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When people tell you your dolls are a waste of money...

Jan 18, 2016

    1. The bottom line is that collecting dolls is a hobby, and almost any hobby is a "waste" of money in the sense that you're spending it on things that are not necessary for survival. The point of a hobby is to lead a fuller and more interesting life, and the creativity involved in doll hobbies is certainly an example of that. When the money collectors spend on dolls is questioned, I generally just point out that it's not so different than any other leisure activity and we all have different tastes.

      That said, it's a little different when you're younger and still have parental involvement with your finances. I don't know who is paying for your education and it's really none of my business, but I can see why your mom might be concerned about your ability to make ends meet if she sees a lot of money going out for hobbies at this particular time in your life. It might be a good idea to reassure her that your bills are getting paid and to show her that you are saving some of your money for the future as well as spending some of it on hobbies. It seems like your mom may be worried about you more than judgmental, so I think that setting her mind at ease that you're doing okay overall financially might make her worry about the dolls less.
      • x 6
    2. As much as it is a pain to deal with in high school/college, it might be something you just have to tolerate or ignore until you're out. My mom was the same way, and although she does have several collections of her own hobby stuff, she still often pointed out that she didn't own any of it until AFTER she was out of school, had a full time job, was out of her parents' house, etc. I actually talked to her about that today. She still thinks BJDs cost too much, but she doesn't comment now because I'm not asking anything from her. I asked her "Remember when you told me if I had enough money to buy a $500 doll, then I had enough to rent my own place and you said I couldn't buy a doll?" and her reply (now that I'm 'older and more mature' I guess. LOL) was "yes, and if I'd let you use your savings on that doll that week, what would you have wanted the next week? And when it was time to buy your house, you would have had 30 dolls and no downpayment." Well.....as much as I still hate to admit she's right sometimes....she's right. I used to have a bad habit of thinking "It's only $20. It's only $40. I have enough saved, it's ok to spend $100." I probably would have gradually spent so much, that I wouldn't have had anything left.

      ANYWAY, that being said, I do still think even when you're young, you do have a right to enjoy your money and your hobbies. Maybe if you can show your mom that you're earning X amount, and putting a certain percentage of that into savings for later, maybe she'll understand that you're capable of being responsible and enjoying the extra.
      • x 5
    3. Oh, you know, I guess it's because I'm retired, have raised 2 kids, all that. But those who've the temerity to say such a thing to my face, well, LOL I point out to my kids that the dolls represent their inheritance which they 'd not have ANY chance at if I went on cruises for my entertainment. To my brothers I remind them that they were so busy in their high-end jobs they couldn't even visit me when I was stationed in Hawaii LOL so why would I want THEIR lifestyles? Anyone else, I just laugh.....
      My mother has NO IDEA how much my 'amazing little dolls' cost - she'd faint... She's too old to risk that :D
      For me, BJDs represent a way to express myself creatively - with costumes, photo stories and the like, so they are useful to me. For those who AREN'T being snarky to me, I explain it that way.
      As for expensive habits when I was young, I didn't exactly collect things (unless books & clothes count... & albums, cause the dark ages) but I TRAVELED as a hobby. I managed to do it on little money by doing overseas study & by joining the Navy. I know there are people on DoA who use their dolls as college projects (especially artists & photographers - but there are other ways...) making them part of their educational expenses. Also you can make money by doing face-ups, mods, clothing etc which would mitigate the expense.
      #3 Teleri, Jan 18, 2016
      Last edited: Jan 18, 2016
      • x 1
    4. Well, when I first got into ball jointed dolls my mother naturally scoffed at bit at their price, but luckily for me it was less easy for her to make remarks about 'wasting money' since she herself has spent large amounts on 'useless' things too. I also did the same as you in the fact that I used my own money to buy them and frequently cleared-out my room of things I no longer was invested in, I also made sure to donate money to charity as well that way my mother knew that while I was essentially spending too much on a luxury hobby, I was also managing my money well enough to give back to society.

      I guess it all depends on how much interest and devotion you show towards a hobby that can allow others to see that you're not truly wasting money but investing in something that adds joy and fulfillment to your life, my father didn't remark much about my dolls since he could see how they were a benefit to my overall happiness and helped me allot through my depression, it's really a hit-or-miss with parents sometimes though. :roll:

      I think that with time your mother will come to see your dolls not so much a waste of money as they are key elements that have helped you learn to manage money better and taught you to work hard towards your goals. I would definitely remind her of the latter when the argument arises, most parents seem to enjoying seeing their children learn the value of a dollar and realize the effort it takes to save for what you love. =^_^=
    5. If you admit to having succombed to "consumer therapy" while away at school, I can see your mom's concern. Are you sure you have your budget figured out so that you can afford the dolls, and that you aren't just at the mercy of consumer therapy again? (Not my business, don't need to tell me....just think about it.) If your mom is still supporting you even partially, then it may be best to wait on the expensive dolls until you are supporting yourself. The most expensive thing I bought while in college -- aside from textbooks and necessities -- was an iPod Nano, and I checked with my parents first since they were helping me financially. I waited until I had graduated and saved some money before I bought any of the expensive hobby items I had been coveting since childhood (not BJDs in my case, but the same principal applies).
    6. It's true that she is still partially supporting me, so I can understand the concern that I may not be able to manage my money well. What's annoying is that I made it clear not only to her but also to myself that I will not use money from my parents or relatives towards my dolls, if I'm saving for them. The monster high dolls turned into consumer therapy from a myriad of factors, most of which aren't in play anymore, but I can see your point that she might not be fully trusting I won't do something similar again since they're in the more recent past. The good thing is, while I may have never really had my budget completely figured out, especially with dealing with the consumer therapy bit, at least I never went too overboard and it was a short-term mistake that's given me a long-term learning experience! :blush

      Thank you all for your replies. It helps to have people to talk to. I figure that I'm just going to have to stick it out until I can get through school and a job and have everything set up, etc. (at least I'm over halfway there). I'm thankful for the first dolls that I have, and I'll cling to them until I can get to that point where she's no longer on my case. I was probably in the wrong in getting them in the first place, but I worked hard for them and they've already helped to teach me a lot about managing money and controlling my needs and wants, so I don't regret them and I'll stick to my guns. Thank you guys again :chibi
      #6 Lupe540, Jan 18, 2016
      Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2016
    7. I was always lucky that my mom never scoffed at my love of all kinds of dolls. I guess a huge difference is that I pay more bills than she does around the house, so she doesn't really have the option to complain about the cost of my hobbies. XD

      Still, I can understand the frustration. My stepmom was similar: She was all about practicality of things, and wondered why I wanted to buy so many stuffed animals when I was a kid. She would tell me to grow up and spend my money on more practical things, like clothes, makeup and shoes. Some people just never understand.

      It's good that you learned to manage money and control your needs and wants through the experience! It's still a struggle that I, a working adult, have a hard time with.
    8. Be sensible and know that you can afford or save for your hobby then listen to your heart and work out a realistic way to buy your bjd doll/s and/accessories. Whatever you do in life know that someone will love to criticise so just enjoy your hobby and make sure everything is within budget so you don't get into any difficulties.
      #8 Anne, Jan 20, 2016
      Last edited: Jan 21, 2016
    9. Well, it depends on the person of interest. :sweat
      If they also have expensive hobbies like golf or polo, then it will be easier to explain it.

      Usually it will be more difficult to people whom doesn't have hobby.
      To those people, I'll just simply said, "Don't worry, it's part of my investment.Diversification." :lol:
    10. Some people are easy to reply with "Im wasteing money? Nice Louis Vuiton bag." Others not,bottem line is. It is YOUR money. And others have no right to tell you where to spend it on. In your case your mom is the only one who does can advise you in money if you dont work yet. Im all for freedom and such but if a person is underage id say do listen to your parents.

      I dont know the exact case. Maybe you bought 1 doll in a year (with a normal income I would say 1 or 2 dolls a year is manageable) that she doesnt really have a point. But if you buy one every month... that your mom does have a point (Im thinking in the $500 dolls).
      My experience with parents is that you should show your mom what the dolls mean to you and what you and other people do with them. That way they see that its more than a normal doll (most people dont know)
      • x 1
    11. I'm one of the lucky few who didn't have to hear much of this. When I got into this hobby I pulled my dad into 3D printing along side this hobby. So he couldn't say "you wasting your money" on a $300 doll when he was buying a $300 3d printer. Granted he points out his physically does something I point out mine is less time consuming and he is forever doing maintenance to get the thing to work and I have time to just not do anything with my dolls or I feel they don't need anything. My mom is use to me spending great lumpsums on something and naturally offered to help because it made me happy however my boyfriend was the trouble maker. Only for a little.

      However I do understand why people call I a waste. The dolls don't physically do anything. They aren't mechanic they don't move they don't so anything. What some don't know is they do other things. Fueling creativity and my boyfriend found out. I have moments where I just need to make something. I can easily make anything for my dolls no problem. It can be a form of therapy for those who have physical or mental disorders it's a good outlet. Or is a hobby and makes you happy.

      Therefore when someone does tell me it's a waste of money I agree smile and continue about my day. I don't need to explain to them why I like my dolls that's my business. I can but I'm likely too lazy and have a lack to care to do so. So for sake of conversation and argument I just agree and continue to "waste my money" on my happiness.
    12. I say Well I could be doing drugs or drinking. I also I can resell the doll at anytime. It's not there money I am spending. So I really when I lay down the facts the people don't bother me. There are positives to the hobby and the money doesn't go out the window.
      • x 1
    13. If someone tells me that my dolls are a waste of money, I would be like


      and continue with what I was doing. :) I believe that as long as we are happy with what we are doing, nothing is a waste of money or time.
      • x 6
    14. I agree with everything that's been said about dolls not being a waste of money if its something that makes you happy and gives you something to look forward to at the end the day. There are lots of things that non-dollie people spend money on for their pleasure that I consider a waste. But it's not my place to tell them what has value and what doesn't.
      Dolls are an investment not in terms of making you money, but in terms of giving your life fulfillment.
      • x 1
    15. My girlfriend is honestly pretty upset about my getting into bjds for exactly this reason. She knows how expensive they are and we're currently trying to save for an apartment. I'm not quite sure how to make sure she recognizes that I am budgeting and I am being careful; I made sure that the doll I wanted wouldn't cost more than $40 a month on layaway and I also get financial aid for school that will help pay for an apartment. She still makes noises and complains about the money whenever I mention the doll unfortunately.
    16. If you spent money on something that made you happy, it means that you made the right investment! Joy is as important as use. What's the difference, how exactly you are pleasing yourself, when it does not cause anyone any inconvenience?

      I don't understand people who think about other people's money. I don't need to make excuses for the waste of money that I earned.
      • x 3
    17. The only people who ever say that I'm "wasting money" are honestly the biggest money drains I have ever met. (With their 82 corvette and the other with her....I dunno, trips to Oklahoma? I'm not sure where her money is going, to be perfectly honest. It's not her family, though.)
      Having to make excuses for something I enjoy is exhausting and I won't do it. I just won't.
      My money goes to bills first over dolls, and that's just a part of being a responsible adult (with an expensive hobby. Dad has one, I can have one. Ha. ...He's not a jerk, though.)
    18. Ah yes, money vs. bjds seems to be the age old debate! That being said, yeah, I'm a college student who is living at home, relying on her parents to help her afford tuition. So, when my mother says I'm "wasting money and time on these dolls," I guess she does have a point. And, on top of that, I can understand her perspective, my family is very frugal, my dad only splurges on household appliances and my mom is an avid bargain hunter. To them, the only difference between that $2 thrift store barbie and that $500 bjd is the giant price gap. But, for me as an artist, I find that these dolls are incredibly inspiring, which makes it hard to resist buying the ones that strike my creativity. As painful as it my be, I suppose the best thing to do is hold onto my doll chateau boy, wait for his head to come in, then sit tight for a few years until I have a steady job and my own place.
      • x 3
    19. Is the original post in this thread missing? The first post that I'm seeing seems to be Blakeney Green's response to something.

      In any case, my reaction would depend on the context. A random person's opinion wouldn't matter to me, but dolls might well be a waste of money for them, while they might have a hobby that I'd consider a waste of money. It doesn't have any real weight to it since it's basically just small talk.

      On the other hand, if we're talking about people who you're interdependent with (like a spouse, or multi-generational households with multiple adults) then it might be worth a discussion since presumably you have common expenses. Assuming you aren't spending the furnace-repair fund on dolls they shouldn't be complaining, but if you are then they might have a point. And I think that's probably doubly true if you're a dependant of the person saying it - I think the more your expenses are someone else's the more likely it is that they have a right to have those conversations.
    20. I come from the opposite point of view, I am a mother, I have four BJDs and my daughters got into them through me. They are 11 and 14 and they normally get one at Christmas. I try to stay in budget and hunt around on ebay etc for a bargain but considering the price of children's toys (a monster high school, £180?!) I think they are good value for money. They have really sparked the girl's imagination and they draw them, sew for them and play with them every day. My youngest loves her dolls and normally has one snuggled in the crook her arm even when doing homework. Something that the love so much, teaches them new skills and feeds their imagination is worth every penny in my book!
      • x 11