Michael J. Logan, Ltd.

Embarrassed about filing for bankruptcy? You are not alone

Is your bankruptcy the number one life event you are most embarrassed about? You may think having such feelings is ridiculous. After all, there are more humiliating things you can go through in life, right? Regardless, the truth is you are not alone in your feelings.

A National Foundation for Credit Counseling poll from 2014 revealed that 37 percent of Americans are more ashamed of their debt than they are of other traits, such as weight, age and account balance, with their credit score ranking a close second. With so many consumers embarrassed about matters of debt, it is easy to understand why you may be upset over bankruptcy.

Common feelings toward bankruptcy

Guilt, depression, stress and shame are all normal feelings for those going through the bankruptcy process. Even those who have not experienced it admit they would have these feelings and be scared to share their situation, says a 2016 poll by American Consumer Credit Counseling. Society has attached a lot of stigma to debt and bankruptcy, associating such circumstances with unintelligence, greed or laziness. Many factors can lead to this path, including change or loss of employment, medical bills and divorce.

Dealing with negative emotions

Just because your feelings are common does not mean you have to wallow in them. Making that connection to others does allow you to accept your feelings, though, which is the first step toward healing. Open up about your situation; you may be surprised at the support network and compassion you find. Your courage may help others share their experiences, too. If serious life events have contributed to your debt, then talking to a counselor may be beneficial in working through your emotions as well.

Most important, remember your thoughtful decision to file for bankruptcy is the answer to restarting your life and getting back on the path to financial success. That is nothing to be embarrassed about. 

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