Lush Living Made Simple

Should We Be More Financially Private? - The Lean Times

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Feb 2, 2011 Debt , , , , , 2 Comments

My long time readers might remember this image from the post Do you have a secret?, where I wrote about keeping your frugal/financial situation to yourself. I am pretty open about telling my friends and some family that I am working toward the goal to be debt free.  I was not always the smartest and let my inner child have too many trinkets paid for on the never, never but now I am a reformed character. Not as much fun but more financially sane.

I must say that I have been criticised and made fun for the extent of which I watch my pennies. Yes, I note where each one goes. I must admit I don’t go out much and the pizza delivery guy doesn’t have a clue to my address but I am quite happy with the situation.

What happens when you do buy something new? Even if you have budgeted for it, which is something only you will know, you still might get a few comments. Does confiding in people backfire on you so they feel free to judge your actions? Do you have to justify your purchase and explain that you sold X number of  items on eBay for the new coat?  Or have taken on a side job?

Would we be better off if we kept our financial situation a  secret? I have cursed myself many times for having exposed more about my financial life than I would have liked.  I also know things about my nearest and dearest which I would rather be left in the dark. I know people close to us have our best interests at heart but they can also use our past weaknesses against us.

I have had people ask how my credit cards are going when I bought something, even though I had not bought anything in months. Does telling the people around you, give them carte blanche to pass judgement? It is a similar situation to being on a diet, when you get a disapproving look from your companion after eating one chip or fry.

Do you lovely readers keep your finances to yourself or are you of the mind it is better to share. Does sharing your situation keep you on the straight and narrow? Please leave me a comment.


Comments

  • Donna Freedman
    Feb 7, 2011 at 4:06 am

    I mention expenditures, such as my upcoming trip to the United Kingdom, but I qualify them by saying that I used frugal hacks to achieve them (frequent flier miles, staying in hostels, etc.). No one has criticized me yet.
    One thing I will not do is reveal my salary, as I was raised not to talk about such personal subjects.
    How much I spend is more of a private than a public struggle. Shouldn’t I be saving this money? Is it all right to travel, or to have an occasional treat?
    I’ve written about it here:
    http://www.donnafreedman.com/2010/10/10/ill-show-you-my-salary-if-youll-show-me-yours/
    and also here:
    http://www.donnafreedman.com/2010/11/11/let-me-eat-cake/
    Interesting comments both times, so I know I’m not the only one who has difficulties with these topics.

  • Shoestring
    Feb 8, 2011 at 8:24 am

    It’s a tricky one isn’t it? I tend not to say too much (surprising for a PF blogger perhaps!). Like you say, revealing information seems to invite comment. I think watching the pennies makes some people uncomfortable as they know they probably ought to too!

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