare (which I paid for - no assistance here). But I couldn't make it through my work day without at least something, so I brought in a loaf of bread and a pack of hotdogs, and allowed myself one piece of bread and one hotdog a day, so it would last.

    I got through it, and it taught me a lot. Even hard-working people can go through awful times. After that low point, I put myself through college, then through a grad degee, all while working full-time, so I could get a better career. Today, I do volunteer work helping people find employment.

    It's very true that these trials make you stronger. While I wouldn't exactly sign up for poverty or hunger, I wouldn't trade the strength I've gained for anything

    1. cobrien profile image63
      cobrienposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Well said!

  6. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image90
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 10 years ago

    Oh geez - excuse, please, my typos! Trying to write this on a handheld mobile. Bad idea! So sorry!

  7. Pcunix profile image92
    Pcunixposted 10 years ago

    Poor enough that a welfare person came around offering assistance when our first child was born prematurely.

    We turned down the offer because we felt we were doing well enough.  Odd, I had not thought of that in any years.

    1. cobrien profile image63
      cobrienposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Wow! I will give a dollar when I really can't spare it and I thought I was the only one. What comes around goes around. Most people don't see it that way, though. Your story is touching.

      1. JayeWisdom profile image88
        JayeWisdomposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I've been poor, but not destitute, and I've also been "comfortable", but not wealthy. I'm retired now, but did so earlier than expected due to health, so my income decreased substantially. I wasn't really prepared for retirement, so it's been a challenge, but one I've handled.

        Cobrien....I've noticed that many people who don't have much are likely to donate what they can to others in need, even if it's a small amount, while many who have more than they need don't even consider doing so. Perhaps it's because the former know what it's like to be in need, while the latter don't know... and may not even care.

  8. profile image55
    SanXuaryposted 10 years ago

    When I reach poverty it is always food where I get trapped. I buy potatoes and rice and frozen vegetables and live on it until life improves. Its pretty amazing what you can do with just that. I lasted an entire month easy on 35 dollars in food.

    1. IzzyM profile image89
      IzzyMposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      You got that right! It is possible to live on next to nothing. Learning to cook is the best thing we can teach our children. We don't need Big Macs in our lives.

      1. Keri Summers profile image73
        Keri Summersposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I think this is a really good point.  If you have basic cooking and shopping skills, knowing what to choose and what goes far, it makes such a difference.  Fast food can sound cheap and good value if you don't know how cheaply you can feed yourself from basic ingredients.

        1. IzzyM profile image89
          IzzyMposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Most people don't have those skills. It is almost unbelievable to me that in this day of education for all, a young person would automatically pick up what they are told is the cheapest in the supermarket and believe they are shopping well.

          Huge sign in a supermarket - BUY 8ozs can of fresh salmon - ONLY $16! Right below it is 1oz cans of the same salmon for .49cents a tin.

          Right to save anyone's brain cells from overflow, there are 16ozs per lb.
          If 8 oz is $16, then 16oz is $32.

          1oz is a sixteenth of that and should be $2. (32/16)

          If we do not teach our children basic math, then they are held up to ridicule, or worse, rip-off supermarket prices.

          I remember shopping with my mother in a supermarket about two years ago.

          They were selling tomato ketchup I think it was.

          The 8oz bottle was £ 1,36.

          The 16oz bottle, surrounded by load of hype and stickers, was £3.10 - but this was the bargain of the century - never again could you buy this ketchup so cheaply etc.

          My mother automatically put it in our basket, till I did the maths.

          Teach your children how to count. That's all I am saying. MY mother knew better than me; perhaps this was at the start of her Alzheimers.

          How many more of our pensioners, or our young folk, are being ripped off like this?

          1. Hollie Thomas profile image60
            Hollie Thomasposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Don't know f you saw the program last night, Izzy, on ITV (or Scottish equivalent) about the new food co-operatives being set up by people. They're cutting out the big supermarkets and buying in bulk- mostly organic and fair trade foods, but they're halving their shopping bills.

      2. cobrien profile image63
        cobrienposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Ramen noodle soup is probably the first thing a poor kid learns to cook. You can do a lot with then though, if you think about it.

  9. profile image0
    Deborah Sextonposted 10 years ago

    Thank God, I've never been poor.

  10. profile image55
    SanXuaryposted 10 years ago

    Some people think its a bad thing to be poor and yes it is no fun but its a lesson that changes your whole view on life if you accept and learn from it. Being poor did not change what I am when I was wealthy. It changed my point of view on what it is that I really need in life. So many people are killing themselves, their family and relationships and others in the pursuit of tools that are useless when they really need something.

  11. lokoyizone profile image68
    lokoyizoneposted 10 years ago

    It is as bad an experience as can be. Presently I am as poor as poor can be, I am still going through the toughest and trying period in my entire life.So far.

  12. GmaGoldie profile image77
    GmaGoldieposted 10 years ago

    "Lack" is a chapter of life that is hard for everyone. We live through it but what we do in the next chapter is the real testament. Do we remember? Do we help?

    So many are hurting. So many are disguising the hurt. So sad that we hide our real positions.

    Honesty with the world, I hope is broadened with the Internet. We all suffer, yet we all can help with a kind word. Humanity needs to recognize the common thread of emotions. Lack has affected many of us, as well as grief over a loved one.

    I met a women who had no one die close to her - same age as me. Couldn't comprehend her life.

    Anyone out there who has never known "need" - not want but "need". I couldn't fathom that but I know people like that exist.

    From what I read about Jackie Kennedy, even thought she was brought up in a wealthy home, it appeared she was concerned with wealth. Her values established from her family were wealth was status and a necessity of life. Which would explain her marriage to Onassis. I heard rumblings that her children were not in the favor of the Onassis marriage but some of her friends equated the marriage as a safety net she wanted for her children. The value of money is different for each of us so hearing how the wealthy view money as safety too is interesting. From the poor where money is safety and survival to the wealthy were money is safety - interesting common human thread.

    Are we ever safe and secure?

  13. CMCastro profile image73
    CMCastroposted 10 years ago

    Poor is an overused word. Without finances is a better way of stating it. I made many mistakes being in relationships with men who did not have any interest in supporting me financially. So I ended up being the "Breadwinner" in the relationship, and it put me in such serious trouble, that I had to file bankruptcy, and that I was evicted twice in a decade, I had car repossession 3 times in the same decade, and I lost employment due to losing my cars and homes. Moving from place to place and having to live in shared households with other families seemed to be the least expensive way to live with lots of conditions to put up with. And having no savings, or life or even health insurance disallows me to live comfortably.
    Being single again, and having a secure fulltime job now, driving a family car that is already paid for, and living in a shared household that allows me to pay weekly rent are ways I have recovered from being "poverty stricken".
    I do not worry about what I don't have, although I rejoice in what I do have.

  14. ThussaysNanaMarie profile image60
    ThussaysNanaMarieposted 10 years ago

    I probably have not been as worse off as some of the above but I had fed my four children two meals a day under one pound. Do you know that including the ends there is an average of 16 slices of bread in a loaf?

    Single parents often learn how to manage money, time and resources. To save on washing costs, after school my children changed straight into pyjamas from school uniforms.

    Why because my circumstances had changed and I had become a single parent.

    1. Hollie Thomas profile image60
      Hollie Thomasposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Been there, still there.

  15. Jlava73 profile image70
    Jlava73posted 10 years ago

    Yes on all questions. When you have had to do those things it makes you realize - not much else can stand in your way. I treasure those experiences because they taught me how to be more resourceful and allowed me to develop a whatever it takes attitude. As they say, it is the most painful lessons from which we learn the most.

  16. Dawn Conklin profile image73
    Dawn Conklinposted 10 years ago

    I have been quite poor myself in the past.  I can't say yes to the food or to the electric as I had resources through my state to help me.  I never actually collected welfare checks but I did receive food stamp assistance.  I also had to take advantage of a program in the state that helps you when you get a shut off notice from the electric company. 

    I live pretty simple so I do know how to manage with less money, it is nice to have the extra money now tho.  If you have cheap rent or put yourself in a house that is more affordable, don't buy an expensive car that you can't pay cash for (I have no problem driving a 15 year old car if needed)-it will help you prevent some bad situations if you were to lose your income.  Right now my bills are very few-rent, gas (for cooking not heat), electric, phone, and cable.  Of course there is extra things for the kids school, but those are my actual bills.  I have no car payments and I don't have credit cards.  I won't get a loan on a vehicle, I have in the past and it is really a big waste of money-sometimes you pay up to $10,000 more then the original price.

    With food, there are many foods that you can cook for cheap.  I grew up without a ton of money so it taught me to live cheaper and you can spoil yourself when you have the extra money smile

  17. profile image0
    Arlene V. Pomaposted 10 years ago

    I tried food stamps when I couldn't find a job, but that lasted less than a week because I was ashamed to use them.  I didn't care to have the checker and customers staring at me to make sure I wasn't buying cigarettes or booze.  I think I bought a jar of peanut butter, and even that was hard to take.  This was right after I graduated from college, and everyone wanted to be Woodward or Bernstein at the time.  I can honestly say that I never had it tough because I always bounced back from my problems and asked God for help and guidance.  I didn't go hungry, and since I don't have children, they didn't have to suffer through my horrible first marriage.  My first husband had this habit of backing his Brinks truck into my bank anytime he wanted, but I finally got smart and fixed that.  I divorced his ass.  Once he knew I had a work ethic, of course he wanted me for a meal ticket.  I found out the hard way that in his case, the apple does not fall far from the tree.

  18. profile image49
    Emmanuel50posted 10 years ago

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  19. prettydarkhorse profile image57
    prettydarkhorseposted 10 years ago

    In my college days I ate salt with rice and noodles!

  20. WryLilt profile image90
    WryLiltposted 10 years ago

    I ate peanut butter sandwhiches while my MIL lived off my husband's money.

    1. kathyinmn profile image59
      kathyinmnposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I remember a time were all I ate was noodles. That was all I had

  21. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 10 years ago

    I was a hippie. We were trained in being poor. We set up a food cooperative. Everyone orders by phone. Buy in bulk at farmer's market.
    Pack it up in someone's garage. Go pick it up. Take turns doing the different jobs. That became corner stores. Those all went out of business eventually.

    1. Hollie Thomas profile image60
      Hollie Thomasposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      They're reemerging in this country, Knol. They may reemerge in yours, was watching a program about it last night and also about a place, I think it was in Bristol. The residents are planting food everywhere, in every little bit of space they have, railway stations, back gardens, front of the council offices- and residents( or whomever needs it) can just pick what they want. Brilliant.

  22. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 10 years ago

    Community gardens. They have had them in San Francisco forever. Course not that many people ever used them. That may be changing now.


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