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10 People Share The Moment They Realized They’d Grown Up Poor

Sometimes kids grow up in poor families but, because they have nothing else to compare it to, don’t really know they’re “poor.” Other kids realize when they go to school, or to a friend’s house. Here are 10 people on Reddit talking about the time they realized that they’d been poor.

 

1. Via Seeyouyeah

When I was young my dad always used to buy one main course and we’d share it. When I was a little kid I always wondered why he wasn’t hungry, and as a slightly older kid I always wondered why he was so stingy. It was only later that it clicked and I understood what he was going through and what he was trying to do for me.

In a similar vein, I later realised that the reasons our main activities to do together were reading and cooking is that the library is free and cooking is necessary whether it’s fun or not.

2. Via TheSwearPolice

Friends birthday party around age 8. Everyone has super cool ninja turtles action figures. I wanted one real bad. Just so happen to ” win ” the mystery prize giveaway drawing at the beginning of the party. My very own turtles action figure (it was bebop or rocksteady). Probably 20 years later I sit up straight in my bed in the middle of the night and realize my friends mom knew I didn’t have the means so she gave me an awesome gift at her sons birthday party. This is getting me all emotional.

 

3. Via ReadMoreWriteLess

My sis and I (now in our 40s) recently were bragging about how the 7 and 9 year old versions of us were so crafty how we could sneak into the hot lunch line at school without paying!! Then we look at our kids and realize they could never get away with that. The teachers knew we had nothing. They looked the other way.

This led to us uncovering tons of other times when were kids thinking we were getting away with something realizing that the adults knew full well. We cried a little.

Thanks adults who knew.

4. Via improbablewobble

I had a “second family” that took care of me and my brother while my mom was off doing her own thing. My elementary school friend’s parents were basically saints. Without them I’d have never known what it was like to go camping, boating on a lake, beach trips, amusement parks, honestly just nice Sunday dinners and playing Nintendo, normal suburban kid stuff, and feeling cared for. They basically gave me a childhood, threw my high school graduation party, taught me how to drive, cosigned my first car loan, sent me care packages in college, paid off a different incredibly stupid high interest loan I took out in my early twenties, and were just generally the decent parents I didn’t have. There really are angels among us y’all.

5. Via Lookitsmonsterki

I realised when all the other kids at school brought packed lunches everyday and I brought no food so my teacher used to make me a vegemite sandwich in the staff room. Doing fine now but as a kid I realised I was poor then.

6. Via Damsell

My mom bought Christmas gifts for us kids and then she realized she had to return the ones she got for me and my older sister. She let my two younger siblings keep a couple of things, but we were old enough to realize that returning things was for the best. My aunts and uncles would always get something for my younger siblings too, but figured my sister and I were old enough to know not to expect anything.

My older sister and I now are very into gift giving at Christmas, especially with each other because we were the ones that usually ended up with nothing.

7. Via bad_luck_dragon

Sitting in first grade. We were given a color by number sheets to do. Everyone else was coloring with crayola, and their pictures were vibrant.

I, on the other hand, was using Rose Art. The cheapest crayon you could get at the time. My picture was wan and lifeless. The colors didn’t pop. They had no depth to them. No life.

Black wasn’t black; it was a listless grey. Red looked like a faded sock left in the sun far too long. Yellow was sickly. Orange was the color of rotting pumpkin.

I looked around and realized, this was it. These pathetic pieces of wasted wax were the best I had to look forward to in the future.

8. Via WhatAmIDoingAwake

For years my mom made my family ‘monster mash’, which was comprised of Spaghetti and whatever canned food we had at the house. It was usually 3-4 cans of random stuff that sort of went together well. My favorite was canned pork and beans, Spam cut in to strips and fried to a crisp, tomatoes with chili peppers, and if we were super lucky there were canned tamales she’d chop up (if not then there was usually corned beef hash as a substitute). It was awesome, like a poor fancy version of chili mac. She’d make a huge vat of pasta and feed us with that for the week. She was not a great cook, but she could work miracles with random canned goods, in combinations that always seemed to pan out well.

I didn’t realize other people didn’t primarily eat canned meat products and dollar spaghetti till I was in middle school. No regrets, that was delicious.

9. Via houndstooth37

I didn’t realize it when it was happening but when I was young my parents would sometimes have camping night. They would set up a tent and we would play board games by candle light. Talking to my mother about it, my parents couldn’t pay the electric bill and they came up with camping night to not alarm the children

10. Via -eDgAR-

I grew up poor, but never really realized it or even really cared until the 2nd grade when this kid named Miguel joined my class. His family was pretty well off and he always had the newest sneakers and coolest clothes. My clothes consisted of things handed down to me from my cousins and things from the thrift store. Because of this Miguel liked to pick on me about the clothes I would wear and rub his new sneakers in my face. At that point I had never owned a pair of shoes that were new, so I decided to ask my mom if they could buy me a pair. She told me we just couldn’t afford it, especially since I was growing and probably wouldn’t even be able to wear them for long before. That was the moment when I realized we were poor and even though I hated getting made fun of at school, I knew my parents worked hard to give me everything I had and I appreciated that.

 

 

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