Dealing With Debt, Financial Stress & Family

Financial stress is common if you are forced into frugality because of a lost job, divorce, death in the family, or being over your head in debt, etc. This can lead to feelings of insecurity, fear, anxiety, anger, and, of course, depression.

These feelings can also cause you to make poor money management decisions. These poor decisions can lead to heavy debt loads, and start a vicious cycle of fear, anxiety, and panic that never seems to end.

When you reach this point, your feelings of helplessness and hopelessness can become so overwhelming you literally stop functioning in the real world. Believe me, I know this from experience.

Understanding, Acceptance & Help

If you recognize any of the above traits in yourself, get the help you need. Talk to a friend, loved one, your doctor, pastor, a debt counselor ... but talk to someone! If you know someone who is exhibiting the above traits, help them! It doesn't matter whether you lend an ear, offer some advice, or help them get counseling, do something!

The first thing you have to realize, understand, and accept is that no situation is hopeless. With just a little guidance, a couple well thought out goals, and emotional support from family and friends, you can do what needs to be done and come out of dire circumstances with a new outlook, new skills, and best of all, a new feeling of self-esteem. Don't let anyone tell you different, and if they do, close the door they came in, behind them!

Who Are Your True Friends?

When you have problems, be they financial, family, legal, whatever, it usually doesn't take very long for you to realize who really cares about you, who is truly a friend ... be they family or not. Your friends will support you in your time of need, offer encouragement, and lend an ear so you can just talk. Don't be upset or angry by this, just remember, it is you who is blessed with true friends, family or not. 

When I graduated from college, I looked very hard or a job and applied to lots of different financial firms but I didn't secure a job. So upon graduation I had to take a job as a line cook while spliting rent with my roommate. The pay was minimal so making ends meet was very tough.

I had to skip out on nights out and buying new clothes and similar things. It was a very difficult time in my life for about a year until I found a job in my chosen career where I could support myself.

In order to get that job, I had to interview for over 20 different positions, constantly write new cover letters, and talk to numerous head hunters.

That year was kind of embarrassing to my friends and family especially any time they asked me what I was doing and it put a lot of stress on me.

Posted by: Nanci

Setting Priorities During Financial Stress

Consider debt consolidation to pay off those credit cards. One payment, usually a lot lower than your credit card payments, can help you get back on track.

The well being of you, and your family, has to be your priority during times of financial stress and upheaval. Did you notice how "well being of you" was first in the last sentence, and not "your family?" The reason for that is very simple, if you take care of you first, then you are taking care of your family at the same time. In financially stressful times, if you, as the Mom or Dad, can't cope, how can you expect your children to cope now, or in the future? 

So make the decision now to learn how to cope, to make the changes you can, to stay focused and goal-oriented, and to let anxiety and financial stress go out the door with the shoulda coulda woulda's.

I had surgery last August and the medical bills just kept coming in. In addition to that, I have over $10,000 in credit card bills. I think I also owe a small fortune in physical therapy bills from my surgery. Talk about being in financial stress.

Then I had to have another minor surgery in January. Those bills weren't too bad, but it still adds up. Being able to work overtime went away at work. So I wondered how am I going to pay all of these bills.

Well I came to the conclusion to put myself on a budget. I do not buy what I do not need and I do not go anywhere except work. I decided to join MTurk and work part-time to help pay off debt.

So I take my smallest bill amount. I pay the minimum payment every month. Then I use whatever I make on MTurk in that month and add it to that bill. Then when that bill is paid off, I go to the next smallest amount bill, pay the minimum payment plus add the minimum payment I was paying on the bill that got paid off plus add my Mturk money. I will keep doing this until every bill gets paid off.

So far I have paid off 3 medical bills doing this, plus my private student loan is paid off. This is working out really well for me, I am even trying to save a little money in my savings account.

Posted by: Traci

"... Dear God, please grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference ..."

If you are absolutely overwhelmed with credit card debt, then you need to check out debt consolidation/settlement. For a free consultation, click here

When I started college I didn't have a job and maybe had 100 dollars. I did not receive enough financial aid to cover all of my expenses. My meal plan payment was due and I had no way to pay the 450 dollars that they wanted.

I was extremely stressed because I wasn't going to get any financial aid for another couple of weeks and I had to eat. I probably got 100 gray hairs during that day.

I eventually called both my parents and they asked my sister to quick pay me the money to pay for the payment and I was set until my next payment was due in a month or so.

I then began searching for a job quickly and diligently. I took away from the experience that a back up of money is always needed for unexpected expenses

Posted by: Karen

Is getting out of debt on your "To Do" list? Start here to get the help you need now. Not only get out of debt, but learn how to stay out! Click here for CareOne Credit Counseling help.