Babylon Mom: Learn To Love Yourself, Even When Your Compulsive Shopping Threatens Your Family's Finances
Lifestyle · Jan 7, 2021 ·

Hey girls, sorry it's been so long since I've written… life has been sooo crazy lately!

Girls, I'm going be really open and honest about something here: Sometimes, I can be too hard on myself. Maybe you can relate.

For example: Recently, I've been doing a lot of shopping. Like, nothing too crazy. But I go to Target and Home Goods almost every day. And Hobby Lobby, of course.

And, you know… If you judge solely by my receipts, it might look like I spend a lot of money. But receipts don't tell the whole story --like the fact that I needed to buy the same blouse in five different colors so that I can take them home and try them on and then return the ones I don't want to keep. So, you know, it's not like the money is actually gone forever… I'll get it back later. 

Of course, when I get it back, it'll be in the form of store credit, which is basically the same as free money, which will allow me to spend even more money on trying out four different duster cardigans and like twenty adorable little decorative houses. Also, I have one or two walls in my house that don't have any letterboards or "gather" signs yet, so I'm always on the lookout for more of those.

Naturally, I'll probably return several of those houses and cardigans for store credit, too. Now, I'll admit that sometimes "return" means letting three pairs of $75 distressed jeans sit in the bag for five months until the return period expires, but that only really happens like half the time.

So what's the big problem?

Well, even though this tried-and-true system of spending lots of money, then making returns, then treating the store credit like free cash so that I can spend even more money on even more items that I'll either return or lose, seems like it would all mathematically even out, my husband keeps hounding me about things like our mortgage payment and other bills.

Look, I get it: It's important to have a roof over my head. But it's also important to have a wide selection of gorgeous sun hats over my head. Does he really have to bring it up every month, just because our bank account is overdrawn and our electric bill is past due? Like, hello, that's what credit cards are for!

Oh, what's that? I've maxed out all my credit cards? Wrong-o, babe! I have like four more you didn't even know about! How does he think I got $75 off my first $800 purchase from Anthropologie? Sometimes I think he shouldn't be the one handling our bills, with how little he seems to know about my awesome money-saving skills.

Still, sometimes I do let feelings of guilt and shame creep in. Like last week, when Costco declined my debit card and I wasn't able to buy groceries for the family, so I had to bring the kids back around to try out all the free samples so they wouldn't complain about being hungry. Or yesterday, when we got a scary-sounding call from our bank, warning us of possible foreclosure. It's silly, but I can't help but feel somehow responsible.

Mamas, sometimes we can be our own worst critic. We feel like we're at fault, even when those Aeropostale sales are completely and totally unavoidable. I need you to hear me when I say: Don't let yourselves stay in that dark place. You deserve so much better!

When I start to get too hard on myself, that's when I know it's time to start showing myself some love. You might have your own method of taking time to "treat yo' self," but for me? You guessed it: I'm going shopping!

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