Life Decisions Influenced By Money



Gail 67 As a 19 year-old single mom I decided to seek a career in education and become a classroom teacher, rather than selecting a more high paying path. I wanted to have a job that allowed me to be home shortly after my son arrived and time off when he did. That meant that for years he and I were barely able to scrape by, often eligible for food stamps, but I was home for my son.  I don’t regret the decision.



J.Patrick 30  

For the past few years I have pursued my creative passions instead of money, opting to essentially work for free instead of taking a job that earned me a paycheck. I am able to live this way and still enjoy a comfortable lifestyle because my partner (husband) is able to provide for our family of 4 and truly believes it is the best use of my time and energy.

Kim 43  

I was brought up with the understanding that I made my own money and I needed no one to “support” me. Very different philosophy with parents who graduated high school in 1959. I had to do it all for myself.

Marge 72  

Before I agreed to marry my second husband, I made sure that he was not in debt and was financially able to contribute to the future of my family.

Lise 64  

Hmmm, have been thinking about this for a few days.  Nothing really major comes to mind.  I think I have tried to make all my major life decisions based on my heart not my wallet. I recognize that makes me a very fortunate person and different from the majority of women in this world.

Sally gibbson 69  

Divorce removed a considerable portion of my income. Not wanting support, or what was called “alimony” then, I took on a second job to help with expenses.  30 years later I think I did the right thing. Not feeling indebted is a good thing.

Just me 31  

Accept and honor the fact that childcare is more than half my salary.

Karen 38  

In an effort to save money for my family from the high cost of medical care,  my disc herniation was misdiagnosed- prolonging an ongoing and agonizing back problem exacerbating the condition and eventually causing me to become immobile for over a month and a half!

Diane 64  

Even though my sister & I were born 1051 & 1953 and raised Southern Baptist Texas Republicans, my father expected both of as to go to college & have carers just like our brothers – and he paid for college though it meant we lived pretty simply. Even though it flies in the face of boomer financial advice, I did the same for my son when I was in my late 50’s & early 60’s. No early retirement for me but I love it! I got a new job 5 months ago and I’m psyched for the next phase of my career and making a real difference in the world. Sorry this is so long – feel free to edit.

Molly 69  

I did not buy an apartment in Soho because my husband and I were just married and thinking about starting a family. The decision was short sighted because the property has a value at least 20 times .

Ann 64  

When picking my life partner and husband 37 years ago, I was very thoughtful about our joint ambitions to be sure they would contribute to a productive, successful, harmonious. and financially sound life together.

P.Rogers 59  

As a person who grew up in working poverty, making the decision to pursue a degree committed me to years of finding scholarships, grants, and work that allowed me to afford college. I was in debt for many years, struggled with a variety of jobs to pay the bills. Bit hard work alone does not get one out of poverty: EDUCATION is the key. Now as a Vice-president at a university, it is my duty and honor to help other “first gen” students find their way.

Kris 57  

I chose to be a working mother and continue my career as a professional educator including seeking my Master’s Degree during that time period. Both my decision to work outside the home and to pursue a graduate degree were directly related to me being a role model for my children (especially my daughter) and being self-sufficient and independent financially.

Theresa 68  

I learned to be a waitress so I could have an income when I moved to the Virgin Islands.

Amy 50  

In an effort to stay on the high road in my daughter’s eyes, I compromised my financial well being in my divorce.NYC/Bi

Rebecca 60  

My important life decision influenced by money was to buy-in to being a co-owner (part of a co-op) of a studio building after getting kicked out of one too many art studios. That’s the positive one. The negative one was not to get my art book printed after spending many years working on it, getting a grant for the pre-press work, having several writers contribute essays and a graphic designer doing a gorgeous design. It was just too expensive to print. So it is still in its cocoon.

susan gainen 65  

Just like so many people to whom I had sold cars in the 1970s, I was a payment buyer on my first post-law-school house: it had to be $500 down and no more than $500 a month. I got it! I loved it.

M.J.W 31  

I chose to get an education  and train for a career, so that I would be capable of supporting  my family financially if hardships such as divorce or death of a spouse happened.

Diane Scully 62  

An important life decision for me was to pursue my Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting and Drawing. I was willing to accrue two more years of debt to have the experience of working on MFA. I was personally looking at how to advance my work through another concentrated painting experience and study. In retrospect, since I have taught for thirty-five years, ultimately my masters has earned me more salary and retirement throughout my life.

Pat B 65  

When in my late 30’s divorcing my lawyer husband, I had a small child and was starting life over. I was an artist and went to my studio daily and held down multiple  jobs, took care of my daughter and the house. Once I filed for divorce, I knew that multiple jobs would not work because I wanted stability for my daughter. I went back to school to get a k-12 art teaching license so I could have financial stability and do my work. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made!

Sassy mom 67  

I worked very hard to get a complete education, to please my family’s expectations, in the hopes of gaining a full time college teaching position.  In the end I seemed to always get positions teaching art history.  Finally in my 50s I decided to quit teaching college & pursue my art & work with private students.  I make far less money but am much happier as a person and I have been much more productive as an exhibiting artist.  Looking at my retirement years I am somewhat concerned about my lack of retirement savings, but I believe somehow it will all work out.  Being an artist means being willing to take risks.

Julie 35  

Not being able to afford birth control because insurance wouldn’t cover it.