I was checking out at the grocery store today when the checker and I got into a conversation about the price of formula (aka liquid gold). Suddenly the conversation took an unexpected turn.
Checker: "Why don't you just get W.I.C?"
Me (not quite knowing what to say...which is a rarity): Ummmm, I make way too much money to qualify for W.I.C."
Checker (with disbelief): "Really?"
Me (a little taken aback that my ability to earn a decent income was so questionable): "Really. I have a good job. (After another quizzical look from the checker I add in) "I have a master's degree any everything".
I don't know whether to be annoyed or embarrassed. Annoyed because perhaps this lady thinks that government assistance is simply an entitlement to feed all children born in this country. And if that is not the case then I guess I am embarrassed because I look so trashy that it is apparently impossible to believe that I could actually support a child. Perhaps my four week post-partum look is a little less than classy. Or perhaps it was because the other items I purchased was a 6-pack of bud light tall boys and 2 bottles of cheap wine (hey, everybody in the family needed something to drink!)
And for anybody out there receiving W.I.C. I'm sorry for making the association between trashy and government assistance. Wait a minute...I'm not sorry. If you can't afford to support a baby then don't make one! And don't give me the whole accident argument. The failure to use proper preventative measures does not count, and when you exclude those cases there are very few true accidents. Keep in mind that I'm making a generalization here, and I do realize there are exceptions where such programs are indeed warranted (e.g. the unexpected loss of a job or illness). However, I believe those situations are relatively rare, and that far too many people rely on such assistance rather than helping themselves. Okay...I'm stepping off my soapbox now.