It’s Really Hard for Me to Ask for Debt Advice But I Live in Fear of My Debt. – Afraid

“Dear Steve,

Hello. This is so hard for me to do. I am 32 years old and have lived in fear of my debt for 5 years now. It controls my life. I have told no one about the amount of debt I have incurred. My boyfriend recently proposed to me and I want with all of my heart to marry him and be honest with him, but I am afraid that once he finds out about my large amount of debt that he will lose all respect for me.

Even thinking about it makes it difficult to breath. I have around 30,000 in unsecured credit card debt 15, 000 of which is an unsecured signature loan with Beneficial…who is now HSBC. This is the one i regret the most as when I was in my early twenties they sent me a check for 6000 in the mail and it has ballooned to 15000 and up until 5 months ago I have always made my payments on time.

I have been unable to make their required 415 monthly payment for several months now because that money was needed to pay for some health issues I have had recently–probably caused from the stress of this debt! I also have a 20,000 car loan. I am just sick with fear and worry.

I currently earn 52,000 a year and am barely making payments on my debt with no room left to make the payment to HSBC. I am so afraid they will sue me and garnish my wages which, for the industry I am in, could also cost me my job.

So far I am 5 months behind on that payment. They have called, but I have received nothing via mail. They will not accept a payment arrangement. Do I earn too much to file bankruptcy? Is that my only option? I don’t want my debt problems to affect my future husband. I don’t know what to do and how to tell him about my horrible situation. Currently ALL of my money goes to my CC bills and anything left over goes to groceries. I live with my fiance and he pays for the house a and utilities. Please help me!

How do I best go about telling my fiance about my horrible debt problem? He views bankruptcy as “the easy way out”. I believe it may be the only way for me to get out of this mess. What can I expect by filing bankruptcy or is there another option for me? The stress of this debt is hurting my body and I don’t want to bring this burden onto my upcoming marriage. Please help me!!

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Dear Afraid,

Those of us that have been in problem debt have all lived through the fear and panic. It sucks. There is hope.

Right now your fear is intensified and magnified because of this secret you have. Ultimately the most liberating action you can take is to come out of the closet. But that’s scary as hell. All those voices in your head have you wondering, “Will he love me? Will he leave me?”

Here’s how I see the situation. I think that if two people can be committed to each other, want to get married or live together and can trade bodily fluids then they should be intimate enough to be honest and truthful with each other when it comes to money problems.

If you truly love the guy you should not infect him with your sexually transmitted debt by bringing it into the marriage when it can be dealt with before the wedding.

Here is what I would suggest you do right now.

  1. Find a local bankruptcy attorney you like. Make an appointment to go in and talk to them. Openly discuss your situation and see if you agree that bankruptcy would be right for you.
  2. After you get a clear head about bankruptcy and what it means for you, sit your guy down and have a heart-to-heart about the situation. But also let him know that you already have a plan to deal with it.
  3. If the guy gives you a hard time or judges you, he’s an ass. That’s important to know before you launch into a life together.
  4. My best is that he will be surprised but supportive. He will appreciate the fact that you already came up with a solution and researched it. Rather than this being a problem that will need to be dealt with by him, all he needs to do is give you a hug and let you execute the solution.

The stress and anxiety over this situation, as long as it goes unresolved, will impact your outlook on life, your job performance, stress levels and hurt your health.

In a perfect world you would not have to deal with this situation or be still dragging the debt around with you. But guess what, it’s not a perfect world, is it?

What do you think? Sound reasonable? Can you do this?

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.

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P.S. Be sure to read ‘The Secret of Surviving Through Difficult Economic Times. What I Learned On My Journey‘.

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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