Being broke and saddled with a lot of unpaid debts can be an incredibly lonely experience. More than likely, you see many of your friends and relatives through the filter of their social media accounts. That means that you see what they want to present rather than the whole picture. Most people don't discuss their financial woes that openly. It's easy to start to believe that you're the only person in your social group that's hiding from creditors or struggling to keep the utilities turned on.
But you're far from alone in your money troubles. In fact, if you're struggling with debt, you've actually got a lot of good company. Here are some facts you should know:
- 40 percent of Americans can't cover a $400 emergency without borrowing, selling something or visiting a pawnbroker.
- 25 percent of Americans have nothing set aside for retirement -- not in a 401(k) through their employer and definitely not independently.
- More than half of the country -- close to 6 out of every 10 people -- is living paycheck to paycheck.
- Even worse, nearly 2 out of those 6 people are going deeper into debt with each pay cycle because they're spending more than they earn.
While different reports tend to come up with slightly different figures, the percentages are close enough to be convincing: More people are struggling financially than not.
While this isn't good news for anyone -- and definitely not for the country -- it can be somewhat comforting to realize that you simply aren't alone. There's no reason to feel ashamed about your situation.
If you are overwhelmed with debt and don't see a clear path to a better financial future, it may be time to consider bankruptcy. Learn more about the process, your options and how bankruptcy can affect your future in a positive way.