Thursday, January 29, 2009

How the 'other half' suffers

When I first read this, I thought it was a joke.

"Dating a Banker Anonymous

Are you or someone you love dating a banker? If so, we are here to support you through these difficult times. Dating A Banker Anonymous (DABA) is a safe place where women can come together – free from the scrutiny of feminists – and share their tearful tales of how the mortgage meltdown has affected their relationships. DABA Girls was started by two best friends whose relationships tanked with the economy. Not knowing what else to do, we did what frustrated but articulate girls have done since the beginning of time - we started a blog. So if your monthly Bergdorf’s allowance has been halved and bottle service has all but disappeared from your life, lighten your heart with laughter and email your stories to Warning all stories sent will be infused with our own special brand of DABA Girl humor."

It's true, ya'll! It's the intro of a real blog. The group merited a story in the New York Times, which you should read, because it's fascinating, from a sociology point of view.

Confession time: While I try not to be judgmental, the story and the blog -- even just the intro -- repulsed me. "Boo effin' hoo," I thought. "People are being kicked out of their homes and you're pouting because you have to get facials every six weeks instead of every month?!" Um, some time has passed and I'm still repulsed, frankly. But I'm trying to be understanding, especially since this is a banking town and there're probably lots of women who can relate to the chicks on the blog.

Americans have different standards of living. Some folks are struggling just to stay in their homes, some are simply cutting back on dining out and downgrading from digital to basic cable, others have to cancel that monthlong trip to Europe. This just goes to show that the recession really is hitting everyone.


Anonymous said...

"Confession time: While I try not to be judgmental, the story and the blog -- even just the intro -- repulsed me. "

Don't confuse being judgmental with having an opinion and holding certain values. I'm personally turned off by the shallowness of gold-digging women. If they're upset about losing *their* job and own income? I can understand. Upset because the guy they're dating can't keep them in world travel, diamonds, and champagne? It's called using someone else.

As Jay-Z puts so well:
Can i hit in the morning
Without giving you half of my dough
And even worse if i was broke would you want me?
If i couldn't get you finer things
Like all of them diamond rings [women] kill for
Would you still roll?
If we couldn't see the sun risin off the shore of thailand
Would you ride then, if it wasn't droppin?
If wasn't ah, eight figure [brother] by the name of jigga
Would you come around naked, would you clown me?... See yourself with a [brother] workin harder than 9 to 5
Contend with six, two jobs to survive, or
Do you need a balla? so you can shop and tear the mall up?
Brag, tell your friends what i bought ya
If you couldn't see yourself with a [brother] when his dough is low
Baby girl, if this is so, yo... can I get a what what.."

I'm just surprised that more hard-working men don't follow Jay'Z's philosophy.

Anonymous said...

My husband used to work in mortgage business and while he had an amazing income for a few years we have since hit a huge financial pit now that his job is no more. But we saved while the sun was shining and although we have had to cut back I hardly think a 'support' group is needed. Girls, if all you care about is how much money your man brings in your relationship will never work out. The old saying holds true "The best things in life are FREE!"

Anonymous said...

Anonymous: Say WHAT? First of all, I can bet that the people in this blog space don't even listen to Jay-Z; those that do, would they really understand what the heck he's saying? Next, not all bankers live the way you suggest (world travel, diamonds, champagne). Most that I know are fairly level headed folks who live in nice homes in "nice" parts of town; you don't have to be a banker to get facials -- how many of the ladies you know get their nails done? Similar pampering, similar luxury, similar frequency and similar expense. Finally, let's not forget that it's not just some ladies who have a particular fondness for nice things; I'm sure you'll find men with country club and golf course memberships among many other things that they will whine about if they have to do without. My point is that while perhaps less common, men can be shallow gold-diggers too. The bottom line is that once you become accustomed to living with certain allowances, it can be a struggle to adjust to less no matter how much you're starting out with and ending with. It doesn't do anyone any good to whine about it; it is what it is.

Anonymous said...

Also, maybe the issue is not only a monetary one but in the blog they said their RELATIONSHIPS were suffering which encompasses more than just everyday luxuries.

I think someone put on their judging eyes...

Anonymous said...

I have to say, the fact that a blog like this (or whatever it is) even exists is just an embarrassment to the high majority of women (and men for that matter) who have a little more to care about in their lives than just material. And quite frankly, I'm disapointed that space on Charlotte Observer would even be wasted to report on something like this. It should be ignored. This isn't "news," it's just a shame.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:13 and 2:32, I think you missed my point. I didn't say men can't be gold diggers; I just singled out women because I think stats would show that more well-paid men support their women than the other way around.

Second, I didn't put down the people for liking nice things, per se. Everyone is entitled to spend the money *they earn* the way they choose, and there's nothing wrong with pampering one's self or liking nice things. But if you're spending someone's else's money, and complaining once it's gone, that's a different story.

As for "someone put on their judging eyes" -- please don't be a hypocrite. You're judging me as much as I'm judging the authors of that blog. Stop acting so high and mighty.

Deirdre McGruder said...

A reader e-mailed me with what I thought were some strong points, so I decided to add them to the conversation:

"I think during these tough and crucial economic times where we have people losing their job and home and not to mention in some cases losing/taking their lives I think a serious reality check is needed. I think my generation (I’m 40) have been used to all the finer things coming up or having access to them and therefore we’ve made these luxury items more necessity. I do work for a bank and I’ve had to curb my spending and also some of the other things I enjoy doing because I’m not sure what my future holds. To hear some of the ladies complain about not taking their yearly vacation to Europe or to the Caribbean is very selfish. I think this is good for some people maybe now they will value a dollar and also learn to enjoy the things that are totally entertainment/luxury items.

"Unfortunately the blog portrays women as some men have described them, more into what can be done for them instead of growing. That’s how it was done back in my mom & pops days. They were happy just to enjoy a night out w/o having to break your wallet. And so what if some of these women cannot get their breast enhanced or their monthly Botox injections life by no means is over. Our parents and their parents survived w/much more than we have today. We just have to get back to basics and start empowering each other."

Anonymous said...

The premise of their blog is confusing. Is their relationship tanking because of the stress their partners are under due to the economy tanking, or is the relationship tanking because they aren't getting as many of the monetary benefits out of their relationship due to the economy tanking? There is a huge difference between the two. And if it's the latter, than these ladies should get a life... one that doesn't rely on bottle service to be happy in their relationships. Maybe their better, banking halves should find more appreciative, hard-working women that support them no matter how much money they make or whether or not they can shop full price or clearance at Bergdorf's.

J said...

I was also flabbergasted when I first read this. But I got to thinking... whatever your life situation is, when part of your normal lifestyle is removed, then it is traumatic to you, even if others in other situations would fid it ridiculous that you think your situation is traumatic.

However, the women who are the target audience for this blog really do need to gain some other perspective. If they only get facials every other month instead of every month, the time slot where the eliminated facial is should be spent at a local homeless shelter, soup kitchen, or any agency for the poor like we have Crisis Assistance Ministry in Charlotte. That would help them realize that things could be so much worse for them. They don't need to be condemmed or ridiculed, but they definitely need to be educated.

Chris said...

"Some folks are struggling just to stay in their homes, some are simply cutting back on dining out and downgrading from digital to basic cable, others have to cancel that monthlong trip to Europe. This just goes to show that the recession really is hitting everyone"

Some folks just need to have some sense slapped into them.

Anonymous said...

It is sad that their relationships are so loveless that something as petty as cutting back on dining out can tank it.

Adrian DeVore said...

I read the original article and felt no sympathy for these shallow folks who had placed their relationships on material worth. How sad.