The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.

Student Loan Debt Therapy

Student Loan Debt Therapy

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


If someone would have told me that I would be paying $1,200.00 per month in student loan debt 15 years after graduating from a top tier law school, I would have told them, "Go suck a lemon and leave the crack alone." Well, here I am 15 years later paying $1,200.00 per month in student loan payments.

In fact, I paid over $11,000.00 in student loan interest last year and could not write the interest off on my taxes. Why??? Because I made too much money according to the tax code.

So at the suggestion of a close friend, I have started this blog as a forum to vent my frustration about being a slave to student loan debt. It depresses me each time I make an online payment to one creditor and write a check to the attorney representing my other creditor.

I know. I know. I should be grateful that I have the money to pay my monthly payments. I am grateful. Really I am. But if I had one wish (beside being healthy for the rest of my life with greater discernment skills) it would be to payoff all my debts by December 31, 2008.



  2. over $125,000.00 in student loan debt.

    what did you study?

  3. All my debt is from law school. I borrowed $65,000.00 and with compound interest it is up to $125,000.00

  4. Crikey,

    so your not a hot shot lawyer yet then?

    i think id have started a company myself for $65,000


    that said after i finish my degree i shall be at about £20K under.

    Not easy.

  5. The sad part is that I am an attorney. LOL I have been practicing law for 13 years.

  6. STUDENT LOANS WERE CREATED BY SATAN!! I'm a 6-figure/yr lawyer and live like I bag groceries because I pay more then $1,300.00/month in loans. All i hear are ads preaching "we can help" or "consolodate now" but when you speak to them its "oh, you can't consolodate subsidized with unsubsidized or Federal with Private" or "your options are limited to deferment, but we'll get you for double in a few months" or "I don't have the brains to think outside of what my computer screen tells me."

    It's racket worse than the mafia. My credit's been ruined (I wasn't always making 6 figures and defaulted on one loan) and NO ONE can help. The government won't give me a tax break because i make too much so now i'll have to pay MORE because of my loans. I can't buy a house, I can't do anything!!

    The lazy minimum wage lady at my school Financial Aid Center who conned me into this at the age of 18 never told me how much i would have to pay back, just said "sign here and you get to go to school!!" The bottom line is that i have a $118K debt and paying in mortgage terms for $200K!! It's simply a raw deal!! I should be paying more in the $500-600/month range, but i no one is willing to work with me and idiot phone reps just want you to repeat your birthday for the 200th time and get you off the phone so they can get back to playing solitaire.

    We are smart people and should be able to figure SOMETHING out. Where's our bailout?!?!?! This is why good people go bad!!

    Venting does nothing... we need action!!

  7. Andy, we are brother and sister in the stuggle. Let's put our heads together and figure it out. You are right. We need to pay our debts.

    Did they give you an exit interview when you left law school whereby they gave you a schedule on what your loans would cost per month??? Well, I did. I was told that my monthly payment would be approximately $325. It was all a lie. TERI is the great Satan of all.

  8. Sidebar: Didn't venting help you feel a little better? : - )

  9. I feel your pain. I'm an engineer who didn't complete her Masters. I just couldn't bring myself to borrow anymore money. As long as I'm employed through most of next year, my student loans will be paid off by Dec 2010 at the latest. Adjusting for inflation, I will have paid over $40k in interest for the "benefit" of a degree and graduate studies. I'm a fool.

  10. Oh BOO FREAKING HOO! You poor LAWYERS who have loan payments. Hey, you know what? My payments are $550 a month, and my paychecks? About 1200 a month. I don't even have enough money to get a shitty apartment. Unless some kind of magic job fairy comes and grants me a decent job I won't even be able to move out of my parents house until I'm 33 or 34. Right about now, it looks like the people I know who didn't go to college are in better shape than I am because they don't have my loans, and they make the same money I do.

  11. Students applying for loans find difficult to come out of debts due to high rate of interest. Banks should offer loan to the Students with low rate of interest so that they can pay off their loans and come out of debts. Life is Better When You Don't Owe Other People Money". Due to debts students are in depression for rising cost of it. It’s right that students should meet with financial aid officers.

  12. This has been the absolute worst thing to ever happen to me. Im glad I found this site and hope it still has an active community. My problem is I owe 50,000 in student debt and my father's name is attached to it. I also havent even finished up undergrad yet. I have paid so much in interest it just wont go down let along go away. The school I went to was a complete joke and I never should have went there to begin with. I got absolutely nothing from it except an interest in a new career path. He is an a-hole when it comes to money and a control freak. He is pretty much holding me hostage and I have to do what he tells me because his name is attached to this loan. Right now I have to go into the dreadful military so the loan is no longer in his hair, but my life is going to be a living hell worse than what it is now. I live with what you could consider a minor preview of what the military life is like and hate it. If I have to go in its going to be the absolute form of what Im dealing with, and Im not having that anymore. Its hard finding a job and if I had that I couldnt move out of my parents house and have my own life. I moved out before and everything was fine for a while. then the stupid loans kicked in and my father pretty much told me that the loan came before my own life (rent bills etc.). I couldnt afford both and had to unfortuantely come home. Prior to that I ended up in even more debt trying to keep up with rent (which went up because of my roommates irresponsibility) and that stupid loan. I just want this nightmare to end once and for all. I hope that I find a winning scratch off or hit the jackpot for the lottery because I am on the brink of ending it all. My whole life has been nothing but in the clutches of others control, slavery, and dealing with debt collectors. If I had the money, I would pay off my debt and IMMEDUIATELY move out. I have no say so in my own life because my father thinks that controlling someone is the best and safe option, plus my mother just agrees with him and also makes things worse. I wish that God could just give me the one opportunity I need to be free from this nightmare of slavery and depression. I am a good person with so much to offer this world and so much to live for, but I cant because of this stupid freaking debt and my father. This is all I need and I am finally free to live my own life and do things on my own my way. Good luck to everyone and God bless.

  13. wow, thats really sucky.I'm sorry you're going through it, I hope it works out. I'm here venting cause I owe 50,000 and its been 3 years since i graduated and have been making payments and it hasnt even gone down over 2 grand! its really sad. I just got off the phone with someone at the loan company who said with interest it will take me 13 moe years of near $500 payments a month until its paid off. She said it would be done by May 1st, 2023. I'm like are you serious? I cant even fathom that. The loan payments are high for me since I live in NC and make under 30 grand. the education was SO not worth it. I just got married and want to buy a house and have a family but I dont see that happening because of these loans. I shouldve gone to community college. God please get me out of this mess!

    God Bless you all.

  14. so isnt there a loop hole for giving loan out to minors starting out in school and also what about this being like loan sharking..where is there justice

  15. I'm really glad that I found this blog. It's both sad and nice that I'm not alone. When I was in school and taking out loans I feel like I completely had my head in the sand. I had no idea what I was doing and how serious and life-ruining my actions were. I thought going to college and grad school were responsible things that good people do. I didn't realize that in the long run I was probably better off never getting anything beyond my undergraduate degree. I have made many mistakes in my life and getting my masters and partially completing a doctorate are the biggest mistakes I have ever made. I owe an overwhelming $182,000. I wish I could say that I had a law degree or a medical degree, but no..I'm just a teacher. I made a couple of mistakes
    1. Not paying interest or making min. loan payments after my undergrad degree was completed and I had started teaching. I wish I had been more financially savvy to realize this is what I should be doing.
    2. Deciding that I should get a Masters and a doctorate

    To make it worse...I'm now married (happily) but my husbands income puts us over the income limit so that I can not recieve any student loan forgiveness. Unfortunately, his income isn't high enough to pay off such high student loans in a resonable amount of time.

    The only solution...getting divorced. As a single person with only my teaching income I could qualify for student loan forgiveness within after 10 years according to a new government program.

    Unfortunatley my husband won't even think consider this an option.

    How horrible, that the only solution to my student loan problem would be a divorce.

    These loans put a huge strain on our relationship. My anxiety is through the roof. I have no one to blame but myself. It frustrates me that people can declare bankruptcy when they get in over their heads after purchasing a house or maxing out their credit cards. I would gladly give back my Masters degree and credits that I earned as a doctoral student. In fact I would gladly have ALL of my degrees 'forclosed on' or 'repo'.

    I've honestly thought (many times) that there is no way out and that my husband would be better off with out me and the baggage I've brought into this relationship. Psychiatrists and anit-depressants can only do so much.

    Are there any solutions...

  16. At least some of you folks got a Master's or a higher degree and have something to shwo.... I just have a bachelors degree and owe 60k in student loan. I didn't party or do anything of that nature in college and still had to pay such high tution fees (CA out of state tution).

    Student Loans are pure evil... And yes, I hate student loans!

  17. I understand exactly how you all are feeling. I finished law school with about $130k in student loans. I was making about $44k gross a year. My monthly payments are about $1300. When you're 18-22, you really don't understand the long term ramifications of racking up all of this debt. It's a horrible system.

    I'm slowly but surely working on paying it all down but it's still a very long road ahead.

  18. You guys want to hear stupid??? I graduated with a four year degree in Finance (hahaha), and $50,000 in student loan debt.

    Every semester I was in school, I borrowed the MAXIMUM they would let me. After I paid tutition and books, I always had a couple grand left over which meant PARTY TIME.

    Even dumber??? After graduating, I deferred and defferred and deferred, and forbearance time and time and time again. Twelve years later in July 2009, I owed just over $71,000. Along with my other debts (no mortgage), I owed $120,000.

    Well, I finally got my act together. Twenty months later, I have my total debt down to $93,000. The student loan protion of my debt is down to $63,200. I have myself on a strict budget, which has me paying $1,500.00/month to debt. I will be debt free in 76 months.

    That still seems like an eternity, but the fact that I am going in a positive direction has made it possible for me to sleep at night.

    For those of you that aren't going in a positive direction, all I can say is do what ever you have to that's legal. Work 70 hours a week if you have to. Have no life outside of work if you have to. It's worth it in the long run.

  19. I'm glad I stumbled across this blog. I'm so embarrassed and stressed out right now. I'm just now realizing the effects of school loans and this is only the beginning. I'm currently working on my Masters in Teaching. In fact, I'll be graduating in May 2012. Although I'm still in school, I am unable to defer my loans because I only took one class (3 credits) this semester and I'll be doing the same for next semester. I didn't intend for that to happen. Unfortunately, I was supposed to do my student teaching this semester but failed one of the licensure exams so my student teaching was postponed. Well, one of my loans has been out of its grace period for a while now and they want $250 a month for it and starting January, more loans will need to be paid off.

    I'm so depressed because I just don't have the money for this. I'll admit also that my total school loan debt is enormous. Mine and my husbands school loan debt combined plus interest is around $240,000. I didn't even know it was this bad. I thought ours combined was $150,000...which still isn't good but better than $240,000! How are we going to be able to pay this off? We were both stupid with our loans when we received them. Like Danny above, we would usually get money back after tuition was covered and would use the rest of the loan money on things like buying computers, paying for the wedding, going on vacation, etc. A year after our marriage, we were talked into buying a house. We were sold on that $8,000 tax credit and at the time we weren't paying our school loans since we were in school. Our mortgage is almost 800 a month and we have a car note.

    This year has been difficult for us especially because my husband lost two jobs in the past 3 months. He just lost the last one this past week. Right now we have only my little income from serving at a restaurant. He's searching for jobs again but even when he gets a job it's not going to be enough for us to keep the house and stay afloat with all this debt to pay, not to mention our $3,000 in credit card debt. We talked to a reliable attorney who's a member of our church who said bankruptcy in our case is inevitable. He and us both are mad that lenders like Sallie Mae would even allow students to borrow so much money when they know students aren't going to be able to pay it off! I just wish I could erase time and do it over again. Like some of you, I begin to think maybe I shouldn't have gone to college at all! But, if I never went to school, I would have never met the man of my dreams. I love my husband dearly and I don't know what I'd do without him. God help us all. Money isn't everything. I'm so insecure about myself and ashamed of what I did in the past but I can't let it dictate my future. Of course, I'll be paying these loans until I die or until I'm 65, whichever comes first ( I hear the loans dissipate after 65 but who knows if that's even the truth) but I don't want this debt to take over my life. There are other things like my God and my family that keep me going. Praying for you all out there that you will find peace.

  20. I'm going on the Obama plan. Pay the minimum for 25 years then you don't have to pay anymore. I'm gonna have about $70,000 when I finish my masters. Or I'll get a public service job and get loan forgiveness. We have to work the system.

  21. so to the OP did you reach your goal of paying off loans?

    anyway i'm in a much worse situation than all of you. just live one day at a time.