CONFESSIONS OF A CREDIT CARD JUNKY

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Butterfly_of_grace, Nov 14, 2006.

  1. Butterfly_of_grace

    Butterfly_of_grace New Member

    Ok here goes....my shameful confession..Im a credit card junky....

    One of the BIGGEST reasons for our money struggles are because I ran up my two main credit cards (good 'ol Mastercard!). I feel SO AWEFUL! One of the main reasons I ran it up is because its been so tough trying to keep up with the kids and the stuff they need, I lost my job but got a new one which pays more an hour but less hours so really Im making less money...wlthough I will be working thru the summer instead of having no pay check thru July and August like I was going thru with working as a Teachers Aide, Now I work for the Chiropractor...so really I guess it works itself out.ANYHOOO...its not cheap raising 4 kids...we are really having a tough time...the credit cards make it too simple. But then again, its so easy to swipe swipe swipe or buy on line with the click of the mouse. I notice I get worse when Im upset or I see a sale...I usually stay out of the malls because of that reason...but the computer is just as bad...hence the debt.

    I dont know how to dig us out of this horrible hole. Come the new Year I will take money from my retirement IRA which now barely has anything left, but I got us into this mess, I will sacrafice to get us better financially. Its my fault...I will pay!

    Thanks for listening. Im so asshamed. This is one of the reasons I cant sleep at night...I dont know who I can tlak to without being judged or feeling worse than I already do. Hubby is so understanding. He never has gotten mad at me and Im lucky. He works so hard and he works two jobs. Shame on me! I need to find a better way of budgeting so we can get back on our feet. I was never like this until i went thru divorce over 5 yrs ago and I was finally allowed to "spend my own money" because my last hubby was so controlling over it that I never had the chance to. Since then it has spiralled out of control. Gosh I feel like such a loser!

    OK...Im done confessing...now...time to get off my tush and do something about it. Hopefully I can last thru the next few weeks thru the holidays and come the first of the year, I will raid my IRA.

    Why dont I feel any better???? I made a confession...*SIGH!...this is my own darn fault!


  2. Kimba4318

    Kimba4318 New Member

    Hi hiney.. I am with you. My hubby used handle all of the finances.. when he did, we were debt free (minus the mortgage) and always paid cash for everything unless we could pay it off at the end of the month. I took it over to relieve some stress from him and OMG... that DID NOT happen.

    He makes very good money... from the outside, we look like we are livin' the life, but inside, I al awake all thru the night worried how I am going to "rob peter to pay paul"... I feel like I am always putting out fires. I seem to wait for the phone calls to pay bills. So sad.... I feel terrible. I have 3 kids, so I know what you mean it is so hard.

    My daughter needs a car - turned 16 in Sept., she is graduating a year early from HS due to her good grades. I feel we need to buy her a used car and not to mention,how in the heck are we going to pay for College. Hubby had this all in check until I took over.

    Like I said, he makes very good money and he does not spend a dime on anything. He leaves here at 4:30 in the morning and returns at 6:00 at night. Geez... I cannot even offer him a clean house to walk into at night.

    I wish I had an answer to help you.... will your retirement pay down all of the debt so you can start fresh? I know that will be losing your cushion, but I was wondering if that will give you a fresh start.

    Now.... I have confessed too & do not feel a darn bit better either. We need ot hit the lottery, huh? Sorry for my rant... Just letting you know I am with you. We need help!
    Hugs
    Kim

  3. Lolalee

    Lolalee New Member

    Here's the good news....you are not the only one who has credit card debt. Thousands of Americans have credit card debt. My husband and I had credit card debt many years ago. We had 3 boys and many needs and not enough cash. Looking back, however, a lot of those needs were "wants".

    Now for the solution...it will not happen overnight and it will take a lot of committment on your part, but I would advise you to Google Dave Ramsey. He has a no-fail get out of debt plan that helped us not only get out of debt, but accumulate some assets over the years. He helps you get rid of the shame and teaches you how to budget and prioritize. My son, who has a wife and 4 children, recently began following Dave Ramsey's plan and they are smiling now.

    Remember, it is your responsibility to teach your children how to manage money. Where else are they going to learn it? So, now you've got it off your chest...time to get out of debt. Be patient and realize that children don't need most of the stuff we parents want them to have.

    Best of luck.

    Lolalee
    [This Message was Edited on 11/14/2006]
  4. Butterfly_of_grace

    Butterfly_of_grace New Member

    As far as what I will take out of my IRA it will pay off the credit cards. As far as the mortgages though, well, I guess they will eventually be paid down. I have one main mortgage and then a home equity which isnt a very big one but its debt and its there therefor its bothering me becuase some of theat was from old credit card debt...and the cirvcle just keeps going round and round. The cycle is hard to stop. Good news is that I still have about 35% equity on my home but it kills me to think I USE TO have ALOT more. I gues sI should be happy we have that. The WORST is that we need space in our house. NOT a huge addition. just another small bedrooma nd a bathroom....6 people only 1 bath and 3 bedrooms...its tight here...we even checked into moving but it would be more...what Im trying to get at is that we could ahve probly had an addition built (nothing big nor fancy just a little more space) if it wasnt for the credit card debt and the visciuos cycle Im having a hard time stopping.

    I KNOW where the money is going...its going to WASTE! YES there are ways of cutting back certain things...we dont go out to dinner every week, we rent video and have family movie nights instead of going to the movies because its a heck of alot cheaper and theres so many other things we have done without...but I DO know that I have TOO MANY CLOTHES that I DONT wear alogn with the kids too. Theres some of the problem there....

    Diane sees a SALE sign and POOF I buy it because its a good deal...if its a day that Im stressed out feleing alone and /or isolated or just depressed...POW off I go to spend money to fill that void...
    Its a problem....like alcohol to a drunk...I have a problem....and I have been silent way too long about it.

    Thansk for making me feel NOT SO ALONE...I needed that. I am ashamed at myself.

    Next yr hubby gets a nice lump sum from his annuity from his law suit from a car accident when he was younger. It will help us get a new van which we are in desperate need of (ours is 8 yrs old and falling apart). The rest of the money will pay down some more debt (the remander of his car loan) and then the rest needs to be placed in an account for EMERGENCIES ONLY!. I WISH we could use it towards the addition...we also have three more heads of braces to pay for at $5000 each! SHEESH it enver ends. The kids may have to do without the braces for now until things get a little better I guess.

    Thansk for the advice and the comfort.
    I love this place....love all of you guys for NOT judging me and making me feel worse. Im alreayd beating myself up Im glad no one else is helping here...thanks a million! You are a God send!
  5. Kimba4318

    Kimba4318 New Member

    he he - sorry had to laugh... I meant to say "HI Honey" on the last post, but did not mean to call you a "Hiney" You are NOT a "Hiney" sorry - just realized that and wanted to give you a laugh... I'm a nut case these days. LOL

    I know about the braces and all the other expenses and YES I have a closet full of clothes with tags on them. I do not know why.... I think it is like you said... If I feel down or depressed - I think "I deserve it" - I get so mad at myself. Sad thing is, I seem to wear the same comfortable pair of jogging pants/sweats every darn week - just the comfort clothes cause I do not feel like I have anywhere to go and do not have the energy to "dress up".

    This may be a small thing but last year I took all of my clothes and kids clothes that had tags on them and any other items I never used and listed themon ebay (hope I can say that). I ended up bringing in about $3,000 dollars in 2-3 months. I got addicted to it.

    It really helped last year. You would not believe what you may have lying around that is wanted by someone else. It also felt good to clear out some space for the stuff I did use. I had clothing for the kids and toys that they grew out of before using it and that stuff sold well too. Just a thought. Maybe you have done that before. I need to get it all together and do it again now.

    Hugs
    Kim

  6. maggiemae55

    maggiemae55 New Member

    I am a single mom of 3, and i'm in the process of filing for bankrupcy. never in my wildest dreams did i think it would come to this. i am filing a chapter 13 so i can keep my house.

    i'm hurt, angry, ashamed, but it costs alot to raise 3 with all their needs, not to mention cost of owning a home ( and i really, really don't want to sell my house). I work 3 part time jobs, but it just isn't enough. I also live in a higher cost of living area.

    My father is wealthy, but has turned his back on me, and said I am a burdon. I am 51!! I never thought my life would be like this!!!

    Like we don't have enough stress to deal with :-(

    Warmly,
    maggie
  7. SusanEU

    SusanEU New Member

    Oh, I know exactly how you feel.

    My cards go up and up, and it is just me comforting myself with spending.

    I've been getting on EBay and spending on all kinds of things I don't need. It's like I get the rush of buying it, then when I get the stuff, I feel so guilty.

    Vicious circle.

    Take Care, Sue in Ontario
  8. bmadan

    bmadan New Member

    I can totally relate. I am only 27 and have sky high credit card debt. The sad thing is that I was so, so close to having it all paid off and then, guess what...the Shopping bug hit me.

    I refuse to tell my parents or sister because of the shame I have and the disappointment it will bring them. I hate to admit it because it's me failing and I HATE to fail.

    Yesterday, I sat down and drew up a budget. I owe so much that it will take me 3 full years to pay it all down. Luckily I am able to work full time and I do make a decent salary, but it is all going straight to the bills.

    I live at home with my parents and everyone keeps saying, "oh, you're so smart saving all that money". I feel like crawling in a hole. What freaking money? I have zilch in my savings and checking accounts.

    A friend recently mentioned looking into the Dave Ramsey website and I am going to do that too as well as stick to my budget. I felt really good today knowing that I have a plan and every day I am going to tell myself over and over again to stick to it.

    I believe in second chances and I think if we fail, we just need to get back up, dust yourself off and try again.

    How about you take all the credit cards and lock them away for emergency use only? That is what I have done. Make a listing of all your bills and how much the balance is, how much the minimum payment is and when the payments are do.

    You can then figure out how much to pay each one and it help you SEE how much you owe. When I did this yesterday, it scared me to know that is how much money I owe. I am young, and despite the illnesses, I could be out globe trotting with the money I make, yet because of my mistakes, I am stuck at home, counting pennies.

    I have read that you should pay off the smallest debt first and then when you are done, take what you normally would pay for that debt and add it to the new smallest debt and keep going from there. It is supposed to be what Dave Ramsey calls the "snowball" effect/approach or something like that.

    It made me feel good to have a plan. It might help you too. You can even post it where you would have to see it daily so it reminds you to stick to your plan.

    Good Luck,
    Barbara :)
  9. Abbycat

    Abbycat New Member

    You've heard some good ideas about how to start getting out of debt. Another idea is to take your clothes, especially the ones with tags still on them to a consignment shop. They will sell the stuff you don't need and take a percentage, but you will get something back.

    About buying kids clothes and other things, consignment shops and even resale shops are great ways to get stuff at a great price and will satisfy your urge to shop and get a bargain. Jeans that retail for 50 bucks you can get for five.

    The problem is that it is so easy to buy now pay later, that we don't realize what we spend. I'm very careful and I still have too much credit debt. All the commercials and ads tell you that you "deserve" this and that. I hate that word. Ads are designed to make you spend.

    The problem that you and many others have what is called spending addiction. My sister got caught up in this and has to fight it everyday like a drug addiction. The clue to this is that you feel better after you shop. Like getting high. And you feel remorse afterwards.

    You do have to deal with that. I have a coworker that has a shopping addiction. She has a condition called hypomania and drugs have helped her a lot. Do a search on hypomania and see if it sounds like you at all.

    Abbycat
  10. Cycie

    Cycie New Member

    Been there done that and am grateful to be away from it all now. My second husband had a bad credit rating, so fool me got 2 cards and ended up having to go bankrupt when he left me for another woman and in debt up to my neck.

    I had 4 children to raise as well,on my own. So I know how hard it is.

    my advice is to you, pay them off as quick as you can and CUT THEM UP, it is amazing what you can do without when you try.
    You say it is so easy with the card, it's NOT you know, they make things harder because you only go buy stuff you really can do without.
    For the last 6 years, if I can't pay cash, I don't get it.
    Believe me it feels great not to have all the worry.
    I just wish I had learned this a lotta years before.

    I don't own my house, I rent, but I don't owe anyone money.
    Good Luck with it all
    Soft hugs
    Cycie
  11. Butterfly_of_grace

    Butterfly_of_grace New Member

    thank you for all your advice. I am going to get the book that a few people suggested here (Financial Peace) and Im ging to start planning. With the coming new yr Illl have to once again dip into what lil is left in my IRA and pay it all down and also sacrafice the penalties under the tax law but since iM not making that much money at my job it should balance out where we will still get some sort of tax refund the following yr and not pay out any taxes (god willing).

    As far as the shopping "high" it feels great when I get a good deal and I buy myself another piece of clothing or whatever and then POOF its like crashing emotionally afterward...like an emptiness and guilt. Just like a druggy or alcoholic would feel like....crazy isnt it? I was never like this...I guess its the way I must be dealing with my stresses in my life now...its scary though. I hope that I will get a hold of it and stop.

    HUGS! thanks again!