How Can I Help My Parents With Their Debt Situation? – Kaleb

“Dear Steve,

I need a financial solution for my parents. My wonderful parents were misguided while pursuing a personal loan about 10 years ago. Despite the bad decision to accept this loan my parents were able to pay the debt consistently for about 8 years.

My dad is a contractor and the money slowly stop coming in as work got really slow in the past couple of years. My parents have always been providers for my brothers and I as well as their own siblings and parents.

Their credit was destroyed by other family members while co-signing for different things here and there. There hearts are always in the right place. Long story short, I, now 27 and single, eventually moved back home in 2008 to help them financially to catch them up on payments and hopefully get back on track to pay off this debt and keep the house.

It has now been 18 months and nothing has changed financially. I am now eagerly ready to move into my own place again and have a normal life as a 27 year old man. Right now I can’t afford to support my parents and myself financially.

Should I go ahead and move out and hope they figure it out, and just help when I can? What other options are out there to somehow decrease their monthly debt situation?


Dear Kaleb,

It seems like your parents have shifted their responsibility for their debt to your shoulders. On one hand it is great for family to help in times of trouble, but not at the cost of postponing your own life indefinitely.

Your parents are adults and need to stop enabling others by signing for credit and being a victim of their own decisions. In my opinion they need to accept responsibility for their actions.

Your parents need to talk to a local bankruptcy attorney. Under bankruptcy they would be allowed to keep the house and make payments on it but address the other debt, pay what they can afford, avoid lawsuits and garnishments and release you out from under this yoke of servitude so you can have your own life.

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If they are unwilling to speak to a local bankruptcy attorney you might want to schedule an appointment yourself and go talk to the bankruptcy attorney. Explain the situation and listen. You’ll be better prepared to go back home and explain it to your parents.

It’s time for your parents to help themselves.

Please update me on your progress by

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.

Steve Rhode

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