The Psychological Effects of Bankruptcy

Here -- just for you to think about -- are some of the ideas Debtors Anonymous has about the psychological pitfalls of declaring bankruptcy.

  • The big fix.
    There's no such thing, of course. All bankruptcy really gets you is a little time. Chances are great you're going to end up right back where you began. Why? Because you haven't solved the problems that got you to the threshold of bankruptcy in the first place. (The rate of people who declare a second time as soon as the law permits is constantly rising. Some say it is now as high as 50 percent.)
  • The lure of the fall-back position.
    Once you've gone this route it's hard not to feel as if you have a back door to escape through, should the going get rough again. And eventually the going will get rough. Learning how to plan for -- and get through -- rough times without going ointo debt is part of any serious debt-recovery program.
  • Catastrophe happens.
    That's really why the law permitting people to declare bankruptcy is there: to protect the innocent from total financial ruin. But you have to decide what is catastrophe and what is not. People who take advantage of this law so as to continue an addiction are putting themselves in jeopardy. Only YOU know where you fall on the spectrum between catastrophe and self-indulgence.

What about those of us who fall somewhere in between but know the emotional strain is making us feel as if we're going to crack?

The antidote to anxiety is action. Take action with credit card reduction and a plan to pay back your debt or talk about your concerns with the community in the Debt Support Group.

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