I’m really bad at spending money.
The value and purpose of money is definitely an area my wife and I differ on.. and that can cause friction – not marriage ending issues just confusion and disappointment.
The problem is simple. I don’t like spending money on me, and I don’t like other people doing it either. I consider money functional and I hate buying things (for me) that aren’t functional. Now don’t get me wrong I regard holidays as functional and I enjoy buying gifts – but clothes that I will only wear once, or even clothes to top up a wardrobe that already contains working items= infuriatingly pointless; ornaments, games, toys, all need to fulfil the used more than once category; books and music? lovely to have but probably not worth buying for myself except in extremis (ie deep depression or giftcards – and even then likely to result in guilt).
I believe in buying food ethically and I like it to be tasty but cannot stand to throw any away and would rather eat food I hate than consign it to the bin. I believe in saving up for regular treats, like takeaway or meals out, but get twitchy if the regular bills go too high and would happily eat only spaghetti in order to have one night of steak without feeling guilty.
Although I feel the need to personally save money for emergencies (keeping cash always available) – train and plane fares and house repairs – I don’t think its the end of the world if there isn’t much to go around. I like to save up for holidays and sudden spur-of-the-moment blow-outs but I hate telling anyone they can’t have something. I adore giving my loves surprise gifts or at least making sure that they can spend whatever they want.. except..on me.
This makes Valentine’s day (amongst others) a touch tricky. Its not that I don’t appreciate shiny things I just .. I just find them hard. I want the money to be useful and in general gifts aren’t useful. Maybe I just have ridiculously high standards – cos hell there is a lot I won’t turn down, or maybe its the low self-esteem that says I am not worth having money spent on.