My Journey out of Debt

Featured customers currently enrolled in a CareOne Debt Relief Plan, share journey to become debt-free; hear how they juggle family, finances, and more.

Surround Yourself with Support

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Surround Yourself with SupportMy wife is done with work right before lunch on Fridays, so she volunteered to help in my daughter's 3rd grade classroom correcting spelling tests.  One week, we decided that before my wife was to correct spelling tests, we'd meet at the school and have lunch with our daughter in the cafeteria.  

We waited for her to come in from recess by her locker.  She had been excited for us to come, so we expected to see her smiling face bounce around the corner.  Instead, as she approached us, we saw an unhappy little girl, eyes swelling with tears.  She put her arms around my wife and instantly starting crying uncontrollably, almost hyperventilating. 

After we calmed her down, we learned that she and her best friend were playing during recess, and her friend had slipped and hit her face on a piece of playground equipment. 

She had been bleeding badly and was sent to the nurse's office.  My daughter was a wreck both physically and emotionally because she was so worried about her friend.  Not until we visited her friend in the nurse's office and she was able to give her friend a hug was my daughter able to fully regain control of herself.

Although I did not like to see my daughter sad, I commented to my wife how caring and thoughtful of others she was.  Our daughter is the sort of person that could feel the pain of her friend, and identify with what she was going through.  That is the kind of friend that everyone would like to have, especially when going through a hard time-- for example, when you are struggling with debt.

In dealing with my debt, I really wanted to surround myself with people that understood what my family and I are going through.  I wanted my friends to support me and help me make good choices to achieve my goal.  We have some friends with whom we have in the past  gone out to eat with, shopped with, and done many other activities with. 

They tend to do things expensively, and I wondered whether we would have to distance ourselves from our closest friends in order to remove the temptation to spend money that we didn't have.

When we began the Debt Management Plan, these same friends noticed some behavioral changes in us.  Suddenly we didn't want to get together with them as often.  They started asking questions. We sat down and explained to them our debt situation, the Debt Management Plan we had just joined, and how it was going to affect us.  They wanted to support our journey to become debt free. 

Before, we would always host when we all got together on the weekend and supply all of the food and drinks.  Now, we take turns hosting, and they insist on sharing the expense of the meal if we're going to eat together.  When our van broke down and we were supposed to travel 90 minutes to an in-law's home to say goodbye to her brother before he left for 12 weeks of basic training, these same friends gave us a hug and offered for us to use one of their vehicles for the day. 

They still go out to eat often, but they just do it with their own family.  They don't ask us to go with as often, but they do stop by our house afterwards to hang out or talk for awhile.  They have sat at our kitchen table countless times, listened to our struggles, and given words of encouragement or suggestions.  They know what we're going through, and do their best to support us.

Recovering from a debt problem is a difficult road that requires you to make some permanent behavioral changes.  Our friends were glad we told them. If we hadn't, we may have drifted apart from our closest friends because they wouldn't have understood why our relationship suddenly changed. 

By telling them, we gained a wonderful support system to lean on as we continue our journey to becoming debt free.

Related Links:

 How to Have a Social Life When you are on a Budget

 Sacrificing to Become Debt Free

 In Debt and Ready to Party

Travis Pizel

Travis is a contributing writer for the My Journey Out of Debt blog and is a very active member of the community forums. Travis is currently enrolled in a CareOne Debt Management Plan and in his posts he shares his personal journey to pay off his debt and the tips he's learned along the way. As a father and husband he provides a unique perspective on balancing debt, finances, and family. Compensated CareOne Blogger.

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  • I find myself looking back on the last twelve months and reflecting on the experiences of the year. Our experiences make us who we are and shape how we will handle future situations.

  • If you are fighting your way through this debt thing I can practically guarantee that one of the CareOne employees you deal with has gone through the same thing at some point, and will share their success or challenges with you.

  • As you are trying to get out of debt, do you sometimes feel like you're the only people to realize you are in financial trouble?

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