Other peoples' attitudes

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
Other peoples' attitudes
Sat, 05-24-2003 - 9:53pm
Isn't it funny how someone elses attitude can influence how you're feeling about something?

I was just thinking about how I had told meremiles(Lucy) in a post about how I was really wishing lately that we had a family car. (we had to give up two old beater cars to start getting out of this debt mess, and have started bussing it and cabbing instead). Well... it really hasn't bothered me at all since we gave up the last car last July, it really has been more of a relief not wondering when the next beater will break down and knowing we'll spend about $100 on transportation per month rather than multiple hundreds. So I was wondering why my attitude change recently.

I think it's because I was out talking to a neighbor last weekend, and he asked why we're parking on the street rather than in the driveway, I told him that it wasn't our car he was looking at, that we don't have a car anymore, that we had to give it up because of the huge insurance hikes in Canada lately and the high price of gas etc etc (never said anything about debt). Told him we take the bus now.

Well he was mortified! He thought it was terrible that we didn't have a car. I think I went in the house after that thinking that 'yah it *is* terrible' or something. I just know it never fazed me a bit until he had that reaction. I guess because everyone else has said that we were probably better off and some were a little envious even of us not having to deal with the gas prices & insurance costs. We have great public transit here and the bus even stops right in front of our house, it's a ten minute bus ride to just about anywhere, and the malls are only a $7 cab ride away if you have groceries or heavy stuff. We also plan to rent cars every second or third weekend this summer as they have $9.99/day rental deals here for the weekends if you rent for 3 days, and that will get us around to parks and zoos and stuff for the kids.

Anyway, it just made me think about how attitudes influence how we're feeling, both negatively and positively. Thank goodness the attitudes here are all so supportive and uplifting!

I'm still wishing I had a car again though, sometimes hubby or I would like a treat at the store and we have a running joke that we say "see me driving in my car?" everytime we want a snack and we just kinda sigh and go back to doing nothing... So it's probably much better for our waistlines and wallets anyway that we don't have that quick way to get around!... and will someone please remind me that these cars come with a huge price tag!!

Okay, 'nuff lamenting! Have a great weekend everyone!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Sat, 05-24-2003 - 10:05pm

I'm a lurker but wanted to respond to your post. I am a stay at home mom to a 3 year old dd on a very tight budget (all bills equal $390/week...dh brings home $500)...I have a great girlfriend who I love dearly who is very well off...well she just can't believe I don't have a cell phone...all the time she's telling me about this plan and that plan...I am 33 years old and survived this long without that "necessity" I think I can survive longer...she doesn't understand that $10/week is a HUGE deal to us. I have learned to do what I think is best for my family...we also went without a car for a while to get some stuff paid down...my dh's sister has NEVER owned a car and has 2 children...to me necessities are food & shelter, everything else is a luxury!!!


Shauna 10/23/99

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
Sat, 05-24-2003 - 10:59pm
Yes you are so right! Thanks for reminding me. It's so easy to get caught up in the material side of things & rush rush way of live living over here in North America.

I think maybe I just need to go turn on some news and see how rough it is in the rest of the world, that ought to cure me of my petty self pity!

Even thinking about how tough our grandparents had it compared to the way we live today. Holy cow huh? I remember going to my great grandmother's house in the mid '70's. She had refused to update to modern ammenities. Had one lightbulb hanging in her kitchen (and they really had to force her to put that in), she baked awesome cookies & gingerbread in the wood stove, did laundry in a wash tub, and had a crank pump at the kitchen sink. She closed off most of the two story house in winter and they slept in the kitchen or sitting room to keep warm near the stove.

And come to think of it, she was frugal through and through, debt free, and happy as a lark! Heck of a lot smarter than my generation.

Avatar for zaboz
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 05-26-2003 - 4:03pm
I think it's great that you've given up the car. In a lot of ways, you have more

freedom than people with a car. I can't tell you how much we spend in repairs,

gas, insurance, etc. I really admire the way you're turning our materialistic culture on its head by saying "we don't need a car". Your neighbor's just shocked because he's never stopped to think about what we really need and

what we are told we need.

My DH and I have talked about getting rid of our cars. The way it is now, I drive

my moped to work and he drives a motorcycle. In the winter I take the bus because I work downtown and parking is just ridiculous.

We do like to go camping and see our families (who are about 1 1/2 hours away) so we'll probably hang on to one vehicle. But I think it's really inspirational and liberating that you're doing so well without one!

Avatar for mrslove2000
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 05-26-2003 - 6:26pm
Yes it is quite interesting how we can start questioning our own decisions based upon other's comments. I believe it comes down to "perception vs. reality". The reality is all of us can "get by, make due, etc" on a lot less than we choose to. A lot of us are "programmed" by the media (or neighbors) that we are somehow "missing out" if we don't have the latest gadgets, fashions or even cars. Just recently, I too, have changed my attitude about my "wants vs needs" and making sure my "perceptions" are better in line with what is "reality" for me. Great subject to bring up!!