Does your family despise you?

With the holidays approaching, I'm curious how you all deal with the awkward family gatherings. More specifically, does anyone else feel despised by their own family now in regards to their career choice?

Personally, I have a VERY blue collar family. My immediate family consists of welders, production workers, and those in the construction business. I'm the only one in my family to have earned a college degree. Needless to say, I have very few commonalities with my aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.

Although I noticed a few relatives become distant shortly after declaring my major in college, I honestly feel like the black sheep of my family now that I'm working. I was extremely close with these people growing up, so I'm not sure what changed, but I know I can't be the only whose gone through this.

Just to confirm I'm not some self centered 25 y/o douchebag out of touch with reality---at the last gathering, my nieces 1st birthday party, my uncle made a comment about my car, which is leased, along the lines of "did my mortgage buy that car?".

I'm at a well respected firm, but I can't even imagine how they would react if I was based in NY at a BB.

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Comments (84)

Oct 9, 2018

Lol who cares. Stop showing up.

If your family is going to be a dick, fuck them. Enjoy blue collar life.

Oct 9, 2018
TNA:

If your family is going to be a dick, fuck them. Enjoy blue collar life.

+1SB

Oct 23, 2018

I like your style. +1

Work hard, work clean, & most of all do not give up.

Oct 23, 2018

This, but sadly.

Oct 9, 2018

I come from a similar background but only really associate with my immediate family. My family is local insurance at the white-collar, janitors, libraries, teachers, on the other. Blood relation is just blood relation. The people who treat me well and are there for me (and vice versa) are family to me. My best friend I've had since I was 15 is more family than most uncles that I have. If they want to be jealous of your success then fuck them.

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Oct 9, 2018
justphresh:

My best friend I've had since I was 15 is more family than most uncles that I have. If they want to be jealous of your success then fuck them.

It's funny you say that. My bestfriend, also from childhood, is still my right hand man to this day. The best part is that we're polar opposite. He's a high school drop out who later earned his GED and now serves our country. Regardless if he's halfway across the world, he's the first one to call me (repeatedly) after a promotion, job change, graduation, etc.

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Funniest
Oct 9, 2018

Pull up in a rented Rolls with a hired "companion" on your arm wearing the loudest pinstripe suit you can find and a wide, shit eating grin.

Let the chaos ensue and burn those bridges. Guarantee it'll be the last invite you get.

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Oct 10, 2018

And make sure the pinstripes are actually comprised of a repeated "Fuck You" written really small side by side.

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Oct 23, 2018

Beep loud if they don't come out to see the car.

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Oct 27, 2018

LMAO! Don't forget to fan yourself with money when it's warm and through change at the children when they bug you. You're my hero!

Oct 9, 2018

It's definitely tough. My immediate family gets it because they know firsthand the work I put in serving in the military, working in the private sector as an engineer, and finally transitioning to finance. While my extended family knows all this, it gets glossed over. All they see is this kid who wears suits to work in the industry that caused the financial crisis.

Blue collar tends to value working with your hands over the type of work finance professionals do. I've found it best to laugh at their jabs towards finance/banking and act curious about their chosen career paths. Turns out, people love to talk about themselves. If you can get them talking about their jobs, they'll go on for hours and you'll deal with fewer side comments. Better yet, if you ask their advice for something related to their trade, they'll be your best friend. It doesn't have to be anything huge. Say that you were interested in learning to weld as a hobby, how can you start doing that? Should you learn tig or mig? Should you buy a cheap setup and start melting metal?

Oct 9, 2018
John Pierpont:

All they see is this kid who wears suits to work in the industry that caused the financial crisis.

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Oct 23, 2018

Triple distilled ignorance and primitive reaction to a symbol.

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Oct 23, 2018

But I also really like this approach too. +1

Work hard, work clean, & most of all do not give up.

Oct 23, 2018

Very similar experience.....I have some family members who fully understand that I've worked 60-80 hours per week but nonetheless act like my success was handed to me while they're just unlucky.

On the other hand, I have some family members who are super proud of my accomplishments with an attitude like "Hey, one of the family managed to become a banker. Nice!" They might not like the profession but are still proud that one of the clan made it in.

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Oct 9, 2018

My neighbor is a pipe fitter, super great guy but once I made the transition from engineering to finance, his attitude towards me changed. Now our conversations consist of:

Him: Hey John, make any money today?
Me: Same old, same old.

We tight

Oct 23, 2018

In a similar boat. It's funny though, they like to talk shit but then when they need help with something technical (coming up with a business plan for something they want to start, shopping lenders for their mortgage/refi, doing any type of market research/homework on something, etc.) I'm the first one they call. Think it depends on the offense. If some relative just makes a casual chirp that isn't that offensive to me, I'll usually just shrug it off and hit them back with a retort. If it's something very inappropriate/uncalled for/not just poking fun, then they are in the penalty box with me for a while.

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Oct 9, 2018

There was definitely a change when I went back to business school to go into banking.

I was always considered self-sufficient (i.e. I don't need any help but my siblings and cousins get a lot comped - help with rent, on parents' cell phone bills, etc. - because they are a lot less hard working and successful).

However since going into banking everyone in my family thinks I am made of money when in reality I live very ascetically myself and have a family to support. Subtly, a lot of family members think they are entitled to stay over at my place, that I will treat them for meals, give them a loan, etc. I have no interest in enabling or subsidizing their lifestyle when I sacrificed my 20's to get to where I am. I offer resume reviews but nobody has taken me up on that.

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Oct 25, 2018
Synergy_or_Syzygy:

. I offer resume reviews but nobody has taken me up on that.

HAHAHAHA

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Oct 9, 2018

Similar situation here with not one person from my family, aside from me, graduating college. Personally I hear that shit all the time 'oh you're rich now huh?' I'm not, 'oh you think you're some big timer now?.' I usually just shrug it off and let it go, most of my family aren't really educated enough on what we do to even know the effort that goes in to getting a job in my (our) fields, to them if you're sweating you're working hard, if you're in an office you're privileged, it's just a lack of understanding.

Chalk it up to that, go see the family, get drunk and talk shit back to them. Nothing like tough love.

Oct 9, 2018

So my experience with this kind of thing has a happier ending, some might say. My extended family (blue collar workers, primarily current/former factory workers and miners) were surprisingly happy for me. They saw the direction the industries that my family has been in for generations were going and support my hard work and choice to do something else. They quickly understood that my job wasnt to steal money from hard-working americans and did not in fact want to cause another financial crisis, and now are actually very interested in what I do.

My cousins around my age (late teens early 20's) were similar to my highschool friends in how they handled it. It took them a sec to realize that I wasn't some bored teenager anymore, and that I needed to do something like this so my black hole of a town didnt swallow me up like so many others. The jobs were drying up and the industries that supported these areas had left long ago. Once they understood that I was different, but also still me, they dropped the issue and were happy for me. I am coached some of them (the younger ones) to work harder and try to do something new. I am still very close with the majority of my family--no more or less than before.

Dayman?

Oct 9, 2018

It's great that your family is so supportive. Are the younger relatives you've mentored / advised also looking to do something else outside of what's available in the town?

Oct 9, 2018

I'm trying to convince them to branch out and try more things but they receive a little pushback from their parents. Idk I guess the parents are tougher cus its their kids and not a relative, but they should understand by now that places like Holyoke MA or Clairton/Ashland PA aren't coming back -- look up those places to see how dead they are (did just out relatives hometowns lol). Parents need to understand that the places that gave them opportunities in their youth are not the same, and that kids have to leave these places if they want any chance at success. No matter how fond your memories of a place were, sometimes you just gotta let it die.

Dayman?

Oct 9, 2018

My immediate family is pretty happy I'm making so much bank. My extended family doesn't know what I do, and with good reason: they're all from a third-world country and already ask my parents for money, and the few who have seen me wear a suit already want to "hang out at the club," "go for a few drinks," and they want me to "teach me what you do." Lol. Right.

My old friends, however, are down to 0 as of this year. The last was a close friend I'd known since I was a toddler, but the deviations in our life paths is just too wide. She's basically against any kind of self-improvement, and you can't convince her of that fact. I gave up. The very idea of striving to make more money takes her our of her safe zone personal bubble and creates friction.

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Oct 23, 2018

I had a pretty big deviation from my lifelong best friend this year too. It's sort of hard for me to accept that our lives have taken pretty distinct splits and I'm not sure that can be recovered. Sucks to lose lifelong friends but in the end I want and need to surround myself with people I want to be like. Addition by subtraction. Like they say: you are the average of your few closest friends, so if a few are addicts, no drive, etc. you are really swimming against the current.

Oct 30, 2018

This is interesting to me. Was the split because you were both living in two completely different worlds with different values?

My circle of friends are all ambitious and all are working hard at trying to make money and be self-sufficient. Some are entrepreneurs, some are getting their MBA, others are working in high-finance, but all in all we're kind of in the same "realm" so to speak. I wonder, besides women, what else could break up such a tight bond between like-minded men?

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Oct 29, 2018

Ditto that, just went through the same thing brotha.

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Oct 9, 2018

Uhhh no. Most of them are blue collar but they have supported me a ton. Love them.

Most Helpful
Oct 9, 2018

My family is mostly trash -- like not doing opioids trailer park white trash, like middle class new Ford F-150 and used Ford Explorer living in a cheap Pulte tract home in a downscale flyover suburb trash. The type JD Vance wrote about -- "illusion of middle class because of material comforts but same destructive/backwards white trash mentality" -- that ensure their kids have little chance at class mobility or leaving the general area they grew up in.

I find them small-minded and gross. They hate education and they sit on their ---es watching sports and reality TV when they're not working. They could easily afford to move to a town with superior schools or send kids to private (where kids steep in a higher-achieving ethos) with the cash they blow on new cars, RV, boat, $200/month cable TV package, etc. Instead they wallow in their downscale suburbs, where their kids hang with the same caliber of underachieving burnouts who lack dreams.

And yes, they're insecure and passive-aggressively chirp. They know I find them gross and it is what it is. Unless you have dumb as bricks family you can't comprehend how awful it is to talk to adults who've never left their hometown, never attended college, never read anything, but because they make $70K-150K they have it all figured out and you can't tell them s---.

Every time I try to have an open mind about them and give them a clean slate they open their mouths during the holidays and I'm just dumbfounded at how painfully low watt and backwards they are.

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Oct 10, 2018

you can curse here, we don't judge.

Oct 23, 2018

Sweet. Fuck you.

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Oct 23, 2018

Not sure what the monkey shit here is about, but this one is so true. This describes my extended family to a T, but thankfully my parents were smart enough when they met to see the black holes of their home town and work their way to somewhere better for me and my siblings. And while I certainly wouldn't call what my grandparents/aunts and uncles/ cousins/etc think of us as loathing, there is certainly some level of derision when they see how much we value education. My parents were the exceptions in their families.

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Oct 23, 2018

Um, because it's unnecessarily mean and just totally makes it's author and his defenders look like total dicks even if there's merit in their views? Could be that

Oct 23, 2018

TIL earning 150k and living in the burbs is trash.

Oct 23, 2018

He reiterated its not about the material wealth, its about the mentality.
Shit in a silk stocking.

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Oct 9, 2018

$150K is certainly at the higher end. Do note cops and firefighters, UPS drivers, car salesman, factory workers who pick up a lot of overtime easily flirt with $100K. Add in the wife working as a dental or nurse tech after attending the local community college and you'll hit $150K HHI.

The point I was trying to make is merely a full-time job and $70K-150K HHI is fantastic amongst the set of working class they grew up with, so in their eyes they're bootstraps raging success stories who have it all figured out. A solid salary does not make them more sophisticated.

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Oct 23, 2018

I remember why I didn't like your first entry on this subject a few months back when you raised the subject. What I'm now trying to understand is why you were defensive back then. You pretty much tripled down.

Oct 23, 2018
ivybroski:

Unless you have dumb as bricks family you can't comprehend how awful it is to talk to adults who've never left their hometown, never attended college, never read anything, but because they make $70K-150K they have it all figured out and you can't tell them s---.

Every time I try to have an open mind about them and give them a clean slate they open their mouths during the holidays and I'm just dumbfounded at how painfully low watt and backwards they are.

This is really well put. I've never quite been able to articulate what it's like dealing with extended family but you nailed it.

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Oct 23, 2018

My dad hates me like Mad Max The Wolf of Wall Street

Oct 10, 2018

All I've done are internships and people around me have deemed me a criminal. I can't imagine what it's like to be some of you guys.

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Oct 10, 2018

Don't really know what your family situation was like before, but from the sounds of it, they're probably just egging you on about taking a "different" path. At the end of the day, they're still family and probably just enjoy taking jabs at your career choice for the fun of it. Just take it light heartedly and respond with right amount of wit/sarcasm.

    • 1
Oct 23, 2018

Think you are overthinking this OP. Regardless of how you make your bread and butter, they are family. They will be there for you.

Go drink, eat, and talk. It's funny that the older siblings in the family likes to tell stories of the younger version of the family, causing embarrassment and laughter all around. Enjoy this moments, life is too short to worry about it.

No pain no game.

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Oct 9, 2018

I don't think you realize that it isn't like that with family for a lot of people. Some of the places people come from (like myself) its just bitterness. I've been in banking for 3 months and flew home to see family and I got jabs already that "some of us have to think about the money and can't do that." It's not just outright attacks all the time, its just a subtle build up of resentment because you "abandoned" where you came from.

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Oct 23, 2018

@H13x Glad your family is swell and all, but as @justphresh noted all families are not like yours.

I have family who literally plots all day long about who they can fuck out of money next. They would kick their own mother out on the street if it was an inconvenience to them.....and they have.

Oct 23, 2018

It isn't your fault for how your family has treated you. If it's gotten to that point, I wouldn't bother. You created your own success despite your obstacles. Live life how you see fit, not on their levels. Good luck @justphresh

No pain no game.

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Oct 23, 2018

I left my parents' house at 15, lived with my cousins and went to ivy on scholarship + worked....i enjoy every bit of my success and i'm sure to the loathing of my family..who cares about them, it's your life and you should always want the best for yourself, even moreso if your parents do not...

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Oct 9, 2018

Congrats on your success and drive my friend. No congrats is the wrong word.. GOOD SHIIT SON.

    • 1
Oct 24, 2018

ivies dont give scholarships?

Oct 9, 2018

Tuition free if your parents make under X amount (I think its like 125k?) I believe.

Oct 23, 2018

are you ghostwriting for me? this is a recurring theme for me, I'm the only right leaning person who believes that hustle is a good thing and acquisition of money isn't a bad thing.

take a seat kid, you gon lern today. here's a bro's guide to surviving holidays

  1. do not engage - the mortgage comment could be answered so many different ways, snarkily, seriously, jokingly, whatever, none of them are good. just say "that's a good one" and change the subject. another cop out is "I don't know about that" and then change the subject
  2. if people ask you for financial advice (happens all the fucking time with me) - most of the time people just want you to validate their own ideas, like a fund they own or a stock they like. just say you hope it works out for them. I've found that family members who want serious advice will call you separately, not at thanksgiving dinner
  3. if it turns political - trust me it will. don't engage. ask to change the subject, and if they really press, stand firm. it's a losing battle, if you win the argument, you lose respect. if you lose the argument, that sucks too.
  4. if it gets really really bad, you have to be able to walk. drive your own car to gatherings, pack lightly. I've had to pull this before, where it got to screaming from the other side and it disintegrated into personal attacks which I could not get them to calm down from. I've been raised to think if you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all. so I left. on Christmas Day, I left my family and went back to where I live now (imagine how awkward packing that suitcase was). it sucks, but sometimes family members can be real dickheads.
  5. always try to be the bigger person - ask people what's going on in their lives, divert attention away from yourself, really try to not give your opinion or talk about yourself. it'll be more enjoyable for everyone, because people with the victim mentality like you describe often times just want a soapbox. give them that soapbox.
  6. find something for the masses - the best part about the holidays is sports. you've got good football, hockey, basketball, and even some early season golf (not to mention the great UFC fights coming up). it's a lot easier arguing whether or not john gruden is a good coach and whether or not the patriots are cheaters versus politics or your job.
  7. make the trip short. if you're in finance it likely aint long anyway, but the least dramatic trips I've been on have been the ones where I'm in town maybe 2 nights (xmas eve and xmas day). only leaves enough time to eat and catch up, not much else
  8. don't drink too much, it lowers your self control and makes it more difficult to leave (can't drive back home if you blacked out)

hope this helps

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Oct 23, 2018

That's all great stuff - I agree with every point - but some of these people are really, REALLY sensitive. There has to be a reason for that.

If you know why you do the things you do, and you haven't actually turned into a douche (which btw, could actually be the case for some of you, right broski?), then ignore them. I have family members who meet some of these descriptions, because damn near everyone does. It never occurred to me to make blanket statements.

Writing nasty stuff on the internet about ignorant poor people makes you what you are, and it doesn't matter if you get 20 other knuckleheads to commiserate with you online.

Oct 23, 2018

completely agree bro, there's obviously some kids on here with a holier than thou attitude who need to check their egos at the door.

on the other hand, speaking from experience, sometimes people outgrow their families to the point where blood relationships can actually be quite toxic. I was moreso writing it for those folks, not the asshats who wear rolexes to thanksgiving dinner at their hometown in calhoun GA

    • 1
Oct 9, 2018

Didn't expect anything less from you. Well done once again. Cheers

Oct 23, 2018

I get similar jokes to everyone above. Ball busting has been part of my family since a kid. I'm used to it and I know that it comes in good spirit, anyway. If they didn't make these jokes and instead had ballbusters in the opposite way, I'd be more upset in that regard. Love hearing I'm doing so well that I'm rich and am better than others. You better not say I'm a loser and could do better.

Oct 23, 2018

My family doesn't really care what I do as long as I support myself and stay out of trouble.

So, no, they don't despise me for being in banking. I think they're happy that I moved out lol.

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn
Oct 23, 2018

It's tough to see that these kind of relationships exist, I definitely feel for your experience and some of the others in this thread.

I wonder if it has more to do with the values people hold - maybe it's from a place of jealously. Working in a white collar field coming from a blue collar background can sometimes be a blessing when you get strong values about working hard to be that one who breaks the mold, my dad constantly emphasized about how college is where I need to be and not a trade, but sometimes family members in those fields or doing something like being a retail manger just see someone who just has it better off for whatever reason. I'll be honest there can be some pretty aimless people in the blue collar / retail type fields. I used to work summers doing landscaping / plumbing / stocking shelves etc and the majority is not the crowd you'd see at the local country club, had I worked as a caddy, who might be more admirable, instead of spiteful of someone, working in banking.

With that being said I'd like to say I'm fortunate, e.g. when my dad found out I was interviewing across bulge brackets the first thing he did was immediately say "well the suit in your closet is absolutely not going to cut it" and took me immediately to the local mall. He's a blue collar guy and he told me Blackstone used to have a stake in his employer and jokingly said "just don't forget us when you work there".

My brother in law works owns a welding shop and he went out and bought me Intelligent Investor for one Christmas. He always asks if I know of any hot stocks.

My mom and my extended family doesn't even know what banking is, they just think I'm going out to nyc to do financial advising and don't get why I don't stick around locally.

My younger brother, a senior in high school, recently got accepted to some "target" schools and thinks he might also want to go into finance. My parents have been down my neck about making sure I teach my brother about doing what I did to get an offer on the street, albeit since he's headed to an Ivy and I'm a state schooler maybe I'll be the one who despises him down the road (joking of course).

Again I think it all just comes down to perspective and values.

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Oct 26, 2018

You should be pretty grateful for your parents. It's interesting to see how some families develop envy towards successful offspring but yours truly want to see you succeed.

Oct 23, 2018

My family is amazed by how much i make. Luckily they dont ask me for money...often.

I talk to literally no one from high school and maybe 2 or 3 people from college.

Oct 23, 2018

[x]

Oct 23, 2018

...no?

Oct 23, 2018

I'm total black sheep

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Oct 24, 2018

Am I the only one whos family and friends mostly have no idea what I do? In general they know I work in finance and "make good money", but thats about the extent of it. I never talk about work because a) they won't understand it anyway b) they won't care and c) I don't really want to talk about this crap outside of the office. Besides the fact that our house is bigger than theirs and our kids go to better schools, we live pretty similar lives to most of our friends who make a lot less money.

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Oct 25, 2018

I have some blue collar family members, but they certainly don't hate me. My cousin is actually my roommate and we get along great (although it helps I don't hound him about the rent when it is late...) On the other hand, I had another cousin who works in retail who demanded to know how much money I had in my bank account. I told him (really not an incredible amount by WSO standards), and he did not like it. Still, I gave his daughter a nice check for her christening because I know it wasn't really about me.

It amazes me how of the lower to middle income people I know, so many carry huge credit card debt. My cleaning lady (also a family friend, long story) has $5k in credit card debt. I don't even really need her, and I don't make huge money. Still, I have her come twice a month and pay $150 each time for cleaning a 1 br apartment. I'm not some super charitable guy, but think about it this way: You can give money to Harvard or some other institution that really doesn't need it, or you can be a little spendthrift with people in your life who could really use it. You don't know who's going to be in a position to help you or your family someday. What if they win the $1 trillion lottery? What if there's a natural disaster and your home is destroyed? What if you need someone to bail you out of jail? You think your rich friends will show up to do it? Don't count on it.

Oct 26, 2018

My fiance's older sister is in Antifa so I have that to look forward to every holiday season.

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Oct 27, 2018

God I love shitting on people like that. "Ohhhh so how is your dance theory degree holding up in this economic climate?"

Oct 26, 2018

lol she doesn't even have that. Just your run of the mill "woke" anarcho-communist who likes to waste all her money on ski trips then complain that she's broke and the system is rigged.

Oct 27, 2018

I am still an undergraduate, but come from a somewhat religious family where my grandfather was actually clergyman. I wouldn't say my family despise me for pursuing this field, though they do think it comes down to greed rather than a genuine combination of competitive ambition and interest in the industry. All in all, they're happy for me. I can't understand how a parent can despise their child for being a banker / investor / whatever they may be.

Oct 28, 2018

My family doesn't "hate" me or my job, but they sure hate it when we make dinner plans and I cancel last minute.

Oct 30, 2018
Phizzurp:

Just to confirm I'm not some self centered 25 y/o douchebag out of touch with realityNY at a BB.

Just to confirm I'm not some self centered 25 y/o douchebag out of touch with reality. I just turned 26! ;)

Oct 30, 2018

At some point, you're going to have to start living for you.
You can't be happy and simultaneously worry about what others think of you.

    • 1
Oct 29, 2018

Accurate.

Oct 30, 2018

Only keep those who are rooting for you in your life. Everyone else is expendable.