When I was a child, I had quite a lot.
We had cable TV, I had a secondhand bike, some new and secondhand clothing (mostly new because my parents are superstitious), we had a used luxury car and a ‘normal’ car, food on the table (but we didn’t get to eat whatever we wanted, going out was still a huge treat).
I am sure we still had more than what I am listing, but when I was a kid, this is what I thought rich people had or I would have ‘made it’ if I did too:
- Central A/C – We didn’t even have a standalone unit, we just had floor fans. To this day, it makes me feel rich
- Heated seats in a car – To sit in one and not feel like a snowman had been there previously
- Matching bed linens – you won’t believe the hours I spent dreaming of matching bedroom sets and linens
- Your own bathroom attached to your bedroom
- Your own telephone and TV in your bedroom (with a separate phone line because we didn’t have cellphones back then, and I spent a lot of time talking on the phone as a girl)
- A luxury condo – With a view, obviously nice floors and walls, decorations, furniture that matched
- Being able to buy whatever food you wanted without checking prices
- Being able to go on any school trip – I missed a lot because my parents couldn’t / wouldn’t pay it
I asked others on Instagram what they thought was the height of being rich, and here were their answers in order:
Detailed Notes on their Responses
Cars & Car Features
- Having a car
- Having a second car as a convertible
- Having a car (even secondhand) at 16
- A car paid in cash
- A luxury car
- Car with Heated seats
- Car with automatic car windows
- Car with an autostarter
Food & Dining Out
- Individual yoghurt cups not the big yoghurt tubs
- Out of season fruit
- Ordering soda in restaurants – this was very popular
- Snacks at the cinema
- Not buying anything generic
- Real milk not powdered milk
- Being able to fill your cart with whatever you wanted
- Branded clothing: TNA, Abercrombie & Fitch, Lacoste, Hollister, Dooney & Burke
- Brand new clothing
- Not shopping at discount stores or on sale
- Not checking the price tags
- First class flights – I flew one once and I can tell you that’s how I feel too
- Disneyland trips
- Any vacation that required a plane or flying
- Amusement parks
- Any vacation not requiring to visit families
- Sleepover camps
- Summer camps more than a week
- Ice skating
- Owning a horse – this rings true even today
- Central A/C
- Central heat
- A fridge with an ice dispenser
- A fridge with French doors
- A garage with an automatic garage opener
- A garage, period
- A dishwasher
- Pools – Built-in pools
- Pools – Waterfall pool
- Your own master bathroom
- Your own attached bathroom
- Your own room and not having to share
- A second holiday home
- Investment properties
What really stands out as what people consider ‘rich’:
- Individual ownership/items – your own room, your own bathroom, your own books, toys, your own things
- Having the choice to be able to buy new – Some people can only afford secondhand, so buying new is <3 (my partner falls into this category)
- Vacations – Not family ones in a car, but “real” ones with a plane going abroad
- Having more than one item – Two cars, two homes
- Not checking prices on anything – Be it food, soda at a restaurant, buying clothes, going on trips
- Conveniences – Taxis, a dishwasher, automatic car starter, automatic garage opener, electric car windows, heated car seats
- Pools – This one was huge!
And I don’t think this has changed much.
Even as adults, we want our own things. We want nice cars, homes, vacations, great food and clothing. That’s pretty much what we saw as children too.
Honestly, having more money or being ‘rich’ to me, seems like you have the same things… but they’re just NICER.
Instead of a family vacation to visits aunts and uncles in a car, you’re taking a flight (not even first-class) to a resort instead.
Instead of just having a car, you have a luxury one, or a convertible.
Instead of having powdered milk or generic food brands, you buy the ‘fancy’ ketchup, or you buy out of season fruit (or raspberries.. when I buy raspberries and eat them, I feel very very rich).