NinjaPigeon - My Flight to Financial Independence

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Helping out someone financially

I haven't mentioned it before, but I suppose it's only appropriate to disclose it here. Starting in January, I began paying my girlfriend's student loan payments.

If you recall, I helped her in the past with tuition since she has had to make ends meet on a pretty meager income. Well, around December she got hit with a double whammy - graduation, which required she start paying back her loans, and shorter hours at work.

She humbly asked for my help, so I've taken over the payments so she can keep from being overwhelmed. Thankfully, I've had a good year and I was both able and willing to lend her my assistance.

However, I can't imagine what it's like to be in her shoes. It's got to be hard asking for help. Even if the person you ask doesn't expect anything in return, there's got to be feelings of owing them something. And it can cause you to doubt yourself, even believe you're a failure. Unfortunately, that doubt can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Because of that, I try very hard to not make her feel guilty for asking for my help. I remind her that the first year out of college can be pretty challenging and that getting on your feet can take time. Heck, I've been out of college since 2002 and I only hit a positive net worth last year!

Now, I'm not suggesting that you should help every family member that comes to you for assistance. But you have to remember that not all hardships are brought on through irresponsibility, and everyone can come upon hard times. Our money may come and go, but the relationships we form can endure it all.


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