Thursday, February 24, 2011

I'm Entitled, Right?

I often feel guilty about buying myself things that aren't absolutely necessary. New shoes? Only if my old ones are unwearable. New pants? Only if they are on sale, and only if I can justify the need. Makeup? None of that "expensive, name brand" stuff - I'll buy my eyeliner at Target, thank you very much.

However, the same can't be said for my step-kids. Perhaps it's because I grew up in a household without "extra" income, or maybe it's because I work hard for my paycheck and I understand that my earnings shouldn't be spent on frivolity. Whatever the reason, I absolutely cringe at the lack of respect my step-kids show when it comes to our budget and finances.

Some liberties have been taken with the quotes below... just telling you what I hear.

"I need $185 for behind-the-wheel classes."

"My lifeguard training needs renewing, so I need to be signed up for the class. It's $235." The kicker with this one is that it enables my step-son to earn money all summer long. Money he spends without guilt. Yet we are supposed to provide the training he needs in order to make this money. Doesn't seem right to me.

"Soccer registration starts soon. It's only $75."

"I need green shoes. I'll only be wearing them once, for a show, so don't worry about spending more than $20 on them." Side note: Have you ever tried to find ladies heels in a cute shade of green that cost under $20?!?

"I joined the speech team. I know you already paid for a winter activity fee for me, but I decided that activity was too much work, so I joined the speech team instead. No, you can't get a refund for my previous activity fee. No, the speech fee is not prorated because I joined halfway through the season."

"About speech - it will require a parent waking up at 5:30am on Saturdays to drive me to the High School so I can get on the bus and spend all day at the speech meet. Then you can pick me up when I return to town somewhere between 2pm and 6pm. You might want to keep your schedule open so you can pick me up as soon as I require you to do so."

"Also, speech requires me to wear a suit. Jacket, shirt, tie, pants, belt, socks, and dress shoes. I have to look nice. Shouldn't cost any more than a couple hundred for the entire set-up."

"I'm taking four AP classes this year. I don't feel like studying for them and doing my homework, so I'm barely passing these classes. However, at the end of the school year, you will be required to pay $60/class so I can take the AP test in an attempt to earn college credits for said classes. We both realize there's no way I will be able to pass the AP test since I can't even pull decent grades on the homework and daily assignments. However, I really do want to take the tests. You can make the checks out to..."

You get the picture. Every time we turn around, there's another hand extended - palm up - waiting for the payola.

Today, I thought of all this, and made a guilt-free purchase for myself. I bought a new coat. It was on clearance. 70% off. I work 40+ hours/week. I can treat myself, right...? *guilt*