How Am I Ever Going to Deal With My Sallie Mae – Navient Student Loans?


Dear Steve,

Sallie Mae->Navient steered me into and consolidated my student loans, 7% interest-been paying for 22 years on one and since they consolidated when I finished my MS in 2007, looks like it’s only been 13 years.

Now I’m a lung cancer survivor, 61 years old with ongoing health problems and the balance is STILL 49k, how can I possibly pay it? I cannot, can you please advise me?



Dear Kathleen,

I can certainly understand the frustration. You feel like you are getting nowhere and dealing with life on top of that.

The reality is you might not be able to pay it possibly, so what do we do?

There are options and possible solutions. None of them are easy, though.

However, they might be able to allow you to accomplish your goal of getting by. That’s what I hear you saying. You are just looking to find a way forward financially as you near retirement but struggle with other health and medical issues.

I’m going to assume this is a private student loan. Sounds like it to me based on the limited information. If it’s federal, let me know.

Some Private Student Loan Options

The first option is to consider discussing the situation with my friend Damon Day, a debt coach who works with people to develop a comprehensive plan to tackle private student loan debt.

One strategy might be to settle private student loan debt. Navient will settle. But just because they will, that doesn’t mean it makes sense. That is why a look at your overall situation is needed.

The last thing we want to do is pick the solution before we understand the situation.

Another option might be to stop paying the private student loan. There are risks and benefits to doing so. It is a true pro and con situation. Read this.

Another option that is a bit of a stretch is to evaluate your loans and see if they are good candidates for consumer bankruptcy. Not all private student loans are protected in bankruptcy. Read this.

See also  Is It True That Sallie Mae Loans Have to be Forgiven After 10 Years? - Lynn

I just don’t want you to give up hope. There are ways to deal with this. If you can put in a bit of time and effort, I can help you get through this.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

Steve Rhode

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