• Difficulties with personal debt can and do create serious issues for people in their personal lives.
  • The embarrassment of admitting that you have a problem can cause those who are in debt to hide the problem from their loved ones.
  • Hiding money problems frequently ruins lives in the UK.

Financial issues are cited as the number one reason for divorce in the UK and debt problems can both tear families apart and leave the debt victim feeling alone like their life has been ruined.  With the majority of the UK population now experiencing increasing levels of debt, the stress on the most sacred of institutions is only likely to increase.  Indeed according to the latest research the average UK adult now averages £15,000 of unsecured debt, spread across five credit or store cards.

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It is exactly this kind of borrowing that debt victims stack their house of cards upon.  The credit card with a no or low interest rate offer seems too good to be true and thus the spending starts.  The odd treat here and there for hubby or your wife, the holiday that you’ve been meaning to take for a number of years and a few extras for the garden and you’re off and running with a further £5-10,000! That is before you suffer any sudden change in circumstance that was not unplanned.

At the time it seemed like a good idea, but once the honeymoon interest period finishes, so the repayment problems begin.  With little or no spare cash to pay off the debt, the victim feels compelled to borrow on other cards just to make the repayments.  However once this has started, it doesn’t take too long before you’ve got balances on all five of those cards, approaching or at the credit limit.  Forcing the debtor (possibly you) into a corner, this often leads to feelings of being trapped and feeling alone with nowhere to turn.

  • So having established that debt is a common problem, do you think you’re the only one not telling your partner?
  • Well, apparently not!

According to a survey conducted in 2010, there are an estimated 12.2million of us in the UK who have admitted to hiding financial problems from our partners and trying to live alone in debt, with the average amount of outstanding at £4,100. The majority of these cases had the debt existing prior to meeting their partner, thus they feel the responsibility of dealing with this debt falls on their shoulders and should be dealt with alone.

  • Let’s take Lauren and Mark’s story,

I had about £1,500 of debt stacked up on my credit card when I met Mark.  It was mostly due to over-spending on store cards, but I’d managed to pay these store cards off by consolidating them into one balance on my credit card.  What I hadn’t really counted on was how I would pay this back when the interest free period was up!

I just hadn’t budgeted for it!  Then there was the fact that ‘dating’ just cost me a fortune! A new frock for his work Christmas party (with new shoes of course!), meals out, trips to the theatre and the spending money for that weekend in New York!  That initial £1,500 had jumped to almost £5,000 – right on my credit limit!  So, I sold some old jewellery – nice stuff too – but that just about covered the minimum payment for 3 months, then I was back in the same situation.

I just about managed to fudge things for a few months more before Mark and I moved in together. I was so happy! But by now as I still hadn’t told him about the debt it seemed harder and harder to tell him.  He wanted to get married, go away on honeymoon and buy a house but I did not have the money to live day to day. Finally, Mark found a red letter and I was forced to tell him. He was furious, not with the debt but the fact I had not told him.  Sure girls do bang on a bit about trust and here Mark was telling me that this just showed I did not trust him.

If you can identify with Lauren’s story, or think you might be another Mark, don’t worry because there are ways out of the problem.

  • To start, clear honest communication is best, but after that why not trying calling our debt consultants to see if we can help.
  • One free call to Lewis Alexander from a land line, made in confidence using 0800 018 6868 could be the best call you make this year!
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