I’m in the Marines and Contemplating Suicide. Can I File Bankruptcy? – Larry

“Dear Steve,

Steve, I am a Master Sergeant in the Marine Corps and have made some mistakes w/ debt. I got 2 credit cards and 1 personal loan ($40K total) that my wife didn’t know about so I could gamble. Needless to say I lost a lot of money and when it was all said and done I was contemplating suicide so my family would be taken care of through my insurance money. Well I just couldn’t bring myself to take that route. Now my wife knows about my situation and i have to find a solution.

Is bankruptcy a solution? Can I file for bankruptcy without it touching my wife’s accounts? Do I have to get a divorce my wife to insulate her from damage of a bankruptcy? Thanks for your time and I love your videos because I can tell you really care about helping people.


Dear Larry,

Thank you for the compliment. It put a smile on my face.

While I can’t imagine the emotional stress you are personally under right now, I’ve been deep in debt myself in the past and as you know, filed bankruptcy. What I can tell you is those deep emotional dark pits lead us to contemplate things which in the light of day make no logical sense at all.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

There is no need to kill yourself because of either the debt or the gambling. Both are issues that can be addressed and there are solutions which you can pursue.

Bad debt doesn’t kill people. Sure, it’s a pain in the ass and emotionally uncomfortable but it is not lethal or fatal unless you let it be.

From my experience the solution is a three prong attack.

  1. Seek help for the gambling addiction. The gambling is the root cause here, not the debt. We need to make sure you’ve addressed that issue and sought help.
  2. Talk to a mental health counselor about your suicidal thoughts. There is help available to you through the Marines so consider using it.
  3. click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney and talk to them for free about your specific situation. Get the facts and then you can make an informed and educated decision if bankruptcy is right for you.
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Ultimately if your wife would have to file with you is a matter of the mix of assets you have. But even if she did, which is the lesser of the probabilities here, it is nowhere near the end of the world and credit can be easily rebuilt. Divorce is not necessary.

I thank you for your service and urge you to soldier up here, take charge and and take this hill. You will be victorious.

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

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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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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