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Chapter 17. Death, Taxes, and Other Impo... > Getting out of Debt - Pg. 181

Death, Taxes, and Other Important Stuff 181 "I'm so embarrassed about my debts. I don't want to ask anyone for help because I don't want anyone to know about them." Strategy:If you're embarrassed to tell friends or family about your debts, don't be. You don't have to show your laundry list of debts to the world, but seeking advice, emotional support, and possibly even financial assistance from carefully chosen friends or family members can lift a big weight off your shoulders. If you choose the right people, they're not going to ridicule or lecture you; they'll want to help. For more anonymity, you can always turn to a credit counseling service or financial advisor. Remember, they've heard it all, so your situation is not going to shock them. As for the creditors themselves, there's been a movement lately toward training bill collectors to be nicer and more like regular human beings. Although there's a chance that they'll ask you why you haven't been able to pay, they're not likely to grill you or make you feel like a bad person. They just need to know if and when you can make payments. If they do get nasty with you, take their names and report them to their supervisors. "I don't think my debts are a problem." Strategy:Being in denial is a big mistake. Maybe your debts aren't a problem now, but they could be if they continue to grow. Or perhaps your financial records and bills are disorganized, so you don't realize how big your debts are. Schedule a time to go through your bills and make a list of debts so that you can see what your true situation is. "I don't have the money to pay off my debts." Strategy:You might be surprised to know the extent to which creditors are willing to work something out with you. They might reduce the total amount you owe, reduce the interest being charged, eliminate late fees, spread out monthly payments, or make other arrangements that you can handle. You can try to arrange these deals individually or with the help of a credit counseling service.