Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts Mental Health Related

My Mom is Bipolar and The Only Help She Wants for Her Money Problems is More Money. – Lecompete

“Dear Steve,

My mom is in great debt. I don’t know how to help her. Though my parents are separated, my dad still sends us money for all the utilities of the house but my mom just can’t fix her problems. She is retired but all her money goes to pay debts with banks and credit cards. All my family has tried to help her at some point by paying some of the debt but she still manages to keep it. I tried to help her get a job, but she doesn’t want to work because she says she’s tiered and that she has many things to do. In a way my dad and I think she has a bit of a bipolar disorder because she doesn’t seem to understand her problem and she doesn’t seem to get that some things must change to improve the situation. At the moment, I can’t absorb any of her debts because Im a full time student. I really don’t know how to help her, I tried convincing her to go to a psychiatrist to see if she really had a problem but she refused to go. The only help she accepts is more money.

I really want to help my mom get out of debt. I need any ideas on how to decrease her credit card debts while managing her possible disorder. I don’t know how to make her understand that she has a spending problem and how to guide her out of it.


Dear Lecompete,

The best way you can help your mother right now is to make sure nobody gives her any more money. It is only enabling her to continue this destructive behavior.

Based on the information you’ve shared, and my experience in seeing these situations over many years, the only two likely solutions are for her either to embrace the underlying mental health issues, seek treatment and stabilize that, or for her to go bankruptcy, and discharge the unmanageable debt.

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People many give her money because they care about here but the reality is that money is being thrown away. It will neither solve the problem or improve her condition.

It seems that getting her into therapy is difficult and she is not ready for that yet. So I would suggest that you click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney and go with her to an appointment with a local bankruptcy attorney.

Tell her you are not going to file bankruptcy but to learn more about what bankruptcy would mean for someone in her situation. We want her to listen and learn and not be afraid of the visit.

After the visit, and if she is mentally prepared to file bankruptcy to discharge her debt she has no chance of paying, then investing in bankruptcy would be smart for family and friends that want to help.

Keep trying to get her to see the doctor regarding her mental health issues. Bankruptcy isn’t going to address those problems and they will still need care and attention.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.


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.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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