February 5, 2016

Hello debt fighters and hustlers! Today we have a great dear debt letter from Heather, a 27-year-old preschool teacher who is battling student loan debt. Enjoy!

Dear Debt,

You and I have not always seen eye to eye. Some days you think I should owe more than I do. Some days I just casually forget to pay you, but you are always there, and I think it’s time we consider breaking up. It’s definitely you, not me.

I have taken out a student loan from the federal government every year since 2006. That’s NINE LONG YEARS OF ACCUMULATION. Now, at  $73,421.30, I’d say I’ve collected enough of your junk. According to Navient, I can be rid of you by 2040 by paying the minimum due.

I will be 52 years old. Maybe I will get lucky and stay in this one non-profit job for the next ten years and be able to have the government waive the rest of my payments due. Provided I make 120 consecutive ones before hand on time, and assuming this type of loan forgiveness even exists ten years from now. Nothing like being 38 and paying off my student loans from 20 years ago.

Instead, I think I’ll try something a little different.

Instead I want to try and pay off my student loan debt in five years. It’s going to be difficult. I may need to do a little side hustle here or there, and I definitely won’t be able to go to Dunkin Donuts on the regular, but it will be worth it.

I am worth living a debt free existence.

And in five years, I won’t even be thinking of you.


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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6 responses to “Dear Debt, I Am Worth It”

  1. Sonia says:

    I’m right there with you! Without a doubt, getting rid of that debt as soon as you can is the way to go. Wish I had started earlier, that’s for sure!

    Good luck!

  2. Pam says:

    You can do it. My husband and i just paid off $110,000 in combined student loan debt ($64k for me and $46k for him + $10k in credit card debt. what a relief that was. I also work at a non-profit and he works at a bank. it was tough, but it can be done. to learn more about my story visit mymoneycounts.org

  3. Mortimer says:

    We are working on tackling all of our debts in five years too! You can do it. Once you start thinking seriously about the benefits of getting out of debt, it seems so much more achievable. As the yogis say, move into the pain, and watch it dissolve. Good luck!
    Mortimer recently posted…Step 1: Do Nothing. Step 2: Profit.My Profile

  4. I’m right there with you! I couldn’t imagine still having student loan debt in my 50s! I decided to pay mine off in three years. It’s incredibly difficult, but it’s definitely going to be worth it!
    Jen @ Frugal Millennial recently posted…Goals Update – February 2016My Profile

  5. This is SO encouraging! I hate when I hear people say they’re going to be in student loan debt forever and don’t do anything about it. You are worth it — we all are! It takes hard work and commitment, but the pay off is worth all of it.
    Natalie @ Financegirl recently posted…Will The Next Generation Be Broke, Busted & Disgusted? (…and how to ensure your kids won’t be.)My Profile

  6. Charlie says:

    You are only 27, pretty young compared to many others, I’m glad that you are working on it now.
    Good luck on your debt-free journey! You will make it.

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