In Life

Don’t speak your mind if you can’t handle the response.

A reader messaged me, spoke her mind and then blocked me from being able to reply back, so here’s my public reply if she doesn’t read my email:

——–

Hey,

I saw your message but you obviously blocked me because I can’t reply to you.

1. I don’t always attack Americans and all American things, but your healthcare you must admit is #%*& UP not to mention your policies on immigration and the rampant racism down there.

2. I am ALREADY fronting $5,000 to my aunt to pay for a trip down there to go and personally help.

It is looking like more money because I am also going to pay for my brother to come with me, so it is closer to $7000 + whatever she has to pay for rent deposits etc.

I am leaving my small son, flying down there, paying for hotels, shifting her from one state to another…

Now I have to also deal with a $400 USD/day bill because of the #%(*#% up American healthcare system for an aunt who got beaten and robbed in a small city where everyone knows her and she should have been safe?

It’s not that it’s a low hit to my net worth, and it’s not the money.


It’s the frustration and stress of having to do all of this in the first place. I feel like the community failed her.

3. Now you are insulting ME by saying how “you like Hispanic families better because they help even though they’re poor”.

To be clear, I have never even met this aunt in my life, and my mother hasn’t even visited her in 55 years, and I am doing all of this.

4. If you are unable to speak your mind and then deal with the consequences, perhaps it is best that you don’t voice your opinions.

I am all right with voicing my own feelings and opinions to how crappy your American healthcare system is, because I am willing to deal with the fallback from arguments and anger of Americans at their system.

5. I never said Canada was amazing, I just said it is the best country for me, but even more so with this healthcare shocker.

It really seems like you can’t live in the U.S. without being rich and hoping you never get sick. Even your fellow Americans agree with me.

6. Your comments hurt me.

You saying “LOL” to all of this is brushing off a very hurtful, painful situation I am going through rather than realizing that I am under a lot of stress & frustration at the whole situation.

Don’t you think I would have already offered to have her come up here and immigrate?

Do you think I’m some sort of monster who only cares about money?

———

I DO NOT THINK AMERICA IS THE WORST

TO BE CLEAR.

I DO NOT THINK YOU OR YOUR COUNTRY IS THE WORST.

Get over it.

I have American family members, I have American friends (some very good ones), and I think the country is on the whole, a GOOD COUNTRY with lots of great qualities and fantastic people, some of the nicest I have ever met and with the best customer service in the world, bar none, which spoils me for anything in any country, frankly.

It is as a country, far better than 50% of the world, it has major advances in all areas that Canada can’t even begin to compete with (we just built a freakin’ Space arm for a shuttle in space, that’s our only claim to fame).

So to repeat:

I DO NOT THINK YOU OR THE UNITED STATES IS THE WORST.

…BUT YOUR HEALTHCARE, IS #*&#@# UP.

I am obviously biased, but yeah, I think know your healthcare system for sure is one of the most screwed up things in the world.

Anyone who disagrees with me, has never gotten seriously sick, and/or has a lot of money.

Canada may not have the best healthcare, but I’ll be damned if anyone finds it normal that someone would receive $1000 a month from Social Security (even having worked her entire life like a dog for a slave wage of $3/hour), and then get almost half of it $450 of it taken out of her paycheque to pay for her health each month.

W.T.F.

Or how about the people whom I have met who haven’t seen a doctor in years because they couldn’t afford the $1000 bill?

Or the guy who had cancer but still had to drag his ass to work every day because if he didn’t, his medical coverage would end and he would just die at home in pain?

I AM NOT SOME MISERLY SCROOGETTE

Maybe you’re not clear on what is happening but I am not a miserly Scrooge. I am already going to be paying $5000 – $7000 (just the initial outlay) for my brother and I to fly down there and personally fix this situation and move her to a new place, pay for everything and set her up.

I am thinking it will be more $8000 by the time everything is done. Stuff is not cheap in $USD when you are Canadian.

IT IS NOT THE GODDAMN MONEY I AM MAD ABOUT.

I am not angry at spending the money itself, I am angry at the whole DAMN SITUATION.

I am angry that her community failed her, and her community whom she has lived with for decades were desperate enough to think that attacking a senior woman who lives on a whisper of a penny was OKAY and ALL RIGHT.

I am angry at the fact that she gets so little and the little that she has, is taken away from her to pay for what is a Basic Human Right.

I am angry that she doesn’t want to come up here and live. We have offered countless times in the past, and even just now, and she refuses to come up here because of the winter.

THINK TWICE BEFORE YOU INSULT OR JUDGE SOMEONE

You don’t know the whole story. You never do.

That’s a hard lesson I had to learn, but it is something I find is one of the best ones to pass on.

Someone is angry? Rude? Ranting? Upset? Sad? Happy? You don’t know what is happening in their life just from a glance at a grocery store, or a few blog posts.

You really don’t.

I have been under some serious stress ever since I found out what happened to my aunt and I have had to deal with this not being there in the same country, not knowing the laws and rules, AND dealing with a toddler, while trying to get information just via telephone or the internet.

I am FRUSTRATED.

I HAVE NEVER EVEN MET THIS AUNT IN MY LIFE

To be clear, I have never met this aunt in my life and I am going to help her because she’s my aunt.

My mother has 15+ siblings. I have met only 7 of them in my entire life and none within the past 10 years.

Actually, my entire immediate family has never met her except for my mother, who last saw her 50+ years ago but keeps in touch via telephone.

We had NO IDEA she was going through this. She never once complained, never once said anything about how hard her life was, and whenever we tried to do things for her, she was thankful and happy, but we had no idea about her situation because she never said anything or asked for help.


My mom also has never mentioned any of her or this family history to any of us until just recently.

Had we known this before, we would have settled it beforehand.

Then when I hear about this situation of what happened to her, I saw red.

I was upset, crying, angry, and after strongly considering the whole situation, I offered to go, shift her to a new state where she feels safer, and pay for the entire shebang.

So saying you “prefer Hispanic families because they help even when they’re poor“, is unspeakably insulting not to mention stereotypically racist.

So what, you can only be good if you’re of Hispanic origin?

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

There are good AND bad families in every religion, race and ethnicity, not to mention at all income levels.

Are you telling me there are no Hispanic families who exist out there who are filthy rich who don’t steal from their own kind, and pretend their family members don’t need help?

Or that we are the scum of the earth because we’re not Hispanic and because we have money, we’re being selfish with it?

Please.

I am furious at the whole situation and angry at the American system for failing in this one regard because it is personal, it is family and it is hurting everyone right now.

So if anyone has anything else to say to me, this is the time to do it.

UPDATE

So this reader, put me on something like PF blog subscriptions and started sending some really “unhinged” emails (in her words), spamming me with about 30 messages in a fit of rage.

Please look into getting medicated. This is obviously an issue.

Oh, and get the @$(@% off my blog.

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have paid my $600K home in cash (my half was $300K), my $180K casr in cash, worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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28 Comments

  1. Jessica

    People have opinions get over it or don’t have a blog! What you’re doing is defamation and libel and you can be sued for it.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      LOL. Try it. She’s the one writing nonsense. I am not changing any of her responses.

      Reply
    2. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      Oh I see.. “Jessica”, you are just the new cover name.

      1. I never mentioned anybody’s name in my post. I said “reader”. Who am I defaming, here?

      2. I was replying to you publicly as you blocked me from any open conversation.

      3. You’re unhinged (in your words). Get the #%(#% off my site….

      Reply
  2. tomatoketchup

    I’m a surgeon in the Southern US. The healthcare system in the United States is barbaric and an embarrassment.

    You can actually get excellent medical care here. If you have money and a good job. Otherwise, the average person would be better off in almost any other developed country than living here.

    Reply
  3. Jaime

    Dear Sherry, I sincerely apologize. I sent you an apology via DM on your Facebook page. I feel awful for what I wrote to you and I’m sorry I hurt you. I was totally out of line, had a dumb knee-jerk reaction and was a coward to face your response. I feel stupid. I’m sorry. I got over my dumb reaction and wanted to catch up with you so I came to read your blog. I feel awful for sending those comments. :-/

    One thing you don’t know about me is that I’m very well aware of how expensive the U.S. health care system is because I used to do surveys with former hospital patients, and had to ask them how their visit was, how their doctors and nurses treated them, etc. I’ve heard of surgeries that cost up to $40,000. I’ve heard a lot of complaints about doctors, the cost of healthcare, nurses, the treatment of patients, doctor and nurses misconduct, etc.

    I also have worked in insurance. I am very well aware of how over-regulated the insurance industry is. I should have known better. I really need to walk away from the keyboard because I honestly wouldn’t have said that to your face, and if I wouldn’t have said that then I shouldn’t have typed it, and I deeply apologize.

    I hope you can forgive me and how can I make it up to you? (besides not jumping to knee-jerk comments)?

    Reply
  4. ArianaAuburn

    That woman is a xenophobe. And she outed herself.

    “So saying you “prefer Hispanic families because they help even when they’re poor“, is unspeakably insulting not to mention stereotypically racist.”

    She outed herself as someone who has only been surrounded by Hispanic families.

    Helping someone while living in another country is hard as fuck. The American Health System is fucked. Without the ACA my friends and family would be dead. This is something I may have to go to war for. Do not beat yourself up over trash comments. You are doing the best you can with what you know and have.

    Reply
    1. Jessica

      Actually no I haven’t been only around Hispanic families. I’ve been around white, asian, and african-american families, I’m allowed to have preferences and opinions just like anyone else. If sherry doesn’t want opinions then she shouldn’t have a blog at all.

      Reply
      1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

        This is my blog so — ALL THE LOLS.

        Reply
  5. SuD

    I am a long time lurker on your site and though my income is at a low point since having starting a new career in my 50s, your posts are informative. As an American and someone who has had cancer, the situation with the healthcare system is seriously disturbing and scary. I am an adjunct instructor and depend on ACÁ, as do many adjuncts. The constant threats to repeal and replace, and remove the coverage for a pre-existing condition is causing lots of anxiety for me and many others in my situation. One would think the current government would be focused on improving it., instead they are focused on destroying Obama’s legacy. There are many things I love about the US, but the political and healthcare system are seriously f@$ked!

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      You really don’t know about it until you get into the thick of things. It is one thing to say “Oh people should just work harder”.. but I’ve always known that even when they do, they could be undocumented, they could be working for $3/hour when they should be paid $7.25/hour .. I mean, it’s just so scary. I feel for anyone who gets majorly sick and doesn’t have the money or means to cover their care.

      Reply
  6. Sense

    Agree w/ you! Also as an American (and now Kiwi and enjoying the benefits of a gov’t subsidized healthcare system). Good on you for helping out your family member. We (Americans) are failing at taking care of our most vulnerable citizens in so many ways.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      On the flip side, people know this, and there are GOOD non-profit organizations surviving on the donations of citizens who want to help them. I’m definitely going to be directing my charitable money towards senior programs this year now, even if it is to help the U.S. system and not the Canadian one. Or maybe a split.

      Reply
  7. raluca

    A person who writes a hateful email and then blocks responses is not looking for enlightenment, they look for somebody to blame for their own problems. They look for justifications for their own actions.

    I don’t know what in your situation triggered him/her, but it’s quite clear that lashing out at perceived mistakes in how you handled the situation with your aunt is code for feeling how morally superior they are in their own lives/possible similar situations.

    So don’t worry. Somebody who has had experience with caring for an ailing relative or has had experience with trying to help other humans knows how incredibly draining the situation can be. Stay strong!

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      I feel like I was thrown into the deep end and forced to fix it in 2 weeks. At least it sort of preps me for my own parents.

      Reply
  8. Jules

    I just want to say that the person who wrote that impolite message to you lacks empathy, common sense and plain manners. I live in Montreal like you but many of my relatives live in the US and I have seen firsthand how complex, unfair and inefficient their healthcare system is.I am not the most socialist person in the world but one thing I firmly believe in is equal access to healthcare for all. I was not the biggest fan of Obama but he brought the US one step closer to a better system, similar to Canada’s. The person who wrote to you probably suffers from a case of overpatriotisitis. (overwhelming feeling of patriotism lacking skills to accept criticism on one’s nation even though criticism might have basis in reality), Canada is far from perfect but it wins in the healthcare dept. When immigrants are surveyed on why they came to Canada, one of the top three answers is the healthcare system. I hope the person who wrote to you stops taking things so personally…

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      Canada has some of the highest taxes I have ever paid (U.S. wins on this), some of the most expensive food for the low quality provided (U.S. also wins on this), and we also get royally screwed on cellphone costs (again, U.S. wins), and shopping (again U.S.).

      The cost of living here is not great.. also we just don’t have enough people like in the U.S., but I will be DAMNED If people tell me that the U.S. healthcare system is fine and reasonably priced.

      Reply
  9. anonymous

    Hey, I just wanted to say I think you’re doing a pretty good job with your aunt and I don’t see anything wrong with what you already did nor do I think you ought to do more. It is a very selfless act. Kudos to you.

    Hopefully, your aunt could be reasoned with once you get there to convince her to go to Canada where it will be easier to care for her and perhaps reconnect with the family.

    You’re so right with people never knowing the whole story. That woman doesn’t know you personally so don’t take what she said to heart. I’m glad you are going with your brother so you’re not alone especially with your condition. Be safe and I wish you well on your endeavor.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      My aunt is unreasonable and stubborn like all the women in my family, myself included. She doesn’t want to be in the winter any longer, she got frostbite on both feet and is convinced she will have to live in a warmer climate until she dies because life is too short. We have offered for years and she has always declined. STUBBORN GIT. 🙂

      Reply
  10. Marie-Josée

    Sorry for your aunt and I agree about that the US healthcare system is awful, As for your comment with respect to what Canada is known for ie the Canada Arm, allow me to enlighten you about a few of our great accomplishements, apart from the invention of hockey and basketball.
    Insulin
    Telephone
    Light bulb
    Five-pin bowling
    Wonderbra
    Artificial pacemaker
    Robertson screw
    Zipper
    Electric Wheelchair
    Poutine
    Cobalt-60 “Bomb” Cancer Treatment
    Java programming language
    Bloody Caesar
    Canadarm
    Standard time
    Electron microscope

    Ski-Doo
    BlackBerry
    Radio Voice Transmission
    Birch-Bark Canoe
    Basketball
    Retractable Beer Carton Handle
    UV Degradable Plastics
    Instant Replay
    Goalie mask
    Marquis Wheat
    Pablum
    Lacrosse
    Electric Oven
    Steam Fog Horn
    Walkie-Talkie
    Alkaline battery
    Paint roller

    Electronic Music Synthesizer
    Weevac 6
    Green Garbage Bag
    Snowblower
    Self-Propelled Combine Harvester
    Instant mashed potatoes
    Explosives Vapour Detector
    Marine Screw Propeller
    Plexiglas
    Key Frame Animation
    CPR-Mannequin: “Actar 911”
    G-Suit
    Ardox Spiral Nail
    Automatic Lubricating Cup
    Crash-Position Indicator
    Caulking gun
    Separable Baggage Check

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      Thank you. You are finally making me laugh with relief. I will have to make a note of those above items.. although Blackberry, isn’t that out of style now?

      Reply
  11. Linda

    I’m so sorry to hear what you, your Aunt and your family is going through. And I’m doubly sorry that some immature, selfish and deplorable reader was so cruel. You’re doing a great job, and while I spend quite differently than you, I always find your posts interesting, intelligent and thought provoking.
    A big hug to you.

    Reply
  12. Virginia

    I also missed the update about your aunt but it sounds like you are really stepping up to the plate. I agree that America’s health care is messed up.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      The ones who get affected are the ones no one wants to care about it seems.. low income, and/or minorities. It’s fine to say “go back to your country” but what if it is all they have ever known? Or low income to tell them to work harder, but they are only hired at $3/hour jobs?

      Reply
  13. Xin

    I am very sorry to hear about how hard things have been.

    I can certainly vouch for America’s healthcare system as being both generally horrifying and horrifyingly expensive. There was a recent piece about how Obamacare/the Affordable Care Act may have contributed to a dramatic reduction in the number of personal bankruptcies in the US. http://www.consumerreports.org/personal-bankruptcy/how-the-aca-drove-down-personal-bankruptcy/ From my (luckily) limited experience with the American healthcare system it’s certainly plausible (and the ACA is far from perfect). Even as someone on track to be a high-earning white-collar professional with alright employer-sponsored health coverage, I’m pretty sure a serious medical emergency could still wipe out a big chunk of my savings if it ever happens.

    The contrast with Taiwan, where my family comes from, is remarkable. (I once saw a dermatologist while visiting as a tourist/wasn’t on the national healthcare plan, and I was still able to get the examination and a one-month supply of brand-name prescription medication for something like $10-15 USD.) Two people in my extended family had cancer scares this year based on odd growths that were discovered when they scheduled and received a full-body scan (MRI?) for something like $500 USD out of pocket. One person’s situation was ultimately found to be benign rather than colon cancer (after intensive surgical biopsy requiring several day hospital stay) and the other person received treatment for really early stage one breast cancer. That series of events at modest cost and with a happy ending, all things considered, would just… never happen in the US.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      As a reader who emailed in pointed out, the history is long and fraught in the U.S. but the only way to fix it is to start from scratch and scrap everything. This is near impossible.

      Reply
  14. Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life

    Totally missed the update on your aunt’s situation which sounds horrible and I’m so sorry that’s happening. Speaking as a born and bred American, though, our excuse for a healthcare system in this nation IS unspeakably effed up and anyone who says otherwise is hugely privileged or thoroughly and willfully ignorant. And I’ll sign my name to this comment in big, bold caps. Maybe some of us have access to good healthcare occasionally – I do right now – but most people who aren’t in the 1% are one job or one employer’s cost-slashing or one disability away from losing all access to affordable and decent care and that’s nothing like a humane system, not at all.

    Reply
    1. Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      The only good thing is that because it’s so screwed up, non-profits step up for basic health checks. I managed to find one she can go to as a free clinic but.. this is incredible that it is so prohibitive.

      Reply

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