💙 We need 2,000 donors this fall to stay on track. Count me in! ✔
It’s not my fault I was poor
Jun 1, 2023
Season 8

It’s not my fault I was poor

This week we'll catch up with a former guest who struggled with class anxiety. Plus, an excerpt from Marketplace's newest podcast, "Financially Inclined"!

When we first spoke to Wen Wen Yang in 2019, she was looking for help with a question that plagued her adult life: How do you be middle class? Is there some sort of guidebook for figuring it out? Yang had grown up in a lower-income family, and even though she was now earning a comfortably middle-class income, she felt like she would always be an outsider. She told our host, Reema Khrais, “I’m probably always going to be like an anthropologist wherever I am, being like, ‘Oh this is a new thing, and I’m learning about it.’”

On this week’s episode, we check in with Yang to find out how she’s handling that class anxiety these days. She’s just as observant as she was before, well aware of the markers of class that surround us every day. But those markers no longer bring her the sense of shame that they used to. She shared that, even though it was hard not to internalize all the biases around poverty she’d come across earlier in life, “I feel like I have encountered so much more language around the fact that, no, there are systems that are hurting us, and things are built up against us.” 

Wen Wen Yang

That’s a huge shift in perspective, but it doesn’t mean everything has changed. In a candid discussion with “This Is Uncomfortable,” Yang shares how her upbringing still informs some of her financial decisions and the hurdles she hopes to overcome. 

We’ll also hear an excerpt from Marketplace’s newest show, “Financially Inclined,” featuring a conversation with host Yanely Espinal and our very own Reema Khrais!

If you liked this episode, share it with a friend. And to get even more Uncomfortable, subscribe to our newsletter. Each Friday you’ll get a note from Reema and recs from the “This Is Uncomfortable” team. If you missed it, here’s the latest issue.

If you want to tell us what you thought about the episode or anything else, email us at uncomfortable@marketplace.org or fill out the form below.

The future of this podcast starts with you.

We know that as a fan of “This Is Uncomfortable,” you’re no stranger to money and how life messes with it — and 2023 isn’t any different.

As part of a nonprofit news organization, we count on listeners like you to make sure that these and other important conversations are heard.

Support “This Is Uncomfortable” with a donation in any amount and become a Marketplace Investor today.

The team

Zoë Saunders Senior Producer
Marque Greene Producer
Alice Wilder Producer
Hannah Harris Green Producer
Yvonne Marquez Intern
Jasmine Romero Editor

Thanks to our sponsors

Let’s do the numbers together. 💙 

Here’s a number – 2,000. That’s how many donors we need this fall to stay on track. Can we count on you?