I’m a really positive person. Sometimes annoyingly so (just ask my husband, hehe). 🙂 I think it’s one of my strengths. But everyone is entitled to a whine now and then, right?
Getting out of debt is not fun, and it’s not always a happy experience. Quite frankly, it sucks! 🙂 Debt fatigue is real and some days the feeling hits hard. After making great progress in February I thought I earned a vent so here are 16 things I won’t miss about being in debt.
#1 – Not being able to pay my bills on the first of the month.
In an ideal world I want to pay all of my bills for the 1st – 15th of the month at the end of the previous month, and then pay the bills due for the second half of the month around mid-month. With debt and a tight budget, it’s not possible.
#2 – Playing the “which bill is most important?” game.
The bills are due but you don’t have enough cash to pay them all. What do you do? Which bills are the priority? Are you making the right choices? Stress!
#3 – Late fees! Related to #1!
When you just don’t have the cash to pay a bill on time, late fees kick in, and the debt struggle continues. So frustrating!
#4 – Credit card fees and interest.
I’m starting to really hate the word “fee” altogether. Are there any good fees in the world? We pay – via fees and interest – to use credit. We pay to be in debt. Because we are in debt, we have to pay more and more (fees and interest just keep rising). I can’t wait to kiss it all goodbye!
#5 – Seeing my husband upset and discouraged.
He works so hard, and he doesn’t get to enjoy his hard earned money. It makes me feel like a failure as a wife.
#6 – Not being able to spoil my friends and family.
I love my family so much. I wish I could buy them the world. I want to give awesome gifts just because, make birthdays and holidays extra special, and just express my love and appreciation through presents, trips, and eating out! But I can’t!
#7 – Feeling helpless when my loved ones are in need.
I feel the urge to spend when times are happy, and when they are not. When someone in our family is struggling, it hurts to not be able to help. Sure, money isn’t the solution to every problem, but there are many ways it could help to brighten a loved ones day.
#8 – Wasting time on the phone.
Debt and trying to get out from under debt leads to many wasted minutes on the phone. Calling to make a payment to avoid a late fee. Calling to reduce a bill or lower a rate. Calling to inquire about financial aid or to settle a debt. Calling to check a balance. Calling to cancel a service. Calling to set up a payment plan. Calling and holding, and holding and holding …
#9 – Mom guilt.
If we weren’t in so much debt, what else could my kids have? Would we have decorated their rooms? Would we have professional pictures taken? Would we be going to music class and swim lessons and more outings like trips to museums?
#10 – Being fearful of checking the mail.
Although this has improved greatly over the years as we have worked hard on our finances, there is always the fear that each envelope contains bad news. Another bill, another debt, another hand held out waiting for our money.
#11 – Never taking a vacation.
And I mean never. My husband and I will celebrate 5 years of marriage in 2016 and we have never taken a vacation. We didn’t take a honeymoon. We have never been to the beach as a family, or gone to Disney World, nothing. One of the reasons to get out of debt is to free up money to do more traveling!
#12 – Not making my own choices.
I am very lucky that my mom (aka Grandma) loves to shop for cute clothes for her grandchildren. We have been gifted so many items and rarely have any needs in that department. Sometimes when I am passing through a store, I do wish I could make my own choices and shop for my boys. But when you are in debt, you only buy things you need, not want. I can’t justify spending money on cute clothes when we already have so many at home!
#13 – Being stressed by others mistakes.
In February we had a paycheck error. Money owed was left off of the check and it took quite a bit of time to be corrected! Not having all of your money arrive on time is extremely stressful when you are living paycheck to paycheck. I look forward to the days when something like that won’t phase us at all, because we will have money in the bank to cover emergencies.
#14 – Social media jealousy.
I’ll admit to it – I’m jealous! I don’t know the full story (maybe you are struggling with debt too), but I’ve been jealous of you. Your posts about vacations, family activities, new clothes, new toys, date nights, and so much more. When you are trapped at home by your debt, avoiding spending at all cost, it seems like the whole world is out living life to the fullest.
#15 – The “on the edge” feeling at the end of the month.
When each month is close to ending I feel noticeably tense. We may have had a great month and the budget is looking perfect – which makes me nervous! I stress those last few days because I don’t want to spend any more money, run out of food, or have anything unexpected happen.
#16 – The highs are high but the lows are low.
Each success feels wonderful! But then reality hits and I realize how far we still have to go. We still need to make more money and we still need to pay off so much more debt! We still don’t have a savings and don’t even make me start thinking about retirement! It’s very easy to get discouraged on this journey.