$ Let’s Talk Money – An Interlude: Taboo

I had originally planned to post Part 2: The Daves this week as part of our financial series called Let’s Talk Money (if you missed Part 1: The Intro you can catch up here.)

But then something happened that I had not anticipated.

Initially I was thrilled with the positive responses that poured in; with many readers excited about the series and hopeful that it would provide things that might help turn their own financial situations around.

Yet, as you might guess, as more people viewed the post, the more opinions began to surface as well. Some of which were filled with concern and dismay, which, to be honest, mildly surprised me.

I hadn’t thought what I was posting could be deemed controversial or make people worried or uncomfortable. And yet, here were these questions rolling in.

What would possess you to broadcast to the world that you’re $43,000 in debt?

Won’t there be repercussions?

If you put it all out on the internet won’t it come back to harm you in some way?

These questions got me thinking and I racked my rain to come up with reasons why I shouldn’t proceed with this money talk series. But, after mulling it over and talked it out with family/friends, I couldn’t come up with any good reasons (if you have any, please do share!).

I can understand the totally valid concern that people thought I might have intended to share specific salary information or call out where we bank or how tell much cash we keep on hand or in the house, but since that was not what I planned to do (as it seems both unsafe and unintelligent) – then what’s the harm?

My whole goal when starting this series is because we want to need to change our spending habits, become more responsible, pay down our debt, and start saving for the future.

This is financial (and ultimately lifestyle) change is going to make a huge impact on our marriage + life and thus, I felt, should be shared on this blog. Especially since this blog was started because it seemed like a great place to capture and share our adventures as a couple – both good times and bad.

I thought that by sharing our financial journey in this series – that our mistakes + missteps, tips + tricks might benefit other people as well.

Talking about money can be awkward and still (shockingly) considered taboo – which is why, I believe, my first post was received the way it was.

But there are so many great reasons to strip away that taboo! Holding onto the idea that it is socially unacceptable to talk about money, I think, actually does more harm than good. And I’m not the only one to think so. For an amazing article please check out “The Taboo on Talking Money Hurts Us“.

I’m not suggesting, as Kristi Gustafason Barlette hilarious mentions in her post, “Should you go around saying ‘I make 800 grand a year and like to roll around in my cash’? No, of course not.”

But being more open about money definitely has its benefits. We struggle and we know others struggle. If you could help someone else that is in the same situation as you…wouldn’t you?

As Andrea, from So Over This, so brilliantly puts it,

“I am not Personal Finance Jesus™. I’m never going to be perfect, I’m always going to own a smartphone and buy shoes (though in moderation now), and I’m not going to turn into a female Dave Ramsey. My mission here is not to lean down from my ivory tower and shout at people about what they should do. I just want to write about random things that occasionally relate to money.”

And that’s what my hope is for this series.

I want this to be a place where I can write something that will hopefully be of real value, for real people.

I want this to be a venue where conversations & questions, even tough, awkward, and deeply personal ones, are welcome.

It’s okay to talk about money.

Money doesn’t define you and there is definitely not one right way for everyone to mange it.

So, although you may not agree with everything we will say or do as this moves forward,

I hope you’ll stay along for the ride.

Although it might be a bumpy one, I guarantee it will definitely be an honest one –

as dollar by dollar, we climb out of debt and work our way to wealth.

And on that note,

come back next week for….$ Let’s Talk Money – Part 2: The Daves!

xo, meg

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21 thoughts on “$ Let’s Talk Money – An Interlude: Taboo

  1. Pingback: $ Let’s Talk Money – Part I: An Intro « Mr.C & Me

  2. There’s absolutely no reason NOT to talk about it. It’s nice to know that there are other people out there struggling with the same things and advice about where to cut back and how to be thrifty are always welcome in my book.
    :)

    • Agreed. :) besides that it’s still a bit taboo – there’s that (valid) fear of oversharing on the Internet and putting yourself at risk for those who want to take advantage of you aka creeps n weirdos.

  3. That’s seems funny/weird that people were so worried and uncomfortable. I didn’t get anything like that when I posted something about it. I don’t think it’s wrong to post how much debt you have or whatever. If YOU’RE okay with posting it, and it’s not important personal information, it should be okay.

    I am excited for the rest and I’m glad you had so many great articles to back you up. It is funny sometimes how scared/worried people are about money when I think most people are in the same boat as each other.

    • Ditto. I think you should stick to what is safe/smart to post but when it comes to other things its all about what you are comfortable with. And to me, the fact that we have this debt is no secret. Didn’t plan on writing this post as a stunt – I intentionally shared because I know many others who are in the same boat as us :) gotta stick together and help each other out!

    • me too :) and it’s also interesting that poor(er) people are usually more open about talking hard numbers/ dollars and cents, than those who have more wealth.

      On Thu, Dec 13, 2012 at 7:55 AM, Mr.C & Me

  4. hate to break it to the people who asked what would possess you to say that you’re $43,000 in debt, but you’re not the first blogger to write about finances, haha! There’s a whole group of bloggers out there writing about getting out of debt. Heck, when Eric and I got married, we had $40,000 in debt, between credit cards, student loans, and a car loan. We’re now about $20,000 down in less than three years. And we totally lived in a shack for over a year to make that happen! Money doesn’t have to be taboo.

    • haha i think those questions come from concern, love, and a lack of internet usage. as bloggers we spend so much time online that not only are we comfortable being over-sharers but we also know what else is all out there…like the thousands of financial blogs!

      but i agree, money does not (should not) be taboo…in my opinion. :)

  5. Pingback: $ Let’s Talk Money – Part 2: The Daves « Mr.C & Me

  6. I totally messes with people when you start talking figures. I have the amount of debt I have hanging in my kitchen… and I have people over often. I don’t care. I put it there and they can watch the number drop as I do. Some are motivated. Some feel awkward. But they’ll see the results of hard work, sacrifice and dedication!

    • Exactly! We have ours hanging up too. It’s motivating for us (although as you said sometimes awkward for some) and I like to think of it as a little welcome sign for friends/visitors to know we’re open about talking about it/budgets/$/our story if that’s something they’d like to do.

  7. Spot on! I don’t understand why it has to be taboo. It’s no secret that student loans and debt are everywhere, so why can’t we talk about it and do something about it?! I basically turned into a personal finance blogger and it’s been a great outlet for me. I can’t wait to read more about your journey :)

    • Hi Katie! The financial blogging community is a great one and I’ve been learning a lot – love that we can all share and help each other out, even if sometimes it’s just to wallow in our money woes together ;) Thanks for stoppin’ by! I’m finally following you at your new space!

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