Thanks for this article, BIDER reader!
I once dated a guy for a while and it looked like it was getting serious. He lived in Maryland. When I met him, he was seemingly in awe of my profession. He had the sort of practical job you get right out of college, and did pretty well--but not as well as I at the time. However, he was NOT in awe of my debt. He asked me how many thousands of dollars I borrowed to go to law school. Try TENS of thousands. I thought it was $60K, because I was in that cloud of delusion that keeps you from adding up the separate loans on the back of the KHELC statement.
Well, fast forward to a later date, when I was trying to buy the apartment that I live in now. I figured that he would come up to New York eventually and live in it since his job was more easily done across state lines than my own. My mortgage broker, at some point in the process, alerted me to the fact that my credit score took a slight hit since my credit was run in Maryland last month. "WHAT????" says I. I instantly knew who the culprit was. I called that fat bastard and confronted him about it. Instead of a heartfelt apology, I was met with stinging accusations. You don't owe $60K in student loans, you owe $72K!!! What the hell else have you lied to me about?! I owe no one anything! If we got married, what are you bringing into this marriage, negative numbers?!
Whatever. The beginning of the end. I wasn't into him anyways. At the time, I was livid and I still am because he had no right to run my credit. Besides, I don't owe nearly as much as other people do. Right? However, a BIDER reader sent me this article that deals with this issue and shed some light on how my ugly ex must have felt. And I kind of get it now.
And hey, look! It happened to this chick too!
Ms. Eastman said she had told him early on in their relationship that she had over $100,000 of debt. But, she said, even she didn't know what the true balance was; like a car buyer who focuses on only the monthly payment, she wrote 12 checks a year for about $1,100 each, the minimum possible. She didn't focus on the bottom line, she said, because it was so profoundly depressing.
But as the couple got closer to their wedding day, she took out all the paperwork and it became clear that her total debt was actually about $170,000. "He accused me of lying," said Ms. Eastman, 31, a San Francisco X-ray technician and part-time photographer who had run up much of the balance studying for a bachelor's degree in photography. "But if I was lying, I was lying to myself, not to him. I didn't really want to know the full amount."So, the question is, when do you tell your squeeze that you're in debt? This is probably timely for Jobless Juris Doctor. I hear she's found someone to keep her warm at night, right in time for fall. When should she drop the bomb on her new beau?
For more on how Student Loan Debt Destroys, check out this article by Lynnette Khalfani-Cox. Also, Cryn Johannsen, an Indentured Student Advocate, put together this piece with many testimonials to how Student Loans have destroyed people's lives. Trust me, these stories are stranger than fiction and more heartbreaking than Titanic.