WashingtonPost.Com received over a thousand comments on its front page story Sunday by Anne Hull about Laura Steins, 47, of Harrison, New York.

Steins got the $2.5 million dollar house in her divorce and $75,000 a year in child support.  She makes $150,000 a year plus a bonus at her job as a MasterCard VP.  She also has about $50,000 a year in investment income.  That’s over $300,000 a year.

But it costs her $8,000 to $10,000 a month to keep up her 4,000 square foot house on three acres. Her property taxes are $35,000 a year, the nanny is $40,000, the gardener is $500 a month and there is someone to plow the driveway in the winter.

“A), I couldn’t sell the house right now,” she says, citing the slow real estate market. “B), this is where my kids go to school. And C), it’s where my job is,” says Steins.

A lot of comments, some from people who make closer to what the nanny makes than what Steins makes, were not sympathetic to her plight.

2 replies
  1. Sad
    Sad says:

    She should be fired. I heard she is on the walmart account at MasterCard — clearly she is not the right person. Imagine working for a self obsessed person like that.

  2. Not Sad
    Not Sad says:

    It’s amazing how many people out there have merely looked at the surface of the article, “Just Squeaking By”. But of course no one stops to think of the real message in the story. I am not defending Laura, I am merely a colleague of Laura’s and not an intimate friend. I do know what it’s like to be a divorced parent and have to make ends meet to get buy, and no I do not have: a base salary of $150k but I have a very nice salary, $75K in child support (mine tops off at $6,500 A YEAR for one child), I only have a 2,000 sq ft home and I certainly don’t have $50k income from investments. How about looking at the flip side of this whole story:

    1. Sure, Laura, why did you put yourself out there — you’re certainly receiving a lot of ridicule

    2. Hey, she was the ONLY ONE out of over three dozen people who even had the guts to do this article

    3. This article was a story about someone at a particular income level and how the economy has affected that person

    4. Laura DID NOT do this for sympathy. Laura is a very smart, talented colleague. She is tough as nails and clearly she made her choices in staying in the home — whether that was right or wrong in other’s eyes makes no difference in the log run

    For all of those who have passed judgement, may one day it come full circle to you. Yes she’s had advantages, but you know what: the woman has worked since high school and been a very hard worker.

    NO, Laura shouldn’t be fired. Tax returns are public records, and for all my other colleagues (which are Laura’s too), and criticizers of her, any one can pull your tax returns and take a nice little look at what you make and then judge how you live without you even participating in an article. How can anyone make a determination that ‘clearly she is not the right person’ for the Wal-Mart account? Do you even have a clue regarding her professional ethics? I think not. Laura works harder then her male counterparts and for that matter: makes a base salary of a lot less then those counterparts.

    Back off people — you’re way off base regarding Laura Steins.

    Laura — hold your head up high and screw ’em if they don’t have a clue….

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