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Case Study: Average Everyday Complainypants Seeks Redemption

Average consumer's daily commute vehicles

Average consumer’s daily commute vehicles

Today’s case study is a classic, because it addresses a problem suffered by tens of millions of families: the chronic time shortage caused by a double income, double commute, kid-raising lifestyle. While some practitioners of this game do it by choice, many other would rather have more free time … if only they could afford it.

 

 

Dear Mr. Money Mustache,

I am new to your blog but have been seriously enjoying this new found financial porn on a daily basis. I think I have the basic principles down. Bike good; car bad. Mindful spending good; mindless consumer orgy bad. Early retirement good; endless wage-slavery bad.

Instead of sitting in my beige 8×12 government cubicle daydreaming about how cute I would look with a new red Guess bag and tall leather boots from the mall across the street…I am now in my beige cubicle fantasizing about a simpler life with a smaller home, more time at home with my tiny humans and more time to read.

At the risk of being labelled a complainypants, I genuinely do not understand how to move from this wageslavery to being a Mustachian. It seems to me to be bit of a chicken and egg conundrum. How do I live on 50% or less of my income while still being stuck in said cubicle with all the expenses that it incurs?

The Basic Stats:

  • I am a fellow Canadian and as such am exceedingly polite
  • I live in one of the coldest winter cities in the world (temperatures in January and February routinely dip to -40 degrees)
  • Aside from the extreme temperatures in which I live, I am otherwise average in virtually every way.
  • Average height, average weight, average number of kids (2)
  • Average home (1200 sq feet), average mortgage (260K, worth about 420K in today’s market)
  • Average income (75K/year, 165K/year household…although according to you…I have already made it big)
  • Average cars (2 –one 2006 Honda Odyssey mini van and one…wait for it…2011 Ford F-150 Eco-boost Extended cab truck)you saw that coming from a mile away didn’t
  • you?…but amazingly both are paid off)
  • Average commute time (20 minutes direct, 45 minutes if you include the kids daycare/school drop time. My husband works 15 km in the opposite direction so we can’t even car pool.)
  • And last but not least, average amount of consumer debt ($12000 on a line of credit).
  • We have an average amount of savings (120 000 in RRSPs and $12 000 in a few different savings places)
  • And best of all I am in 15 years into a 30 years sentence with Her Majesty the Queen to be given my golden hand shake at the age of 55 (ie 70% of my income for the rest of my life…or if I cashed it in today 280K)…which as you might guess, I am starting to think isn’t worth the next 18 years of my life.

 

A basic sampling of our current overall monthly budget is below:

 

Take-Home Pay$7500
Savings:
Retirement accounts, emergency fund, etc$500
Debt Paydowns$500
Spending
Mortgage$1400
Property Tax$325
Home Improvement /maintenance$300
Utilities$325
Daycare$1200
Groceries and Personal care$1200
Insurance (home, life, van, truck)$475
Gasoline$500
Parking$95
Charity$150
Kids' sports (hockey/swimming)$100 (we're Canadian - hockey is a fixed expense)
TV/phones/Internet$100
Miscellaneous (birthday parties, lunches out, hair cuts,
gifts, golf, hobbies, entertaining)
$330
Total Spending$6500

My days and nights consist of rushing around like a chicken with its head cut off.  How do I get from here to retirement and more time enjoying life with tiny humans?

Interestingly my husband is a structural engineer, who does carpentry and custom wood working on the side, which is his passion that he would like to make his career, he is not interested in ‘retirement’ he would just like a career change.

Sincerely,
Whiny in Winnipeg

Mr. Money Mustache Responds:

Dear WW,

While your situation sounds horrific to me, it is of course the standard situation for most two-jobs-plus-kids families. Let’s begin with the end in mind: getting you some freedom ASAP.

Right now, you earn $75,000 before tax or 45% of your family’s gross pay. Since you listed take-home pay at $7500, let’s assume you are bringing in $3400 of it.

Out of that, the following monthly costs might be byproducts of your job:

  • Gas and direct/indirect car costs for almost 2000km/month of driving around in a van: $1,000
  • Parking: $95
  • Daycare: $1200
  • Convenience foods and services that show up in your grocery and miscellaneous bills: $200

    Total: $2495

This leaves only about $1000 per month of “profit” from your job. So, including commuting and shuttling kids around to child care, are spending about 250 hours a month to earn $1,000 – or four bucks an hour. If you can think of better things to do than working for well under half of Manitoba’s minimum wage, you should quit immediately. Since this is what you wanted anyway, congratulations!!!

But it gets even better than that. Since it sounds like properties increase in price as you move towards your job downtown, they might well decrease as you move towards your husband’s job. If so, you could find a new place close to his work, and eliminate his commute as well – potentially saving the $600 per month he is currently burning up commuting in the opposite direction.

The savings from owning a less expensive house might free up an additional $200 per month in interest, since the equity from your current house would easily wipe your debts and you’d also have a lower mortgage payment.

So far we have only addressed basic strategy – the simple choice of where to live and work. There’s even more wealth on tap as soon as you activate a bit of Mustachian frugality.

For starters, since this is the MMM blog we’ll need to fix your insane choice of vehicles.

trucks

 

You have two kids, and yet you drive around in a BRAND NEW GAS GUZZLING LUXURY RACING BUS. The 2006 Honda Odyssey is not a vehicle for an indebted mother to use to drop the kids off and then head downtown. It is something a hopelessly spendy multimillionaire might use to shuttle around six pampered passengers on a cross-country roadtrip while hauling a giant trailer full of supplies. For two kids, you use a Toyota Yaris or similar. That will cut your gas bill down by 50%.

Your husband appears to be driving alone and not even a multimillionaire himself, and yet he has a TWIN-TURBO SIX PASSENGER RACING FARM TRUCK!!! Holy shit, brother, how many heads of cattle and pigs are you hauling on that roundtrip, while simultaneously carrying international heads of state in the stately cabin? That is a fucking ridiculous vehicle for ANYONE to drive except the rarest breed of Farmer/Diplomat, and I’m betting none of them also hold jobs as Structural Engineers.

So you’ll be selling that, and walking to work. For those rare times you drive, you can ask to borrow the wife’s manual transmission Yaris hatchback. You are also permitted to buy a used mountain bike, and if you’re REALLY getting serious with the carpentry, a 2001 Ford Ranger pickup, 2 wheel drive 4 cylinder manual longbed. You may weld a 12-foot lumber rack to it in order to outperform your current clown truck.

The savings on depreciation, fuel, and insurance will compound an additional $86,000 per decade into your family’s wealth.

Once you have these big wins in place, you’ll have much more time and energy to go after the medium-sized ones: your grocery bill can easily be cut in half, according to most Canadian Mustachian 4-person families. Restaurants and other takeout frivolities may drop as well, depending on your priorities.  Another $1000 per month is possible in this area, which will go directly to your financial independence fund.

When you add in Mrs. WW’s outstanding windfall of a $280,000 early pension payout, all my calculations indicate that you will be further ahead than you are today, even after ditching the government job. In fact, after a year of making these changes, Mr. WW may even start getting the itch to scale down his own job and do exactly as he sees fit as well. And that would be nothing to whine about at all.

Best of luck!

Do YOU see any parallels to your own life? It is almost always possible to avoid the two-commute family with kids if you make it a priority.

 

  • James January 2, 2015, 9:44 am

    MMM,

    I have a question regarding your process when running calculations. I know that all you’re given is a snapshot to work with, but I’m particularly interested in the calcs on the wifes actual pay.

    “Right now, you earn $75,000 before tax or 45% of your family’s gross pay. Since you listed take-home pay at $7500, let’s assume you are bringing in $3400 of it.

    Out of that, the following monthly costs might be byproducts of your job:
    •Gas and direct/indirect car costs for almost 2000km/month of driving around in a van: $1,000
    •Parking: $95
    •Daycare: $1200
    •Convenience foods and services that show up in your grocery and miscellaneous bills: $200

    Total: $2495

    This leaves only about $1000 per month of “profit” from your job. So, including commuting and shuttling kids around to child care, are spending about 250 hours a month to earn $1,000 – or four bucks an hour. If you can think of better things to do than working for well under half of Manitoba’s minimum wage, you should quit immediately. Since this is what you wanted anyway, congratulations!!!

    That is true, in this moment. However lets assume that since the kids are already playing hockey they’re both at least a few years old. Is it reasonable to assume that within a few years they’ll be in school fulltime. Then there is no daycare cost. Additionally, she could heed your vehicle advice, and perhaps cut that $1000/mo estimation in half. At that point her take home is significantly higher. She also continues to develop her pension. I’m wondering if you can elaborate on this.

    When I try to apply these lessons to my own situation the numbers are very different depending on the timeframe I consider.

    Cheers,
    James

    Reply
  • SandieP. January 5, 2015, 7:55 am

    I had been on a decent path to financial independence for over 15 years. Once I stumbled upon the MMM website two and a half years ago, I kicked that plan into overdrive and made some crucial adjustments just when I needed to. I still have some areas that I can tighten up and produce more savings or at least use those funds for some things I would like, but don’t feel I should use my existing savings for and they aren’t worth me getting a job to pay for. I am doing pretty well at being a cash basis consumer. I like the way my medium-sized mustache looks. I feel the badassity…it motivates me.

    It would be nice if some of my friends and loved ones would start growing their mustaches. They seem to think I “lucked out” to be financially stable, debt free and able to work if and when I feel I want more money. Rather than examine how and why they spend money, they would rather say that I always was in the right place at the right time.

    I am 54 years of age. I began the journey at age 30. First order of business was to pay off credit card debt. I worked two jobs for 20 years and lived on 50% of my basic take-home pay from my primary job. The other half of my pay went to make extra principle payments on my three rental properties I obtained, each with a 15-year mortgage. The rest of the money was saved and reasonably invested.

    A few of the people I know routinely discuss their money issues with me. I don’t discuss too much of my personal financial business with them because I don’t feel they really want to change. They will think I am being critical of them. I think they just want/need a listening ear. I have told many people about the MMM website. I told them this website is for those who really want to obtain their financial freedom and are willing to do what it takes. I hope they can handle the truth. The couple of times I have had some earnest discussion with close friends regarding my observations on ways they can improve financially, they are quick to tell me that I can’t possibly know what it takes for them as I don’t understand their circumstances. They will say the middle class is under attack and there is no way out. That the system and the government are out to get them. So I am learning to just keep quiet and nod politely in concern when the discussion resurfaces.

    Just in case any of my friends and dear loved ones read this post, this is what I have wanted to say to you about the middle class:

    The bottom line is, the average middle class is too poor to be rich and too rich to be poor. We pay more taxes than the rich and the poor. The top wealth holders of this world do not care about us, but talk to us as if they can relate to us, in order to get our vote or hope we don’t dislike them. Like it or not, we are in “the 47%”. If you don’t own your house (i.e. the deed is in your safe deposit box, not the bank’s), then you are just one step above those that rent the house down the street. If you couldn’t pay cash for your car, then you are just one step above the couple that got their car from the “buy here, pay here” joint. If your credit cards are maxed out and you are paying the minimum along with 20% interest, you will remain in debt until you leave this earth and are a pinch better off than the desperate soul that went to the title loan company. So what you have a few dollars in a 401k? What happened to the defined benefit plans that employers had because of your loyalty to the job? Now if you don’t fund your own retirement, there won’t be one worth speaking of. The financial advisors that you trust to tell you how to spend your money, what the heck do they know? Not as much as you think. However, they know enough to convince you to pay thousands of dollars for one of their seminars or get-rich-quick schemes. And to put your eggs into their basket (or a basket of one of their affiliates), for a fee of course. And if the market tumbles, too bad, so sad. They got their fees up front, and each and every year you kept pumping more money into it. But we’re middle class and we’re on the upscale entitlement programs of mortgage debt, auto loans and credit cards.

    When you get sick and tired of being sick and tired, make that change. It’s not easy at first, but once you accomplish that first small goal, you will build momentum and confidence. You won’t care what others think. Freedom ain’t free! And that certainly applies to financial freedom as well. It’s not too late to start growing that mustache!!!

    Reply
  • Kara January 7, 2015, 6:20 am

    I’m a new reader of this website and so my apologies if this has been discussed previously. I want to focus on the suggestion that leaving the workforce is a good option from a financial standpoint. In MMM’s recommendations to this reader, he suggests that it would make most sense to quit her job since all but an estimated $1000 are spent on things such as day care and incidental expenses related to working outside the home. While this might make sense in the immediate time frame, shouldn’t she also think about how taking a hiatus from the workforce may affect her lifetime earning potential? What about the idea that one should stay in the work force as an investment of sorts for his/her/the family’s future (from both an income and retirement savings perspective), even if the immediate pay off isn’t evident? I’m a new mom myself and have made the decision to stay at my job, even with the extra expenses it incurs (commuting, day care, time, etc) because I work in a field in which technologies advance rapidly and I worry that a few years away from work will result in losing or attaining the valuable skills to stay relevant. I don’t want to start over, or worse, have to take an entry level position (and entry level pay) after my children are older and I decide to return to the workforce. I am interested in MMM’s thoughts on this.

    Reply
    • Mr. Money Mustache January 8, 2015, 2:26 pm

      I hear you, Kara, but I suggest doing anything at all in the sake of “career” is overrated. Focus on developing yourself through real world experiences and human relationships, and the job opportunities and self employment skills will come.

      Reply
  • Megan January 12, 2015, 11:35 am

    One thing I would say to the subject of the case study is that it is a terrible idea to have a “Miscellaneous” budget category. It’s easier to overspend and be less organized and therefore solution-oriented this way. Budget for everything, and create separate spending categories as needed. For instance, I would put haircuts into “groceries and household,” I would create a different category, with a monthly spending cap, for gifts, and I would take the total amount I anticipate spending on each child for their birthday (party+presents), divide it by the number of months you have before each of their birthdays, and start some automatic savings for that. $250 for each child (remember, party expenses plus gifts) has proven to be very comfortable for us.

    This, the first case study of 2015, inspired me to do my own budget check-up, over two years after I discovered this blog. We don’t have all the expenses this family has because I’m a stay-at-home parent. We have no debt besides our mortgage. I am happy to report that we are saving nearly 50% of our income. In about two years, we should be able to drop our “home improvement” savings/spending to around $100/month. Right now it’s so high because it’s a 35 year old foreclosure, so we have a couple of years of repair and cosmetic updating ahead of us. I do need to note that because my husband is military, our taxable income is not that high, and we have two children. This means that we get a hefty tax return of around $5700/yr, which fluffs our income by about $475/month. Without further ado, here is our comparative budget:

    Income: $6013 (5538netpay+475taxreturn)

    Savings: 2936

    Longterm
    Retirement 713
    College 459
    Addl PP Mort 164

    Mediumterm
    Home Improvement 1300
    Car Maint/Rep 200
    Pet Care/Food 100

    Spending: 2956
    Mort+PT+Util 1186
    Groc/Household 500*
    Car+Home Ins 126 (life taken out of check)
    Gas 160*
    Kids Act/Expenses 160**
    Phones/Internet 72
    Ent/Dining Out 200 (+ groc/gas surplus)
    Kids Birthdays 42
    Gifts 100
    Clothing 125
    Christmas 125
    Adult Free Money 160 (80 ea.)***

    *often, we do not spend as much as we budget, so we end up throwing any extra towards dining out and entertainment (travel, field trips, museums, movies, etc), b/c we enjoy the small lifestyle boost this gives us.

    **again, we don’t spend all this every month, so any surplus goes into a special savings/holding account for months when we do more with our kids, or when we have more school expenses than anticipated.

    ***we have this go automatically into our own separate “allowance” savings accounts, and then transfer the money over as we spend it.

    Reply
  • The Microbiologist January 27, 2015, 10:39 am

    Mr. Money Mustache,

    I regret to inform you that your response started out well, but as soon as you mentioned Whiny in Winnepeg’s husband’s truck you jumped the rails a bit. Specifically, your letter to her became a letter to him, which is pretty rude and there for not Canadian at all. I’m not inclined to assume any overt sexism on your part, but I will recommend a more thorough proof reading, perhaps by a female.

    Sincerely,
    The Microbiologist

    Reply
  • Marie B February 9, 2015, 8:20 am

    I expect it proves I’m a slave to the system, but what I thought after reading the case study was, if I had a well paid job that was going to pay me 70% of my income from age 55 I’d be hanging onto it and looking to outsource as many chores as possible to spend time with the kids. Yes, I know it’s the polar opposite to what’s advised by MMM. Maybe it’s because I’m approaching retirement in the UK and wish MMM had been around thirty years ago!

    Reply
  • WalkTheLine February 15, 2015, 8:48 am

    So I’m curious: Is it ever okay to increase increasing your commuting distance/time? I’ve been offered a job that will leader to a higher income in a year ($13.5K), but will also lead to a longer commute (both in distance, from 10 miles a day to 26 miles a day and time, from 30 minutes a day to 1.5-2 hours). I’m torn on the decision. I’ve had my current job for seven years, and have climbed the ranks and now earn a good income. But, I’ve had to put up with a lot of stress in that time and am tired of dealing with people who treat others poorly. For a year and a half, I worked on a project with a woman in a small conference room who refused to acknowledge my existence, but fawned over people in power. She is now my supervisor. If it were a decision based only on the job, I would take it, as it is an area that I am very interested in, and feel that I would do well. The money would be a nice bonus. But I don’t want to increase my commuting time and costs as I have a young son at home and don’t want to miss any time with him.

    My wife currently has a similar commute to what I would taking on, and says that she hates it (we live in the suburbs of a city and she commutes to the city every day). We have our son in daycare and taking the job would also complicate things should we need to get home in a hurry.

    I think the job would be a good challenge and could be a lot of fun, but the only guarantee would be increased commuting time and costs.

    Reply
    • Mr. Money Mustache February 15, 2015, 12:08 pm

      An extra hour a day of commuting for only $13k? Sounds like a horrible bargain to me!

      Remember that you always have the option of moving to a new house, and of either (or both) of you getting new jobs – the options are wide open! Car commuting is always avoidable and wise.

      Reply
      • Eldred February 15, 2015, 2:55 pm

        “Horrible bargain”? An extra $13K sounds like a lot of money to ME. I once took a job with a 63 mile one-way commute that was a $22K raise over my previous job, which kept my house from going into foreclosure. I’m curious on the math you’re using to say that a $13K raise even with a longer commute isn’t a good thing.

        Reply
        • mrs.M180 February 15, 2015, 3:51 pm

          Oooh! oooh! I can help! :D

          Alright, first, I have to make a few assumptions. They will likely skew these numbers, leaving WalktheLine to re-do the math with proper numbers and see what is best.
          I assume WalktheLine is currently biking to and from work, since it’s only a 5 mile trip one-way.
          I assume that WalktheLine will now have to drive, but already owns a good car that gets 40mpg.
          I assume that WalktheLine is paying the National average for gas, $2.25/gallon.
          I assume that WalktheLine works 40 hours a week, 253 days a year.
          I assume that WalktheLine is a crazy good driver with crazy good luck, and never experiences a car accident ever, thus never needing to pay for repairs.

          In a previous article, MMM explains that on average you pay $0.50 per mile for maintenance on your vehicle. This makes the financial cost of this commute (NOT including the increased insurance rates) $3,644/year, which turns the raise to only $9.4k a year.
          In other words, our friend is making $18.50/hour to be in a rolling death trap for an extra two hours per day. Only Walk knows how that compares to his current hourly wage, but we know through this blog that self employment makes $25-$50/hour, with the potential to raise to $200/hour in certain professions. This is a net loss of AT LEAST $6.50/hour compared to other ways to spend this time. He would be agreeing to work 50 hours a week instead of 40, or an extra 506 hours PER YEAR of commuting. This is 506 hours he could be spending with his son, or wife, or building his skills, or sleeping in!

          Is 506 hours a year lost to commuting worth $9.4k and a possibly but not guaranteed better work environment? Is there a use of that huge amount of time that would make WalktheLine more fulfilled than commuting for $18.50/hour? That’s up to him!

          Reply
          • BCB February 15, 2015, 5:36 pm

            I third this! Terrible deal! It is much easier to spend $13K less on stuff you don’t need with no extra time investment, no additional complications to family life, no additional risk of fatality in clown car, etc.

            Simplify your life, don’t double down on complications!

            If you want to find yourself even further ahead, lose the 2nd car all together and bike every day. You could save up to $40 and up per clown car commute, far ahead of your the potential raise of $13k.

            See this post: http://www.businesscasualbiker.com/monetary-impact/

            Reply
            • WalkTheLine February 15, 2015, 6:52 pm

              Thank you all for your thoughtful replies.

              I do have the option of taking the subway, which would allow me to focus on other things, though it would still eat up my time. As I work for the government, I could also be partially reimbursed for the money spent on the trip.

              The agency I work for has an office in the suburbs, where I currently work, and it’s main component in the city. People frequently leave my office to go to the main city, so getting a job back at my office probably wouldn’t be hard if I end up hating the commute.

              I suppose this is a good problem to have though. I just wish I could have the job without the commute, but such is life :)

              Reply
          • Eldred February 16, 2015, 7:59 am

            “In other words, our friend is making $18.50/hour to be in a rolling death trap for an extra two hours per day. ”

            Shouldn’t that be, making an *extra* $18.50/hour? We’re talking about the raise, not his total compensation. And can you point me to one of the blog articles that suggests self-employment(not requiring specialized training or expensive equipment) that brings in $25/hour, please? I’m only making about $26/hour NOW. If I had a self-employment gig I could reasonably do for $25/hr I’d quit TOMORROW.

            Reply
  • LaPriel February 15, 2015, 6:27 pm

    Dear Walk The Line,

    Your question is a great one that will have many varrying opinions. So, I will just share an experience my husband and I had. Many years ago he took a job an hours drive away. The pay was $10,000 LESS a year than what we were making. They promised him double digit raises. It was a job that he really wanted to try. Call me crazy, but I said yes! He commuted until we could sell our house and move close to his work. He loved his job, the promises came through, and later we were able to buy into the business. After selling his portion of the business, he retired at 47 yrs. old. To top it all off, I was able to stay home full time and raise my 3 kids.
    Run the numbers, weigh the pros and cons, and most of all be brave!

    Reply
    • WalkTheLine February 15, 2015, 7:05 pm

      Thanks for taking the time to reply! I’m in a different situation than your husband as I work for the federal government, and there is probably no chance I can retire at 47, though I wish it were possible. I would like to build up a substantial capital reserve, but that will take some time to do. I suppose the upsides of working for the government is guaranteed raises, provided I’m doing an okay job (so far so good). There is also the promise of a pension, but I’m not putting too much stock in that since I’m still fairly young (mid-30’s).

      My wife and I purchased a new house last year though we had our mortgage paid off. Partially to find a place with a little more space for our infant son, partially to remove ourselves from a toxic situation where we were being harassed by neighbors (my suggestion: don’t ever join an HOA board). So now I’m chained to a mortgage again, and we’re paying daycare, so it will take a while to build the reserves up to have any hope of early retirement.

      I really want to take the job, and if it weren’t for the commute, it would be an easy decision.

      Reply
  • Rick March 24, 2015, 2:14 pm

    With regards the Yaris not doing the job in a wintery climate; I’d have to disagree. My wife is still driving her 1991 Corolla that she bought new. She drives it all year, and we live in Eastern Ontario and get tremendous amounts of snow and ice. We run all season tires on it; no winter tires:)

    Reply
  • jms March 28, 2015, 7:04 pm

    So im going to touch on the poverty issue that was mentioned above by a number of people. My wife and I currently live in the USA under the “poverty line”. We are the quintessential “poor college students” but seem to be doing just fine. While i will admit that we do anticipate on having a sizeable income in the coming years after all my schooling is over (~6 years) we are saving anywhere from 750 to 1250 a month. Yes folks we qualify for food stamps which if we were to receive them would receive $360 a month for food, yet we do not get them and from our own pocket eat on $200 a month. That means toal if we were to go on food stamps we would have an effective increase in income of $600(ish). Now we were not “above” being on stamps but thought it to be a little silly if we didnt really need them. We make enough and are doing well enough why bother.

    Before I make a very long winded post i will cut myself short and say the following. YES while I do feel for, sympathize, and hope the best for those in poverty, and would love to wave my wand and stop the poverty cycle I have the audacity to say that the cycle exists because of choices. Live a frugal lifestyle and save your money. AGAIN we are in “poverty” and save on average $1000 a month for our future. Its choices…the end

    Reply
  • BCB April 28, 2015, 12:21 pm

    This is for Tony H. The thread up above is too long so I cannot reply directly.

    You make the point about one person: Ben Carson. I do not deny that one person can rise up from a poor community and become successful. There are many example of these folks. However, the vast majority of people that grow up in poverty struggle to get out of poverty and are much much much more likely to be in poverty as adults compared to people who grow up in affluence. I admit that my statements are certainly generalizations and exceptions exist, but this does not disprove the general thesis that growing up in poverty dramatically reduces your chances of success (and I stand by my previous comments related to the struggles that people in poverty experience compared to those of relative affluence, including the majority of people reading this post).

    Reply
  • Liz March 28, 2016, 3:41 pm

    Why would you classify all the daycare expenses as a “cost” of this woman’s job? Does her husband not need someone to look after his children when he is at work? I’m sure this is just a reflex, but it really looks like you’re assuming looking after children is entirely a woman’s responsibility, one way or another, even if she works. I’m sure that’s not how you really feel–especially since it seems like you spend a lot of your own time raising your child. But that’s how it reads. And I think it sends a really outdated message to your audience.

    Reply

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