Toilet Paper and Frugality

If you follow a lot of frugal blogs, you've probably heard some variation of this line before:

"I like to be frugal, but my wife uses SO MUCH TOILET PAPER. I don't know what she does with it! Is she eating it? Why can't my wife be frugal like me and use JUST ONE SQUARE like I do?!"

I want to be clear: this post isn't about how to save money on toilet paper. I plan to settle this question once and for all, and let you in on the true secret of frugality.

Ladies will already know, but for the guys, here's the reason behind what your wife has been doing with all that TP. She can't just "shake it off" and go. If she isn't careful to clean down there very well, she'll get a painful UTI.

Yeah, guys can get UTIs too, but because of the nature of our plumbing (a shorter urethra), women have more than a 50 percent chance of getting a UTI at some point, according to the Cleveland Clinic  Men's UTIs are rarely caused by bathroom habits, but womens' almost always are.

For gals, here's what's at stake: missing a day of work to go to the doctor, having to buy those awful $10 cranberry pills, that general feeling of unwellness as well as the sharp pelvic pain, and being totally unable to get anything done without running to the bathroom every two minutes.

UTIs are awful. Left unchecked, they can even make women sterile or damage their kidneys.

Faced with all that, suddenly a few squares of TP start to look like a real non-priority.

And that brings me full circle to what this post is really about. Here's the secret: the meaning of frugality is priorities.

Everyone talks about frugality, but few people stop to actually define it.

Frugality is the act of prioritizing your spending.

A frugal person spends on the important things first, and does not waste their money on things that are not important. They always seem to have money for the important stuff because that's where there money goes first.

Someone who is not frugal spends on things that aren't important, and doesn't have enough money left over for the things that are. Think about that roommate you used to have who always had money for beer but never had money for rent.

So if you're one of those guys whose wife uses a lot of TP, you have some options.

You can buy TP or baby wipes in bulk/on sale, learn to use a tabo, install a bidet, or come up with your own ideas. You can even divorce your wife in the name of saving five squares of TP per day. Whatever your priority is, go for it.

The One True Frugality Tip

I like to call it the match game. Yes, like that old-timey game show where couples try to match each other's answers.

Every time you pull out your wallet at the store, or get ready to pay a bill, ask yourself:

Does this spending match my priorities?

What are your short term goals? How about your long term goals?

If You Are a Team, be a Team

If there's more than one person on your team, you have to take their goals, values, and biological predisposition to UTIs into account as well.

If you're a man married to a woman, there's a good chance that you don't eat the same amount of food. Many men have higher calorie needs than women with the same lifestyle.

How often does your wife scrape food off your plate, put it back in the fridge, and scold, "You're eating too much! Why can't you eat a small amount, like me? Don't you care about saving money?"

Yet I keep seeing the toilet paper comment from frugal male bloggers, again and again.

Has your view on toilet paper - or frugality - changed? Let me know in the comments!

No comments:

Post a Comment