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Recently Married But Brought My Sexually Transmitted Debt Into the Relationship. – Jeff

“Dear Steve,

Over the past few years I have incurred about $20,000 in credit card debt. I am not at the point where I have missed any payments, so I haven’t been harassed by creditors. But the reality is that I barely get by now month to month and if some emergency came up where I needed funds, I don’t know what Ii would do and I’m scared that an emergency situation is inevitable.

I recently got married, and we have a house together, but the credit card debt is mine and the house is not in my name (I will not be able to get a home equity loan). If I continue to pay the monthly payments, it will take me forever to get out of this debt (and I cannot put much more than the minimum payments towards the credit cards). On top of all this, I filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in November of 1999.

What is the best solution to helping me get out of this credit card debt in a timely manner? Also, if bankruptcy is suggested, can I select to not file with a particular lender? It’s from a Credit Union that I belong to that I wish to keep in good standings with. I can manage that credit card payment with ease…it’s just I’m overwhelmed at the moment.)? Thank you.



Dear Jeff,

If you go bankrupt, it is all in. You can’t exclude any creditor or show any one of them preferential treatment.

But since you are recently married, how are you tackling your finances together. Is it everyone for themselves or are you working as a team to make life better for both of you?

I’m guessing here but I assume you are the spender in the relationship and she is the saver. You know how it is said that opposites attract, well the same is true for savers and spenders. In that case what I suggest that you do is sit down with your new wife and ask for her help. You can create a plan on how to get out of debt using my free book you can download, “Eliminate Your Debt Like a Pro.”

If you work together and make this a relationship project I think you’ve got a pretty good chance of digging your way completely out of this hole. If your wife says she’s not interested in helping you plan and execute your debt reduction then it is probably worth a second look at bankruptcy.

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About Steve Rhode

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.
  • Freedom

    Jeff, if your wife is working and can help you to solve your debt, that would be great!! Take a look at each of your credit cards and how much they charge for interest. The highest interest debt would be the one to pay off first. If you pay an extra $ amount each month, it will come down quicker. As you concentrate on the highest interest debt, continue to make the minimum payment on your other debt. At the same time, see if your paycheck will handle a small, maybe $5.00 fund to begin an emergency fund. Just set that money somewhere where you can’t readily get to it.. ie – your wife’s hand? Let her hide it for you.
    I hope I’ve been helpful,

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