October 24, 2016

Hey everyone! We have a fantastic dear debt letter from Brittney. Brittney took out student loans to get her undergraduate degree, then promptly did everything wrong. She spent years in denial before finally coming to terms with, then learning how to manage, her debt. She now works as a writer and editor for BadCredit.org, where she uses her personal financial journey as inspiration to help others overcome their own mistakes, and make better financial decisions.

p.s. check out my profile on BadCredit.org!


Dear Debt,

I owe you an apology.

I hate to admit it, but for the longest time, I hated you. I couldn’t even stand the thought of you — except to pass blame.

Every time I made a financial stumble, you were my go-to excuse. For years I blamed you. Each silly, ignorant, or downright stupid mistake became entirely your fault. I was so sure that without you, everything would have been exactly as I wanted it to be. I convinced myself that you were the source of my troubles — and you had done it all on purpose.

But none of it was your fault. It was mine.

It took a while, I’m ashamed to say, but I finally accepted the truth. I realized that you weren’t out to get me. You didn’t try to ruin my credit, or put me behind in my financial goals. You couldn’t have known that I would make so many poor decisions, and get into so much trouble.

You just wanted to help me go to school — and you did.

You helped me venture away from home for the first time, to cross the country to the big city, where I could see my academic dreams unfold. You helped pay for classes, books, and even the roof over my head. You gave me the education for which I had been pining, and all I gave you was grief.

So, I’m sorry.

You weren’t the bad guy in our relationship; I was. I’m sorry I blamed you for all these years, when I should have taken responsibility for my own mistakes. I’m sorry I spent so long hating you, instead of fixing me. (Oh, and I’m sorry for all the horrible things I said about you to my friends.)

I’ve learned a lot since we first met. I’m done blaming you, and I’m done hiding from you. In fact, I’d even like us to be friends. I think we could accomplish some really amazing things, working together.

Here’s to the future.


Melanie is a freelance writer currently living in Portland, Oregon. She is passionate about education, financial literacy, and empowering people to take control of their finances. She writes about breaking up with debt, freelancing, and side hustle adventures at DearDebt.com.

Currently she puts more than 50% of her income towards debt, while living a frugal, fun life. In addition to her love of personal finance, art and music, she is also a karaoke master. Follow the adventure @DearDebtBlog.

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5 responses to “Dear Debt, I’m Sorry”

  1. Miss Mazuma says:

    Awww – I love this. So often the blame is put on the wrong subject. Good for you for coming out of the fog, taking control, and finding a way to turn it around. It’s never easy to admit to being wrong – even when it is to yourself! Good things ahead for you… 🙂
    Miss Mazuma recently posted…The Aunty Fund – Teaching My Nieces and Nephews All Things MoneyMy Profile

  2. This is a terrific letter. Really like how you acknowledge the benefits of your debt. Being able to get rid of your debt is great, but what your debt was for doesn’t have to be all bad.
    Financial Panther recently posted…My Postmates Side Hustle: Getting Paid To Bike Around TownMy Profile

  3. Jack says:

    Great twist on “it’s not you, it’s me”…

    The biggest problem with debt isn’t having it, it’s our relationship to it and how to use it.

    Use it well, it accelerates you.

    Use debt poorly and it destroys you.
    Jack recently posted…Lending Club P2P Portfolio Update: Q3 2016My Profile

  4. Centsai says:

    Debt definitely has a bad reputation! It was refreshing to see your positive point of view on how debt allowed you to go to school and branch out! Rather than hating on debt, making it your friend can actually work out in your favor in the long run! This was a great letter Melanie, thanks for sharing!
    Centsai recently posted…Comment on Why is the $100 bill purple? by Hannah RoundsMy Profile

  5. I love the part where you apologize for all the bad things you said about debt to your friends. I’m guilty of that too. 😉
    Catherine Alford recently posted…A Life & Family Update & Getting Back to BasicsMy Profile

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