So my fiance created a GoFundme a few days ago over some financial, transportation, and other material deficits we've been experiencing lately. Each deficit is clearly outlined along with all of the steps we've taken (such as trying to find, in my case, a job, and in his, a better job) along with reasons why things haven't panned out too well over the last year (living many miles from where 99.9% of the jobs are and having extremely limited transportation is the big "gotcha").
After he created an outline of what he wanted his page to say, I did my ghostwriting/'look at me I'm a copy editor' thing, he read my edited version and we posted it to GFM. His GFM connects to his Facebook page which lays claim to over 500 of his "friends". We didn't have ridiculously high expectations but felt it wouldn't hurt to put our story out there since he's tying the funding to two very clear, specific goals: paying off our current bills and opening his own business in a specific profession (all discussed at length on the page). What happens next was the one thing you'd never see coming.
Within seconds of my fiance's GFM posting, one of his 500 "friends" (interestingly enough, a woman who jumps in to offer her opinion every time him and I have any sort of kerfuffle and usually sides with him) PM'd him on Facebook to ask why he was doing a GoFundme - doesn't he know that it's "wrong" to do those things?
She told him that instead of doing a GFM page, he should get a job (the GFM page clearly states he's already working but very little because his boss is constantly sick and in legal trouble, both which shut his business down all the time because he's just a one-man show; besides that, my fiance is applying everywhere he can online, by making cold phone calls, along with socializing and networking with literally every person he runs into online and off), to try to "work more" with his landlord (he already did, but the landlord has been "working with him" for over two years and is finally showing signs of strain), to look for others ways to make money online and off (but he already is), to "sell things" (as though we have not already done that until we have almost nothing of value left in the entire house) and to tell him to tell me what to do to find a job, mainly: "look online more". It was humiliating to hear him read this to me. Also, she usually sides with him in our arguments so I don't like her, anyway.
We discussed how every one of her suggestions was covered on our GoFundme page as to a) what we've done in relation to them and b) why, in doing all of that, we've still fallen short (really: it's down to lack of transportation since we've done everything she's suggested, which is discussed at length on the GoFundMe page). So if she was my "friend" I would've told her to go fuck herself after asking her if she even knows how to read, but my fiance was much more diplomatic in his response (and he's usually not the diplomat). He simply replied: "Don't you think we've tried all these things already? We're doing the best we can, that's why there's a GoFundMe because it just hasn't been enough". At which point she wished us "luck" and hasn't been heard from since.
A few hours later a guy he's been "friends" with for years - mostly through Facebook - emailed him to say: "What the fuck is this shit? Are you sending this to ME?" in response to an automated GoFundMe email. At this point I began to worry: of all these friends of his, not one had said a kind word in response, but two had bitched him out over the very thought of someone asking for their help.
After 24 more hours went by without another PM, email or Wall posting for or against his GFM page I thought: "Good, if people have nothing nice to say then they can just not say anything at all. I've lived without GFM before and I'll do so again. Fuck it." Then one of my fiance's more recent - but up until now, extremely supportive - hobby pals of his through Facebook posted a screed to his own Wall that he knew my fiance would see, warning "everyone" not to email him "ever again" with any "Fundmethis" or "Fundmethat" "bullshit" because "from now on" he'll "immediately block them and unfriend them on Facebook". The cruelty of it is shocking. But wait - there's more.
The guy went on to say "we've all fallen on rough times" but when HE fell on them he got a second job, then a third job (completely ignoring the fact that my fiance said he's already working - on days that his boss is not sick or in court he picks him up and drops him off - and ignoring how we lack any decent transportation and live too far from everything to get to any other jobs we could get, which we can't get without going to interviews, which we can't do because lack of transportation; it's obviously sort of a catch22). Then he ran on about how people like us just won't sell off enough earthly possessions, that we aren't looking hard enough online or off for work and that we simply won't give up our pride to work at Burger King. He also wanted to share with us that during HIS rough time he lived on exactly $200 a month for food so people like us should, too (though we never mentioned needing food nor how much we spend on it).
He also said if we're so damn poor then what we need to do is 1) cancel our cable (we've never had cable), 2) cancel our Internet, 3) shut off our cell phones (I've already shut off my cell phone and we've never had a landline - my fiance needs his cell phone for WORK or we'd shut that off, too), 4) mind our bills and 5) stop asking for help. The subtext seems to be that we're shiftless, no-good, lazy white trash that just needs one good mansplain' to pull ourselves out of this quagmire. Thank God he came along because now I know exactly what to do:
- We need to try to get hired at three different jobs a piece by walking (or biking) 20-50 miles one way to apply for said jobs then 25-50 miles back home, then walk (or bike) 20-50 miles back each way to any interviews we can possibly secure, then walk (or bike) 25-50 miles back after applying for more jobs after any given interview(s)
- Have the remaining cell phone shut off immediately so no one can call for interviews after we walk (or bike) 25-50 miles each way and back (not to mention all over town itself) for days and weeks on end to apply in person for jobs; it would THRILL this guy to know my phone has been shut off for weeks already, but probably wouldn't thrill him enough, since a few weeks isn't that long and should've been much longer
- Have our Internet shut off immediately so we can't apply online for any of these six total jobs we need to secure; having the Intertubes shut off will also a) keep me from making anymore money at online surveys and b) prevent us from ever so much as posting a garage sale listing online again, since our phones will be shut off
- Get at least one job for each of us at Burger King - we've failed and should be spat on for the lazy fucks we are if we can't at least do THAT
- There is no cable since it got shut off last spring before I ever moved in; in this way we're already following his all-knowing "friend"'s advice to the letter
- Have a garage sale (but without Internet or phones we can't advertise it except by slapping signs on trees by the house - and our road is fairly private and hard to find, out in the middle of nowhere, with only a tiny handful of neighbors) where we sell everything we own for .50-$1 which is all most of it is worth. This will surely make us enough money to buy a 9-pack of toilet paper while we learn to live without our personal effects in order to do the right thing, which, if you didn't get it the first, second or third time someone made it clear, is NOT ASK FOR HELP
- Cut our food bill in half since we're clearly living like kings and fools if we spend much more than the magic figure of $200 (we spend almost double that and still have to eat every last leftover and cook only about half of what we'd normally eat, and even at that there are plenty of "pasta and red sauce" weeks because has this guy ever actually GONE TO a grocery store? He's got to be kidding).
If he were only running our lives for us on a daily, nay hourly basis as he obviously should not only would we walk (or bike) at least 40-100 miles round-trip each day looking for work and be unable to apply for jobs and set up interviews except in person, we'd also have amazing Florida sunburns, regular heat strokes and exhaustion, and run the risk of contracting many illnesses from all the mosquitoes we can't afford to keep off of us - and I'm sure he'd have many other really great ideas, besides:
- The cat and dog? Who needs 'em? Throw'em outside to fend for themselves (since of course we can't drive to the shelter to properly dispose of them). Poor white trash thinkin' they should own animals - now that's kinda high-faluting' and uppity.
- Electricity? Who needs it? You are poor peeps, right, so shut it off. Shower when it rains, cook and clean when the sun shines, go to bed when it gets dark, use blankets in the cold and wear light clothing in the heat
- Crack whores and drug dealers exist for a reason so do what ya gotta do - it's rough times all around
Notice I'm not linking to any GoFundme here? That won't be changing. It was my idea to do one - not my fiance's - and it had to be done either way, but because he has over 500 Facebook friends I thought he'd have more pull than I would if he did a page than if I did one. But after the stern counseling and Tough Love sessions we've so helpfully received from them I'd rather pry my eyeballs out with an embroidery needle then ever do a page there again or even link anywhere to the one we've got going on now.