I read an article a few day ago where someone from the same general area of the country as me is having a hard time feeding herself and her 4 year old daughter on $400 a month in food stamps. If this person lived somewhere else and I wasn't familiar with what things cost there, I might not think too much about that. But I know where she lives, I know what prices are like there. After I stopped yelling I considered posting a comment about how maybe food stamps should pay for cookbooks, but then I remembered a friend sending me a link to the free SNAP cookbook online.
Moral of the story?
You can give someone financial aid but you can't give them sense or good judgement.
I once knew a man who often said, in America poor people have cable. He's right. Contrast many of our "poor" to those of other nations and you might see a startling difference.
The only person I can control is me. I shouldn't worry about this stuff but it's frustrating at times. I need to focus on my own goals, and I think I've done pretty well with that lately, my savings haven't grown but I've taken on a lot more financial responsibility and still managed to keep expenses down. Two things are coinciding my life that are typically VERY expensive, Christmas and the birth of a new baby. Not my baby, I'm way too old for that. But without my help, this grandchild might be coming into the world with very little. I've spent maybe $100 or so and kitted him out pretty nicely. Between my daughter and me, we've pulled out every trick in the book, borrowing and asking for hand-me-downs, thrift stores, etc. He'll have everything his tiny self needs, and then some. As for Christmas, my goal was to make most of the gifts, and most of what isn't being handmade is second-hand. I really don't know what I've spent, since I've been sewing, knitting, etc. all year. But I do know I haven't spent a lot, and what I did spend has been spread out so much it's been no problem at all. No January Blues for me.