Feeling Very Helpless and Sad

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-09-2011
Feeling Very Helpless and Sad
4
Sun, 04-21-2013 - 4:45am

Hello,

I've been reading all of your stories and wow, you guys are so inspiring. I really hope that I'll be able to write about my success soon.

To be honest, I feel like a worthless bag of *hit right now. I'm in my overdraft (-1765) and I have two bills coming out on Monday that are $400 each and not getting paid till the following Friday. I am constantly living in the red in my bank account and don't know how I'll ever get out. I owe close to $15000 on credit cards and a line of credit. I have three children ages 3 months, 6 years and 9 years old and I work two jobs from home while my SO sells cars. I feel that I make decent money but it's always gone because of my debt and bills. I made a decent stab at my debt about 4 years ago and got it down to $2000 but now how I dug this hole again. I feel so stressed, can't sleep, can't be happy and im questioning everything. 

How do I even start on this? I just want my bank account to be in the black and to make regular payments. My debt is: approx 2700 on Scotia Card at 12%, 5000 on LOC at 9%, 3500 on TD Visa at 19% and 4000 on Royal Bank Visa at 19%. I don't have any room to move money around on cards. What would you pay towards each month? 

Thank you for reading, I really look forward to getting to know you all. 

xo

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2003
Sun, 04-21-2013 - 2:32pm
I'm so sorry you feel so down right now. Please don't let you debt dictate how you feel about yourself. We all have had times where we felt overwhelmed, but being in debt doesn't dictate your worth as a person. I would start by going through your bank statements for the last few months and determine exactly where your money is going. Check to see how much is going out in cash and if you can track where it is. You may find that you have a leak that you didn't even recognize (my leak is eating out . . . I have managed to not pay to eat out this entire month and my cash flow is so much better!!). Also tally up your bills and determine how much you reasonably have to put towards the debt each month. If you *should* have a few hundred each month and you don't, then you have a leak. If you don't have enough income then that is a completely separate issue. I would also look at the debt itself. What caused it? Is it from essentials (like groceries or bills) or is it for non-essentials? Feel free to post your budget here. The ladies (and PB) are great at finding money and noticing things that you may not have even though of! In terms of what to pay off first, the best is to tackle the high interest debts first. However, you need to decide whether or not this will keep you motivated (some folks need to close debts off to keep motivated - I am like this!) Either way post often. This is a great place for accountability!

Bex -

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-14-2008
Sun, 04-21-2013 - 4:02pm

Hi, welcome!

I read your post. There are a lot of "I" statements. Do you and SO combine your incomes and pay bills? That is a "we". And if he makes more than you do, and you don't do things jointly then he has to contribute a higher percentage of the bills than you do to be fair. Did you get into debt together too? See what I am saying?

There are fixed expenses and variable expenses in a budget.  The fixed ones are rent or mortgage, car payment etc. Things you can't change. And then there are variable expenses, the ones you have control over like food, clothing, entertainment etc.  Those are the ones you can cut cut back on. If you don't make enough money to pay for the fixed expenses then that is a whole other problem and you need to make more income through a 2nd job etc. I suggest tracking your expenses by writing down every penny you spend for a month to see where your money is going. And don't forget in 2-3 years you will have less of a grocery budget because you won't be paying for diapers or formula anymore.(I have a 9 month old and she is half formula and half milk now, I can't tell you how excited I am that she is getting off forumla very soon for my grocery budget, and I have heard that girls potty train earlier than boys so I am excited about that too but all in good time lol).

Do you have a definite "why" as to why you are in debt? Medical bills, divorce from spitting assets or another reason? If the answer is no then you are likely living above your means due to over spending or not enough income.

What do you do at home for income? I'm curious. Ladies here are always looking for ways to boost their income from home. 

If I were going to start with your list I would make sure I got out of over draft debt first then worry about the others while still making minimum payments on everything. Aka, stop the digging into debt first. Then some people pay off the smallest balance first to give themselves motivation and apply that payment to the next card as well as the minimum to use a snow ball effect.

Come back, ask lots of questions and we will help!

Good luck!(and try to give yourself a bit of a break, you just had a baby, get some rest too!)

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-28-2009
Sun, 04-21-2013 - 7:19pm

You have already got some advice on where to start, I just wanted to welcome you......this is a great board. Hope you come back often and participate and ask questions! I know how you feel right now, it is overwhelming. But know that relief will start to come when you formulate a plan and take control.

Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006
Tue, 04-23-2013 - 12:04pm

Welcome!  You have come to the right place.  We are not our debt!  We are important and valuable people who are trying to do things a little different.

To kind of sum up what everyone else has said: (oh, and I am kind of going on crisis mode here, not debt repayment)

Start wrting down every penny you spend for the next month. 

If your checking sits long enough in the red, the bank will close it.  This may not be an entirely bad thing. 

If possible, only pay the minimums on your CC until you can calculate what you are REALLY spending and make some decisions on where you could cut back.  Cable, cell phone plans, etc.

If you can't  make the minimum payments on the CC, you may have to pick  one to be behind on.  Again, this is crises advice, not debt repayment advice.

Is there any kind of assistance you may be eligible for, especially since you are not married and apparently don't blend your finances with SO?   Here, we have WIC through the county that gives your vouchers for formula and staples from the grocery store. They even recently added fruit to it, also.

When I was in crises mode, I figured out the system for each utility before they would acutally shut me off.  Look into Energy Assistance. 

Now, if you two actually make enough money, and are just spending it poorly, then forget my crises advice and look at where you can seriously cut back.  Which tracking every penny for a month will help you do that. 

What ever you do, don't touch any retirement you may have and always make your rent or mortgage payment. 

You can do this!!!  I think your hormones are probably playing a part in your discouragement, also.  Don't be too hard on yourself.  You have pulled through before, you can pull through again! 

Keep posting!  We are here for you...

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