The Weight of Poverty by Caitlin Moran

“There is one, massive difference between being rich and being poor, and it is this: when you are poor, you feel heavy. The heaviness comes from the sclerosis of being broke. Because when you are poor, nothing ever changes. Every idea you have for moving things on is quashed through lack of money. You dream of a house with sky-blue walls; wearing a coat with red buttons; going out on Saturday and walking by a river. Instead, you see the same crack in the same wall, push-start the same car down the same hill, and nothing changes except for the worse: the things you originally had are now wearing out. You’re dragging ten years of non-progress behind you like a wheel-less cart.”

Caitlin Moran, The Times   Follow Caitlin on Twitter.

Do you have an experience of being hard up you have left behind you? How did you achieve that?

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2 Responses to “The Weight of Poverty by Caitlin Moran”

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  1. Judith Morgan says:

    Patrick, Thanks so much for sharing your story and your thoughts, coloured by your experience of real life. Though it was tough, you came through and that will give others reading here, one day, hope that they can do the same. If any one of us can do it, then its possible for all of us to do it. J

  2. Yes – I do.
    I had a breakdown – as a freelancer that meant work dried up – I lost my girlfriend and my home – moved into a shared house with 4 people I didn’t know and lived off benefits, biscuits and chicken and chips.
    But I had one huge advantage – I had been loved as a child and taught how to survive and be confident by middle class parents, – and if it all went totally wrong, I knew I could go back to them – I didn’t, but the knowledge gets rid of a lot of that “weight”.

    I was depressed for a while, couldn’t get out of bed before noon, couldn’t get into bed before 1.00 am when the TV stopped (yes, that long ago) and life was hard.
    Leaving it behind was based on a mental health recovery and that was down to those flatmates, sticking with me even when I was shit company, eventually I managed a smile – eventually I got some work, even from someone who had been let down by my being in mental hospital at the time we had a job booked…
    Money followed – the dole allowed you to carry on claiming each week, despite having a few days well paid work (only those days deducted from benefit) – that really helped.
    Since 1990 I have been in 5 different jobs, paid more in tax and helped more people find work than this government appears to have done.
    If George Osborne came to me in rags smelling of beer, I’d help him get a job –
    there is always work in hotels doing the washing up for £1.40 an hour…

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