According to the World bank, the number of people living below the poverty line in the world is gradually decreasing, but this is still far from enough to say there’s been a serious improvement in the situation. On the other hand, several decades ago, everything was much, much worse.
Yes, if today in the world less than 10% of the population live below $2.15 a day, then forty years ago there were more than 40% of such people. In other words, almost half of the modern population of the globe grew in poverty. And, according to people in this recent viral thread, there are special behavioral patterns and signs by which such a person can be recognized.
More info: Reddit
Lack of exposure to cultural events. missing out on experiences that others may take for granted, such as attending concerts, traveling, or participating in extracurricular activities.
Scanning the menu for the cheapest options possible when at a restaurant. “It’s ok the soup is really enough for me”
For me, I have what I call “poverty mentality”, while I can afford new shoes and clothes, they have to be falling apart for me to replace.
In the US I’d say poor dental history or teeth – dental work is a luxury
Overall, I’d say many hoarders grew up poor because they are so afraid of not having something if they’ll need it so they keep everything
– Being hypersensitive to any light left on, door left open, opening the fridge too much, running water too long, etc, because you’re trained to minimize utilities.
– Never pouring more than 1/2 a glass of any drink when at someone else’s house (except water) because you don’t want to be seen as wasteful/gluttonous.
– Making weird snacks out of food that isn’t supposed to be a snack – ex. Eating dry ramen noodles like chips, koolaid with sugar and your finger to make your own fun dip, eating Kraft cheese slices/cold hotdogs/other things that are normally just a part of a meal.
In USMC recruit training we had a dude in our platoon who was homeless for an extended period of time before enlisting.
Every morning at zero dark thirty the DIs would come in turn the light on, screaming, total chaos to wake us all up…. Every single morning for the first thirty days or so of basic this dude slept right through it 😂. Kid said he was so comfortable in his little rack and hadn’t slept so good in a long long time. He was always exclaiming how good the food was at the chow hall. It put a lot of things in perspective for me.
Odd hoarding behaviours of things you probably should have gotten rid of out of fear you won’t be able to replace them easily. I keep a stack of boxes broken down because there’s still this fear in the back of my mind that I’ll have to move again at a moment’s notice. I make a decent salary now and have lived where I am for nearly 7 years, but I still can’t part with those boxes despite the space they take up. Under the bed, behind the chest of drawers… Yeah. I still have ‘em.
I grew up poor and my husband grew up middle class. Whenever we have guests, I am constantly asking people if they got ENOUGH food. “Is anyone still hungry? I can make something else!”
My husband will inquire about the quality of the food and if it is to everyone’s liking.
I think when you grow up poor, food is very much quantity over quality.
When I was in elementary school a girl asked me why all my shirts were just solid color and not brand name logo shirts. Made me feel insecure. So im going to go with an obvious answer here, clothing and style. I still wear my clothes until they have holes and stains. I have the money to buy new brand name clothes, but why. I’m not trying to impress anyone.
having a vast skill set! trust me, when you cant afford a repair man/hairdresser/seamstress/builder/roofer/welder/mechanic etc, you learn yourself.
I went without food sometimes when I was growing up. It took a long time before I stopped hoarding food once I could afford it. My husband always commented on how long it would take me to go through the chocolate he would bring back from his international trips. I was always afraid it would be the last time we could get it and would make it last as long as humanly possible. I am quick to shut down spending and I am much better at saving money than my husband. I also keep our heat set at 63 for the day and I am usually the last in the neighborhood to turn on our air conditioning. I still shop sales and I don’t understand things like renovating a perfectly fine kitchen just because you don’t like the color of the countertop or cabinets.
I’m really surprised I haven’t seen “condiment drawer” here. When eating out, you save all of the unused condiments in a drawer. It took me until I was about 40 to finally recognize and stop hoarding ketchup and sauce packets.
Someone asked me if my kid was going to do dance or gymnastics. I was confused as to why. Their response was didn’t you do it as a kid. No I that cost money. I was lucky to play with a knockoff Barbie.
A personal anecdote:
For backstory, I’m the primary financial provider for my wife and I, but I really don’t care what she does with our money. If our bills are paid and we have food to eat, I’m fine.
I grew up fairly poor, so I never really bought anything for myself, or asked for anything to be bought for me. A few months ago a video game I had wanted to play was on sale for like…. $2.50, and I said to my wife “hey, can I buy this?”
Not really because I wanted “permission” but because I hadn’t logged in to check our financial state and didn’t know if the money was already set aside for bills. But she looked at me and said “did you just ask permission to buy a $2.50 game with your own money?….”
So I’d say the hesitance to buy anything for yourself, regardless of how stupidly cheap it was.
I have ”poverty toes”. We didn’t have a lot of money growing up so shoes were worn until they died, regardless of fit. My toes are curled and with prominent knuckles from being scrunched into too-small shoes.
I’m a foster kid. I was always poor and pretty much had nothing. These are habits I have.
I hoard food. They’re still edible if they’re past their expiration date as long as it’s not mouldy or something. My basement is stocked for a zombie apocalypse.
I never throw out old containers unless they’re mouldy or something, clean that s**t out, good as new.
I also always have leftovers. I never waste food and eat everything on my plate.
I feel guilty when I buy something I don’t necessarily need.
I add water to “empty” soap containers so they’re full.
I cut “empty” toothpaste tubes so I get every last drop.
I reuse a lot of stuff. The “disposable” stuff don’t need to be disposed most of the time. You can reuse them.
Little or no financial literacy.
If you grew up poor chances are you had no one around to teach you about how to manage things like mortgages, large amounts of savings, or how to budget past the point of juggling bills.
It sucks because knowing how to do these things is such a useful skill, and can get you out of a lot of difficult situations if you play your cards right.
Knowing how to manage money also prevents you from being taken advantage of by people and companies that don’t have your best interest at heart.
While I’m here, if you identify with this comment, please check out r/PovertyFinance and r/PovertyFinanceCanada. They’re super helpful.
One day my girlfriend asked me why I’m washing ziploc bags. I told her so we can reuse them later. It was only after the following discussion and some thinking that I realized it’s not very normal.
There’s quite a bit, I didn’t see them in myself until I was an adult and went to therapy.
1. Lack of basic wellness, e.g. no primary care doctor or dentist. Rationalizing this because there’s a “financial cost” to it.
2. Serious guilt from buying anything you don’t absolutely need. It’s a feeling of “you don’t deserve this” or “you’re being stupid to ever want something”.
3. Working yourself to death because of a serious insecurity about “returning to poverty”; my therapist called this the “never again” work ethic, it’s toxic.
4. Eating your food so fast like you will never have another meal again. It’s a sign of food insecurity growing up. My fiance pointed this out to me that I did this, and it clicked when I talked with my therapist about it. It’s very common
5. General anti establishment beliefs. The system failed you, so it’s hard to trust something that put you through abuse. This can manifest in bad financial literacy, or lack of belief in banks/stock market, etc.
Sentimentality. Not that wealthier people can’t be sentimental.
But my dad, whose parents grew up in the rural South during the great depression, wants to keep every little thing of my mom’s. Everything.
He would prefer to keep her bedroom as is.
I always wondered why he wanted to keep it like that. But then I realized, the only thing we have left is my mom’s ashes in an urn.
There was no funeral, no memorial, (she didn’t want any and there was no one to come anyways) no tombstone. Nothing that feels tangible, personal, etc.
We don’t have the luxury of beautiful personal mausoleums, or headstones, or anything else in the Western death culture.
My mom’s bedroom, and all her stuff is the closest we will ever have to a memorial for my mom. It’s a tomb, without a body in it.
Realizing I wanted to have the house that all my kids friends came over to hang out at because that wasn’t really an option for big chunks of my childhood.
Enjoying cinnamon, sugar, and butter on a slice of bread because we couldn’t afford sweet treats 🥲 it low-key slapped though
Aversion to certain foods they had to eat —- I won’t touch cheerios
I wasn’t in the know with all the cool Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon shows.
But I did watch Arthur, Cyberchase, Clifford and Dragon Tales.
Spending any windfall money. The bone deep certainty that money will just…go away. There will always be another surprise bill or the car will break down. If you get some extra money, you buy the kids a trampoline because for once you don’t have to say “no, we can’t afford that”.
I was told recently I was crazy for using bread instead of hot dog buns. That’s just something I always did as it’s what we had. Burgers, hotdogs all bread fellas.