Let's learn how to bear the consequences of our actions and spend money reasonably

I wish that my story helps at least one person in overcoming any fear that results from failure to meet financial liabilities.

It started like always - with the first credit, that was partly meant for paying unexpected expenses. A 10 thousand zloty credit was - amazingly - spent in two months. Obviously, it came along with a credit card, that I could not reject. Having met the payment deadlines, I received another card from a different bank, and then from yet another one, as means of appreciation. I obviously tried to reject it, never having ordered it in the first place; I'll never forget the words of the customer service lady who then said to me: You don't have to use them, after all. And so, in time, I had four credit cards + a consumer loan. Being unaware of my deeds, I started using the credit cards. The money was spent nice and easy. Purchases for myself and my wife, plus we had a new-born child - meaning a plenty of things had to be bought. We had the one and only excuse for all our expenses: we can handle it. And so we started wiping the credit cards to the last penny. After some time, we began lacking money, so we took a bigger consumer credit for paying the previous one - and the cards. We got it without any problems. In those times, banks would grant credits very willingly. We paid it all, but didn't close the cards, thus falling into the trap again after some time. A larger credit, effecting in larger installments, plus the credit cards. We started rolling down on a downward slope towards disaster.

Suddenly, when we touched the bottom, we managed to take a consolidation credit for everything. We paid the old credit, the cards. The balance was clean, with only one installment from now on, BUT - we still didn't close the credit cards. Moreover, we had to move (5 years in a single room with the wife and the child, living at my parents). We could afford it, so we didn't hesitate. Then we changed our car (another credit), remodeled our flat... yes, we used the cards again.

After two years of living peacefully at our own place, first trouble with repaying the debt started. Phone calls, notices. We tried to make ends meet, but things have gone too far. Also, my wife lost her job, which turned to be a major nail in our coffin. Calls and notices from legal offices started. I was only making things worse by never even answering them; I didn't want to talk, despite numerous attempts of debt collectors. I was hoping that I would solve the problem somehow, but, deep in my mind, I knew I should talk to them. Believe it or not, but I was afraid. Me, the fearless tough guy.

Luckily, I started thinking reasonably at this point. After only one call I found out that the debt from one of the cards can increase significantly if the matter gets into court, and that it can still be solved, provided I start a dialogue. I was damn scared. I felt like crying like a little child, when I was forced to call the agent and beg him for amicable resolution. I hadn't been answering calls for several months, and I knew he wouldn't even have to talk to me, except for merely stating the place and the date of the trial.

Long story short... I came to my senses, first in regard to the first case, and then to all the other ones. And so, I managed to solve all my problems with banks. In fact, I haven't yet paid all my liabilities, but at least I started paying them regularly again, in convenient installments. After all, any deal can be made, provided you initiate the dialogue as soon as possible. Do not avoid conversations, because eventually you will face the consequences.

What has always mattered for me, and what I value above anything else is a piece of mind. But the fear and shame resulting from having to reveal your weakness to other people was greater, and was overcoming the former each time I was making another debt enforcement call. In my story I dealt with several offices and debt enforcement agencies, and learned that the people that work here are normal - they also have problems, and they understand life.

But if you avoid contact, and do not want to do it the amicable way, then it might happen to be too late to solve the case peacefully. In case you're interested: I have been visiting several credit forums, where people would reveal their problems. Compared to some of them, I am but a drop in the ocean of misery. My total debt amounts to several thousand zlotys. Its repayment will take me a few more years, but I am happy it hadn't grown more, and that - most importantly - I am free from calls from unknown callers.

You need to understand one thing: it was you who caused the situation; it is your signature that is on the contract, and it is you who need to handle it. Learn to face consequences of your actions and spend money reasonably. Try to believe that repaying debt is possible, and act on it, and you will see yourselves that faith combined with action gives great results.

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