Or for having a job in at least some form since the age of 15 and not having parents that bought me anything besides the basic necessities to live. I totally agree with you Polynikes about the financial responsibility and paying the loans off ASAP rather than spending the entire salary on things you don't need. I personally think I live quite a nice lifestyle now - good sized place (though rented) for my boyfriend and I, a good functional car bought new at the end of 2010, pretty good vacations the last two years, good quality clothes that are not from Kmart (as someone suggested you must do) - and this is definitely affordable on a resident's salary even with some student and car loan repayments, maxing out the roth ira, and hitting our employer match in the 401k. Even with an increase in money as an attending, I don't see the expenses going up too much - we don't need more space (it also seems like more hassle than it's worth for a much bigger place) and my car will be paid off, with plans to drive it until it dies. Loans will be taken care of pretty quickly the way I live and retirement accounts maximized so we'll likely be spending the extra money on big vacations and early retirement. I don't judge anyone that chooses to spend the money while debt grows and retirement accounts are neglected, but if that's the path one chooses, I don't understand the griping about how it's hard to pay off monthly expenses and/or debts that one freely chooses to take on for him/herself. Especially when one's own salary is multiple times higher than the average family income in this country.