In one of our past blogs, Groce & DeArmon, P.C. listed some of the ways to approach life after filing bankruptcy. One thing that we mentioned was the stigma of bankruptcy, and in this entry we’re going to look at that stigma by itself. Why does filing bankruptcy often come with such negative connotations? Why are so many people afraid to admit or seek help when their debt becomes too much to deal with? Groce & DeArmon’s legal aid experts share their thoughts.
Guilt, Shame, and Failure
It might sound harsh, but it is, unfortunately, true of many people who end up in a situation where they need to file bankruptcy – they feel guilty, ashamed, or that they’ve failed in some way. In our culture, being successful is, more often than not, equated with financial stability, wealth, and being able to comfortably afford not only what we need, but luxuries too. Having a good job with a healthy paycheck is often associated with having achieved what we all strive for in life.
Because of this, the idea of having little to no money, being unemployed, not owning your own home, or having overwhelming debt is associated with failure. With these assumptions so common and reinforced, it’s easy to understand why filing bankruptcy creates these feelings. In getting into a situation where you can no longer pay what you owe, according to these imaginary rules, you’ve lost.
At Groce & DeArmon, we’re well aware of just how untrue this is. In reality, no matter who you are, there’s always a risk of simply falling behind the incredible pace of modern life – and it says nothing about your success as a person. If anything, having the courage to admit you need help, and to confront the idea of bankruptcy, proves that you’re strong enough to keep going despite the obstacles that may be in your way.
You’re Weak if You Need Help
Following on from this false idea of failure, another toxic idea that seeking help for your financial issues suggests that you’re unable to handle them yourself. Once again, this speaks to the idea that being able to deal with all your problems alone suggests some kind of strength – but, again, this isn’t true.
Filing bankruptcy and dealing with debt is immensely complicated, both personally and legally. Being able to open and honestly discuss these problems with a bankruptcy lawyer or bankruptcy attorney from Groce & DeArmon, P.C. demonstrates that you’re not only proactive, but willing to own your financial missteps and fix your situation.
You’ll Never Get Back on Your Financial Feet
Outside of fears of personal failure, another extremely common hesitation in filing bankruptcy comes from the idea that you’ll never be able to re-establish your own financial security.
Bankruptcy is very commonly seen as a black mark on your credit and finances for the rest of your life. It’s also common to fear that others will assume you’re simply bad with money if you’ve had to file bankruptcy.
Again, the truth behind filing is often a lot more complicated than simple irresponsibility. One of the most common reasons people end up bankrupt is due to mounting medical bills, sadly an issue we see far more of at Groce & DeArmon, P.C. than we’d like.
Outside factors like this, or the general, unreliable economy leading us all to rely more and more on credit and loans, are far outside the realm of just being “bad with money”.
In truth, being in debt and avoiding the problem is far more irresponsible than recognizing the risks of debt and filing bankruptcy.
Groce & DeArmon, P.C. and the Truth of Bankruptcy
Groce & DeArmon, with many years of experience helping people in Springfield, MO with Chapter 7 bankruptcy, Chapter 13 bankruptcy, and many more types of legal aid, know the facts. We know that bankruptcy is often the best option, and our bankruptcy lawyers are ready to help.