Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I am a Closet Food Stamp Recipient

We have been on food stamps for 2 years and probably will lose those benefits come next "review" time.  I didn't want to do it in the first place.  I was embarrassed.  I was humbled.  I absolutely did not want a single soul to know we were on 'em.

Why do I even care? Well, part of it is embarrassment.  I know I shouldn't be embarrassed, but I am.  It goes along with that we should be able to take care of ourselves without assistance.  Part of it is that I feel like people in our community see us as successful business owners and I don't want their perception changed, and I don't want them to think we are sinking and stop buying from our shop.  And finally, perhaps most importantly, I don't want anyone's pity.

So yes, we are closet food stamp recipients.  We have never used our EBT/food stamp card at the grocery store that is less than two blocks from our house.  God forbid anyone sees it in my hands and the word gets out (small towns have big mouths!).  I used to drive almost 30 minutes away to a large grocery store where the chances of me running into someone I knew would be slim-to-none.  Then I found a grocer about 15 minutes away and rarely saw anyone I knew, so I have been going there to save on gas.

It's sad, I know.

My husband doesn't care.  I told him to not tell anyone.  We didn't even tell anyone in our family for over a year.  A couple family members know now, and now anyone who happens across my blog will know.  I guess I am willing to divulge this information because we are getting ourselves out of the bleakness that has been the last few years - knock on wood - and it's not a long-term (as in forever) thing we will have to do.   I am okay with it because it is a program to help people like us to help us get through a rough patch.

Are there any other closet food stamp recipients out there? 


  1. There is nothing shameful about using assistance when it is needed. That is what it's there for. The abusers are the ones that are shameful. Hold your head high. We all have had times in our lives when we needed a little hand. I know I have. Thanks for visiting my blog!

  2. Thanks Dawn! I know I shouldn't feel ashamed, but it's hard not to. It's definitely not anything to brag about, either. I just look at it as a phase of my life and makes me truly appreciate these kinds of programs and the blessings I've had before and since. Thanks for your comment!