Feeling more judged than usual?

How to explain ERE, arranging family matters
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Olaz
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Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Olaz » Thu Sep 22, 2016 11:41 pm

I've been feeling more judged recently than I have in the past 3 years. Things like:

"Oh, your room is so empty!" (minimalism)

"Wow, you must be secretly rich!" (ability to pay apartment security deposit in cash)

"I don't trust you." (polyamory, capitalist)

"You're a 9.5/10." (fashion, aesthetics)

"He's a douche."* (INFJ - I don't play well--nor want to--with my extroverted sensing roommates)

"You're not a finance type of guy." (vegan, barefoot, activist)

"Do you live under a rock or what?" (no social media or news)

*To be fair, the roommate that said this to a close friend of mine in a group setting is always nice to me in person and tends to ask for permission to throw parties/move stuff in the common space. This person then talks negatively when I'm not around (a thing the person does not only with me).

----------------------------------

Anyway, what gives? I don't recall having so much feedback about my personal habits over the past 3 years, but now in my last year of college it's been left and right! Do the social pressures and judgments just become more verbal over time?

One of my hypotheses is that my chosen personal habits are having long-term external effects over time (positive net worth, healthy/fit, nice clothing, quality yet less stuff, ability to DIY, etc.) to put me quite a bit of Wheaton Levels above the norm. Naturally, this makes me crazy. So, for example, since I now have close to 40k saved up, I can't relate to my current roommate complaining about whether a $10 purchase will ruin their "budget".

Thoughts? Will the judging/social expectations only worsen as I age ("what do you mean you don't want children!")? Should I display a normalized public persona with the majority of people to avoid their misunderstandings, continue to be myself and to hell with their opinions, or some other alternative?

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theanimal
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by theanimal » Fri Sep 23, 2016 2:07 am

I don't remember the exact saying but this should do. The gopher that sticks out gets the hammer.

The way to avoid this is to live stealthily. That's not always desirable, so you will receive comments from most on just about everything. Personally, I find it pretty lonely a good portion of the time as I can't relate to others completely and form the deeper bonds that many do. It might just be the price to pay for living deliberately.

Another good analogy is the crabs in the bucket. The crabs will always pull back the one that tries to escape. It's the same thing with humans. We are wired to conform and be part of a group. If you act or believe something different, you're questioned and tried to be pulled back in.

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vexed87
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by vexed87 » Fri Sep 23, 2016 3:43 am

I don't think the question you need to ask is will it get worse, as new people will be continually surprised by your different lifestyle. If you are authentic, your close friends and family will already understand and accept you for who you are. Passers by in your life are just that. Those that reject your differences are not worth keeping around for the sake of friendship.

Ask yourself, who are you trying to please, those that 'judge' you, or yourself? For me, I'd rather be authentic than care too much about what others, that is other than people I care deeply about, care about me.

Withholding the whole truth from those who don't need to know everything about you can be a great tool so long as you use it wisely. As theanimal points out, people will make comments, don't look too far into those, they are mostly passing quips, and if I am in the frame of mind and like the person enough, I'll use that moment to try turn some preconceptions on their head.

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Dragline
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Dragline » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:12 am

My guess is that it has very little to do with you per se and has more to do with the fact that your contemporaries are in their last year in college and therefore are at a decision point about what to do next, and are trying to find their own identities. A lot of that angst is just musings about self "coming out" and misdirected towards you.

In other words, meh.

As for the future, you are under no obligation to explain yourself to the world. Unless you really WANT to explain yourself, some measure of stealthiness is usually a good idea just to avoid certain conversations. There is a measure of freedom in anonymity that I don't think younger people appreciate as much as their elders.

"Nothing to see, move along . . . "

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Kriegsspiel
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Kriegsspiel » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:27 am

You aren't as far removed from high school as some of the greybeards here, but you could work on not giving as many fucks as you are giving.

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GandK
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by GandK » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:41 am

It does you no good to be a minimalist on the outside if you're collecting useless crap on the inside. Especially other people's useless crap. Kriegsspiel is right.

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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by RealPerson » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:43 am

Dragline wrote:As for the future, you are under no obligation to explain yourself to the world. Unless you really WANT to explain yourself, some measure of stealthiness is usually a good idea just to avoid certain conversations. There is a measure of freedom in anonymity that I don't think younger people appreciate as much as their elders.
+1. I don't get why young people need to let the world know what they had for breakfast. Some of their stuff will come back to haunt them later in life. What happens in Vegas definitely doesn't stay in Vegas, but what happens online stays online forever.

Your roommate is displaying a lack of emotional intelligence. Hopefully he will grow into it. EI is a vital skill. His disapproval of your lifestyle is a sign of either lack of understanding or jealousy.

As time goes by, you have an opportunity to select people who understand you and get along with you. True friends don't talk behind your back like that. As for coworkers etc, I totally agree with Dragline. Learn to be more stealthy and keep the ERE stuff to yourself. Get better at flying under the radar. Remember that you need to live your life for you. Seeking social approval of your lifestyle is a solid recipe to become a consumer sucker. Only take into account the opinion and advice of people you truly respect, which is the main reason I read these forums.

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Sclass
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Sclass » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:52 am

Wow, some good wisdom here.
theanimal wrote: If you act or believe something different, you're questioned and tried to be pulled back in.
Or pushed out.
Dragline wrote:My guess is that it has very little to do with you per se and has more to do with the fact that your contemporaries are in their last year in college and therefore are at a decision point about what to do next, and are trying to find their own identities. A
. "
It isn't about you, it's about them. Yup. A neighbor of mine is shooting me some glares all week. Every time I see her she's looking dead at me. Could it be she's really mad I'm always out walking around during work hours? Wait a sec, she's always around too recently. She isn't wearing her nice clothes and XYZ.com shirt and hat. Hey I just read XYZ got bought out by another cannibalistic firm this summer. Nope, her frequent glares during the weekdays have nothing to do with me and everything to do with her.

Olaz, be happy your roommate asks for permission to move stuff and party...not to mention being a close friend. Having the other kind of roommates I am already loving the guy.

I've always found friends to be a pickle. One one hand it is really easy to convince them I'm poor. It's like they want to believe I'm broke just because what the eye sees the mind believes. On the other hand they do get nosy and annoying when they observe me buying things they cannot - like time. I can often change their minds by misdirecting them on another subject. For example I was showing an old pal a valve head I just cut by myself and explained I couldn't take it in because I'm broke. He's been running all over town telling all our friends how poor I am lately. I can feel the improvement in our friendship now that he thinks I'm poor again. It's funny how minds just want to be swayed.

Aren't all rental deposits paid in cash?

Good luck. Friends can be annoying. Weren't curious friends the motivation for the MMM website? He tells a story about having to explain it too many times and eventually just creating a website to lay it out.

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cmonkey
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by cmonkey » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:12 am

Dragline wrote:There is a measure of freedom in anonymity that I don't think younger people appreciate as much as their elders.

"Nothing to see, move along . . . "
+1 to this. There was a time right after I discovered this community that I wanted to let people around us know about FI and how they could achieve it and the lifestyle changes we have made to do so. I never really got around to doing so mostly because in the back of my mind I knew I probably shouldn't....

A couple years later and I am really glad I made the decision to keep shut about things. I don't really have a problem with judgement, but in that time, I have improved on my ability to 'not give a damn' about letting others assume things about my life. Assuming I'm a happy little drone who will show up for the next 30 years ( to get a retirement coffee/cake party, eh? ), assuming I'm still paying a mortgage, assuming I watch TV for 4 hours a night. Let them assume all they want. :roll:

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Sclass
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual,

Post by Sclass » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:33 am

Agreed. This is a youth thing. It actually makes me feel young reading the OP.

;) where do I insert coins in this machine anyway?

I had my friends and family over scrutiny moment a few years ago. Posted it here and got really sane advice from some of the same members replying above. Oddly I mention feeling like a 45 yo boy in the thread. It is a youth thing. More strange, the people I complained about most at this gathering were my school roommates...from 25 years back.

http://forum.earlyretirementextreme.com ... ter#p72763

I got singled out at the parties. Then I just left town. People noticed but they don't publicly acknowledge my departure from their game. So yes, this will continue through life if you stick around the same tribe you were raised in.

Good luck. And hats off to saving so much before you even finished school. You are miles ahead of other kids I know IRL.

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cmonkey
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual,

Post by cmonkey » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:39 am

Sclass wrote:This is a youth thing.
Definitely. So is my problem with people's assumptions. It harkens back to my wanting to stand out as being different as most young people want to do. Now that I've entered my 30's, I have started shaking off that feeling of wanting to "show" I'm different and am focused more on "being" different instead, mostly in a stealthy way. It's much more pleasing.

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Ego
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Ego » Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:05 am

Slightly different perspective.

Having a thick skin is a useful trait. Thin skinned people are fragile. Think of this as "I don't give a shit what they think" practice. Just don't go overboard and invite criticism.

I agree that we overshare today, but it is important to recognize that It is possible to go too far in obscuring who you are from others. The act of obscuring can actually change the person trying to be obscure.

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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by llorona » Fri Sep 23, 2016 1:12 pm

Yeah, I tend to get this a lot. As in:

"You only have ONE car? For two people?"

"Your house is...spartan."

"You grow your own food? Isn't that a lot of work?"

"You don't have cable TV?"

"Wow, you travel sparingly."

Laugh it off. It's your life and you get to live it how you want.

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BRUTE
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by BRUTE » Fri Sep 23, 2016 2:16 pm

fuck others

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bryan
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by bryan » Fri Sep 23, 2016 2:30 pm

cmonkey wrote:There was a time right after I discovered this community that I wanted to let people around us know about FI and how they could achieve it and the lifestyle changes we have made to do so. I never really got around to doing so mostly because in the back of my mind I knew I probably shouldn't....

A couple years later and I am really glad I made the decision to keep shut about things. I don't really have a problem with judgement, but in that time, I have improved on my ability to 'not give a damn' about letting others assume things about my life.
When I found ERE proper, I was already following along some other PF blogs. I ended up posting a comment on one of them with some details about aiming for retirement at age 32-35 and someone replied pretty quickly about young people throwing out ages much too young to retire (that it was not a real plan)!?! For the record _today_ my up-to-date plan still says I can retire with a 3% SWR at age 33 (but think I will end up doing some semi-retirement or more lean in the initial years). The comment definitely riled me up more than it should have.

I don't mind talking about FIRE/ERE concepts with others (actually I probably enjoy it too much) though it's best to start by connecting with them on relatable sub-matters. My explanation for any peculiarities is simply that I try to make my spending dollars line up with what I really value, i.e. savings to "retire" sooner, good coffee, nights out dancing, instead of rent, cars, or consumer crap. Though I say as much in a different wording that I think the person I am talking to is receptive to.

Not much of a fan of "fuck others" mentality, wording.
Last edited by bryan on Fri Sep 23, 2016 3:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Ego
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Ego » Fri Sep 23, 2016 2:59 pm

bryan wrote:
Not much of a fan of "fuck others" mentality, wording.
No, me neither. Whenever my strange lifestyle happens to come up in conversation IRL, I offer the qualifier that it seems to works for me but is not necessarily right for everyone. Same with vegan, marriage, anti-drug use, trash-cycler.... runner... whatever.

I actually like it when people challenge my strange ways with specific objections. Rather than immediately respond, I will ask a bunch of questions to get to the bottom of their objection. Sometimes I learn something new. Sometimes we reach the point of circular logic and I say something like....."that's an interesting perspective."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3boy_tLWeqA

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cmonkey
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by cmonkey » Fri Sep 23, 2016 3:18 pm

bryan wrote:it's best to start by connecting with them on relatable sub-matters.
I have done this before, I actually shared Jacob's blog about coffee with a friend. I pointed out that it was possible to save X amount, invest that money and never have to pay for coffee again (using your paycheck). He thought that was pretty awesome, but I lost him when I connected that to "all your expenses". Maybe in time....

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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by C40 » Fri Sep 23, 2016 4:13 pm

You'll get used to it. Sometimes the criticisms are based on things that would be helpful for you to know and possibly change. I've fully accepted that some of the things I intentionally do make some people think I'm an asshole.

And you know what, Olaz: I think you're great!

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C40
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by C40 » Fri Sep 23, 2016 4:15 pm

Also, there was a Podcast done very recently by "The Minimalists" titled "Criticism" (or, it contained that work plus maybe others). It's nothing groundbreaking, but some parts of that may be helpful.

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BRUTE
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by BRUTE » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:43 pm

C40 wrote:And you know what, Olaz: I think you're great!
still a judgement :)

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Olaz
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by Olaz » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:49 pm

BRUTE wrote:
C40 wrote:And you know what, Olaz: I think you're great!
still a judgement :)
Agreed, though shhh, I like this one, and C40 is pretty badass :mrgreen:

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BRUTE
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by BRUTE » Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:05 am

brute can't argue with that

7Wannabe5
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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:46 pm

Yup, the older you get, the less you will care. I got "The 1840s called and they want their cookbook back." yesterday :lol:

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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by heyhey » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:35 pm

llorona wrote:Yeah, I tend to get this a lot. As in:

"You only have ONE car? For two people?"

"Your house is...spartan."

"You don't have cable TV?"

Laugh it off. It's your life and you get to live it how you want.
I get this kind of thing. I grew up with one car for 5 people...but all the same, when I say that maybe I won't need another car whenever my 13-year-old vehicle passes on, people have trouble understanding it.

When it comes to TV, I just say I spend so much time looking at a computer screen, looking at a TV is not relaxing for me. Nobody minds then that I don't have one.

What really bugs me TBH is not people's comments on my lifestyle, but their whingeing about their own. Maybe this is something that happens later. It's the "I could never afford to buy my own place" while they look at mine as if it has been gifted to me by angels. From people whose salaries are twice what mine ever was. And I can say, "Right, but if you saved that money instead of going to the Caribbean every year..." and they are still, like, "I need something to look forward to, or I couldn't get through the month." Fine, but accept that means you will never own your own house... but they don't accept it. They see what I have, and they think it's unfair--why should I have all this, when I never made it past the clerical grades? They forget I haven't had even the cheapest package holiday for 20 years. They think they are entitled to everything: the savings and the house and the holidays in the Caribbean. Sorry hon,it doesn't work that way.

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Re: Feeling more judged than usual?

Post by FBeyer » Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:58 am

7Wannabe5 wrote:Yup, the older you get, the less you will care. I got "The 1840s called and they want their cookbook back." yesterday :lol:
A colleague told me I'm so old school I've become retro. 8-)

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