Dealing with casual insults from family

How to explain ERE, arranging family matters
enigmaT120
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Location: Falls City, OR

Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by enigmaT120 » Wed May 31, 2017 11:34 am

GandK wrote:
Tue May 30, 2017 8:31 pm
(b) if you're sitting around with so much money that you don't need to expend effort any longer in order to get it, your charitable giving has not been what it ought.
That never even occurred to me. Interesting idea. I hope I don't adopt it.

IlliniDave
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by IlliniDave » Wed May 31, 2017 12:19 pm

Sclass wrote:
Sun May 28, 2017 9:42 pm

When I announced my retirement and explained my means to my closest friends and family it hit them like a left hook KO blow. People I thought were very close to me began to distance themselves. Of course they knew what I was doing all along, they just couldn't accept it gracefully. It has been lonely but I still prefer to be on my own after the shallowness of my friendships was revealed.
This seems very foreign to my expectations, so maybe I should beware of the possibility a little more. But then again, for the most part I truly don't care what most of the people I currently associate with day-to-day think. I actively disassociate my self from people who tend to be judgemental, so maybe I engineered a more receptive audience by accident.

I haven't been shy about sharing my intent to check out. I've even inspired a couple other people to give ER serious consideration. Maybe because I'll be 55 makes it generally more acceptable along with the aging parents several states away "excuse". Of all the people who I've mentioned it to, only a couple of female acquaintances have reacted negatively, and I think that was not so much about my age when bowing out but rather the part where I close up shop and head more than 1,000 miles to a place where there are no Joneses, (180 degrees opposite the direction to the nearest beach), and therein foiling ideas they'd been entertaining. It sounds a bit arrogant to say that, I know.

I've been a little more careful around my family, but they seem generally favorable too since intertwined with all of it is me "coming home" for at least part of the year. Of course I'll probably do a little sandbagging on the lifestyle front--because of their politics if they decide I'm a "rich b@stard" I'll be sentenced to listening to political snark for the rest of my life. Better to play up the sub-median "fixed income" angle ;) .

Salathor
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by Salathor » Wed May 31, 2017 1:23 pm

Tyler9000 wrote:
Sun May 21, 2017 3:25 pm
Have you considered that perhaps you're projecting a Scrooge-like unhealthy relationship with money? I'm not saying you should spend more, but maybe you should be more cognizant of how you present your lifestyle to others. Stop talking about frugality and start talking about the positive things you do with your life.
Great quote. This is something that I need to keep in mind, as well. My wife and I both love to talk about frugality, and my brother is even more on-board with ERE than we are (he's on track to FIRE at 31ish, while we're looking at 34 or so), but I think my parents need a little easing in (although my dad retired at 45 without knowing anything about the concept of FIRE.

I need to switch gears away from talking about NOT SPENDING to talking about ACTIVITIES that don't require spending. This is difficult when so many people talk about spending as a positive option. I recently rode to the city dump with a friend and he pointed out three-four restaurants in town that I've never noticed, and he commented that he'd like to eat at all of them. I've lived here seven years and never thought about any of them once.

Maybe I need to start "being the change I want to see" and just pointing out free, fun things throughout the day.

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Sclass
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by Sclass » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:11 am

IlliniDave wrote:
Wed May 31, 2017 12:19 pm

I haven't been shy about sharing my intent to check out. I've even inspired a couple other people to give ER serious consideration. Maybe because I'll be 55 makes it generally more acceptable along with the aging parents several states away "excuse".
I help manage my mom's care. It is kind of like my new job now. This is a way to explain quitting my job. It works on some people. "He's leaving to look after an aging parent. Great guy that Sclass. " Right.

With siblings it is complex. The act of moving closer to my mom has made them upset. I'm no psychologist but I think it is a sibling rivalry thing. At the end of the day even though they don't want to, they cannot leave their jobs and lifestyles to look after my mom's affairs. Worse, acknowledging that I am further diminishes their perceived efficacy. Seriously, these people are hyper competitive from the womb. On top of that, they want to bow out of any responsibility for helping my mom.

So by saying, "cool Sclass, thanks for looking after mom" suggests they are not. That cannot be in their world. I think. I'm just guessing. I get the idea they avoid me because they are avoiding responsibility but also because it's a blow to their ego that they just cannot do what I've done...or been drafted to do.

I think one sibling simply wont acknowledge I have money or that I don't have money or that I actually take care of my mom. It's a coping mechanism...I think. Like if she doesn't face things they aren't happening. This is the sister who has been hyper competitive since our births...she's better than me in everything in her mind and has spent a lot of effort trying to establish that. Somehow she cannot really win this one, that is, I'm either the loser who doesn't work, or the guy who lost his (infererior to her) career to take care of mom. But not both. Because that would mean she's not doing something very well compared to me. It's really odd. I haven't really gotten my mind around it. Just thinking out loud here.

Good luck with things. I generally didn't react to what people thought either. But, I sure have noticed people distancing themselves. I've also noticed the bad mouthing behind my back. At the end of the day people are envious animals.

IlliniDave
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by IlliniDave » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:30 am

Sclass wrote:
Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:11 am

With siblings it is complex. The act of moving closer to my mom has made them upset. I'm no psychologist but I think it is a sibling rivalry thing. At the end of the day even though they don't want to, they cannot leave their jobs and lifestyles to look after my mom's affairs. Worse, acknowledging that I am further diminishes their perceived efficacy. Seriously, these people are hyper competitive from the womb. On top of that, they want to bow out of any responsibility for helping my mom.

...

Good luck with things. I generally didn't react to what people thought either. But, I sure have noticed people distancing themselves. I've also noticed the bad mouthing behind my back. At the end of the day people are envious animals.
Maybe you are more observant than I am, and things are going on around me that I don't pick up on. My family are not an overly competitive bunch, so in that I am lucky. I am also the oldest of the siblings so me being the "responsible one" fits their outlook. Either way, I live 600+ miles away from them right now so I don't think I bubble up far in their attention queue. In the end, I guess I won't know until I get there. Envy is something I wouldn't be surprised to encounter. Especially from one of my BILs. About all I can do is be respectful, and not show up looking like the dude in the card and throwing money around. :mrgreen: Being 400 miles away at the cabin a good chunk of the warm season (when family obligations allow) should help--outta sight, outta mind.

This is slightly off topic, but related. I was speaking with one of my aunts a couple weeks back (the one who sent me the card). She retired from a tenured position at Syracuse at 69 and moved back to the old home town two years ago. Her net worth is probably $2M, give or take, no spouse or kids. She drives a 12-year-old Toyota and wants to buy a new one, but says she's afraid to because she doesn't want people (i.e., my siblings, their spouses, and their kids) to think she has money because she thinks (not completely without reason) they will start looking to her to function as a bank for them. She is stressed over how it would look to tell them to buzz off while she's driving a shiny new car around. She didn't ER, obviously, but the moral of the story is that it can definitely be awkward and stressful to be the financial outlier in a family. I fall somewhere between her and my parents/siblings, so maybe I'll escape notice.

halfmoon
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by halfmoon » Thu Jun 01, 2017 9:57 pm

I've been following this thread and trying to figure out why it hasn't been an issue for me in 37 years of frugality. I've always been the bossy, opinionated one of the family; that probably helps. Being an accountant doesn't hurt either; my family look to me for financial advice, which only reinforces the bossy/opinionated thing. Then there's DH's FU attitude about pretty much everything.

Regarding friends: most of our friends have also been clients or at least advice-seeking at various times, so they tend to worship at the altar. :lol: We do have one client-based friend who likes to make insulting "funny" comments that slide into off-base ethnic slurs. For example: he calls us 'Jews in a junkyard', which I find offensive (we're not Jewish, which is beside the point) but don't press because he doesn't get it...and also client.

Now that I think about it, my father used to make all sorts of longing comments about how I was supposed to be a lawyer or a Senator, but that had less to do with money than not 'fulfilling my potential'. Funny thing, though: about 20 years ago, he started bragging about the things DH and I had done and telling me that I was the only one of his children who was happy in life.

Bottom line: make yourself happy, communicate your happiness to your family and friends, and don't worry about the rest. No rancor, no need to prove everyone else wrong. Just live well.

Frugalitifree
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by Frugalitifree » Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:09 am

bridgebetween wrote:
Tue May 30, 2017 1:39 pm
Fugalitfree,

Welcome fellow Irishman.
Thanks Bridgebetween. I have been on this journey just a short time. Naturally frugal, having stumbled across Jacob's book and the general approach recently I'm an instant convert. The saving and finding ways around over spending are coming along nicely - 80% this month on a relatively low wage. Would love to getting chatting to people living in our country about how they approach investing. Im a complete newbie in this regard and have no idea of the most tax efficient approach, lowest cost etc. Would you be up for pm'ing a little re same?

Apologies if I've taken the thread off on a tangent!

bridgebetween
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by bridgebetween » Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:32 am

Yes, PM me here and I will reply.

BB.

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Viktor K
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Re: Dealing with casual insults from family

Post by Viktor K » Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:03 am

I'm quite defiant and happy to express and embrace my differences in opinion, lifestyle, etc. with friends and family, so long as it doesn't turn in to a mess of emotions. If they don't approve, I couldn't care less! If they seem super firm in their evaluations then maybe later I'll have a minor epiphany where I realize some of the logic in their views, but in the moment I'm more than happy to be the odd one out and go against the trend.

However, with strangers or people I don't know too well, even people on this forum, I'm far less expressive, timid, and worried about what they may think and how they may disapprove of what I do or say.

I don't know why this is. Anyone else like this?

I think this is why I like being in China. I can just loud-mouth freely on the metro because chances are nigh that anyone around has any idea what I'm saying :D

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