Anyone ever try to explain their trading career choice to family?

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by fatrat, Nov 10, 2005.

  1. fatrat


    I'm basically a software engineer who left Silicon Valley to trade. I've recovered most of my losses, and I'm on track to becoming profitable. The income isn't quite there yet, but it's enough that I don't bother with part-time jobs anymore. I live on savings, and I expect trading to cover 1/3 to 2/3s of my expenses by around February/March, given current performance.

    However, everytime I explain my progress to family, they keep pushing for me to go back to real jobs. No conversation happens where some reference to getting a real job with a salary doesn't take place.

    Anyone else ever encounter this fierce resistance to career choice? What gives? Do I just dimiss family and tell them off, or what? It is not easy to explain that losses are a part of this game, that losing is part of the equation, and that it takes losses to learn and test new strategies.

    Should I just give up hope trying to convince these people that it is a good career path, and just trudge onwards?

    Surely, I am not the only one?

    If I am the only one, ... then damn.
  2. pdonlevy


    The only thing that will convince them is your success.
    Focus on that and don't waste your time and energy trying to sell people on something they do not understand.
  3. I did almost what you have done, except that I was in finance for quite sometime, so in a way my family expected that I would jump in (and pile almost my entire networth into it). The key thing, in my mind anyways, is to have some scenarios (best case, worst case), and have a reasonable plan, nobody expects that you would make money day one, but if after a year you are still not profitable, the worry would pile up. Have a plan, and prepared for the worst, think about what your bottom line is (say next April), and then prepare everyone for next July. I think your family will trust you with your plan, but if you miss the "drop dead date", then follow up on your promise to call a few contacts regarding jobs.

    Good luck.
  4. ozzy


    Your situation is very normal.

    My dad supports my decision and believes in me (although I'm having doubts myself due to my financial situation). My mom is old school and she really doesn't understand the business and thinks its a form of gambling, but she thinks I can do it as well (mainly because my dad brainwashed her telling her I could).


    P.S I switched from EE
  5. oh of course

    you just have to ask yourself, are any of them millionaires?

    Ask a millionaire+ what they think of your trading,

    Here I can answer that for you:
    Yes, Take the risks, big risks = big rewards , No risks = loser @ paychecktopaychek job. You never know until you have tried.

    They tell you that because they have no idea how to break out of the 9-5 shell, what else are they going to tell you?
    They don't know any better other then the simple life because thats what they have been living their whole lives. You can't blame them.

    The best fruits are when you go out on the limb, Most people never do.
  6. You have to see it from their point of view:

    As so often pointed out on this board: 95% of people lose
    money in this game, and probably only 1% make serious

    Thems shitty odds.

    Until the day you show them the $$$$$ they will always have
    a stronger argument than you.
  7. MR.NBBO


    I've made it, kept it, showed it ......and to them, it still barely matters, even after 8-9years.

    They don't understand it, and find it as hard to understand as ever, even after simply explaining it in 1+1=2 kind of terms. It can be quite frustrating. What's worse is when you've got several big pieces of R.E. almost paid for.....and the comment is: "Well that'll give you something to fall back on, when you have to sell it".

    That's why there are millionaires....and why there are 9-5 punch clockers. Dream and dare for yourself, not others.

    From coolweb: The best fruits are when you go out on the limb, Most people never do. GREAT SAYING COOLWEB!
  8. That's surprising, my experience is almost the exact opposite. I have family that once learned what I am doing, want to "invest" (and they shouldn't play with their retirement money like this!), I have to spend hours explaining risk and time horizon to them, not just look at the simple rate of return. Their thinking was completely, "why should I keep my money in a bond fund earning 4% when I can ...", it got to a point of me having to show them the bad daily drawdowns to scare them off (even then, a portion of them persisted).
  9. I still relatively young <30. But given my experiences, it is best not to discuss finances with friends and family in too much detail. I answer most questions w/ ok, I'm fine. Some things are better left unspoken.

    Look at it this way - your career/financial choices are your choices. If you are looking for support and/or judgement from others then you aren't confident in what you are trying to accomplish. Choose to be confident and not seek or take seriously the opinions of others.

    I believe that the people closest to you will be the most critical about any decision you make, this is because they care the most.

    Given the above sounds trite, but those who you know are objective can provide a valuable perspective. Family and friends, on the other hand, will always be subjective hence their usually biased opinions.
  10. "From coolweb: The best fruits are when you go out on the limb, Most people never do. GREAT SAYING COOLWEB!"

    I couldn't agree more

    I'm 20 years old and been trading since I was 16. I show my family my profits in the last month up over $15K, and I sitll just get the same ole' belittlement (sp?) I agree with much of what coolweb and mr. nbbo already said about how most people march to the same drummer, just consider yourself lucky you don't have to have the 9-5 like the nay sayers. I have one year of college left, and I 100% am convinced I want to trade for a living and be able to help less unfortuanate with the money I make. Although sometimes it is tough not having one single person who is willing to support my passion of trading, but that just keeps me motivated. And as far as being successful monetarily I don't think being flashy with cars or houses will change anyone's mind, let them stay narrow-minded while I'm out on the golf course....great thread!

    #10     Nov 10, 2005