Post Traumatic Broke Syndrome

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I’m frugal AF. No. Seriously. Up until recently I had somehow convinced myself that I was perpetually broke and on the verge of being a forever broke. I was so into this mindset that eating out more than once a week was considered over splurging. I swear by Dollar Tree and I will ride my car until the last drop of gas. The reason?…I have what my male best friend hilariously named Post Traumatic Broke Syndrome or PTBS. I’m constantly afraid of going broke so I live as though I truly am.



When I was younger I didn’t have too much of a choice in the things I could purchase or do because I simply knew not to ask for them. Stress for bills was always present. It felt like there was never enough money for everything.

This was my first impression with money and so it was there that I developed a negative relationship with it.

I keep a tight grip on money like it’s a cheating, lying ass boyfriend that I can’t trust to stick around.


From that point on I became like Cory from That’s So Raven. I saved every bit of money I got and only spoke of it in hushed tones. Recently, my sister and I were having a conversation  in which I said, as I often do, “I’m broke.” she replied “You are not broke. You’re like one of those old women that buy the dented cans in the grocery store to save money but you’re secretly rich.” Funny enough, I couldn’t deny it. I learned that trick from my Grandma. Love you Grandma Rose!

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I have to really, really, REALLLLY want something priced $100+ dollars in order to buy it for myself and even though this has helped me grow my savings account; there are some drawbacks to thinking broke even when you’re not.

You don’t travel as much as you could because you’re stuck in the thinking that eating Ramen noodles and watching Netflix is cheaper than going out with friends. Now you’re missing out on great experiences, networking and fresh air because you didn’t want to spend a possible $50 even though you have plenty in the bank.

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When you don’t buy that one thing you really wanted in the store you obsess over it for weeks wishing you weren’t too cheap to buy it. When you finally decide to get it you can’t find the same style anywhere; now your only choice is a similar style that costs more.

(I truly hate it when that happens)

You may end up spending more buying the cheaper brands. IDK how many aux cords I’ve purchased from Dollar Tree. They work for a month and then give out. The ones at Walmart cost $10 and probably last far longer. Let’s face it…you just spent $10 anyway buying 10 cheap ones for $1 over the course of 10 months.

You miss out on great sales because you don’t buy in bulk. You buy only what you need. So you end up spending more because you could’ve caught the 3 for 2 sale and saved $2 but your tightfistedness decided to only buy the one thing you needed for less at the moment. Next month when that body wash runs out you’re gonna wish you brought that 3 pack for the price of two instead of just the one.

You obsess over money and bills unnecessarily even though you have enough; somehow it just never feels like enough. This puts a strain on you emotionally regardless of if you are financially sound. Plus, your cheap ass let’s everyone else pay for things you really want instead of treating yourself and others once in a while.




While being money conscious definitely has it’s place so does spending. I’m recently learning that being thrifty and being tightfisted are two different things. I love that I price compare when I’m shopping for groceries or clothes. It helps me save and not over spend like most others in our generation today. I could care less about keeping up with the Joneses.

On the other hand, I have missed out on meaningful trips and events because I didn’t want to spend money. But isn’t that what it’s there for? I could save up thousands even millions of dollars until I’m an old woman but I can’t go back in time and experience things I was too closefisted to participate in.

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While this post is meant to be light-hearted and funny, this has been a mental habit that’s hard to break. Having discussions with others from similar financial backgrounds confirms that this stems from something a little deeper than just being cheap.

I am now learning that I have what it takes to make money so it’s ok to spend it. The fear of going broke in itself has made me miserable; not actually being broke. When I was broke (er) life was simple. Now that I’ve gotten enough mullah to have fun I’m afraid to lose the opportunity. This is my long winded way of saying 🗣🗣 SPEND THAT MONEY HONEY because like the old people say “You can’t take it with you when yah leave.”

Amen to that.


What are some unnecessary cheap habits that you have? Share in the comments sections below and stay tuned for more posts. #LetsBuild




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  1. […] present; then you wonder why you’re unhappy even with money in the bank and good credit. Post Traumatic Broke Syndrome  and Suspicions of Me talk a little about this mindset and how to overcome it. You keep waiting […]

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