This Is Uncomfortable

“This Is Uncomfortable” is a show about life and how money messes with it. Each week, Reema Khrais digs in with stories about the unanticipated ways money affects relationships, shapes identities and often defines what it means to be an adult. Khrais dives into uncomfortable topics like friends borrowing money, relationships and the other varied ways money shapes who we are.
Khrais’ career has included a two-year position as a Fletcher Fellow focused on education policy reporting. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication, where she earned a degree in electronic communication and political science. Join Reema as she cuts through the uncomfortable to get to the root of how money plagues us. Produced and distributed by American Public Media, you can find “This Is Uncomfortable” wherever you get your podcasts.

Episodes
Sept. 24, 2020 “Why don’t you fix your teeth?”
One woman’s smile becomes a marker of poverty that feels impossible to escape.
Sept. 17, 2020 Who can afford to vote?
From restricted access mail-in ballots to poll taxes, voting rights have always been tied to power and money.
Sept. 14, 2020 “This Is Uncomfortable” is back this week!
Money messes up everything. This pandemic is widening the wealth gap, pushing thousands of people into debt, and shifting family …
Sept. 10, 2020 Love in the time of coronavirus (rerun)
There are a lot of couples stuck at home right now. Some of them are out of work or dealing …
Aug. 20, 2020 WeWork too much (rerun)
When WeWork acquired her company, she got executive training, fancy corporate retreats and a dope Patagonia jacket. It was almost …
Aug. 6, 2020 Life in the coronavirus heckhole
To get a new bike, this 11-year-old signs a contract to do the thing he hates most: math. How one …
July 16, 2020 Money makes me sick
Meet the professional auditor who can’t stand to look at his own bank account. Our team goes on an adventure …
July 2, 2020 The fight for fair pay in Big Tech
One woman’s fight against Silicon Valley’s racial pay gap. Plus, why it’s so hard for Black workers in tech to …
June 18, 2020 How to pay for college
Years ago, one woman put college on hold because she couldn’t afford it. Now she faces a hard choice to …
June 5, 2020 It’s expensive to get arrested
A teenager protesting police brutality lands in jail, and we try to understand the tricky business of bail.
May 28, 2020 Barred from benefits (from The Uncertain Hour)
Millions of Americans who are out of work don’t receive unemployment benefits. That’s by design. An episode from “The Uncertain …
May 21, 2020 School’s out (forever?)
When you’re 17 or 18, you’re often making choices that can dictate the course of your whole life. Making those …
May 14, 2020 Our parents’ debts (from Terrible, Thanks for Asking)
This week, we’re showcasing a story from our colleagues at “Terrible, Thanks For Asking”: When a supporting pillar is knocked …
May 7, 2020 From prison to pandemic
Kevin Harrington was exonerated last month after spending 17 years in prison for a murder conviction. He and his family …
April 30, 2020 Confessions of a shopaholic
A woman grapples with her shopping addiction in quarantine. By the way, we were just nominated for a Webby! Please …
April 23, 2020 A $35,000 COVID bill
Danni Askini fought cancer for 18 months before getting COVID-19. Their focus was on surviving, not the cost of care. …
April 16, 2020 What it’s like getting an abortion in Texas right now
The clock is ticking for one college student after she finds out she’s pregnant in the middle of a pandemic, …
April 9, 2020 Zoom therapy in a pandemic
How do I keep from fighting with my partner about money? What do I say to a friend who’s just …
April 2, 2020 Love in the time of coronavirus
There are a lot of couples stuck at home right now. Some of them are out of work or dealing …
March 26, 2020 Hard choices
As states across the country close all non-essential businesses, people are rethinking what it means to do the right thing. …
March 19, 2020 COVID-19 comforts
The coronavirus is changing how we think about money and community. We set out to see how people are coping …
March 12, 2020 What’s a friendship worth?
Would you spot a friend money if they needed it? How about if they asked every month? This week: the …
March 5, 2020 WeWork too much
When WeWork acquired her company, she got executive training, fancy corporate retreats and a dope Patagonia jacket. It was almost …
Feb. 27, 2020 My boyfriend wants to pay my rent
Sam Sanders, host of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” and Marketplace product specialist Sarah Menendez are here give advice on …
Feb. 20, 2020 In sickness and in fraud
When a shady business partner leaves a newly married couple on the hook for over $300,000, it tests the limits …
Feb. 13, 2020 Total financial control
After getting married, Angie’s husband started to scrutinize every purchase. The situation soon got so much worse. We look at …
Feb. 6, 2020 What’s your sign?
Reema (a skeptical Libra) talks with astrologer Chani Nicholas about the booming business of astrology and together they answer listener …
Jan. 30, 2020 Divorce Story
Money gets complicated when a marriage falls apart. First we’ll hear from a divorce lawyer who ends up representing herself. …
Jan. 23, 2020 “This Is Uncomfortable” is back next week
We’re back Jan. 30 with new stories about life and how money messes with it. You know, the light stuff, …
Jan. 16, 2020 I have class anxiety (rerun)
A listener struggles to navigate all the unspoken rules of middle-class life. This is our last rerun before we return …
Jan. 2, 2020 Instrument of sabotage (rerun)
In the cutthroat world of professional classical music, Eric Abramovitz was headed toward a shining career. Until something — or …
Dec. 26, 2019 When money makes it weird (rerun)
Reema tries to settle a debt she’s been avoiding. And what happens when one person in a relationship has way …
Dec. 12, 2019 Bonus: Money horror stories II
Earlier this year, Hayden started getting these surprise gifts in the mail. Once he realized who sent them to him, …
Nov. 28, 2019 Home/work (rerun)
Just in time for Thanksgiving, “This Is Uncomfortable” revisits the “jobs” we take on in our families — starting with …
Nov. 21, 2019 When your life depends on it
After a rare cancer diagnosis, one family’s battle with insurance and pharmaceutical companies, and the endless bureaucracy, teaches them about …
Nov. 14, 2019 Love thy neighbor, and pay off their debts, too
An aspiring dancer finds a way to become debt-free. All she has to do is take on someone else’s.
Nov. 7, 2019 Don’t buy your boss a gift
“Nancy” host Tobin Low and journalist Julia Furlan join us this week to give advice on office gifts, financial independence …
Oct. 31, 2019 Money horror stories
This Halloween, we have listeners’ frightening stories of impulse buys, spooky scams and a very Hungry Heart.
Oct. 24, 2019 Sperm, baby, sperm
Two couples won a chance at pregnancy, but money has complicated their journeys to build a family.
Oct. 17, 2019 Instrument of sabotage
In the cutthroat world of professional classical music, Eric Abramovitz was headed toward a shining career. Until something — or …
Oct. 10, 2019 TIU Live: I hate my boss
We’re presenting a new segment this week called “The Group Chat.” It’s when we bring in friends of the pod …
Oct. 3, 2019 F you, pay me
Caitlin Boston asked for a raise. Her boss gave her a hard no. Then she made it her mission to …
Sept. 26, 2019 Money advice with “Call Your Girlfriend”
Reema was on one of our favorite podcasts, “Call Your Girlfriend,” a few weeks ago to answer listeners’ tricky money …
Sept. 19, 2019 Can’t buy me love
After hooking up with her roommate, one woman can’t seem to avoid him — or his spending habits, and a …
Sept. 12, 2019 Everyday liars
You tell your mom you’re broke. You pretend to have student loans. You wear knock-off couture. People tell lies about …
Sept. 5, 2019 Cashing in on your kids
Something to think about when you’re watching the new “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” this weekend: For every piece of …
Aug. 29, 2019 Trapped in your personal brand
Aparna Nancherla has made a career in comedy, where she often delves into her own struggles with mental health. We …
Aug. 22, 2019 The lies we tell our friends
Most of us tell little white lies at some point or another to make things less weird about money. But …
Aug. 15, 2019 What dad left behind
When money, death and grief mix there’s no playbook for what to do. And for years, one young man has …
Aug. 8, 2019 I have class anxiety
A listener struggles to navigate all the unspoken rules of middle-class life.
Aug. 1, 2019 That thing you buy and don’t tell your parents about
We’re keeping things just a little uncomfortable this week with another round of our favorite game: Financial Face-Off! But first: …
July 25, 2019 The college fund
When you’re a kid, your parents make all the financial decisions for you. But what happens when you grow up …
July 18, 2019 Ziwe Fumudoh makes people uncomfortable
Growing up, Ziwe Fumudoh wanted to be a pop star. Her parents wanted her to go into medicine or finance. …
July 11, 2019 Lost in the game
When you’re a high-stakes gambler laying down tens of thousands of dollars at a blackjack table, the value of money …
July 3, 2019 Guess my financial secret
Our new game, “Financial Faceoff” puts one couple’s financial life to the test. Plus, we’ll get an update from the …
June 27, 2019 Home/work
Reema Khrais explores the “jobs” we take on in our families — starting with her own. Plus, one couple comes …
June 20, 2019 Crying at work
What happens when work is the thing that’s making us cry … at work? Plus: Reema asks her old boss …
June 13, 2019 When money makes it weird
Reema tries to settle a debt she’s been avoiding. And what happens when one person in a relationship has way …
June 3, 2019 Introducing “This Is Uncomfortable”
This is a show about life and how money messes with it. Every Thursday, we’ll dig into the unanticipated ways …