DEAR CHRISTINE: Husband unaware of my debt issues
I HAVE three beautiful children and a wonderful husband, all of whom I love immensely.
I have always tried to give my children and husband the best and live a reasonably good life. However, I have been keeping a secret from my children – who are ages 18, 17 and 15 – and my husband of 25 years.
I am in huge credit card debt – way over my head. I have two credit cards, which my husband is not aware of, and I am a habitual spender.
I love to “help my children out”, buy things for them, for the house and for my husband. I have a reasonably good job but my debt is so high, it is causing me some sleepless nights. Apart from my bad debt is my struggle to stop spending.
I am afraid my husband will find out about my debt and either leave me or scold me. He is in the financial business and has always been frugal. He pays the monthly bills and we share the grocery costs. He also gives me money each month. All of us have health insurance, so our medical bills are always taken care of.
I am not sure what step to take to prevent this situation from escalating any further. Put bluntly, we are deep in debt and I need advice.
You need to talk to your husband about this situation and face the consequences. The reality is that this is a wake-up call and you must let him know the depth of your debt.
If he works in the financial field, he should be able to advise you on your spending and perhaps find ways and means to ensure you break this habit of yours.
If you are not prepared to speak to him and you make the decision to handle this situation on your own, see if you can work out a deal, perhaps with your payroll officer, where a set sum of money goes towards your credit card debt each month.
I strongly feel that you should give up your credit cards – either for a period of time or altogether if this is at all possible. The latter could be a big step, but you have the option of using a debit card which will allow you to spend only what you have deposited into the bank.
Speaking to a financial adviser would also still be a wise thing to do if you prefer to handle this matter on your own.
I have given you some choices. Choose the one with which you’re most comfortable and at the soonest get yourself out of this financial pit which you have dug.