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Why do I need debt relief? or How did this happen to me?…

I never meant to get into debt like I did.  I know probably very few people ever do.  That would be like taking a stick and whacking a beehive with it just to get the bees out of the way so you could get to the honey.


So how does a fairly smart feller with an inkling of common sense get to this point?  I know that question is on your mind because some of you are in the same boat.


Well, the real answer I guess is that we failed to plan.


Someone once said “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”  Or was it “If you plan to fail, you fail to plan.”  I don’t rightly know. 


Anyway, whichever it is, it is true.


Our story goes a lot like this:


My wife, Beulah, and I were married in 1980.  I was 20 years old and she had just turned 19.  We have always had a pretty good marriage.  Things were going pretty good for us in the beginning.  I took a job at the local pork and bean factory making some pretty good money as a bean-filler. 


We bought us a nice little manufactured home (Rednecks like to call them trailer houses or mobile homes, but I like the term “manufactured housing” because it just sounds classier.)  We paid it off pretty quick and started having some kids.  Joe Bob, Jr. (I’ll just call him Junior from now on) was born in 1983 and Cletus, our second son was born in 1987.  In 1993, our daughter, Romalee, was born.


 About 1988, we decided to build us a home and so we did.  Between the money we had saved up and the money we got for selling the trailer, we didn’t owe that much.  And so, we just decided that we would pay off our home loan as quickly as possible.  And that’s what we did. 


By 1990, I had got promoted at the pork and bean factory to being the pork engineer, which mainly meant that I was in charge of making sure there is 2 pieces of ½ inch by ½ inch squares of bacon in every can.  It meant a pay raise and we just kept on living like I was still a bean-filler and paid off that whole mortgage by 1995.


So I was 35 with no mortgage and no debt.  I was a dad-gum genius.  People would come and ask me personal finance questions and all and I pretty much thought that I knew it all. 


I was putting about $300 a month into my 401K at work… which is another story unto itself.  But that was about the only saving that I was doing at the time.  Remember, if you “fail to plan, you plan to fail”.  Well, I didn’t know it at the time but I was on a collision course for disaster.  And I didn’t even know it.


To be continued…