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Why?? posted 6/11/2013 16:26 PM

Just curious what's your definition? A coworker said they weren't but then later talks about buying expensive suits and just bought a fancy car...

GabyBaby posted 6/11/2013 16:36 PM

To me, a person is materialistic when their main focus is to obtain the biggest and best "thing".

By some people's definition, I could be considered materialistic. I have a nice house, a nice car, etc. I buy my kids electronics and nice clothes.
I don't think I'm materialistic because those THINGS aren't the focus of my life.
My family, pets, and friends come first always. I took a lot of years pursuing an advanced education (while working full time and taking care of my kids) so that I could have a stable career with which to support my family. One of the perks of that hard work are fun things.

ETA: When I was "broke", I was happiest when I was with my family.
Years later, now that I have "more", I'm STILL happiest when I'm with my family. I also like that I'm able to buy things that I didn't have (or couldn't give my kids) before.

[This message edited by GabyBaby at 6:29 PM, June 11th (Tuesday)]

somanyyears posted 6/11/2013 16:52 PM

..some folks may validate themselves thru the things they have.

..some buy expensive things to validate their financial success.. 'the Armani suit' says " I can afford to spend $2000. on a suit or $150000. on a fancy car.

..therefore i am successful.
..boasting about it tells me that they want your recognition of their level of success. smacks of insecurity as well.

..i must consider myself as materialistic bc i love stuff!

..artwork especially, the more, the better.. but i tend to boast about how cheaply i got it. If i found it in the trash, it's even better!

..clothes don't mean squat to me.. i buy most of it at the thrift store.. good stuff, but cheap prices give me the kick.. the Armani suit for $15.00

..some folks define themselves by what they do, by where they live, by what they wear or by what they have..and some by how much they paid..

..or in my case, by how 'little' they paid.

..does this co-worker piss you off bc of their bragging about all their expensive stuff?? there some jealousy going on between you?

..just wondering why the post??


Sad in AZ posted 6/11/2013 17:23 PM

Materialistic, to me, confers that the person really cares about having possessions. They don't have to be expensive; it's the act of caring so much about having them and wanting others to feel envious of them for having these possessions.

Why?? posted 6/11/2013 18:16 PM

Yes, GabyBaby that makes sense. I think he might fall into that category of having worked hard and can have nice things.

Somanyyears - Not jealous in the least. I am happy with my thrift store finds Just curious as to why he would state he wasn't materialistic and then later bring up these things which could mean anything. Always wonder what makes people tick. Why they say what they say and if their actions match up.

Always nice to hear what SIers think too

Clarrissa posted 6/12/2013 07:33 AM

Sounds to me your coworker was just bragging. Making the point of letting you know he can afford to buy the fancy car for $XX grand when he probably could have made do with a used one for much less. That could be seen as materialistic I suppose. Personally H and I have had little that was brand new, except clothes. We're fine with thrift store stuff. Since we moved to where we are, our finances are a bit more flexible and we csn afford more new stuff (like the pool) but we still look for bargains. Just because we can now afford higher end stuff doesn't mean we won't look for the same thing at a lower price.

sadtoo posted 6/12/2013 10:32 AM

I've been accused of being materialistic.

I like to wear designer clothes, shoes and carry designer handbags, etc. (I know, completely shallow. )

But what most people don't know:

1). Most, if not all my jewelry comes from the pawn shop.

2). I buy my cloths and shoes and handbags at a second hand shop.

3). I am an outlet junkie

4). I have never paid full price for anything in my life.

GabyBaby posted 6/12/2013 10:34 AM

I'm with you, Sadtoo !
I love clothes and electronics (I may have to hand in my 'girl' card since I don't really care about shoes or purses). I get a HUGE sense of satisfaction for finding designer/hot new gadget at bargain basement prices.

Its even MORE fun when you notice your kids doing the same thing when they shop.

[This message edited by GabyBaby at 10:36 AM, June 12th (Wednesday)]

sadtoo posted 6/12/2013 10:42 AM

I get a HUGE sense of satisfaction for finding designer/hot new gadget at bargain basement prices.


It's like finding GOLD!!! It's so exciting. And sometimes at these 2nd hand shops, the tags are still on these clothes. It's unbelievable. Like a $1000 jacket for $20! Nothing makes me more excited. Who cares it's last years fashion?? not me!

Bobbi_sue posted 6/13/2013 06:56 AM

To me, a person is materialistic when their main focus is to obtain the biggest and best "thing".

In my view you can be materialistic even if this is not your MAIN focus, but having lots of "nice things" is an important focus in your life, and most people I know are materialistic to some degree, including myself.

My husband will say that he is NOT materialistic but I don't agree with him. Even though we don't drive fancy cars, and don't really have a fancy home, there are "things" that are important to him and he deprives himself of nothing if he can possibly get away with it (man toys like tractors, four-wheelers, snowmobiles, tools, stuff that makes all his male friends jealous even though many of them have a fancier home and vehicle than we do).

As for a home, I want mine to functional and comfortable and I just want it to be perceived as "normal" not a dilapitated dump (which is what I grew up in as a child). But even the modest home I want may be somewhat materialistic.

I like clothes to some extent but as others say, I would look for a bargain that I felt was flattering on me, rather than spending top dollar for clothes. I do not care about fancy trinkets or jewelry. I do have a "real" wedding ring set, but quite frankly I would not be that upset to wear cubic zirconia as I don't think most people would ever be able to look close enough to even realize the difference.

Unless I was looking to resell something and make a profit, I would have no interest in buying a $100 decorative item for my home that had a supposed value of $500 if the item was not something I was looking for in the first place. My husband on the other hand, is easily sucked into buying almost anything that he thinks is a "great deal" whether it is something he really wants or needs, or not.

I think my husband gets a high from buying things, and if anything, I'm the opposite. I am usually cautious spending money, always asking myself if I really need/want it, or the money might be better spent on something else.

Ashland13 posted 6/13/2013 08:05 AM

Yes, there's buying material things to feel validated and there's buying material things because we can and we like them.

I think the way a person speaks of possessions and how they treat others can often show the level of materialism a person has.

FWIW, it was one of the first signs of NPD that I ever understood, in several people besides Perv. He is to the point, for instance, where if there are several different types of things to buy, he will only allow the top brand. For him, the lower brands mine as well be broken.

I think Why's coworker may be searching for ego boosting by speaking of their possessions, but also, maybe not. FMPOV, (from my point of view) it depends on they type of conversation and verbage flowing forth.

Another example is my mother and brother, where if it's not Ralph Lauren or others, it is not usable.

It's when an ego is fed off material things that may tend to be an NPD person. I'm not a counselor, but have been working on this with a few of them so I can know how to respond to the people like that.

MoreThanMe posted 6/14/2013 21:19 PM

Isn't it when someone who likes material things more than anything else? More than other people? Wait- maybe that's me- I love my sewing machine more than most people. Well, not more than my family- my husband & children. Well, okay, not more than my children,

Mama_of_3_Kids posted 6/14/2013 21:23 PM

Materialistic, to me, confers that the person really cares about having possessions. They don't have to be expensive; it's the act of caring so much about having them and wanting others to feel envious of them for having these possessions.

This ^

rachelc posted 6/15/2013 10:40 AM

I notice people do this not only with things but with people as well.
i have a friend who brags about her children and when I talk about being a BS, she says, what is the big deal, you have a nice house and a good life... WTF? This is the same friend who drives a 50k car she can't afford.....

anyway, I drive a very old car, we live way beneath our means, but I do like clothes, not necesssarily expensive ones but looking well put together. When I try to explain it is like art to me people's eyes glaze over...

Most of my clothes are purchased used on ebay too. I just bought three used swimming suits to workout in. People may say ewwww but I don't care.

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