Poor you

If you want to wish anything on an enemy, don’t waste time on illness. One day that suffering will stop. Instead wish upon them poverty- it’s a feeling that crushes you from the inside out, shames you in an empty room and makes you acutely aware how being, being something or being somewhere is more than you can afford. You can’t afford to stay at home because it costs to heat or light, even trips to the toilet and the necessary hand soap and loo toll incur a cost.
You can’t afford to socialise- a friend coming over is a pair of eyes to view your state of living and another mouth to feed, you can’t afford to visit because you might have had to sacrifice wash powder for food, travel expense is out of the question and better yet, poverty takes your connection with other people away. No longer can you share stories with friends about ‘normal’ life. Normal life is too expensive.
Nobody understands the shame and how it affects you mentally. How you can’t just ‘cheer up’ or ‘smile’ because you’re using all your face and emotion to stop yourself from crying. How you don’t want to talk about it because talking doesn’t improve the situation but just widens the dust cloud.
Poverty strips the joy from parents hearts. Everyday as a poor parent is lived for tomorrow; for hope. Tomorrow we will have more money, tomorrow I might get work, tomorrow I won’t have been on the phone pleading we didn’t run up that bill and definitely can’t pay it, tomorrow there will be time for us to play. Today is about making it to tomorrow.
As a poor parent you don’t speak to anyone about it because it brings questions, be they direct or assumed. “Why have kids if you can’t afford them?”, “What do you spend your money on?”, “Have you tried looking for work?”
Then there’s the ‘fun’ throw aways like ‘have you tried….(insert group/organisation/charity/outlandish idea) and  ‘you just need to get a rich boyfriend’. No. What you really  is the sense of pride that comes from getting a job, doing that job well and earning money from it. Poverty dehumanises you. It strips you of all choice. It makes you aware of your worth and the greater worth of everything else.
Poverty is a greased and broken rung at the bottom of a long ladder- It’s almost impossible to climb out from.
Wish poverty on your worst enemy and you have wished for them the cruellest fate by far.

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