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To start things off this isn’t a pity party on my behalf, this is just me reaching out for an outside perspective.
My name is Nick.
When I was eighteen my parents kicked me out of the house. It wasn’t drugs, alcohol or laziness on my part. I developed different views on life than what my parents would have had me think. Regardless I ended up homeless for eight months. It was rough, I felt abandoned and forgotten by the world. I searched and searched and finally managed to land a job. Shortly after that I landed another job at Starbucks (I’m a supervisor here presently).
With this new wind I found some roommates, got a little room and got my drivers license. I’m twenty-one now and trying to save up for my first car.
However, I still feel lost and confused. I watch kids my age going to college without a care in the world while I work day in and day out just trying to pay the rent. I feel so behind compared to my peers. I just want to be a normal college kid. I want to worry about exams not where I’ll get my next meal. I realize wishing doesn’t solve anything or get me any closer to my goals, I’m just writing out my feelings.
So with that here are my pros and cons.

Pros:
Credit score: 750-800
Loans: None
401k
Health, dental, life insurance.
Salary: about 20,000 a year
I’m very financially aware and responsible. I’ve read Dave Ramses books and have applied them to my day to day finances and long term goals. I also have a strong work ethic and I know how to get shit done.
I’m also trying to avoid debt. I understand eventually I will need to but if I sink I don’t have mommy and daddy to run back to. So I’m very cautious.

Cons:
No car
No college
FAFSA still counts me “dependent” till im 24
Salary: about 20,000 a year
I simply don’t make enough money. I can’t save fast enough and its frustrating.

Finally my question: What do I do with this mess? How do single moms do it? How do men go from rags to riches?
My ultimate goal is to support a family of my own. To live as a good husband, a good father but most of all a good man but I don’t know where to turn.
Help me Internets, you’re my only hope.

Thank you for your time and suggestions.

P.S. I apologize for any grammatical errors. I haven’t takes any English since High-school.
P.P.S. Don’t tell me to slow down and enjoy life. I’m driven, point me in a direction rather than slow me down.

2 Thoughts on How to rise from the ashes…?
  1. Reply
    sophieb
    October 25, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    sure you watch kids go to college when you don’t but they’re in the process of not only educating but racking up lots of debt which may even last them until they’re in their 90’s except for the rich kids wherein their dads made good money and saved it up for them so they could go to college. There is college and then there’s trade schools and vocational schools. The trade and vocational used to be taught in the high shools but I understand that no longer happens. I’d suggest that you check out a trade school and see how the cost compares to that of college. It may take a shorter time so you can earn better money quicker but you’d have to go full time and work only weekends so you’d need loans and it would be difficult for you without a car. So I suggest that you continue working, even working two jobs and buy yourself a car that isn’t too old and learn to take care of it (keep it going) by yourself. I wouldn’t want to see what you’ve worked for so far all of a sudden turn to debt but that’s what happens to a lot of people. Maybe when you go to buy a car you could buy a hatchback or a small truck so you could deliver something as a job or your own part time business. Or even a van so that you could put in there some equipment (like floor scrubbers, vacuum sweepers, mops and such) like if you chose to clean businesses in the evenings after they’re closed.

    The economy all over is bad here and overseas right now and maybe for some years into the future. Make the money you earn last long.

  2. Reply
    likepepsi
    October 25, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    I love your attitude and I have no doubt you will achieve the goals you are working toward.

    First thing to do is stop comparing yourself to others. That just breeds negative feelings. Look what you have already done! You were a homeless teen, now you have a job, a place to live, and an understanding of the dangers of debt. The list of “Cons”… no car, no college, not making enough… are all things that can change! None of them have to be permanent. You are where you are, you are driven to do better, so focus on that instead of focusing on what others are doing and what they have.

    If you want to go to college or a trade school, go talk to admissions counselors there and see what options are available. Perhaps they have ideas on how you could do it even though you are still a FAFSA dependent. Or maybe they can help you figure out how to be treated as independent for financial aid purposes. But watch out for the easy “just take out loans” answer as it can be a crushing debt burden to repay.

    Here’s a suggestion. Find out what local organizations of business people meet in your area, and join one or two then volunteer to help with activities they are doing. Rotary Club, Lions, things like that. This is a way to develop contacts. With your motivation and drive, it’s possible that if you meet the right business owner or manager you might just get a better job offer. A younger person like you will definitely stick out from the crowd in a group like that and if you impress them with your work ethic and intelligence, who knows. These organizations focus on service to the community so if that appeals to you you will fit in fine. Even if you don’t get a job offer directly, you might find someone willing to mentor you towards a better gig and possibly help you get a better job somewhere else. And just being around those professionals will help you learn how to conduct yourself properly in a business environment.

    Another suggestion is to take on a second job and save that additional income.

    Look, I grew up poor too. When I was 23 I was a college dropout making barely above minimum wage and living in a cockroach infested dump. I know how you are feeling. The solution is to focus on the future and stop looking at others. Position yourself for success and understand that it won’t happen overnight. Write down goals, including short-term goals. Tape them to your bedroom mirror so you see them every day. I think you are going to be successful based on your attitude so don’t be discouraged.

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