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Thread: I am terrified of being in debt

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    I am terrified of being in debt

    So, this is silly because I already owe my parents $20,000 in student loans, so I already AM in debt.

    I paid off some bills today and had to, for the first time, move money around to do so. This is largely because I previously lived with a roommate but now live alone, and our electricity was in my name but we never paid the final bill so that extra $300 (because it was August and we used the A/C) got tacked onto my new electric bill this month. But of course now I'm terrified that I've mis-budgeted, that I can't afford to live/rent on my own, that it's all going to come crashing down.

    I work two jobs, plus another that I'm trying to quit and replace with a different job (food delivery). Have looked into some freelance work as well so I can be working but be at home with my dog - he makes it hard to be away from the home working too much. Of course my boss at my main job just came up and told me about this awesome new technology that would make my life easier, but has me terrified that our university will invest in this and it will get even better and then they just won't need me anymore and I'll be let go.

    Of course, I recognize that this isn't totally realistic, and anyway this isn't my forever job - I'm just working it because the benefits are good and it's paying for my grad school. But the idea of being broke is just so terrifying to me.

    I've spent all afternoon reading up on financial stress and I don't know how helpful it is. Anyone have any advice?
    __________________

    I still go a little bit crazy sometimes...
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    [Mostly] managing anxiety, HA, and depression.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    841

    Re: I am terrified of being in debt

    Quote Originally Posted by .Poppy. View Post
    So, this is silly because I already owe my parents $20,000 in student loans, so I already AM in debt.

    I paid off some bills today and had to, for the first time, move money around to do so. This is largely because I previously lived with a roommate but now live alone, and our electricity was in my name but we never paid the final bill so that extra $300 (because it was August and we used the A/C) got tacked onto my new electric bill this month. But of course now I'm terrified that I've mis-budgeted, that I can't afford to live/rent on my own, that it's all going to come crashing down.

    I work two jobs, plus another that I'm trying to quit and replace with a different job (food delivery). Have looked into some freelance work as well so I can be working but be at home with my dog - he makes it hard to be away from the home working too much. Of course my boss at my main job just came up and told me about this awesome new technology that would make my life easier, but has me terrified that our university will invest in this and it will get even better and then they just won't need me anymore and I'll be let go.

    Of course, I recognize that this isn't totally realistic, and anyway this isn't my forever job - I'm just working it because the benefits are good and it's paying for my grad school. But the idea of being broke is just so terrifying to me.

    I've spent all afternoon reading up on financial stress and I don't know how helpful it is. Anyone have any advice?
    It sounds to me like you’ve really thought about things and are very cognizant about living within your means. In my experience, people who end up buried in debt or big financial trouble are those who spend spend spend without any sort of plan or idea what they’re doing. As long as you’re keeping an eye on everything, I’m sure you can adjust as needed and make everything work.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    23,615

    Re: I am terrified of being in debt

    Sadly this is something most of us will always face. All you can do is be responsible, learn life's lessons as you go (or learn them off your parents so as to avoid them) and realistic. Budget and be wary of hitting the plastic for stuff you can do without.

    I learnt my lesson with debt early on because I went a bit mad on the plastic and then spent about 6 months working all the overtime there was to clear 4k off. I never got into debt ever again.

    But something I found in my anxiety was I became obsessive about money. It didn't matter how much I had in savings I would just reset the bar higher and start stressing until I hit the target again. Be wary of this type of behaviour, it's something you will even find in OCPD as it's problematic.

    Pets can be a worry so that insurance that seems worthless can really help. Our dog is ill at the moment with an eye ulcer and 7 days in doggie hospital with an eye specialist part way we had to rush him too would have cost us probably thousands.

    So, if you can, get some rainy day money saved here & there just in case you get an unexpected bill. Your parents are likely to help you in times like this anyway if they are doing ok.

    Something you may need to be careful with is sharing bills like you did. I used to work in the utility sector and by law we could hold the name on the bill legally accountant able for the whole debt unless we saw a tenancy agreement showing all the names. Then what would happen is one or more students/sharers would decide they didn't care but that meant everyone, whether paid their share or not, ended up receiving debt collection actions. We could split these debts if we could prove some had payed so that only the true defaulters were chased but this was a goodwill gesture because in British law we could chase everyone as it's classed as a "Third Party Dispute". The courts could look deeper into debt assignment.

    I used to see that happen all the time. So, I'm just saying protect yourself as much as you can in respect of this because utility companies can be notoriously lazy (over here anyway) when it comes to helping customers out. It can often come down to individuals who care about their job & customers or something reaching a suitably high complaint status.
    __________________
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    For free Mindfulness resources, please see this thread I have created to compile many sources together http://www.nomorepanic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=168689

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    1,223

    Re: I am terrified of being in debt

    Thanks to both of you.

    AMomentofClarity - I do try to be careful. I just hate being behind (which this extra bill did to me) and feel like I should have way more in savings than I do.

    Terry - you're right. I wish that we could split utilities here, I don't really think that's an option. I had Electric and Internet in my name, and my roommate had Water and Gas. I took care of the trash as well because I was earning more than her. I really don't know what happened to the Water/Gas bills, if she is still getting them or if they are going to the house we lived in or what. I think because I moved and have the same Electric service it was easy for them to just add the amount owed onto my current bill and make me pay it. :/ I wouldn't have minded so much if we hadn't had the A/C on to make the bill so high!

    I do agree it is nice to have my parents help me out when I need it, but I just want to be out from under them if possible. I know comparing myself to my brother is like the theme of my life, and it's a weak comparison because he also owes them money and doesn't even attempt to pay it back, but he just bought a house with his wife and here I am working 3 jobs and trying to figure it all out. He works in a school so gets summers off and his wife suggested him getting a second job instead of sitting at home all day - he laughed at the thought of working another job, especially something part-time or minimum wage. But of course the psych job he has now is the only job he's ever had, which frustrates me too as I've worked a LOT and for YEARS and still come up short.




    EDIT: I should also add that now I have to quit job #3, delivering cookies for a local business. I was previously scheduled to work some weekdays 6-10, which worked because I work full time during the day and can't work too much later than that as I need sleep. Then, upper management changed the schedule around so that there were "set shifts" and they were longer (6+ hours) so my boss has had to schedule me from 6-12 but knows my situation and usually lets me leave at 10. Well, she's leaving and who knows who the new boss will be, but doubtful they would be willing to mess around with my schedule like that.

    I just took another job at a different food delivery service where you go to various restaurants and bring people the food, but I don't start until the week after next so I have no idea how good it will be money-wise. But the schedule is more flexible, so there's that.

    Sorry to ramble on, sometimes it helps just to type my thoughts out since I can't really talk to anyone about this in person.
    Last edited by .Poppy.; 26-10-18 at 19:21.
    __________________

    I still go a little bit crazy sometimes...
    but now I don't stay near as long.


    [Mostly] managing anxiety, HA, and depression.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    23,615

    Re: I am terrified of being in debt

    Sounds like you are very proactive and a hard worker to me. Very motivated and that's interesting when you think about how things like fatigue have plagued you in the past (I may have got that wrong?) so it shows you keep fighting back.

    I suspect your brother will end up learning a lesson at some point about work...his wife will probably kick his backside at some point.

    You never knows with a new boss, they could get a glowing report about you and want to retain you with a little effort rather than risking someone new who could be worse for them.

    As for the utilities, if in the US you have shared tenancy agreements I would expect utility companies can bill everyone on the agreement. All we would do is put all the names on the account so when a bill was produced it had them all on above the address. With newer SAP systems being the latest thing for utility companies (and for the most part SAP is a big steaming pile of dog poo from my experiences with it!) they tend to allow for more modern living so allow more characters in fields for names.

    It depends on your laws really and what differs state to state. It's much simpler on our tiny little island!
    __________________
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    For free Mindfulness resources, please see this thread I have created to compile many sources together http://www.nomorepanic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=168689

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