They say good friends can enrich your life, but what happens when hanging out with rich friends leaves you feeling broke? This is a pretty common feeling among many people. You feel that you need to keep up with them in terms of paying your share when it comes to going out for dinner, going on vacation or just hanging around. Unfortunately if they have a larger bank account than you do, chances are you are going to end up feeling that you are spending money that you do not have and you may even begin to resent your friends.
How does this topic blend with home maintenance costs? It is all about managing money and saving money for other priorities. One of the issues we all have to deal with is about how we spend our money when it comes to hanging around with friends.
Hanging out with Rich Friends
Diverse Group of Friends
In my thirty five years, we have met many people and become friends with a wide assortment of people from various professions. We tend to gravitate to groups of people who are in similar situations as ourselves from a financial perspective. While we hang around with a fun, diverse group of friends they are very different when it comes to how much money we have or earn. We are all smart, hard-working people, we are compensated very differently and we may have inherited different amounts of money. Some are high-priced lawyers, bankers and people of the corporate persuasion. And then there are those of us who are slugging it out in the service industry, fulfilling unpaid internships or freelancing for pocket change. Some have inherited from wealthy parents and really have no need to work while others are supporting parents who do not have sufficient funds.
What are Your Priorities for Your Friends
So what is the price of being good friends with people who earn significantly more than you? Surrounding yourself with financially successful individuals can be both motivating and inspiring. In fact you can learn a great deal from these friends and often be exposed to opportunities that you might not consider other wise. However, there are times when trying to fit in with friends who earn super-sized salaries can also leave you feeling jealous and insecure. Everyone wants to feel successful and feel that other people look up to them. At the same time it is all about having fun and enjoying the people around you without taking into account how much money they have. In other words there is a balance to achieve if you can define it and then achieve it with your friends.
Living Beyond Your Means
It is very easy to live beyond your means when trying to keep up with your friends in a social circle that has rich friends. Whether you’re splurging on a lavish night out or expensive wedding presents, there’s plenty of room for financial tension when budgeting for your friends’ expensive tastes. None of us want to be made to feel cheap or be embarrassed about how much we spend on gifts or dining out.
Sometimes, well-meaning friends can be insensitive to the diverse income brackets that exist within the group. They may not even realize that they are making some of their friends feel inadequate. Hosting your birthday party at a pretentious resto with heart-attack inducing prices is one thing. But ordering a pricey bottle of wine plus an expensive platter for the table and expecting everyone to split the bill is ridiculous.
Managing Get Together
Going to restaurants and parties can be challenging when you have rich friends. While you might order a salad and tap water to drink, they order wine and expensive appetizers for the table. If they then suggest that the table split the cost of the meal, you may feel that your spending a lot more than you planned. One group friends we go to dinner with always orders desert with their meal and often do not even finish them. We have started telling the waitress that we want split bills right at the beginning to make sure that everyone pays for what they order.
This seems to work well for our group, and everyone feels free to order as much or as little as they wish because it will show up on the bill of the person ordering it. Parties can be the same. We always like to host dinner parties at home, while another couple are not good at hosting and are uncomfortable as a result. They are the ones that tend to pay for everyone when we do go out to dinner, since it is their way of paying everyone back for the dinners they have been to at our homes.
Never Discuss Money Other Than in General Terms
We can talk about all kinds of things with our friends even investments, but we never discuss how much we make. This is just taboo for most people. Although there is one couple who has a business that has become very successful and he likes to tell us how much money his business has generated a year. We are very happy for him since he started from nothing, however sometimes it can get a little tiring to hear it. The point is that circumstances change for everyone, sometimes good and sometimes not so good. We all need to look beyond this and focus in on why we are friends. Good rich friends will the thoughtful too and not make their less successful friends( in terms of money) feel uncomfortable.
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Ultimately, it’s important to remember that while good friends might be priceless, friendship doesn’t have to come at the expense of your financial security.