Home > Randomness > Friday Rant-Don’t Get a Boob Job if You’re on Welfare!

Friday Rant-Don’t Get a Boob Job if You’re on Welfare!

boob job barbieI try very hard to avoid rants. If I have a problem, like an unethical co-worker, I try to look at all sides of the issue and come up with a positive solution. However the past few weeks have left me in a tizzy. Tara and Tonya both got to rant recently, so I thought I’d take my turn. Here goes.

With my job as an optometrist, I get a pretty good glimpse of most people’s health and financial status by the paperwork they fill out in my office or the things they tell me. (Free tip: If you’ve found by experience that pleasuring yourself does not really make you go blind, keep that to yourself) I try really hard not to judge. Poverty is a huge problem in this country, and health care is crazy expensive. If you need to be on state assistance and you qualify, there’s nothing wrong with that. I do think that some people cross the line, though, and it really yanks my chain.

I Hate Glasses

The first example of what I think it wrong with the world came in for a LASIK pre-op. She had already scheduled surgery in Denver and wanted the co-management done locally. She did not have a horrible prescription that caused her extreme agony and suffering. She just didn’t want to wear glasses. Her surgery and co-management costs were almost $4000! Did I mention that she is on Medicaid, the state public assistance program for health care offered to those who are low income. Maybe someone gave her a gift, and it’s not my right to say how you should spend your money, but really, how can you take state aid and not have a better use for $4000!?

I’ll have Double D’s Please

The other case was even worse. This patient belonged to a colleague of mine and was also on Medicaid. In her health history she stated that she had had surgery in the past year. Can you guess what surgery she had?

Breast augmentation! No, she wasn’t a breast cancer survivor or a victim of some tragic accident. She wanted bigger boobs. Again, do you really need to take money from the state if you can pay for plastic surgery?

It’s Only a Career Expense if You’re a Stripper

Yes, maybe I’m being judgmental. It really bothers me that I pay so much for health care, and these people get it for free while they save up their money for boob jobs and the ability to see the TV without glasses. They are why the whole system gets a bad wrap.

I realize some might argue that these ladies are investing in their future by building self esteem, which could lead to a better job. I get that if you have a crooked nose or buck teeth that might make an unfair, but realistic, bad first impression, those might justify fixing. However, if you are getting a job other than a stripper or porn star, do you really want your chances improved by having larger breasts?

I think this falls into the same category of thinking a Prada suit will get you a better career or that buying a new car will raise your status and make clients flock your way. If you have self esteem issues, work on fixing those first, but do it the the right way. Throwing money at them will never solve what is causing the real problem.

Thanks for letting me rant. I really have to bite my tongue hard to keep smiling and minding my own business with people who work the system. It’s good to get it out and move on.

What examples of working the system have you seen? Is is OK to get a boob job and accept welfare?


About Kim Parr

Kim Parr is a private practice optometrist, freelance writer, and personal financial blogger. You can follow her journey to 20/20 financial vision at Eyes on the Dollar.


  1. I don’t know if it’s an urban legend, but what about the stories of people committing crimes to go to jail so they could have one surgery or another. That’s a pretty painful way to work the system!

    • Hey Mrs. Pop, I’ve not only heard that, I’ve seen it happen. I had a friend by the name of Will. He really was a good guy believe it or not but, he desperately needed a back surgery he couldn’t afford. He couldn’t find help either. So, he walked into Walmart, grabbed a $1,200 TV, walked out and sat on the sidewalk. He was arrested for Grand Theft and was given treatment for his back during the 8 months he was there. He came out a brand new man. Now, I wouldn’t suggest doing this but, it worked out well for him from what he said.

      • That is a pretty sad way to get back surgery, and really says something about the state of healthcare in the US.

      • It is very tempting for people to do since prisoners get wonderful health care services. My wife works in a state prison, so I know first hand. Why should the hard working middle class get less than a convicted felon? Maybe if we did not make it so tempting, things like this would not happen. How about the bare basics health care in prison?

        • I wouldn’t recommend this for anyone in the state of Alabama. I did research on Alabama’s prison healthcare system for my college thesis. Most people left prison with more health problems than they came in with. Or died from common ailments that just went untreated.

          • I believe where we live, the prison system only does minimal care to keep you alive, but I hope I never have to experience that first hand.

    • Not to mention the nice felony criminal record you’d carry for the rest of your life!

  2. I see it more as a systematic problem than one where I blame the individual. Yes, it may be wrong to get a boob job while collecting welfare, but the fact the system allows it is the main problem imo.

    • I do think if you sign up for assistance, you should have to have your spending monitored. I’m all about freedoms, but you have to take a drug test to work at McDonald’s. Why is this any different?

  3. I have seen a lot of people with kids sell their food stamps for fifty cents on the dollar. That always bothers me A LOT because the people who I know of that are doing it buy drugs with the money and their kids just don’t eat well.

    However, on the other side of things I think that a lot of people pass unfair judgement on welfare recipients as a whole because of the huge bad apples. It’s always so much easier to point out the people who abuse the system than to point out those who it has really helped.

    • My Mom used to work at a grocery store and I think she’s seen it all. There was kind of a little black market food stamp action right outside the store! Highly illegal, but it happens all the time. It is sad that these type people ruin it for the ones who are really trying.

  4. That’s ridiculous. I have some *ahem* relatives *ahem* who are on state assistance but all I see on Facebook is how they’re going to a concert or getting a new tattoo (and if you’re familiar, tattoos are EXPENSIVE) or moving OUT of their rent free room with grandma because they “just can’t take it” and “want to live somewhere nicer” (PS, grandma’s house is just fine and if I had no money I’d be more than happy to live there rent free.) Ok, rant over. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I feel your frustration!!!! 🙂

    • I’m glad I’m not the only one. I think people should be able to do or buy whatever they want as long as they don’t take government money. If you do, I think there should be some tracking of spending and deductions for things like buying cigarettes or getting a tattoo.

  5. That’s ridiculous. I have a friend who has been working the welfare system for years. She goes on vacation all the time and has way nicer things than me…all while getting food stamps and all kinds of assistance.

  6. I was offered a boob job (reduction) by the French healthcare without asking. I didn’t complain about back pain or anything, just went for a 5 year routine physical and was told if I wanted it, it would be completely covered. Then they wonder why they have a deficit. Maybe your patients were offered it too and just went along with it.

    • Medicaid doesn’t cover any elective things here unless it’s maybe reconstruction after breast cancer. These ladies sought it out all by themselves. That is a very strange thing for a doctor to suggest though. I don’t know if I would be happy or offended.

  7. Hey Kim, this is my first time visiting for your Friday rant and, I absolutely loved it! I just couldn’t live on welfare. I’d have to feel like a productive member of my community. I’ve seen so many people on welfare that brag about “Gaming the system”. It really is a shame! Anyway, thanks for yet another great read!

  8. People gaming the system…it really bothers me. There needs to be stronger checks to make sure the bad apples don’t take advantage of a system designed for those who really need it. I’ve seen people try to sell that food stamp money as Alexa mentioned. I used to work people in Housing Court and people who received rent assistance had nicer electronics, clothes, etc than I did. I know of people who are Not low income but get paid in cash apply to get benefits that are not intended for them. Thanks for the rant…I had to get that off my chest!

  9. It’s sad that a few people give welfare, food stamps, and other government assisted programs a bad name. Look I’d love a new wardrobe to boost MY self-esteem, but it ain’t gonna happen and I need to work on that myself. I think that would have been really frustrating to witness.

    • It is so hard not to say anything. I did actually ask the LASIK patient if she had a job and she did. If she didn’t work, I think I would have lost it.

    • I try really hard to be sympathetic, but it’s really hard sometimes, especially when there is no desire to ever get off assistance.

  10. Ugh. No. Those are elective surgeries. If it’s their money, there would probably be better uses for it but at least they are using their money instead of mine. The sad part is it is those kinds of people who hurt those who truly need the assistance, are so grateful for the assistance and don’t take advantage of it.

  11. Super frustrating! Especially for those in the medical profession who have to see that often.

  12. Crazyness the amount of responses this post is getting.

    I like your perspective. It feels good to rant sometimes and you realize you are being judgmental. It is the few cases that ruin it for everyone. Keep that in mind.

    • Thanks. I do realize I am being judgmental. I am waiting for someone on welfare to explain why a person in this situation might do this, but no one has stepped up yet. Having never been there, maybe there is something I’m not seeing.

  13. There is a lady that I see in my local grocery store all the time who drives a brand new Cadillac, always has her hair and nails done, is always caring an expensive brand name purse, always wearing expensive clothes, and is ALWAYS on her $600 cell phone….and she ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS pays for her groceries with a food stamp card. o.O

    • It’s very hard to not be judgmental when you see that. I don’t think poor people should not have nice thing, but not to the point of working the system.

  14. What is the boob job finds her a wealthy man to take care of her and get her off of welfare? A win-win!

  15. I think it was a woman in Michigan who won the lottery and was on welfare. She was still accepting welfare after she won too. There was nothing in the law to stop it.

    • You only have to show proof of your W2 income. You are supposed to declare things like dividend income, but they don’t require proof. I’m sure whoever set up the system didn’t consider that would be an issue. There are many trust funders in Telluride who live on dividends and are on public assistance.

  16. In NY you get a large immigrant population, many of whom were rich before they came. There is one particular condo in the highly Russian (and mob infested) neighborhood of Brighton Beach where they keep finding folks gaming the Medicaid system illegally. Since many run cash only operations, there is no W-2 trail.

    Thanks for the link to my rant. I think its good for all of us to complain once in a while!

  17. Your rant hits an area that I’ve thought about a lot. We, as a society, set up systems to help the less fortunate. That core idea (helping others)is solid. The problems begin when some of the individuals and groups learn to work the system so that they receive benefits that were not intended for them, or when receiving the benefit itself begins to discourage individuals from improving their situation.

    I see this in my profession (accounting)with tax credits, especially the earned income credit. The last report I read (IRS Newswire newsletter) indicated that the burden of tax cheating costs each household $3400.00 per year. (I wonder what we could each do with an extra $67.00 a week?)

    How much is every household paying for the burden of fraud in other government programs? I don’t know. Likely thousands a year as well.

    Regulation is not really the answer. We won’t cure this until we can, as a society, combine our core values of helping others with the core values of self-responsibility, self-improvement, dignity, and integrity.

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