You are looking at Bossy when she graduated from college, which was approximately eighteen years after she began.
It’s things like this—little unexpected things, like deciding you need an undergraduate degree when you’re in your mid-thirties—that can really break the bank. And Bossy and her husband have these things tenfold.
For instance, when Bossy met her husband he was a musician. After the birth of their son, he became a carpenter, which was a familiar occupation frequently used to supplement his musician income. After a few years of this carpenter business and the hardships associated with things like lying on your back in bug-infested crawl spaces two feet high, Bossy’s husband decided to enroll in full-time graduate school.
Bossy and her husband live in modest ways, but their flighty career path has prevented a more typical economic foothold.
Which leads Bossy to the subject of today’s post: Student Loans.
Do you remember way back in the Olden Days on Tuesday when Bossy reported her grand
mal seizure total = $62,518 debt? Well—do you remember how Bossy then received an email from her husband yesterday saying, “Oops, I forgot about your student loan!”
Of course you don’t remember, because Bossy never told you! And guess how much Bossy still owes on her student loan that she acquired from a bank so she could get an Advertising degree and paint houses for a living? $8,124.06, which certainly explains why it was so easy to forget.
And by the way, it’s the six cents that really breaks the deal for Bossy. New grand
mal seizure total = $70,642.06 debt. And the chorus of Poverty Party guests shout, “You’re going the wrong way!”
Check below for the list of blogs already participating in the Poverty Party. Email today to sign up! And don’t forget to comb the comment section for links to entertaining Poverty posts across the web.
david saysOctober 17, 2008 at 10:08 am
Well, at least we can count on our home equity being a good investment. Oh.. wait.. nevermind.
andrea saysOctober 17, 2008 at 10:25 am
My student loan makes me want to cry when I think about them.
Betsy saysOctober 17, 2008 at 10:30 am
We had three kids in college at the same time…our oldest finished his last semester when his little sister began. Parent Plus Loans =$100,000.00+ YIKES!!
Auds at Barking mad saysOctober 17, 2008 at 10:35 am
I’m still working on my inaugural Poverty Party post. I’m having trouble though because when I saw my total indebtness (accumulated in ONE YEAR! ONE YEAR PEOPLE!, we were DEBT FREE aside from the mortgage before that!) my eye started to twitch and hasn’t stopped since. So annoying.
Kris saysOctober 17, 2008 at 11:12 am
I finally paid my student loan off last year after 14 years. When we sent the final payment off the hubs and I went out and got hammered! That was an extra $225 in our pockets each month. Ya right. It went right out the door to pay for our kids’ braces, car payment, etc. Crap — there’s no end.
kate saysOctober 17, 2008 at 11:37 am
i have a student loan too. it’s payable to nordstrom.
dray saysOctober 17, 2008 at 12:18 pm
this number might make you feel better: $128,263.33. and that’s just what i owe to sallie mae. and it doesn’t include what my husband owes to sallie mae, which is roughly the same.
Liz saysOctober 17, 2008 at 12:46 pm
Student loans need to be added to that list of things we can count on in life. Right alongside death and taxes.
I feel your pain.
Little Miss Sunshine State saysOctober 17, 2008 at 12:47 pm
I wrote a little post about college costs. I have so much respect for all of you struggling to pay for education.
My Name is Cat saysOctober 17, 2008 at 12:48 pm
Bossy, I knew you were an advertising major because I am, too, and you write just like a copywriter — saying the most stuff in the fewest words possible. As a fellow advertising major since college I have worked as a waitress, interior designer, nanny, substitute teacher, at a community college in the photo lab, a seamstress, and I’ve painted a hell of a lot of walls. Yankee pretty much paid off my student loan, which is really sad since he worked so hard to graduate without any.
dgm saysOctober 17, 2008 at 1:10 pm
Take a look at the photo of Bossy on graduation day–you look so happy! Hang on to that. It was worth your while even if you didn’t go into advertising. It probably gave you the mad skillz you display before us almost daily. You’re still young; you’ll pay it off.
Caleal saysOctober 17, 2008 at 2:10 pm
*cough* I don’t know the extent of my student loan damage because I am afraid to look, but it’s safe to say that it Bossy’s Student Loan Debt X 10.
And that’s the *conservative* estimate. It’s probably more like Bossy X 12. It makes my left eye twitchy. So I try not to think about it. In the spirit of the poverty party, however… I should probably look into it.
vuboq saysOctober 17, 2008 at 2:24 pm
I think student loan debt shouldn’t count (mainly b/c I’m not sure how much mine is …). I did consolidate at the right time and only have to pay about 2% interest. HUZZAH!
btw, how come I’m never remembered even though I check the little “Remember Me” box? Is VUBOQ *that* forgettable? *sniff*
Chris saysOctober 17, 2008 at 3:02 pm
Lots of cool links to save much money today! http://3giraffes.blogspot.com/2008/10/more-savings-sites.html
Mrs. G. saysOctober 17, 2008 at 3:08 pm
I’m actually relieved to know that I am not the only middle aged woman alive who is still paying off her student loans from the early NINETIES. And have I mentioned the recent loan we took out so that our daughter could enter college this fall. In BOSSY speak–oy.
I’ve udated this week about looking for a second job (can someone share with me how to put a live link in the comments section?):
Stephanie saysOctober 17, 2008 at 3:19 pm
Thank God I didn’t go to college!
Sara saysOctober 17, 2008 at 3:33 pm
Thinking how appropriate this terrifying topic is right before Halloween. (insert theme from Psycho here.)
I keep tiptoeing over to the scary debt door and listening to the feral animal sounds on the other side. But I’m still too afraid to actually peep inside.
Applauding Bossy’s bravery in the face of danger.
Student loans = They’re heeeeeeeeeeeere!
Debs saysOctober 17, 2008 at 7:08 pm
OMG. I need to call my parents right now and thank them again for paying for my college. All of it (except living expenses for the last 2 years). It was in the mid-70’s and I went to a state college, so it wasn’t anywhere near as expensive as it would be now. But, I don’t think I quite realized how difficult it is for people who have to take out loans for education. I feel very blessed and fortunate right now.
With regard to debt, I owe $257 per month until next April on my car, $7,000 credit card debt on a 0% interest for life Discover card (yay), and 24 more years on a mortgage. Not too bad, I guess, but I can’t wait to get the car and CC paid off. I hate debt. Especially stupid debt.
Thanks for all your great posts Bossy, and good luck on getting out of “poverty.”
MamaMo saysOctober 17, 2008 at 10:39 pm
I’m one of the lucky ones – no college debt. In NC there’s a constitutional requirement to keep college affordable. When I went to school (MANY years ago). Tuition was $500 per semester (which my parents paid with my college fund – God bless ’em!), and I worked to cover my living expenses. I shudder to think what we’re going to be up against when it’s time to send the girls to college!
donna in mid michigan saysOctober 18, 2008 at 7:54 am
WOW! after less than a week of joining BOSSY…I HAVE WON The lottery!! Holy Mack I can Hardly believe it!! WHEW! This is not the first time either!!
Kim saysOctober 18, 2008 at 11:15 am
If it makes you feel any better, after I finish school, my student loans will amount to about 41,000 dollars…yippee, could someone pass the Ramen?
David saysOctober 19, 2008 at 1:08 am
I used to be cranky as a kid about how everyone else had nicer cars then we did, had their color television YEARS before we ever got one, the lack of a microwave, cable TV, a backyard pool, vacations that didn’t involve a tent, air conditioning. Add to that the indignity of being forced to work during all my college breaks and vacations, instead of going somewhere fun like FL, where I could have done cool things like gotten alcohol poisoning or herpes.
But my folks paid for my sister’s college, my college, my grad school AND my grad school living expenses. I have no school debt and amazingly, neither do my folks. And they did it ostensibly on one income: my dad’s. My mom’s employment income was always negligible. She worked to pay for her mother’s nursing home expenses.
They are both retired now and enjoying life, traveling and re-decorating the house. They have nicer cars now, too, by the way, and I don’t begrudge them for a second.
Thanks to them I have no real debt, and thanks to my Dad’s hammering home the message to live within my means, I remain debt-free. It isn’t easy. It means I live in an unfashionable neighborhood an hour outside Manhattan, don’t go out drinking with pals every weekend, pack my own lunches for work every day, steer clear of fashionable clothes, don’t take exciting vacations and basically deny myself anything that isn’t a necessity.
Of course, I also have no children, which no doubt is a huge help in keeping expenses down. Kittens can cost a bit but they don’t need sneakers or braces. I’m very lucky and I know it.
Karen (Submommy) saysOctober 19, 2008 at 1:50 am
Start with the smallest debt first. I know that sounds weird, but trust me – once the little one goes away, it seems a little more, um, DOABLE.
We’re used car people, too. And I drive a *gasp* stick.
margalit saysOctober 19, 2008 at 9:01 am
I thought I had paid off all my student loans (a mere 40K) about 9 years ago, when I got a lien on my bank account. Turns out dear old Mom (better known as the Evil One) defaulted on the ONLY loan she promised she would pay back. So I got saddled with another $6,000 loan which had blossomed from fees to an ungodly $23K. Um, yeah. Now, I’m disabled. The US government considers me disabled. But the student loan folks? Not so much. I have to PROVE every single year by going to the doctor and having her fill out this enormous form that I’m disabled. She’s thrilled to do it…not. Plus, this last year they tacked on a loan for a school in a state I’ve never even set foot in: Alabama. For another $9K. And the burden of proof? On me, of course. I HATE THEM.
margalit saysOctober 19, 2008 at 9:05 am
Oh, and Mrs MG. I graduated from undergrad school in 1975 and grad school in 1980. And I’m STILL paying the damn loans. Plus, let me just add that in my day, when dinosaurs roamed the earth, we could sign up to teach in an urban school and get the loans deferred. So I did. And guess what. Small print… there were so many urban schools that only SOME of them were exempt each year. Mine…was not.
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Cara saysOctober 19, 2008 at 2:36 pm
Look into North Carolina’s “Carolina Covenant” and push our legislators across the nation to do the same. This program really works!
operagal saysOctober 19, 2008 at 7:57 pm
oh my dray, I’m with you!
127k in student loans. I so do NOT recommend going to a private music school, no matter how highly rated. Cause that whole career in opera?
Meg saysOctober 19, 2008 at 9:39 pm
Wow, I hear ya Bossy. Husband and I just had our come to Jesus conversation about our debt, conveniently, right after we blew the bank on a fantastic trip to Las Vegas to celebrate our 15th wedding anniversary. The numbers are BIG AND SCARY. I’m not sure I want to post about it on my own blog, though… my mom and my in-laws read. But I’m with you in spirit (and gin)!
karen saysOctober 20, 2008 at 7:20 am
Here’s my first post for the Bossy poverty party! http://karenmaehr.blogspot.com/2008/10/soupe-aux-fves.html. Is this what we’re supposed to do with our posts, Bossy? Have a great Monday!
Kitty saysOctober 21, 2008 at 1:21 am
I finally got around to tallying and posting… $45,377.80 – all by myself! Whoopee.
Lauren saysOctober 21, 2008 at 6:28 pm
My mom always told my sister and I that we had to marry either a musician or a carpenter. How lucky that you got BOTH!!!
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