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I Grew Up Poor

Personal Stories, Advice, and Support 2,978 People

    Dirt Poor

    Growing up we didn't have much money and I didn't have many toys, but that never stopped me from having a good time. When I was 10 my Dad got me my first pocket knife, and I'd go out and find the perfect fallen tree branches to carve toy guns and swords out of. When I was 12 I...
    FordPrefect42 FordPrefect42 36-40, M 89 Responses May 18, 2011

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    From the very beginning of my life,

    my mother had decided that she would take the traditional 50's housewife role in spite it being 90's to 00's. Now this wouldn't have been a problem in most circumstances. But my father was a fry cook. He worked at gimmicky restaurant in Florida off and on when he got sick of it...
    Helmetwarrior Helmetwarrior 18-21, M 1 Response Jun 26

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    Being Poor

    By John Scalzi Being poor is knowing exactly how much everything costs. Being poor is getting angry at your kids for asking for all the crap they see on TV. Being poor is having to keep buying $800 cars because they’re what you can afford, and then having the cars break down on...
    ConfusedInCollege ConfusedInCollege 22-25, F 3 Responses Dec 7, 2012

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    But Life Was Good

    I grew up in a poor "Irish ghetto" section of Boston. Think where Matt Damon lived in Good Will Hunting and you'll have a pretty good idea. Third floor of a tripledecker. My folks both immigrated from Ireland in the 50's. My father worked a full time job and two part-time...
    deleted deleted 26-30 2 Responses Dec 1, 2011

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    Being Poor As A Kid Wasn't That Bad.

    I have to laugh a little when I remember some of the things we did as kids.My grandma was very poor but I lived with her most of my young childhood.I was too little to understand poverty. I was happy. The kids in my neighbourhoodplayed games in the street, traded for things we...
    friedchickenmama friedchickenmama 31-35 1 Response Sep 24, 2013

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    Because Daddy Used To Drink

    Mom had to work for a few years as a waitress because Daddy used to drink up most of his paycheck. He came home every night from work with a six pack and usually had most of it down before it was time to pick Mom up. He would park in the tavern's parking lot and tell me, "You...
    MaryJanine MaryJanine 56-60, F 4 Responses Jun 1, 2013

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    I Never Really Knew It At the Time.

    but looking back now i know we were. i never realized it when i was little, i always had plenty of toys and clothes and i know now that that was because my mom sacraficed so much so that i could have the things that i needed. she did without so much for herself so that i could...
    asdfok asdfok 18-21, F 2 Responses Jul 25, 2008

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    Poor From Lies, Greed, And Death

    I read some horrible stories on here:( some people had love at least I wasn't so lucky. I was neglected and raised kind of by my grandparents. My mother cared more about her boyfriends, drugs, and drinking then she did her own children. It finally caught up with her. When I...
    Shaneking Shaneking 31-35 2 Responses Mar 1, 2013

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    Relative Terms

    Poor is a relative word.  It all depends on what you put it up against. I have a few oddities from most Americans because of my upbringing. - I have no issues with sharing toothbrushes.  My brother always hides his whenever he stays with me. - I like to cuddle with...
    Krypton Krypton 31-35, F 14 Responses Mar 26, 2009

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    Wore hand me downs. Didn't have new shoes

    until I was in 4th grade when feet got larger than any other guy in my family. First new store bought clothes I had was in 5th grade after a growth spurt just before school started. Before that it was hand me downs that my mother would take the summer to alter to fit me.
    CowboyFarmer CowboyFarmer 46-50, M Feb 28

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    ..

    My mother and father had divorced and my father would send child support at the end if the month. My mom had a low paying job and She had to choose to either pay rent, or buy groceries at times. It was scary and hard, but we got through it eventually. My father wouldn't...
    jennamarie210 jennamarie210 13-15, F 1 Response Nov 3, 2013

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    I'm not gonna say we had nothing,

    because that's not true, but I'd definitely wasn't good. We had to live without electricity for a while because my mother was constantly drinking and not working. My dad wasn't around because my mom had pretty much separated from him, and he wouldn't have helped anyway because...
    Xander8905 Xander8905 18-21, M Jul 17

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    Humble Beginnings

    My parents had very little money bringing up myself and my two brothers and sister. Being the first born clothes tended to be passed down to my youngest brothers. My father worked extremely hard, and my mother did two jobs as well as bringing up us lot. Growing up I began to...
    Grantor9 Grantor9 51-55, M 2 Responses Sep 7, 2013

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    Yeah I grew up a cattle ranch

    that more often cost more to run than it brought in. We did without a lot of the things that the city kids took for granted, things like electricity. We got power on the ranch in the early 1970's and party line telephone. We never had much money but we had the most spectacular...
    Manfromthemountain Manfromthemountain 56-60, M Feb 2

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    Well not necessarily poor,

    but I was definitely raised in a "bare necessity" type of home. Hand-me-downs and home cooked meals were a regular, and I have never had all of the latest things. I feel like it's preparing me that much more for success in my future, though. The reason I feel that way is because...
    landhoee landhoee 18-21, M Mar 3

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    Forgotten Memories

    I don't remember many memories as a child. I remember bits and pieces here and there. Some kids always said I was spoiled.. The truth is, I really wasn't. My grandma had always bought me toys and even my clothes. My parents couldn't afford it. As a baby, we lived with my...
    MeMe0326 MeMe0326 18-21, F 3 Responses May 3, 2013

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    I Grew Up Poor So What !!!!

    when i was 5 years old, we used to live with our relatives my father don't have a permanent job that time, our house is empty we don't have a single piece of furniture at our house only our clothes on a box.. i remember my older brother and i used to watch TV at our relatives but...
    deleted deleted 26-30 2 Responses Aug 24, 2012

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    Signs You Grew Up Poor

    We were poor but we didn't know it is one of the biggest lies ever. Trust me if you really grew up poor you knew it. Signs you grew up poor You didn't have heat in the middle of a Midwestern winter Your power or water was shut off because the bill was over due Your parents couldn...
    fae430 fae430 22-25 3 Responses Apr 27, 2013

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    Real

    I grew up in Perfectville USA, a quiet town with great schools and neighborhood after neighborhood of beautiful houses with manicured yards and pretty cars parked safely out of sight in their garages. Now drive past all those houses and you get to my street, one single ugly...
    deleted deleted 26-30 29 Responses Aug 28, 2008

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    Meagaroni18 Meagaroni18 22-25, F 2 Responses Jul 4

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    I Still Remember It As If It Was Yesterday..

    i grew up poor..my father was a gambler and would constantly put us down financially by gambling everything we had. i still remember not eating because i wanted to give my food to my mom. what a terrible thing to feel and experience at a young age. but it has made me who i am to...
    deleted deleted 26-30 5 Responses Jan 18, 2012

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    I Have Experienced The Poor, The Rich, To Nothing

    I have been lower than poor, I have been complete scum, a pebble in someone's shoes. so low that I was unnoticed as a child or ignored by those that were to scared to help me or have a voice for me. Didn't have a farther growing up, I was his dirty little secret since he already...
    KandiGirl KandiGirl 18-21, F 4 Responses Oct 28, 2009

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    At the Age of 8 I started to take care

    for myself. We had to move to another house when I was 9 and my parents didn't have the money so I had to buy furnitures. My mother owes me because she often borrowed my mony for gas for the car, I still buy my clothes with my Money. I think it's ok because I learnt from the...
    BlaBla01 BlaBla01 16-17, F 3 Responses Mar 1

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    I Was So Happy Growing Up Poor.............

    I grew up with my Mom and her brother, my Uncle John , in my grandfather's farmhouse. My Mother was in her 40's when I was born and everyone in the house was older than that. The house was paid for, but it was falling apart. My Mom & Uncle didn't do anything to maintain the house...
    TheOriginalPard TheOriginalPard 51-55, F 1 Response Apr 2, 2013

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    I Grew Up Filthy Poor

    This is my first story so please understand I very new at this but this is a story I had to tell . Firstly I love my mum and she did the best job she could , but she has made me who I am today but as a child we was very poor and I mean poor not just going with out poor I mean...
    Dirtykimmy Dirtykimmy 22-25, F 6 Responses Aug 2, 2012

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    I am grateful I grew up poor.

    We are more blessed than those who were handed everything. We know how to rub 2 nickles together to make a quarter & we aren't nearly as wasteful. We are far richer than those who don't have anything besides many expensive possessions.
    Shellybelle713 Shellybelle713 36-40, F 2 Responses Feb 3

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    My Life, A Horror Story

    Having to lie because of my poor, unhealthy and unstable financial situation. Feeling dirty because we don't have access to warm water in this dirty dumpster home full with hoarder stuff (books, newspapers) (boiler broke) and have to boil water in little amounts. Still can't...
    GenderPunk GenderPunk 18-21 2 Responses Apr 5, 2013

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    Government Peanut Butter

    A friend of mine asked me to share this story again.  Growing up poor is not necessarily the worst thing that can happen to a person. I am writing this story after reading a moving story about growing up poor.  Because I think I am terminally unique, I like to imagine...
    childoftheland childoftheland 46-50, F 26 Responses Aug 24, 2009

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    Growing Up Poor In Ohio

    I was a kid growing up diring the sixties and seventies.   I lived in the country, it was pretty rural especially compared to maybe today.  Growing up we really didn't have much.   Our lifestyle was also basically different than many can maybe imagine today as well.  The...
    dairyworld43143 dairyworld43143 46-50 2 Responses Oct 27, 2011

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    A Different Kind Of Poor

    I have an older brother and younger sister, My mother was a college educated concert violinist.  My father was a college educated business man who owned his own successful small business.  We lived in a huge beautiful home in an exclusive San Diego neighborhood, and that house...
    nanasixboys nanasixboys 56-60 5 Responses Feb 1, 2012

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    No One Really Knows

    I grew up dirt poor.  For a while I payed the bills instead of my parents.  For a short while I was homeless.  It was bad, but I'm actually kind of glad it happened.  I've always wanted to be the best person I can be, and the experience gave me a lot of...
    Xuan Xuan 22-25, M 7 Responses Jul 1, 2010

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    I sent this dude a picture of my kitchen

    and he said it was bigger than his house. :-0
    projectgwyn101 projectgwyn101 16-17, M 2 Responses Apr 21

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    Well Actually I Did Not, Not In Terms Of Finances But Still Something To Share

    It is an Urdu poem and in my opinion it captures what it is like for people who grew up poor. The Poem is by Ibn-Insha It is my own translation so it doesn't sound that poetic. Aik Chhota Sa Larka Tha Main Jin Dinon Aik Melay Main Pohncha Humakta Hua In times when i was a...
    lazyangel lazyangel 22-25, M 4 Responses Jul 4, 2011

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    I wasn't what you call poor.

    poor but my clothes didn't come from no j.c Penney's or sear's or some other name brand store . all mine came from the small 5 & dime store ,you know the one that sell the stuff that Looks like the nice stuff :)
    Badazzhillbilly69 Badazzhillbilly69 61-65, M 1 Response Jan 28

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    Yeah since I was like 7 my mom & dad got

    divorced. We still had a pretty apt then. Then we had a ugly apt, pretty one, & now a super duper ugly one now in a not that good city. But in like 1 & 1/2 years I graduate high school, then I go to college. I can't wait for that.
    njgirll njgirll 16-17, F 1 Response 2 hrs ago

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    Ya....right

    I grew up poor, I dress in whatever is on sale. Besides, this was Las Vegas and it was hot outside. I had saved money and took vacation from work so I could party in sin city for my 21st birthday. One night while coming out of the club in one of the hotels, i passed by a high...
    endofseptember endofseptember 22-25, F 1 Response Aug 5, 2010

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    My Dad Always Tried His Hardest!

    my dad always tried his hardest to provide for me and my sister. But having twins is hard, if i got a new toy so did she! If we went into the shop my dad would be all 'you don't look at it, you don't touch it and you don't even dare to ask do you understand' at that age we knew...
    Emogirl22 Emogirl22 18-21, F 1 Response May 12, 2013

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    It Seems To Be Inherited

    I didn't really understand when I was younger, it all seemed normal. Things like constantly having no electricity were just the norm. Living with extended family? Sure, who doesn't? When I was older, I did start to ask questions, like why my mother was always "just not hungry...
    deleted deleted 26-30 Oct 24, 2012

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    Yep...

    My immediate family (mom and siblings...) was poor. I grew up wearing "hand-me-downs" and my sister and I didn't have many toys, just stuffed animals that cost a dollar. So, we had to make do with very little, growing up. But, it thought me...
    deleted deleted 26-30 4 Responses Jul 25, 2008

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    From Poor...To Rich

    As a child, me and my family were financially poor . We were officially homeless in the beginning and at first moved to a bed and breakfast and to various other places. My dad was in between jobs and on minimum wage but every penny he did earn was saved by him. We were also a...
    candy85 candy85 26-30, F 1 Response Apr 26, 2013

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    I grew up in Detroit with my mother,

    step father and half brothers. My mom worked and my step dad stayed at home. My mother was on food stamps and my step dad on SSC. She always bought generic, never splurged. There was water for cereal when we ran out of milk. Stealing ketchup, mustard and salt and pepper packs...
    kelseysimone kelseysimone 22-25, F 1 Response Jun 15

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    My family is extremely poor.

    We don't have hot water, heat (not that we need it it's summer but we didn't have it in winter) we have Internet every now and than we'll keep it for a few weeks, have it shut off, get it turned back on, our car is the same deal as internet on and off.
    PinkParisChiffon PinkParisChiffon 16-17, F 4 Responses Jul 16

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    Poor Won't Be An Issue Anymore. Let Us All Dream Higher

    Majority of us are not born in wealthy family. Some of us are chased by debt, some of us are chased by bills to pay. And it is very stressful, if it is severe, may consider of suicide.. But we all deserve much better than this. So why not from now on, you have the things you...
    yilinxx yilinxx 18-21, F Sep 21, 2013

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    Dad would get paid on Friday,

    and money would be paid back to the relatives. The weekend would be okay. Tuesday, we would get something called family allowance. On Wednesday, we borrowed money from relatives. It was impossible for a poor family to break the cycle, and I think becoming aware of how we lived...
    deleted deleted 26-30 Mar 15

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    We Were Poor

    It was somewhat of a depressing time. Both parents lost their jobs and sold many of their valuables. We ended up in one of them homeless shelters for a little over a year and then we went into a sort of government housing. We had no TV or internet around this time so I started to...
    BornUnderABadSign BornUnderABadSign 18-21, M 1 Response Jun 10, 2013

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    Life Less Ordinary

    aw i was growing up my mother didnt have muuch but she would still make a way to provide for me and my siblings my mother is the nicest person ever and will provide for anybody in need but when the tables were turned no one would do the same for her. When i was just a little girl...
    Pinkmistress Pinkmistress 18-21, F 5 Responses Apr 9, 2011

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    Grown To Fast

    my mother,divorced my father when I was very young.I guess she got tired of his cheating and his marriage to another woman in another country while still married to my mother.She had married him young also fresh out of high school,then she had me.As a child i felt a lot of...
    vicdrago vicdrago 31-35, F 4 Responses Dec 5, 2010

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    It Is Stupid Assuming Before You Check

    Being in the right place at the right time isn't the key to success. Realising that you're there and doing something about is the key. While you have a chance to earn some money, you wouldn't just miss it because this works 100% but also earn A LOT!!! Empower Network is perfect...
    yilinxx yilinxx 18-21, F Sep 30, 2013

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    truth2b truth2b 26-30, M Mar 19

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    Best Childhood

    I didn't know we were financially poor. As a child you don't know what poor is. I had fun the old fashion way, was fed, and had a place to sleep. We had love and spent family time, all the time. No internet, or electronics until 13yrs old. During my teens my single mother began...
    nikkiab86 nikkiab86 26-30, F 1 Response Jun 25, 2013

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    The Pickle Jar

    I have been wanting to post in this one for awhile but couldn't find the words.  I didn't want my story to come off as a cry for others to feel sorry for me or as me throwing myself a pity party.  I hate pity parties and I don't like being felt sorry for.  I saw this email...
    snowberry75 snowberry75 36-40, F 18 Responses Jun 2, 2011

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    How To Get $500 In The Next 24 Hours (Video)

    To a lot of people earning over $700K in a month may seem impossible… But Vick Strizheus thinks differently. Recently he tested a brand new marketing Idea nobody ever talks about … and it generated over $700K in a month…. … without spending a dime on ads! This...
    yilinxx yilinxx 18-21, F Sep 24, 2013

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    Love Is What Matters

    And I have a very dear mom! I won't complain about what was lacking, all what matters is the love my mother gave to me and my three siblings. I remember one birthday, my mother had a sad face. I asked her, what's up? She said, that she hadn't enough money to buy a present and...
    RickiChickie RickiChickie 46-50, F 25 Responses May 18, 2011

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