My aunt and uncle are in the upper class. They have a really nice house in a really nice town in a really nice part of the Bay Area. They have two kids. They have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the stock market. My uncle, who is self-employed with a once-thriving web marketing business, is struggling to retain clients. My aunt, who is in charge of a profitable department at an otherwise struggling company, just got a 10% paycut. With an expensive mortgage, even six figure and then some income isn’t enough to pay for their lifestyle. So they’re watching their spending. They are worried about just how bad this all is going to get.
While I’ve “lost” over $9000 so far in stocks, I feel lucky. I have a job. I make $60k a year, plus any freelance income I can bring in here and there. While I’m still not the best at managing my money (I just spent $100 at Sephora on a few eyeshadows and lipstick… I like to think of it as “stimulating the economy”) my cost of living is not that high. I don’t have any kids, my rent is cheap (well, at least compared to what I was spending living on my own before I moved in with two roommates, and I don’t buy much other than the occasional overpriced pair of jeans or high-pigmented and pricey eyeshadow. So my life is pretty cheap. And I like it that way.
For everyone who has a family to take care of… a mortgage to pay… this recession is really, really bad. It makes me want to never have kids or up my desire to purchase a house. Sure my room is tiny, I have to put up with my roommates for better or worse, and I don’t get to cook naked (which is seriously the biggest downfall of living with roommates), but… my life is affordable. Even as I lose thousands in the stock market. If I had kids… a house… I’d be screwed right now.