My student loan debt: desperation, coping and solutions

I am trying so hard not to cry right now. In fact, I’m about to throw a fit. I’m jittery, borderline hyperventilating. I just want to kick my legs so hard, like a five-year-old on a tantrum. Student loan debt depression? Sh*t, I didn’t even know it existed.

What have I come to?

You see, I was about to write a cheery post on this Travel Bucket List Wednesday, continuing to tell you about about my teen Europe trip and how it was such a dream come true. However, as I looked over my 2005 travel journal, my mind was blurred.

student loan debt depression, financial anorexia

“Get rid of debt … rid of debt… RID OF DEBT!” (blentley, Flickr)

All I could think about was my Out of Debt spreadsheet.

Over and over again, I calculate and recalculate all its numbers. All the deadlines and financial goals I have set. If I remain on schedule, I’ll pay over $50,000 in debt in 3 years. And no, I don’t have a six figure job or anything close to it. I earn less than $40,000 a year before taxes, live in the Expensive States of America, and live very frugally in order to pay way more than the minimums each month. If I have everything set in stone, clear goals, and I’m on track…what’s up with this f****ing student loan debt depression?

Why am I so desperate? Why am I so obsessed all over this?

As I’m typing, I’m crying. I can’t help it. I look at my balance sheet (currently $36,000 approx.) and can’t help but have mini panic attacks. I feel so trapped. I see no light at the end of the tunnel, even though a huge flashlight is being shoved all over my face, with someone yelling:

HELLO! You’ll be DONE in 2015! You will be able to do everything you want then! You will be FREE! Never again! We’ll leave this shitty hyper consumerism and truly LIVE LIFE!

But I can’t internalize it. This student loan debt depression is very real

I look at myself in the mirror and keep seeing myself fat, even though I’m thin. Some call it insanity. I have begun to call it financial anorexia (I found out that’s an actual term today). I feel worse than a person that can’t make their minimum payments, even though I have a clear plan (and SOLUTION!) to ALL my financial problems, including my student loan debt.

student loan debt depression, dreaming of recovery

Dreaming the dream…dreaming of recovery… (Mohammed Buqurais, Flickr)

I guess I just don’t have much patience, eh?

I read all your travel blogs and wish I could be in Indonesia or Thailand right now. Living off $300-$500 a month. Walking everyday. Enjoying the sunshine. Exploring ancient temples. Diving with whale sharks. Instead, I’m stuck in a gloomy warehouse, typing inside an office under artificial lighting 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.

And my job isn’t even that bad. Gee, I even have the best boss in the world

I know I should count my blessings. Trust me, I do. I pray every day and thank God and the universe for everything that I have. A wonderful management position by 25, a college education, several degrees, friends, a loving boyfriend, wonderful family, etc. How many college graduates can say that nowadays?!

I guess the root of my student loan debt depression is that I know what I want to do, but I can’t do it right now. I’m simply not happy in my current situation. I have to get rid of this stupid debt first. I barely enjoy life, barely live, as any disposable income that gets in my hands I put straight into my debt. If I didn’t have a travel blog and went on the occasional trip on holidays, I wouldn’t even eat out every once in a while…

student loan debt depression, desperation

Max Boschini, Flickr

Financial anorexia. Yup.

I deeply apologize for this rant/venting session. But… I really needed it. I’ve been keeping all these emotions, desperation, frustration deep inside me for so long now. It’s been killing me. I mean, have you read my posts for the last month or two? They sound like crap. I’m writing like crap. I barely feel inspired anymore. No, I’m not trying to find a scapegoat. I’m just saying that I can’t even enjoy blogging (or anything I do in my life for that matter) anymore because of this student loan debt depression. I’m coping, but some days are better than others…

And today isn’t a good day.

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