That would be my finances. Click the image to enlarge.
Just a warning, this post is filled with a ton of angst. I am a spoiled, wealthy brat who realizes how much she has but is foolish with it. And I feel very ashamed, and really don't know how to change my ways.
I let go this month. Our take-home pay decreased substantially because I contributed twice my usual to my pension thingy at work this month. In total, we only added $216 to our checking account and $415 to our emergency fund. Still -- only adding $600 in liquid savings feels really bad.
1. ED treatment got more expensive this month. My therapist just moved to California so I've been going to a bunch of trial appointments with what feels like every therapist in town. Eventually I'll find someone I like who takes my insurance but until then I have to pay for the full cost of the visits.
2.We ate out at a pricey place. First mistake: going to the hottest restaurant in the DC area for our wedding anniversary. Second mistake: trusting that they wouldn't try to kill us at dinner. If you have food allergies, Volt in Frederick is not a great place to go!
3. I didn't restrain myself when it came to entertainment. It's that simple.
4. I bought more Christmas presents. I felt it was better to split the present purchasing over three months. I only have about $60 worth of planned gifts to get yet, for a total of approximately $400 for the whole family, for $50 apiece. The remaining gifts complete the "baskets of local goodies" I've been planning to make. But next year I need to focus on more homemade gifts and also to set a budget.
Really, #2 and #3 are the biggest problems. I just have to restrain myself. I've got no choice if I don't want to find myself having to pay bills out of our savings.
It really gets worse.
The spoiled brat continues her spending, because this week she's taking another vacation to another ritzy destination. My MIL goes to the Caribbean and begged us to go with her. She offered to pay for food and for the hotel. We thought, 'what a deal!' Yeah, right. Airfare alone was $750/pp.
What's really going on here is that my FIL died a number of years ago and my inlaws used to go there every year. So there will be lots of things that will be done just for the endorphins. She already has plans to take me jewelry shopping (real jewelry shopping..."it's half what it is in the states!" she exclaimed). If I say I'd rather not spend money she will then offer to buy me something or will bring me back something I can't stand. And that is very dangerous. She tried to buy her say in our wedding, and I HATE it when she pays for things, because I feel like she's using money to gain some kind of invisible control over me. I feel like I'm in her debt. I feel that way about the whole vacation.
My husband is talking about snorkeling and renting boats and eating out...I just paid the pet sitter...my parents are coming over when I get back and they'll want to eat out a lot...and I'm overwhelmed.
My husband doesn't have a spending problem, I do. I'm not sure how I'm going to handle any of this. I used to never eat out and that was how I afforded all of the stupid things I would buy. But now I don't want to cut into his fun because he prefers to eat out and enjoy vacations and I can't control my spending on the little stuff.
Like the eating disorder, angsting over it makes it worse. Perhaps it's best to just talk with the guy I married and set a reasonable limit on how much to spend at the jewelry store, and to be okay with it. I have $250 in contract work coming to me this month. Perhaps that's a reasonable amount to spend.
And on top of it all, I know so many people who make so much less than I do, and yet I'm so careless with it.