Calabash_Issue 9 Apr. 2014 - Page 59

bites The Other Side of the Coin On the other hand, in good times and bad times, many people – both rich and poor -are relatively free of anxieties about money and materials possessions. Why the difference? In a report entitled “The Meaning of Money”, the researchers observed that some people are “highly motivated and controlled by money. This may lead to stress and neuroticism.” In contrast, they added: those who budget their money carefully tend to have internal locus of control and positive feelings towards themselves. They are the masters of money and not slaves of money..... We assert that those who budget their money carefully may also have lower stress, and thereby, lower strain. What is your attitude towards money? How does the volatile nature of the world’s economy affect you? Is money your master or your servant? Perhaps you do not experience the symptoms of so-called money sickness syndrome. Still, whether wealthy or poor we are all vulnerable to the ill effects of money worries. Consider how adjustments in the way you handle your finances may bring you more peace of mind and happier life. Calabash Agony Aunty letters To be educated or not to be educated? That is the question? Q: Dear Aunty, I live in Freetown and currently attend college. Like most of my peers, attending and completing college/ university is a great achievement. But, for the past months, I have begun to question if all my efforts (both financially and educationally) to remain in college are worth it. Like many of my friends; finding the money to pay fees is difficult and I sometimes wonder if it is worth it because many of my friends, who have left college/ university, are still unemployed and struggling. I’m in my last year of college and wonder if there is any point in trying to find money to pay for university or if should just look for manual labour employment once I am done. A: All over the world the connection between education and the labour market is a hot topic of debate. I completely understand the difficulty that many individuals face finding money to pay high school fees; only to find themselves unemployed for up to a year or more. As attractive and rational leaving education early (to get a job) appears, I would still advise that if funds are available, to pay for further education, continue learning. There is a quote that says ‘knowledge is power’ and indeed it is. Sierra Leone is developing and more people are investing into the labour market. As time goes on, more national and international investment will continue expanding the labour market. Employers look for those that are qualified, so put your self in the running and keep on learning. I once heard that: Outside the bedroom window may be dark, but once the hand on the clock touches the number 12, it is another day. Don’t look at your now look to your tomorrow determined and in faith that you will reap all the hard work and sacrifice that you sowed into your education. A tough year Q: Dear Aunty, 2011 was one of the toughest years of my life. In December 2010 I got married; it was the happiest day of my life. Married life started well and by February I was pregnant. Sadly I lost the baby but my husband and family were very supportive and we vowed to try again. So to both our joy, I fell pregnant again but 4 months in I lost the baby. I thought that my husband and his family would be supportive but they weren’t and started blaming me for the two miscarriages. My husband and I became distant, until one day, he mentioned that we needed some time apart. He’s currently moved out of our home and I don’t hear from him regularly. My mum keeps telling me that I should take courage because this horrible season in my life will pass, but will it? I’m depressed, lonely, disappointed in my husband and angry at him and his family’s ignorance towards the miscarriages. A: Going through any sort of loss is a horrible experience, but to loose a life that was growing inside of you is that bit more painful. It is totally acceptable for you to feel disappointed in your husband. This is because, when you both took your vows you both made a promise to support one another through the hardest periods in your marriage and a miscarriage is no exception. My advice to you would be to speak with your immediate family and don’t internalise any pain that you are feeling. Bottling up your emotions will do you no good but will intensify any depression that you are experiencing. If you are currently living alone in the house, consider moving back home with your parents. If this is not possible, get a close friend to come and stay with you at home, even if for a few days so that you are not alone. This is because, not only are your mourning the loss of an unborn child but also the potential loss of your marriage. Try your best to continue with life and don’t sit dwelling on what has happened. This doesn’t mean that you ignore the reality of your situation, but you can’t allow your situation to pull you back into depression. You will regain your strength again and you will be well. But it takes small steps, that you must take, away from your feelings of anger and disappointment in order for you to be ok. Wedding hat?! Q: Dear Aunty, I’m feed-up. I’m 25 and all my mum keeps going on about is where my boyfriend is and when we’ll be getting married. It’s not that I don’t want a boyfriend i just don’t see why she is so concerned that I haven’t brought anyone home since my break-up 2 years ago. Guys ask me out and I have been on a few dates, but as I have gotten older, I don’t feel the need to waste my time with men who are not what I want in a husband. How do I stay calm when she keeps nagging me, or am I weird for being single for 2 years?! A: Mums start to worry when their children, especially girls, hit 25 and there is no sight of a potential husband-to-be. But don’t let this be a major concern of yours. It seems that you are quite a level headed individual and you are right in saying that you want to only date men who exemplify what you want in a husband. There are some criteria’s that I don’t believe individuals should compromise on such as faith and moral values. My only advice to you would be, don’t be too rigid in your idea of what your ‘perfect’ husband should be like. Many times out Prince Charming is not initially packaged according to our understanding, but once you have taken time out to speak with him, you begin to see potential. I’m not advocating that you run around town kissing hundreds of frogs before you find Prince Charming, but I am saying that you should remain open-minded. Next time your mum mentions this issue, just smile and remind her not to worry and explain to her that you are interested in a relationship but all in good time. Good luck, and when the married does happen, I want my invite and enough notice to sew my Ashobi! issue nine | Calabash Magazine | 57