Debt can be very scary. Heck, real life is scary. There’s having a job, being a parent, being a spouse, owning a home, etc. Then add money into it. Or lack of money. And then bills. And more bills. Ask anyone what debt feels like and they will say words like: overwhelming, paralyzing, crushing. At LSS we get it. And can help.
Here are three stories of real people struggling with their debt. Maybe you can relate.
I went through a divorce in 2002 and obtained custody of my three young daughters. Going from a two income household to one was a huge change for me, especially with three kids. The expenses associated with being a single parent started piling up and I got to the point where every bill went on my credit card. Medical debt, car breaking down, etc. I soon built up a large amount of credit card debt. I started looking for some sort of solution with my problem because while I was able to make all the payments, I started to notice the strain. I eventually started working three jobs.
Our story really starts in 2009 with the economic downturn. My husband and I were self employed and we found that we were losing ground quickly. We were making all of our payments and basically just ‘surviving.’ We decided to rent out our home and were able to make the mortgage payments, but then something else would give. And as a result we ran up our credit card balances. We could pay one but not the other. With a heavy heart we decide to list our house for sale. Thankfully it sold in just a few short days. This was a big monthly payment off our chests and we regrouped. Finally, we hit the wall again. We knew something had to give.
I was 23 and just starting out in the professional world. I was also a single mom with a baby working full time and living paycheck to paycheck. So in my mind, credit cards gave me “freedom” to buy things like work clothes. After opening up some credit cards/store cards, I found myself with $8,000 in credit card debt. This might not seem like much, but at my age $8,000 seemed like $80,000. I used my cards for pretty much everything…clothes, entertainment, groceries, gas, and even some bills. I was trapped in a vicious cycle and kept using the cards even though I knew I couldn’t keep up on all of the payments. Something had to give because I couldn’t take the stress of being in debt and not being able to make payments.