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Question of the Week- What Are You Willing to Sacrifice?


This is our Sunday series where we all respond to reader questions. If you want to submit a question, please go to this post.

Question of the Week

 What are you willing to give up, or not willing to give up, to get out of debt?  For example-not willing to give up the gym because health is critical: willing to give up current home to live in a small space and save money.  posted by Juhli


I feel like we have already made a lot of changes and none of them have caused a decline in our quality of life.  For the last year my girls did not participate in dance or cheerleading (which they’ve both done since they were three) and while they miss it and will go back at some point, it was kind of a nice respite from how crazy our weekday evenings used to be.  They currently only participate in sports that are offered locally for free and that keeps them happy and us busy enough to stay out of trouble!  I also think my going back to work full time has been a huge sacrifice because I can’t be nearly as involved with my girls’ school activities as I used to be. This has been a big adjustment for me but even more so for them.  I think it’s safe to say that we are pretty much willing to do anything short term to get out of debt as quickly as possible.  The long term goal will be to stay out of debt.


Basically I am willing to sacrifice any superficial thing to get out of debt.  We have already gotten rid of cable and our cell phones.  Starting last month we cut back on eating out, with the intentions of only eating out once a month.    As for not willing to give up… Well I think you all know that answer. I have very strong feelings about my self employment. I know in the deepest parts of my body, that I can make this entrepreneurship work. I know that eventually with what I am doing, I will be better off. And I also know that if I did take on a job, that I would let this dream die in me. Which eventually will do devastating things to me.


I will not give up opening our home to children in need. That was easy. Pretty much everything else is up for negotiation.  And every day I’m looking for new ways to make money, save money and cut costs.  I’m certainly not perfect and it is a daily battle for me, and I do mean daily, but I am committed – all in.


I’m trying to be open to sacrifices both big and small. In terms of “big,” Chris and I have decided to forego our annual Christmas trip back to Texas so we can save money (it will be our first Christmas in the 7 years we’ve lived out-of-state that we won’t be returning for the holiday). We had also originally been planning another trip this Spring. Chris has family in Seattle and I’ve never been to the area. Chris hates flying (read = scared terrified), so we were planning to drive, spend some time, then take our time driving down the California coast line to get back to Arizona – take a couple weeks for the full trip. Obviously that’s out the window. In terms of “small” sacrifices, I’ve been making all kinds of things homemade or DIY instead of buying, we’re trying to cut down how often we eat out, and I’m trying to generally “make do” with what we have instead of buying new things (first thing that comes to mind is a swim suit for summer, though this applies to more than just clothes). In terms of “not willing to do,” one thing I do not want to change is our residence. We pay $1055/month for rent in a reasonable (small 1 story) home in a safe area. In the past we have lived MUCH more cheaply (rent for only $595). But to do so, we were living in the extreme “hood” (in a really rough area). That was all fine and good when it was just me and husband but now that we have children I really value living in a nicer, more family-oriented neighborhood. I’m sure there’s some compromises – places “in between” where we currently live and where we used to live….but at this point I’m not really interested in looking elsewhere. We moved here last August so we haven’t even been here a year, we love it here, and I do not want to uproot us again at this point. I’m not saying this will NEVER be a possibility, but currently it is not an idea I want to entertain.


  • Reply Meghan |


    I think it is great that you are involving your kids in age appropriate participation in your debt reduction.


    I love that you are so committed to children in need. There are so many that need the kind of love and compassion that you can provide and it is a rare gift. Thank you for taking on that challenge!


    I think that you are right to stay put in your current house. To move to somewhere you will save $100 would still not balance out for months afterward when you consider the costs of moving. My parents made a similar choice when I was your children’s age and I am 100% sure I had a better life because of it. We also are in a similar position right now, we live in a two bedroom instead of a three because the price difference puts us in a different neighborhood. Even though this means our two young ones share a room, we still feel less cramped because we can let them play outside!



So, what do you think ?