Don’t Let Debt Ruin Your Marriage
Marriages are stressed out and burdened by debt. And guess what? No one’s coming to your rescue. You’re the help you’ve been hoping for.
So many people are treading water financially with credit card bills, car payments, medical bills, insurance, student loans, rent and other expenses. And added to this are the daily necessities of food, clothing and utilities.
Financial stress can create downward pressure on even the strongest of marriages.
In these economic times, how many stories have we heard of couples being badgered to death by creditors. It gets so bad that they unplug the phone or turn it off just to have a minute’s peace.
The resulting anxiety creates a situation that becomes a breeding ground for arguments over money. Money is actually one of the main reasons why marriages fail today.
Truth is, the help we were hoping for isn’t coming. It’s up to us to fix this mess and to manage our money wisely.
1) Start by prioritizing your expenses.
Food and shelter should be at the top of the list (you don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure this one out).
2) Scale back where you can.
If you are not heading in a stable or healthy financial direction, then it is time to ask, “What can we do without?” When this point is reached, it becomes a matter of choosing short term pain over long term pain. Letting something go for a few months or a year or two is much less painful than a future of perpetual financial hardship and stress.
If you have fallen or are about to fall behind on your credit card payment(s), call your creditors immediately to negotiate a lower payment with better interest options. Some will say “yes” many won’t. But you must put yourself on record as having tried to negotiate with them.
If your situation is extreme, and you are able, and your creditors are willing, consider a one-time settlement option. But expect this to impact your credit negatively. So consider this option carefully. And even if you think you might be able to negotiate with your creditors on your own, listen when I tell you that it is a very good idea to seek legal advice on this matter.
I just wish to emphasize that even if this is a temporary situation and you know your money problems will turn around soon, it is always best to take charge and initiate contact with your creditors before they initiate contact with you. This puts you in the driver’s seat. And the simple act of taking action will decrease how much you worry.
3) Here’s another thought that might help. Refinancing your home while interest rates are at historic lows might just free up just enough cash flow to give you the cushion you need to make it through this hardship all in one piece.
Marital stress is normal and is something that is experienced in every relationship. But money problems, well, those are a much different kind of stress altogether because they wreak all kinds of havoc if not addressed.
The important thing is when it comes to money: You need to take be in control and take charge or else the situation WILL take charge of you.
Even if your finances are out of control, the one thing that always remains within your control is your attitude and how you will choose to respond to the situation at hand.
It is election time here in the United States. And we have been hearing all kinds of data and promises as politicians struggle to gain our trust and strive to make us promises.
But please, please, don’t put your hope or faith in politics. Trust God and in what he has given you the strength and ability to do, especially in the area of your life where finances are concerned.
Take charge of your debt right now to save your marriage. And remember this, the most valuable credit you will ever get in this world is the credit you give yourself.