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Bramble's Hi, guys, welcome back to Anything Goes. OK, so today's episode is inspired by a question. That I answered in my last episode that I cut out. Because I ended up deciding that I wanted to make an entire episode about this and the question that someone asked me was. Along the lines of this. Hi, Emma. I'm struggling because I'm a middle class person, but I go to school with a lot of rich people and it makes me feel really bad about myself and I need help, like, how do I not look at things like that and how do I stop the jealousy?


Right. And I got that question and I related to it beyond belief. And I got super passionate, like I was like screaming when I was answering this question and I realized, you know what, let's make this into an episode, because there's a lot here. And I really, really want to dig into this topic just.


The overall jealousy of wealth and the truth of it, because I grew up in a very normal. Family where like meaning my parents and I, where, you know. They were by no means rich and, you know, my parents got divorced when I was five, so I kind of only knew them. Being a part which financially can be tough because each of them had to support themselves and me individually rather than together, I mean, they were, of course, splitting everything that had to do with me, but like when it came to living.


Food and housing and everything, like everything was there to do it on their own, which definitely was tougher than it would have been if they weren't divorced. Right. And, you know. They also work normal jobs like they didn't have some sort of Google Tech job, so they were like normal parents, but also living in Northern California, where there's a lot of money in a lot of wealth and. So I just grew up. With this weird complex feeling like I was, well, do you know what, fuck it, let's just get into it.


Let's just get into it.


Let's start out with my childhood, childhood, like elementary school childhood, I grew up in a very normal town. Not a super wealthy town in northern California. It was very normal, it was middle and lower class, I would say, in the area that I grew up in initially with my mom and dad. That's where I lived. And I went to elementary school there. And to be honest, I never had a thought of money. Money never crossed my mind.


I mean, I was a kid and. My childhood seems super normal, and it was my childhood was very normal. I never thought about clothes or what car. My parents had like it, just none of that mattered to me, so that's kind of how my life started. But things all changed when my parents got divorced and my mom moved to a different town. There was about 20, 30 minutes away where everything was very different, OK? There was a lot more wealth in this town.


And the overall. Culture and environment of this new town was very different, even though it was only 30 minutes away, there was a lot more. Families that had parents that worked in tech, which is obviously a very high paying job to have, there's a lot of big houses that were super nice, a lot of people that had a lot of nice clothes, you know, a lot of the rich moms driving the rich cars kind of vibe.


There's a lot more of that. And don't get me wrong, there's of course. You know, still, people like my mom and I that were normal and like had normal cars and like her income was normal middle class, but there was a lot more wealth there. So I went to middle school there and I remember. When I went to orientation. Everybody was wearing Abercrombie and Hollister and like Juicy Couture and UGG boots and shit, all being things that, like I had never had unless it was hand me downs for my cousins.


And I was like, oh, shit.


I'm going to need to keep up, huh? Like, this is different and everybody's parents had these beautiful luxury cars and I was like, fuck not everybody, but everybody had a new car. Like, it was very much that. Right. Or at least all of the people that I wanted to be friends with.


And so. That immediately clicked in my brain and I immediately knew, like, OK, I was going to need to figure out how to make this work. And so, you know, very quickly, my mom and I started going to the Hollister outlet. I remember there's an Abercrombie outlet that was like, I don't know, an hour away we go to TJ, Max, and sometimes they'd have juicy jackets. This is not a joke. I used to get all of my juicy jackets at Marshalls and TJ Max and they would have them there and I'd be like, wait.


And they would be like 25 dollars. And I was like, this is amazing. And so I was kind of like. Faking it, right? So that I could fit in and when Christmas would roll around, the only things on my Christmas list would be like a pair of UGG boots and a special north face jacket that everybody else had so that I could fit in. And I think that that's when things started to get weird for me. And then I started making friends and I started going to my friends houses and they all had these big, beautiful houses.


When at the time I was living in. An apartment with my mom, that was. Kind of dated, you know, in a sense, and I remember my biggest insecurity being that there was no front lawn on this apartment, there was just a dirt patch and, you know.


Arguably, it was the least attractive apartment on the street. And that bugged me because on the other hand, all my friends had the nicest houses on their street a lot of the times, or at least one of them, one of the nicest.


And so that was like. Weird for me. And. I was embarrassed to invite people over to my home because I was like. Embarrassed to be completely honest, and I was mortified, and I especially knew that I was playing the game, right? Right. Like I had all the Abercrombie jeans, I had all the juicy jackets. I had the UGG boots. But it was because I was playing the game, you know what I mean? It was like I had to wait until Christmas to get UGG boots, which is still getting UGG boots.


They're expensive. Our shoes. My mom was working her ass off and my dad was working there, they were working their asses off so that I can have those little things that completed the story for me. Yet I was embarrassed in almost angry at my parents. Because I was putting on a show and had this whole facade going on like I was one of them, when in reality, no, like, you know, I was going to the outlet.


I was like, you know, having to wait until it was like a birthday or Christmas to get the things that they would just get on a day to day, you know what I mean? And so that made me angry because I'm like, fuck why I'm faking.


I feel like I have this fake identity of like this wealth. I want to look like I'm wealthy so that I fit in with these kids when in reality. My family is doing absolutely just fine, but like I don't have that amount of money, I don't have that amount of freedom, you know, my family can't go out to dinner every night of the week because that's fucking expensive. And this was when I kind of started to realize, like.


My family has to budget things, and it felt like my friends families didn't have to budget, they just got to do whatever they wanted with their money. They were going on these, you know, vacations all the time. They had like their lake house. They had this, they had that. And for me, I'm like, my family can't just do that. Like, we have to budget things out. And then to me, budgeting money.


So, like, you know, being smart about when we go shopping or being smart about when we go to the movies or being smart about when we go out to eat all of those things. All of those things became associated with me feeling like a victim, like I don't have this financial freedom. I didn't realize that 90 percent of the world doesn't have financial freedom in 90 percent of the world has to be budgeting shit out. But I didn't know that because I was in this wealthy environment and, you know, in middle school is pretty bad.


But high school was when it got really bad. No, my throat strike is unlike scream talking, I'll slow down. High school is worse because I decided to go to private school and with private school, there's a tuition. And the tuition for my school was, you know, a pretty decent amount, obviously, my family couldn't afford that. So we applied for financial aid and we got it to. And at that time, I actually had gotten a lot more comfortable with my financial standing because I had really good friends going into high school, I had two best friends at the time that.


I felt accepted me for who I was and never judged me and like had grew up going over to my place and like a lot of my friends actually really liked my mom and his apartment because it was really cozy and warm and homey and, you know, shitty because we had downstairs neighbors.


So, like, we had to be quiet constantly and tiptoe around her apartment. But like, you know, despite that, it was really fun to have friends over and stuff and. I felt good about it, I wasn't weirded out also, I felt like at that time my mom had gotten a new job in, like, you know, things were just going really well. So, like, I didn't feel as insecure about money and about my family's maybe lack of money in comparison to everyone else.


I feel like I'd found more of my identity and it had nothing to do with money, but I went to high school and immediately when I got there, like the whole friend group thing switched up, I kind of drifted away from my two best friends that I had. Went to school with we started the high school together, we all kind of went our separate ways and I started making new friends and. These friends were even more wealthy than. Who I was friends with in, say, middle school, right, I mean, these friends were like their families were rich, rich, and it's because I was going to a private Catholic school like, yes, you're going to have some really rich kids.


And it was because the school that I went to was kind of close to this really wealthy town.


That's all mansions, all mansions like these massive estates everywhere. And a lot of those kids ended up trickling to my school. So I had a lot of wealth at this school. And mind you, I'm still at a very similar financial standing to when I to when I was in middle school and whatever. So, like, it was even crazier for me to see. So I'm like going to these kids houses. They have like designer bags. They're shopping at like expensive stores.


They're like going to expensive dinners all the time with their family. They're going to these on these crazy European vacations, their families have like planes, private planes and fucking some of them, not all of them.


But there was like a few that fucking had private jets. OK, that's like what we were dealing with here. Mind you, I had financial aid. So I'm dealing with kids that like are paying full tuition for the school, whereas I'm paying like, I don't know, like a very small portion of what they were paying. I need water. I'm screaming, baby, OK, I'm back. I actually stopped the recording, which scared the shit out of me because I thought I deleted it, but I didn't.


Anyway, we're talking about some wealthiest kids. All right. And you can only imagine I immediately was like, oh, no, like, this is bad.


And all the kids, when we all started getting cars, I got my mom's Subaru, which was a great car. Relatively new at the time, like three or four years old, fully paid off so that I didn't have to pay for it because she got it paid off from her work or something. So I got this car completely for free as my first car. Amazing, amazing things. So grateful for that. Yet I still was, like, angry that I didn't get an Audi for my birthday and.


Luckily at school, we all wear uniforms, so when it came to like clothes and stuff, it didn't really matter as much like. I fit in just fine when it came to all that, but. It was really tough being surrounded by that level of wealth on a day to day basis because kids were always talking about what purse they were going to get for Christmas or what this or that they're going to get for Christmas. Mind you, I'd never been into a fucking designer store in my life.


OK, so I'm just like so out of my element here.


And listen, it's not those kids, those girls faults that they were born into money. Their parents had extremely high paying jobs and they were born into it. Is that their fault? No, but not only did I resent them, but I also resented my own parents for not choosing a higher paying job as if it was fucking up to them or I resented them because they both had to support themselves individually, which made it harder to have, you know, say, a big house, like my mom lived in an apartment because that was what she could afford, because it's not easy to just go and buy a house in the Bay Area when it is way overpriced.


And in general, it's hard to just go buy a house straight out of a divorce. Like, what the fuck did I expect? Not to mention I had a roof over my heads and I had two extremely loving patient parents that worked their asses off to give me everything that I had and I had more than enough. But because I was sitting next to somebody who has a private jet in English class or sitting next to somebody that had a fucking Louis Vuitton pencil bag in math, I felt like I was a victim.


I felt like I was so unfortunate when in reality I had everything that I needed and more right at home and I had everything that I needed. I had a computer for school. I had a backpack, I had the uniforms. I was, you know, going to an amazing school. And even though I was on financial aid, my parents still had to pay for that school. To a certain extent. It wasn't like it was completely free, like they saw it.


I had more than enough. But because I was spending all of my time comparing myself to these wealthy girls, I didn't appreciate what I had and I resented all of them. And it was so beyond toxic and luckily by sophomore junior year, I feel like it got a lot better just because I found myself in a way and I just kind of started to see through all of it. So it's not like it lasted the whole high school experience, but definitely freshman year was a tough one for me.


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I thought of myself as a massive victim and listen, there were money struggles in my family, as there are in most families, even the really, really wealthy ones like, you know, there were times when money was tighter than other times. There were times when. You know, money was really low and there were times when money was comfortable, and that's normal. OK. At one point, you know. I don't want to get into that, but there's there was some struggles, there was definitely some struggles and there were definitely some really low points.


But overall, I always had food on the table. I always had a roof over my head. I always had a car to drive me to school. And my parents made that shit happen and they worked their asses off. And my mom got a new job in. My dad, you know, worked as hard as he could while still having a job that allowed him to spend time with me. And like, I had everything I could have ever wanted.


Yet I was still a little brat and I still wanted more. OK, as they say in the coralline movie. You know, it's funny, this actually does relate to Caroline, how Caroline? If you've ever watched this movie, basically, I don't want to spoil it, but basically she lives a normal life in her parents. You know, there's like normal family struggles that go on with her parents and money and things like that. And she finds a secret portal that takes her to another dimension where there's an identical family to the one that she has at home.


Except it's perfect. It's exactly what she wishes that her family was, you know, infinite money, yummy food that her parents cook, her parents have cool jobs and there's a beautiful garden and everything is beautiful, but.


At the end of the movie, it turns out all that was fake and her parents were there were evil and they were just trying to kidnap her. Those parents that seemed so perfect in the other dimension and I remember it says something and has a line in it about like how Coraline always wanted more, you know, and be careful what you wish for. And that's exactly what I ended up realizing, is that it looks so great. Right. This like wealth seems like it can fix everything.


It's like if I had more money, I could buy this type of food. If I had more money, I could buy this type of clothes and I could do this to my hair and I'd look like this. And I could buy better makeup and I could buy better this or better that, and I could go travel and do this and that. It makes it seem like, OK, well, obviously it buy you happiness.


Duh the fuck like it seems so obvious that money would make you happy. And I was so convinced of this. Nobody could fucking shake my view. I hated the wealthy. I hated anybody who had more money than me and would like rub it in my face whether they meant to or not. I hated it, OK? And I hated people that had money and I thought that they were evil and I thought that their life was too easy and that they should all shut up.


That's truly I was so jaded about it. OK, but then I made my own money and, you know, I had a very weird the way that I you know, I made my YouTube channel. I never expected to make money from it.


I didn't even realize that people were really making money from it.


I like didn't I mean, I knew that you could monetize your channel, but I was like, OK, maybe a few extra bucks here and there, like, whatever. I didn't realize that it was like a full career, OK?


I mean, I kind of knew that, but I like didn't expect it to be that for me. I was just doing it for fun. But, you know, six months in, I was making enough money to support myself outside of my parents where I didn't need to ask my parents to pay for anything anymore. And it was amazing because I was like, I can't give myself everything that I've been begging my parents for in the brightest way possible.


And this is great. And so that actually really helped in my relationship with my parents. And so I started to make money and this was great. And then, you know, things blew up and whatever, and I was able to move out and then, you know, at a certain point.


I was making the money. That I had. Been envying my entire life. And to this day, I can't comprehend it because my brain just will never. Be able to understand how that happened, like I listen, I'm in disbelief, I don't understand how this happened. I am beyond grateful for it. I am so beyond grateful for it. But what's so interesting is what I've learned about.


Money and envying wealth and all of that, and I feel like, you know, some people might be like, what's easy for you to fucking say that, you know, money doesn't bring you happiness because. Because now, you know, you support yourself and you have the money that you were fucking envying, which I hate to say because that's so annoying and I want to punch myself in the face like it's annoying because money is touchy. And that's why I avoided making this episode.


But I feel like it's so important because what I've learned from being on both sides of this.


Right, I didn't grow up with this. So I'm new to this. This is new for me. I've never been able to like I've never like, you know, I got my first car and it was a Mercedes. And I was like, this is insane. Like, this is so weird. I mean, I kept my fucking Subaru as long as I could, and then that thing turned into a piece of shit, but like. I think the second I started to make money and it was in my bank account, I realized all of these materialistic things.


They mean nothing. And the money itself is necessary, it's necessary and it's incredible to have and it's, you know, whatever, but I struggle now just as much, if not more than I did when I was living with my family. And we just had a normal amount of money. Nothing happened. There was no like hitting a nirvana with this, I expected that, like me making this amount of money would change my life in a way that was made me feel ethereal.


I thought that having money would make you feel ethereal and like, you know, nothing, whatever. No, because. It can enhance your life, money can enhance your life, you know, it it it gives you freedom to travel and, you know, to. Do whatever, but at the end of the day, there's. There's a bigger picture. Money doesn't matter if you don't have people in your life that you love. And things that you care about and a life that is.


Fulfilling money doesn't fulfill you, you can use your money to make a fulfilling life, but without people that you love and shit like that, it means nothing.


And I never realized that because I had to rebuild relationships with my parents, you know, after being a brat for so many years, you know, it's been a working it's been a work in progress. You know, I still feel terrible for. Some of the ways that I, you know, treated that I didn't treat them terribly, but like I didn't know any better, so I was asking them and begging them for things when they were working their ass off and giving me more than I needed as it was.


And I still was asking for more. I have incredible guilt about that. My parents forgive me. They totally understand. They don't have any kind of resentment towards me for that. But I resent myself myself for that. Right. There's a lot of growing that I still need to do and a lot of with them. Right. To prove to them like that. I am sorry for that. And I don't even think that they expect that. But I feel this guilt because I didn't understand that none of this shit mattered.


And it's funny because my dad actually grew up in a family that had money. His dad had a very well-paying job, and they lived in a nice, beautiful big house. And then my dad decided when I was younger to quit his kind of nine to five, if you will, and become an artist, even though that was a financial risk. Right. Because when you do a creative job and you become self-employed, there's a lot more risk in it.


There's no salary. There's no, like, guaranteed tomorrow. It's like all in the air. And he took that risk because he knew that it would make him happier and he knew would make him a better dad. And yet there's a chance he might make less money. He might make more money. There's not nothing is guaranteed. OK, but he decided to do that because he knew that it would make him happier, him healthier because his job was very labor intensive and it would make him a better dad.


And so he prioritized that over having money for not only me, but also for himself. He was taking that risk because he knew that his quality of life was going to be better. He was going to be able to spend more time with me. And that's a very selfless thing to do in a very smart thing to do. He knew because he grew up with money that it doesn't mean anything. So he made the decision to potentially make less money or to potentially take a huge financial risk, because he knew that that's because life doesn't have a purpose just because there's money in it.


And I wish I would have taken his advice sooner because, you know, he's one of the happiest, most fulfilled people that I know because his job allows him to have free time. His job allows him to do what he loves every single day. And the uncertainty of it and the fluctuation within it. Yeah, can be tough. But at the end of the day, like, he's doing what he loves and the money doesn't matter to him, he has enough money to live the life that he wants to live and that's that.


And he doesn't need more. He doesn't need access. You only you don't need a lot. You need a roof over your head.


You need food and you need good people and you need, you know, money to put into your savings if possible. But even then, it's like you don't need in excess. People think that excess will bring them happiness. If I have that bag, if I have that outfit, if I get to go to this restaurant twice a week, that's extremely expensive. I'm going to be happy. No, my dad, you know, when he wants to go out to eat, he'll go get a fucking three dollar burrito and it's delicious.


Or he'll go get like he'll fucking make himself something at home that he enjoys. It's it doesn't matter. Going to the nicest restaurant in your town doesn't bring you anything. It's about making life enjoyable with your circumstance. And yes, money can give you opportunity. And I understand that and I see that. But I wish that I would have seen back then that I had such a beautiful life right in front of me. My parents both had jobs that allowed them to spend a lot of time with me.


There's a lot of kids that have really wealthy parents that have like nannies and they never see their family because their parents are working and traveling constantly. But they, you know, in their in this big, huge house alone with no family because their parents are working every day, day and night to give the kids this, you know, lavish lifestyle. But they don't have their parents. They don't have that relationship with their parents. I got to have such a beautiful relationship in such an intimate relationship with my parents that was so close because we lived in these small spaces together where, you know, one on one and they were home a lot of the times.


And that's a beautiful thing, you know what I mean? I used to envy kids that had stay at home moms, but my mom got to be home like, you know what, after six, whatever, if I needed to go home by myself, like, it's like. It's all about your circumstance, there's pros and cons to everything, and I had a very I have a very amazing life and I had a very amazing life back then and I did not appreciate it.


And I want to punch myself in the head for being as materialistic and dumb as I was. At the same time, I didn't know any better. How was I supposed to know that the wealthy life that I was envying was just as flawed as my own life?


Every single person's life is flawed. Would I want to have one of their lives? No, they don't even they've talked to their dad once in that month because their dad had been in Tokyo all month on a business trip. I don't wish that for myself. I love the fact that my dad is an artist and I have a creative household. And yeah, we may be made less money, but we made enough money and we got to go to San Francisco and go and walk around and like, go and get coffee together.


That's such a beautiful thing and such a beautiful memory that those kids didn't get to have with their dads. Yeah, maybe they got to throw the craziest pool party of all. Twenty, sixteen. But like, there's a piece of their life that they might envy about mine. And I never realized that until I got older. If you don't work hard to keep up your mental health in your relationships with others. And you have all this money, none of the money matters.


When I have toxic people in my life, the money doesn't matter, I hate my life. Just as much as the next guy. And even more than I did when I was younger and I was in high school and I had a great group of friends because there was a period of time in high school, I struggled in high school, there was peaks and there was low, low points with friendships. But like if I compare the time in high school where I had a very good group of friends to a time now me in L.A. with everything I could have ever dreamed of and more.


But I have toxic friends in my life. Let's say let's compare those two. I was way happier in high school when I had those healthy friends and yeah, whatever I, I blah blah blah. There was flaws at that time too, but. I have everything I could have ever dreamed of now, and yet if I have a few bad apples in my friend group, my mental health will struggle just as much or if not even more, because I'm like, Emma, you have everything that you want, everything you've ever wanted, you little bitch.


OK, and you still feel sad. What else could you fucking want? What else could you want, you idiot. But it's true. Money means I can't say it means nothing. But money is not what it seems to be. It's an illusion. And you know. I I still struggle with the illusion I, I hate people that are super flashy, I and like, listen, you know, I understand there's certain people that really enjoy expensive things and they really love that.


And don't get me wrong, I appreciate things that are expensive and stuff like that, but not as a status symbol. And I found that, you know. Living in L.A., there's so many people that are so obsessed with the the image that they put out, right. Like I want to seem super rich and wealthy and successful and like, you know, I want to seem like this. It's all so empty. And I think that that's why, you know.


There's there's a way to do it that's respectable, and I think that some people are just so flashy about it. And I just want everybody to know from the inside, if you see a celebrity being all flashy and shit with their money and stuff, I can guarantee it's not as smooth sailing as you think 90 percent of the time. It's all an illusion, money is an illusion. People with their crazy sports cars in their expensive bling, dout watches in their crazy big mansions.


It's not as smooth sailing as you think. And also it's not as fun as you think. The excitement of those things wear off and then you're left with your life in what's there.


Right. The excitement of these expensive, crazy, nice things. It wears off and that's why people get addicted to buying these luxury things, because they're like when they're in this position of having money that they never expected to have, they're like, OK, well, I'm just going to go buy whatever the fuck I want all the time. Well, once the excitement of your new Cartier bracelet wears off, what do you have left? You might as well go buy a fucking fake one because it's it's interchangeable.


It doesn't bring you any happiness for me. If I buy something nice for myself, it's because I love it and it's because I genuinely, really like it and will use it. And I appreciate the craft of what it is. And that's when I spend my money on something nice. I'm not spending it to prove something or to get this weird dopamine rush that, you know, people get from that. I it's all so surface level and empty.


None of it means anything. The only time it means something is if it actually does mean something to you. I could buy a three dollar shirt from the thrift store. That means just as much to me as like a really nice pair of sunglasses that I've wanted for a really long time. It's just something that I like. It's not about the status symbol behind it, you know, and it's all empty. Trust me. The moral of the story is.


You can't control the life that you are born into. You can't control. What cards you were dealt? Always remember that somebody is looking at you and wishes they had something that you had while you're wishing that you had their big mansion, they're wishing that they had the relationship with your parents that you have or. While you're wishing you had the same car as them, their new Audi, they're wishing that they had your sense in fashion, there's the grass is always greener and all of this doesn't matter.


You make the most of the life that you have. You enjoy the small little things and remember that your parents worked so hard for you. And yes, they brought you onto this earth, but they're doing their best, OK, don't you think your parents would have a big mansion, too, if they could? It's not their fault. And also. There's something so nice about a normal life. It like this crazy. Wealthy image is great and all, but like having a cute house on a cute street or having a comfortable, cozy apartment can be like equally as amazing like.


I live in a house now that. I could have only dreamed of living because I grew up primarily in an apartment with my mom because I was closer to my school and I also my dad had a house as well.


But my mom's apartment was, you know, as I mentioned earlier, it was not it was it was definitely a huge struggle, I think, mainly because, you know, aesthetically it wasn't so great from the outside. My mom did a great job decorating it. But, you know, it was not the cutest thing, not the nicest looking thing in me and her. I've talked about this and I got her permission to talk about this. And we both, you know, it was it was not the ideal situation for either of us.


Neither of us were super pumped about this apartment also because we had neighbors that, you know.


We're really fucked up. I mean, they were like not good, like they were constantly smoking weed and it was coming up into our apartment. Our apartment always smelled like weed.


And, you know, we always would fight with the neighbors. And because they would yell at me because they would say that I was stomping too loud, but really I was just walking normally and there's just no building insulation. But they would scream up and hit or fucking hit their ceiling in our floor with a broom and scream at us and bang on our front door and harass us about being too loud, when in reality it was just like, yeah, I'm a fuckin 12 year old and I'm walking around with a heavy foot, like, that's not my fault, whatever.


And, you know, we would also like there was mold in this apartment. It was not the ideal situation, but it was it was also like not terrible. It was like, you know, it was cute and it had big windows and the cats loved it and blah, blah, blah. And so, you know, when he was a great location. And so we stayed there for a really long time. But it was tough for my mom and I.


And we both talked about this. And, you know, I called her. I want you to know, like I talked to both my parents about this, you know, I got their permission. I told them what I was going to talk about and they were all both on board. And, you know, whatever this I'm not talking about this without their consent. But anyway, you know, it was always my dream to live in a house where I could make as much noise as I wanted and not be harassed by my neighbors where I could have friends over and wouldn't get the police called on me and my friends just hanging out, talking in a room at like 9:00 p.m. because that was always an issue for my neighbors.


Like that was always my dream to have a space where I felt safe to, like, do whatever I wanted in like I have friends over and have a sleepover on the weekends if I wanted. That was never an option. And it's crazy because now I've moved to a house where I have all of those things. Yet for some reason I almost feel more comfortable in an apartment setting. Like my friends, all my friends live in apartments. And weirdly enough, like I like going over and hanging out there almost better because I like the coziness of it.


And there's something comforting about it. So see what I'm saying? The grass is always fucking greener. Like, I'm not kidding. Every time someone asked me, like, hate my place or yours, I'm like, I want to go to yours because I genuinely prefer the the feeling of the closeness of being in an apartment. It just feels more cozy. And there's something I like about it. There's something comforting about it. I don't know if it's because I grew up in an apartment.


And so that's just kind of what I'm used to. And now I'm living in a house that's like I just it's weird for me. I don't know what the mentality. I don't know what my issue is with it, but that's there it is. It's like the grass is always greener. And the moral of all this is appreciate what you have and. Embrace the struggle of day to day life and embrace the stories and, you know, like I have such good memories from the most traumatizing moments, you know, of my childhood because they're memories that, like, shaped me.


I wouldn't be who I am if I didn't experience every single thing that I experienced. I have no regrets. I'm so glad that everything panned out the way that it did. And I'm so grateful that, you know, I have been so fortunate to. Support myself in like, you know, have the life that I have now, I am beyond grateful and I wouldn't have it without you guys supporting me and coming back every week, every month, whenever to support me and, you know, always being on my team.


And I appreciate you guys more than you know, because being able to have this financial freedom, in a sense, has given me the ability to give opportunities to my parents and take them on trips with me and, you know, give them gifts that I only could have dreamed of giving them when I was younger. And those are things that are so amazing to me. Those are the things about money that make me happy, that do enhance my life.


And so I just want to thank you guys so much. And also, you know, hopefully this lifted the veil on the truth of it all and that it really isn't what it looks like in 99 percent of it is an illusion. On that note, I'm going to answer a few questions and then I'm to wrap it up because, my God, did I just rant? I blacked out. I have no idea what the fuck I talked about.


So hopefully that was a good episode. Do you save money for the future of YouTube doesn't work out. Yes, this has always been a huge priority to me. I mean, there's a balance with, you know, spending money on things that you enjoy. Like I enjoy buying Thrifty, like I like I enjoy buying clothes. Like that's something that I really enjoy doing. Right. Like, I like buying vintage clothing. I like that. Like, I like collecting.


That's a passion of mine. Right. So I'm OK with spending money on that. But like, I don't care about having a crazy nice car, so like I'm just leasing my car for now and I only need one car and like that's fine with me. I invested in real estate because I was like, OK, I'm going to do this because this will hopefully benefit me in the future. And, you know, I'm also investing my money in other things as well.


Behind the scenes. I've hired someone to do that because I don't know how the fuck to do that, but I've been trying my best to do that. My parents are great at helping me with all this. So I've been making it a huge priority that, you know, I save my money and I'm smart with my money. But also I still enjoy myself because you do have to enjoy yourself to a certain extent. It's like money is there to be saved and spent, not just saved.


You have to like you have to enjoy life. And if you want to go out to a nice restaurant and you have the money to do it, or if you want to buy somebody a nice gift and you have the money to do it, sometimes that brings you more happiness then, you know, saving that money ever could have. And so I think that it's important to find what things bring you happiness, like if going on a trip and saving up for that and, you know, using that money on that instead of on something else is like important to you.


You do that as long as you're being smart about it and as long as you're, you know, putting a certain amount of money into savings every month, I think that's really important if possible. Like, obviously, those things are very important. But you also have to have you know, you also it's if you can you know, you should use your money to it's because I always was so afraid of spending money. I had like a phobia of it.


And still to this day, I kind of do because I'm worried of running out and.


You know, my parents have explained to me, like, this is how you can budget yourself out so that, you know, you don't have to worry and that, you know, whatever, and just be smart and and it's not it's hard and it's like kind of a confusing process to figure out, like, OK, what do I spend my money on and what is not worth spending my money on and what's a good investment and what isn't.


And I think that that's all just talking to people that know more than you and blah, blah, blah, and just hiring a professional to run your money so that you can ensure that your money is being handled safely and whatever.


So that's what I do. But. Someone said, I'm 16 and I kind of feel the need to think about saving money to give my parents when they retire. I don't know if this is too young to start saving for them or even if I'm supposed to. Do you have some advice? Because I love you, Emma. You always make my day. Thank you. I love you. And you also make my day.


So most adults have a retirement account, and I'm assuming that your parents probably do, too. That's a conversation that you need to have with them. You know, being like, do you guys have a retirement? What do you guys plan on doing? Blah, blah, blah. But you are 16 years old. And, you know, I think right now you should be focusing on, you know, school and figuring out what you want to do with your life.


And, you know, you're a minor. Let your parents worry about themselves. They're adults. And when you get older, you can worry about stuff like that. I really don't think sixteen is a necessary age to start worrying about your parents retiring, because I. I bet that they have a plan for that. And if they don't, that's not your burden to take on your your own human being. And, you know, obviously, if you get to a point at some point as an adult where you can.


You know, help support your parents if they need it. That's amazing, but work on, you know, making money for you first because you are so young. This is not a burden that you need to take on. Somebody said when coming out of high school, how did you manage your money with bills and taxes? Because I honestly have no clue. I love you and your podcasts and advice through them are such a great help and gives me so much confidence.


You were literally my therapist. Well, I love you. I love you so much. I'm so glad to hear that.


For me, it it was definitely leaning on the adults in my life, I, you know, asked my parents for advice and they've been helping me to this day. I mean, I'm 19, right?


I'm still new to all this shit.


And so, you know, really leaning on them and having them help me, but also finding professionals to help me. You know, there's so many amazing companies that can help you with your taxes and can help you with, you know, filing things and blah, blah, blah. And like so much so much information on the Internet, too, to just Google, you know, the most random, mundane things. But I think really leaning on your parents or, you know, any adult in your life because they already know.


So it's almost like the best way to learn is from word of mouth. I feel like I'm an adult because you don't even know where to start when you're a kid. I still am confused by 90 percent of this. Like, I don't understand. My taxes are handled by the guy that does my taxes. Like, I don't understand any of it. And when the money goes out of my account, it hurts me and I and that's all I know and it sucks.


But, you know, I hire a professional so that I can be you know, I can have the most responsible. I want to make sure that I'm doing my taxes right. You know what I mean? Like, I don't want to fuck it up because I don't know what I'm doing. And, you know, I don't want to accidentally commit tax fraud. So, yeah, somebody said, how can I make sure that I'm saving a good chunk of money each week for my paycheck?


What I do personally is I agreed upon a certain amount with like my parents and some professionals about how much money I should be setting aside every month, every paycheck I get, how much what percent of that should be going into an account somewhere far away from me that I cannot touch. And so I think it's about agreeing with yourself. Let's say your paycheck I'm going to use this is obviously not an accurate paycheck, but I'm using it as an example.


Let's say you got ten dollars every month.


Obviously, that's not accurate at all. But you get what I'm saying. Let's say you got ten dollars every month and let's say you decided, OK, every month I'm going to put three of those dollars into a savings account and then I'm going to save that extra seven for my day to day life where I can just spend it freely as I want. Boom, agree on a like on a solid amount for every single month so that you it's routine and you know how much money you're going to have for spending that month every month.


And it's consistent and it clicks in your brain and it becomes a habit. Right. Becomes a habit to put that three dollars into the savings account every month. And you know that that is how that's going to be. That's the best way somebody said, what's the best thing that you've ever spent money on? I think that my favorite thing to spend money on is gifts for others and traveling, to be honest. And also, I think buying my house, because that was such a lifelong dream for me to have like a space that I was proud of, because I think that as a kid, I was always so insecure about where I lived and I'm always so.


Embarrassed of it, and so my goal as a kid was always I would always tell myself, the Emma, you're going to live in a beautiful house one day that you're proud to invite people over to. And, you know, I have that now.


And it's so cool because I love having people over here. Obviously, right now, it's kind of a bummer because we can't really have I can't have people over, really. But, you know, just even like my closest friends and like, you know, whatever. And even when my family comes to visit, if they come to visit, it's like it's nice to have a place that I'm proud of, you know, to to host people because it's something I always wanted as a kid.


And so that has been such an amazing thing for me and so cool. And I'm just so grateful that I've been able to accomplish that goal and so that. But also, I love getting gifts for people. I love surprising people with things. I love all of that shit and. I like to also like. On a day to day, like if I go get coffee with my friends or something. You know, when you really love somebody, you want to provide for them in a sense and so for me, like buying things for people that I love is like like, you know, just buying, even if it's just symbols, like buying them lunch or something.


Like, I just I feel good when I do that and it feels good to feel like I'm taking care of someone. And it's weird, but like or even just a coffee.


Or like, I don't know, it just feels good and obviously, you know, you need to leave it open for other people to do that for you, too, because I think for other people, it feels good for them, too, but you know what I mean. So, yeah, and traveling I think traveling is very important. Spending money on traveling. I think it's something that, you know, it's a memory, it's an experience.


It's something that helps you grow as a person in a way because you're experiencing new things and blah. And I, I like that.


I mean, you don't need that to grow as a person.


But I think for me, sometimes I need it because I'm so stuck in L.A. in the headspace here that like going and traveling to like a little remote beach town for me sometimes exactly what I need. And it's not even necessarily that expensive, but it's like I need that to reset my brain. And so that's something that is very important to me.


I also like spending money on clothes because clothes is something that I'm passionate about collecting, you know, I'm passionate about finding cool pieces and cool vintage pieces and, you know, Beauvois and like, that's something that also, you know, means a lot to me.


So I just remembered one thing that I forgot to talk about, and I want to bring it up before I end this, because I just want to set the record straight, because this also really upset me and I feel like I never got a chance to talk about it.


One time there was an article that was written about me and the words.


In it. We're kind of twisted and there was also an interview that I did where I kind of twisted my own words to and I and I want to clear the air on it. I can't remember exactly what I said, but it had to do with me not being able to go to the movies. It was this like whole like headline like from not being able to go to the movies, to this war. And in the interview, I think they the the outlet that released this article stole a snippet from an interview that I did where I was talking about how, you know, I struggled with money when I was growing up, which I did here and there.


But the way that I portrayed it was so victim mentality and so like acting like not being able to go to the movies a lot because my family was budgeting was like a really abnormal thing.


OK, and in retrospect, the situation, you know, I think I was remembering a memory where my mom and I were going to the movies a lot, the movie theater, which is crazy because now I hate movie theaters.


I have like a phobia of them.


But whatever there was this period of time were like money was a little bit tighter. And so I think my mom was like, OK, we're going to need to cut back on like a few of these things for a little while, like we need to stop doing a few of these things just because, you know, we need to be saving money right now, which is so normal, like there was no reason for, you know, whatever.


And but to me, I was like, oh, my God. At the time and even up until recently, that memory, my memory was like, oh, my God, we were struggling. We couldn't go to the fucking movies. But then I was thinking about it and I was like, OK. Thirty dollars for two people to go to the movies, like multiple times a week. That is fucking expensive. So yeah, my mom's like, yeah, we need to take a break from the movies.


This we can't go to the movies anymore because this is too much money like, OK, hello.


I was totally playing the victim and I didn't even know it. I didn't know it. I didn't want sympathy. I didn't like, I just genuinely felt like that was something that was I at the time was like, oh my God, that's so sad for me that I can't do that.


What in reality it's like, OK, yeah, but I had a roof over my head. We had to fucking budget some shit out and cut some, you know, like some kind of mundane fun activities out of our day to day for a little while because there was like, you know, a money struggle at the time. But it was like, OK, yeah, but the fuck like, I just didn't portray that correctly. And then it got twisted in the article.


And then, you know, my mom, even we talked about it and I was like, I really didn't mean it like that in the way that it came off. Like, yes, it's in a sense true. But they made it look so different from what it truly was. And it was just that. And it was such a normal thing that I had I had subconsciously taken out of proportion because of the way that I worded it in the interview.


And then, by the way, that the article twisted it even further. And so I just wanted to clear the air on that. It really yes, there were money struggles, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, but we were absolutely just fine. And I always had a roof over my head and I always had food on the table, period. And that's all that mattered. So me fucking bringing up that shit where we had to budget out going to the movies because we were like, you know, it was during a rough time that is so dumb.


I should have never brought that up. But I was immature at the time and I also still had this weird money mentality that I hadn't taken yet. So that was like two and a half years ago, two years ago, maybe so like whatever. Irrelevant. But like, I just wanted to clear the air about that because I think that I made it look a lot different than it was on accident and that was an accident on my part. So, yeah.


Anyway, that's enough of this. Thank you guys so much for listening. I really appreciate you guys constant support and I really love talking about this.


And if you guys have any more podcast topics that are similar to this that you want me to dig into the Twitters at Ajai podcast, you can do me, you can tweet me and I'll hopefully see it.


And if you want to leave, anything goes a little rating on Apple podcast. Give us a little five stars. You can do that and I'd really appreciate it. It really helps us out. And I love you guys so much. Thank you for listening. Day after day. You guys are the best. And peace out, motherfuckers.


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