Post # 1
I’m sitting here crying right now, I’m afraid my FI won’t want to marry me because I’m in debt. I have zero CC debt and no debt from “stupid choices” I am $45k in debt from my masters degree and $9k in debt from my car. My FI knows I have debt from school and knows I have a car loan. He knows how much my car loan was for but he didn’t know how much my school loan was for and honestly neither did I. I just called today to find out exactly how much I owed on both loans and find out the interest rates.
Our wedding is set for August 4th and we are NOT incurring any debt for our wedding. My parents and his parents gave us generous sums of money and we have a “wedding” bank account that has enough money to pay for our wedding in full in August.
I have a good job and make a decent salary, my FI makes triple what I make so it isn’t like we are hurting for money. Actually, I have enough money in my savings account to pay off the school loan in full but I don’t think that is a smart thing to do because it would clean out my savings account.
When we were discussing this yesterday he was making me feel SO bad about the loans. I mean its not like I racked up thousands of dollars in CC debt or acted irresponsibly with money. I got a masters degree for goodness sake! I also don’t have a very expensive car, I drive a very nice Jeep so it isn’t like I bought myself a land rover or something. Also, I am working as a speech pathologist which pays well and there are plenty of job opportunities in my field and unlike some fields the job outlook is very good.
Any advice? I feel so sad.
Post # 3
i would pay off the car loan asap since that wont wipe your savings out and just make above the mininum on the loans.. i doubt your future husband would call it quits before the wedding because of this debt. just like u said its not cause u were frivilous with money it was for school.. hugs
Post # 4
I don’t think he won’t marry you over it. It sounds to me like he didn’t realize the full amount of your debt. I get that it’s not “bad debt” persay, but it is still debt, and debt he’d be liable for if anything happened. Tell him your concerns about him freaking out over money – you need to talk it out, since most marriages that end, end because of money issues. Be on the same page with him.
I wouldn’t recommend paying the whole thing off if it would destroy your savings, but I’d start overpaying on the balance to pay it off quicker.
Post # 5
((HUGS)). Wow, I am so sorry! No way he should make you feel bad about this, in my opinion. Your debt is somewhat substantial but by no means is it in any way unconquerable. Many, many people have way worse financial situations than you do and still get married and get along just fine. In fact, my FI has some debt leftover from his divorce. While that does not make me happy, I would never dream of making him feel bad about decisions he made prior to meeting me. I tell him that because I love him and we’re getting married, we’re in this together and I’m willing to help all I can. That’s what marriage and love are – working together.
You sound as though you have a good plan and your debt is mostly student loans. What you gained in the way of education is so worth what you’ll pay back. You have a stable, steady career and a plan to pay off your debt, what more could he ask for? I agree with you to not wipe out your savings to pay off student loans. Pay on a schedule and keep your savings for emergencies.
Try talking to him again to reassure him you have this under control and are making wise decisions, with his help, going into the future. Maybe he was initially upset and said the wrong things but if he has time to think it over he may come around and see that you’re doing the best you can.
Post # 6
Is your student loans government or private? If they are government, reassure him that those loans have easy payment options, do not hurt most of your loan applications, and are often seen as “good debt” as it’s a lasting investment.
But I agree with everyone else. Make a plan to pay off your car loan as quickly as you can. The sooner you own your car right out, the better investment it is. As for your college loans, I would recommend reading “Young Broke and Fabulous” by Suzie Orman. I feel like she gives great advice on how to deal with college debt.
Post # 7
Thanks ladies, I really appreciate the support. My school loans were Sallie Mae and consolidated through Direct Loans. I pay ~325 per month on them. I am planning to pay off my car right now, since what is owed is under 10k it won’t be a huge hit to my savings.
Post # 8
@Ballet513: Please let me add that if he considers not marrying you due to this reason I’d think long and hard about what that says about his potential as a husband. Last I heard marriage is “for better or worse, richer or poorer . . . “
Post # 9
Agreed with sunfire that if he really does not want to marry you just because of the debt then you should have a long think about the future before you actually say I Do.
Perhaps more importantly, you and your fiance need to learn how to talk to eachother about unpleasant things. There will be plenty of problems in the future— that’s just part of life. Someone will get sick, or lose their job, or make a bad decision about something, or maybe it’s just plain old bad luck that is going to mess with you, like a tree falling through your roof during a hurricane. You will not always 100% agree with each other, and you need to learn how to handle it so that you do not end up crying and he does not make you feel like you need to cry.
You have to learn to communicate openly, honestly, and with respect. Take this as an opportunity for both of you to express not only how the debt makes you feel, but also how each one’s reaction to the debt makes you feel.
Maybe I’m just spoiled by having the most incredible, realistic, practical, loving and supportive fiance but when we had our “debt conversation”, it ended up with me feeling relieved, confident, and comforted by the fact that, even though we’d run up a stupid amount of debt (an unexpected $40k roofing job, thanks a lot tin roof), we were going to work as a team to chip away at it. That’s the kind of feeling you should get from your fiance, and the only tears should be the good kind where you just can’t help leaking a little because he’s so durn good to you.
Post # 10
I think you need to pay off the car loan which will still leave you a lot of money in the bank, and really bump up your student debt payments. Make a plan to have it payed off in a year or two. 325 a month isn’t that much on a 45,000 debt. It will take you years at that rate.
Post # 11
He must not have a very firm grasp on the reality of how people fund their schooling these days if he is freaking out about student loans. Good luck finding someone who doesn’t have them! And, almost everyone has a car loan! He’s being really unreasonable.
Post # 12
I think it’s strange that he’s making you feel so guilty over school debt. I have about the same amount of student loans as you did and FI just took it as part of the package in marrying me– he has some (much less) debt from his degree, and we call it “our loans” and “our debt” rather than blaming one person or the other (even though mine is probably 3 times the amount of his, and he’s already started paying his!). I needed an MA to advance in my field so I made the choice and he respects that decision.
How do you plan on managing finances after the wedding? Are you combining accounts? Is he going to make most of the spending decisions? Have you talked about how you plan on dividing up bills?
Post # 13
Honestly, his response was probably just sticker shock from the amount. At least, I think that’s how I would feel. Maybe once he thinks it over more rationally, you’ll be able to talk about it again.
Don’t feel bad about the amount. That’s the education system. At least you’re putting it to use in that you have a good job in the field and that degree enabled you to make more money and whatnot to pay down the loan.
Post # 14
When I clicked on this, I thought you were going to say you had tens of thousands in credit card debt or something. Student loans are something else entirely. That doesn’t show irresponsibility, so I don’t know what he’s upset about.
How did he make you feel bad? What did he say?
Post # 15
You can let him know that the average graduate has about 25K in student loans. That’s for undergrad only… where you are more likely to get student financial aid in terms of scholarships.
Post # 16
@Ballet513: First, federal student loans are dischargeable if something happens to you, so he wouldn’t be liable for anything.
I agree with PP that if he has such a problem with the fact that you decided it was in your best interest to get a higher degree and took out the loans necessary for that, it may be a larger conversation you two need to have. Is he somehow viewing this loan as making you less of a responsible person? If so, I’m incredibly irresponsible with my law school loans (and good job that goes with them). Honestly, and this is just my personal opinion, I find it infuriating that he feels he can judge your worth based on a student loan decision.