Your Questions About Debt Busting Deals

Helen asks…

Is it really possible to change your life for the better?

I have been trying to make a new better life for myself but to no avail. I had a drug addiction and have been clean for six years with intention of going back. I have a mental disorder which made it impossible to live but I decided to take action and now I hardly ever have an “episode”, I guess on that front I have been more fortunate then others. Then lets get down to another thing, I have worked consistently for years but in-between not working several things happened. 1) I decided to shoplift… It was my decision but I stole food. 2) Later that year I got real drunk and stole an item from a party. I don’t remember doing so and can’t find the item anywhere but hey shit happens, I was charged and sent to prison. Since leaving prison which was bad I found a job but then the company went bust. I have been trying to survive but found it hard as I lost my house as well which meant that I did not have home therefore could not get any benefits…. In sheer stupidity I stole some food items from a shop (I am being charged… Whatever happens I deserve. I know that people are in a lot worse off situations then I am and do not shoplift….the rest is history. What I find really hard is why when things are really hard do I give in? apart from the moral thing why did I resort to shoplifting twice when clearly I am not good at it? I actually prefer to pay for items as it makes me feel good… I went to university have all this debt 10,000 no house, no job and possibly facing prison again. How does one stop punishing themselves? Is there a therapy group or someone to talk to that will help me understand myself and deal with this last negative personal trait? I deeply am sorry and upset by my actions and i have this fear that what happens if things get worse what will I do then? I came to the realisation that it would be better to just kill myself and then I would not have this problem, but then I thought that would be the easy way out… Will I ever be just normal? Will I be able to get a decent job despite having two convictions for theft. If I do back to prison will I ever have the opportunity fix my life and put things right? If I am sorry which I believe I am why can’t I sleep, why am destroying myself and how do I stop hurting people… I don’t want to be this anymore. I thought I was nothing I wanted to die until I realised I am something I am dishonest and I cant keep being this way… Help? any words? Anyone been in a similar situation and saw the light?

John answers:

Every decision that you make has the potential to make life better or worse. For life to become noticeably “better” you have to make a lot of positive choices. It’s not always easy but it certainly can happen. It took a lot of bad decisions to get to where you are now, it didn’t just happen to you and it wasn’t just 1 decision. Start making better decisions and it will get better.

Jenny asks…

I’m scared to go to the police about my husband stealing my pain MD’S(his father is a Miami ex-detective)HELP!?

I asked the following question before. I got excellent answers, however, many stated I should go to college to find better people. Just to let you know I went to college, I have a graduate degree in Accounting & I still owe $55,000 worth of student loans. I would like to change careers but I’m struggling VERY HARD with my disabilities from my car accident that happened in 2004. I have had 9 operations since & I just came home from the hospital today for the 10th time since. I went because I suffer extremely painful spasms that radiate from my brain stem to the left side of my head. I have Occupital & Trigenimal Neuralgia among other things. If I don’t stop the pain the inflamation affects my motor functions & if left untreated I will have permanent brain damage. The car accident was not my fault. The person who caused this 3 car pile up on I-95 (where I was the middle car that landed on the car in front of me and then my car fell backwards) was obligated to pay me via their insurance paid their policy limit which was $100,000 within months of the accident. This just barely covered my hospital bill. My Lexus was totaled. I’m in serious debt from this accident & had to take a huge cut in pay because I physically can’t handle what I used to before the accident. My employer said I’m not the same person because of all the mistakes I make (which I never did before the accident). My employer is right (acknowledged by all my doctors), thus, I also have been told by all my doctors to go on disability. I’m working on getting partial disability mainly for protection against discrimination for my current medical condition. I’m allowed to work while partial disability, The limited income threshold from receiving partial disability will help supplement from what I’m making now. As far as religious groups. I have tried but it’s hard to be around people when you don’t want to feel like a burden because of my ongoing medical problems. Also, the only sibling I had died in the auto accident & my parents can’t handle anymore stress so sharing this problem with them would be too overwhelming for them. I know this because I have hinted enough to see what their reaction would be. Finally, I’m 37 with a 15 yr old daughter who’s staying with my parents for the first time in her life while I stay close to Nova University to be a guinea pig to receive any treatment available since their a “teaching hospital” in medicine who works closely with John Hopkins. Anyways, with that said, here is my question that I posted several weeks ago. Sorry for the lengthiness. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I’m scared to go to the police about my husband stealing my pain meds(his father is a Miami ex-detective)HELP!?
I asked this question before but apparently did not provide enough information. I do not want to snitch on my husband. I have tried to hide the medication but he gets extremely angry (but does not hit me). However, I have been a victim of domestic violence before (where my ex-husband tried to kill my family & stabbed me with a knife) so I don’t know if I’m extra fearful about confronting him and/or putting my foot down; I was in counseling (as well as my family) for that for 5 years before I met my new husband who is well aware of my past. I have tried to talk to his family who not only is in denial or “tired of dealing with the problem” as they put it as long as he acts “productive” to them that’s all they care about. Plus, he’s a “momma’s boy” so it’s like he can do no wrong. The only time that I know (I suspect there were more now) that he was “busted” by them for abusing pain medication he said the pain medication was mine. However, this pain medication was something he bought online & took a much hire dose in a short period of time & when he ran out of those he vomited so much (as well as experiencing other symptoms) for 4 days before being forced to go to the hospital via ambulance (in front of his parents) & when he got there he was so dehydrated (he couldn’t hold even Gatorade) that when his toxicology screen came back for opiates he was “clean.” He was honest to the drs at the hospital about his opium use & that’s why they suggested he see a GI doctor because his intestinal tract was in such bad shape due to ulcers from the pain med. However, since he also had food poisoning (as well as I but did not suffer because as much because I had a better GI tract) and was given antibiotics his originally suspicious parents believed that it was just food poisoning & that this non-prescribed stash was mine, which has now ruined my relationship with my in-laws even though I told them to blood test me anytime & even offer me a lie detector test. I only take my pain medication when I have spasm from MS, and now occipital & trigenimal neuralgia that I was diagnosed with after a severe 2004 auto accident for which I have had already 9 operations. I never have dealt with someone with substance abuse but due to

John answers:

Whatever you do make sure you have plan A and plan B. I would suggest that you not contact the police right now. You need to concentrate on getting yourself some place where it is safe for you. Contact a women’s domestic abuse hotline. Explain to them the situation that you are in with your husband. I also think you should explain your medical history and the need for you to be near a location that will assist with your medical needs. You should also explain your employment situation, basically explain everything you are enduring right now. They will be able to help you develop different plans/options. Only a well recognized women’s domestic abuse hotline will be able to help you develop a legal thought out plan. Also, since you have exhausted all of the insurance claim, can you sue the driver of the car personally? I’ll say a pray for you. I hope everything works out for you and your daughter. Don’t be scared, be bold.

Paul asks…

MY dad hits me and my mum overdoses and alcoholic?

Okay i’m 14 now but my parents split when i was 4 and my mum got sectioned and i went to live with my nan not knowing where my parents were and i got told my mum was dead.. over the next few years i went to live with:
-Dad (came back to get me and lived in a flat)
-Dad and girlfriend (moved to her place)
-Dad (relationship went bust)
-Dad another girlfriend
-Dad (relationship went bust)
-Dad and ANOTHER girlfriend
-Dad (surprise surprise, relationship went bust)
-Mum (my mum called after 9 years and i went to live with her)

That was up until now but i didn’t realise what my mum was like but when i lived with her she:
-Drank excessively
-Over dosed excessively on strong medication for her Bipolar and sevear depression
-Never bought food she spent it on cigarettes so i was hungry
-We never had money because of this
-She never cooked, cleaned or washed

In the end i got taken away by social carers and i live with a family, but this is only temporary until my dad sorts out his debts but i really dont want to live with him he hit me really hard the other day and i get so depressed when i’m with him i can’t handle any more stress i tried to copy my mum and commit suicide with tablets but got scared.

I feel like im being dis-loyal to my parents i havent had contact with her for weeks and im terrified each night i cant sleep i cant do my work i cant concentrate i cant eat i cry ALL the time.. i cant go on liek this i dont know what to do!

Oh and i also got abused by my mums boyfriend sexually and im taking him to court but he’s been convicted before for:
-Attempted murder
-Armed robbery
-Perverting women

I cant deal with all the stress what can i do to help?
Please help me im terrified i’ll end up like my mum

John answers:

Why the hell do you feel disloyal?.its them letting you down,tell your doctor or teacher whats going need to be kept away from them.dont blame yourself for there failings.x

Michael asks…

Can ex partner claim me for conversion home?

Me and my now ex were basically were engaged and living together happily when we agreed to do an conversion on the attic and transform it into 1 Master bedroom and a shower-room ( I was in early pregnancy when this happened).

As he’s a joiner running his own business he thought we could do it much cheaper (approx 12K) than architect quoted us a guesstimate of around 25K.

I basically took out a second mortgage for £12K in my name (both mortgages are in my name only) and some more funds from credit cards and we started the process of doing the conversion. Around a year and a half later, and the conversion was almost complete and we had been having arguments for day and he decided that he wanted out relationship but stated angrily that he needed money that he could put into a house as the conversion was an investment for our future. So wanted me to go as guarantor for another property or mortgage or give him cash for work on conversion. I tried to explain to him that I couldn’t be a guarantor as I’m not technically a relative and besides due to having had our baby my own income had gone down to part time wages (though I always paid bills and mortgages out of my account, sometimes by the skin of my teeth). So no-one probably would let me be guarantor on another property even if I had wanted to.. I wasn’t getting any income from him while he was staying there at this particular point except for his working tax credit which would come through as part of the joint claim. Well he basically blew up at me and started to smash the new converted room up and pulled shelves he’d built off wall and put big holes into plasterboard walls ( I point out he had had a drink)!! Needless to say police were called and he was charged with breach of the peace and we separated.

He adjusted money that was given to me to £40 a week maintenance money for our daughter, and eventually after quite some time (6 months later) it became amicable again between us after discussing his drinking issues and he started to repair the damage he had done to house. We (stupidly) got back together again for a few months and and again discussed getting married as this would have us all settled as a family and I was looking at costs of a marriage.
He never adjusted any money he gave to me he just kept it at the £40 a week.

About a couple of weeks ago, he for some unknown reason pulled another stupid stunt with drugs and got lifted by police for drug driving (sustance still to be confirmed by blood tests) and was off his head for a few days on whatever it was that he took,

I naturally saw red as we have a little girl who is now 2 and she has got to come first so I have thrown him out. Anyway conversion is almost complete but not quite (I think a few little things need finished off to get completion certificate for it, but that is another matter I think for me to now deal with).

Problem I have is, he is now trying to tell me and I guess bully me into (I guess as he did at first bust up) giving him money for doing the conversion or half the house on paper to which apparantly I can get then stay in the house, as he’ll then be able to get colateral and get his own place and he’ll even clear the credit card debts!! (what a hero!…LOTFL). I have naturally said get stuffed you ain’t getting your name on the mortgage(s) or other option is he’ll take me to court for the money. I asked him how much is he expecting from me in cash and I finally got an answer the other evening…..£36K!!

Question I have is can he legally challenge me in court to get any money back and if so, how much is he likely to be entitled to? as I am concerned that as he is a self employed joiner who I trusted as my partner at the time to get the conversion done, will have the receipts for the materials and probably make up new ones for man hours for people he brought in to help with job. and try and make a case for a lot of money.

I don’t have any spare cash and am up to my eyes in debt because of this work. All income goes on paying bills and” keeping the wolves from the door” but because I am currently working I don’t believe I am entitled to legal aid but can’t afford a lawyer. What do I do?

John answers:

Get a contractor in to give YOU an estimate of how much it will cost to finish the job and get the certificate of completion. This amount MUST be subtracted from any appreciation he feels has been done to the home, also ask the contractor what HE would have charged for the job and how long it would take . . . . Your ex should not only be a bill for unpaid rent over the last couple of years, but a penalty for the fact that it took him so long to do the job (which at this point is worthless if you do not have a certificate of completion).

George asks…

should I drop out of college and open a bicycle shop? And where should I open it at?

Here is the deal, I am going into my last year in college, looking at 100K in debt (80K if i get out now) majoring in industrial engineering technology, concentrating in robotic line development, anyways my grades are not too good, if i really bust my ass i can finish but is it really worth the effort? little back ground on me and my interests… i don’t really have any, my hobbies are more of i don’t hate them more then really liking them. but biking is one i dislike the least. also i have absolutely no ideal on how to run a business. so is it really a good idea?

John answers:

In your own words, you say, “also i have absolutely no ideal on how to run a business. So is it really a good idea?”

Isn’t that a rhetorically question? Why don’t you try tossing in one or two business courses in the college curriculum, then re-think your idea of opening a bike shop. And what about the money? You will need a capital investment enough to keep you afloat for THREE years without making a profit. It takes most businesses at least three years to see a return on investment.

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