I’ve been reading an article in The Washington Post about the fallout from the government shutting down the economy. The article tells the stories of several people who lost their jobs and are teetering on the brink of homelessness.
One story was about a young woman who left her job because people at work kept getting sick and she was afraid she would get sick.
She has a daughter, so she was also worried about here daughter, but… she only $500 saved for an emergency.
Doesn’t seem like enough to me but…
Anyway, she is still waiting for her unemployment check. According to this article:
As the weeks ticked by, and her unemployment check did not appear, she pushed aside thoughts about what might be ahead, helping her son with his school work and learning to make soap — a new hobby, something to keep her busy.
The notices she got from her landlord noted that due to special protections put in place by the District during the pandemic, she could not be issued a summons for lack of payment for now. But they were keeping track of each $1,297 payment she missed.
“I could not fathom the idea of what was coming next. I couldn’t look in that direction,” she said. “I don’t want to be in no shelter, so I tried not to think about it.”
You know at the same time though… and this is going to sound incredibly insensitive, that’s the exact mindset that landed her in this situation.
When I talk to folks about having a massive amount of insured savings and death benefit, “just in case”, many people shrug it off and choose not to think about it. They probably think they can start an insurance and savings plan any time they want. That they have plenty of time because they’re young and healthy and making decent money. That everyone around them is waiting to start saving so what’s the big deal? That putting $50 into a 401(k) plan is proabbly good enough…
Until… the unthinkable happens.
Well, the unthinkable just happened.
And that’s a question I pose to you. What do you do now?
If you’re in the same boat as the gal above, I’m sorry. I really am. You’re going to think I’m being flippant, insensitive, and maybe downright cruel and that I just don’t understand your situation when I say this: you put yourself here and I can’t help you.
Now… if you’re one of the lucky few that has made it through this relatively unscathed, maybe this is a wakeup call?