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Periodic Contributor

Thanks, Joe (College Debt)

Thanks, Joe. I know you're trying to help with college debt. Not sure what you're gonna do, but I won't live to pay mine off, regardless. I kept telling them I wouldn't be able to afford it. "Sure you will, with a Bachelor's you'll have so many more opportunities," they said. Of course this was false and a hard sell tactic. But I went for it, because I was delusional I guess. Really, I was just hoping for a better life. Maybe more earning power. You know, things people actually want in life.
 
I did really well in college. Worked hard, got excellent grades. 3.9 GPA and all that. Enjoyed it, to be honest.
 
But those opportunities haven't materialized. They don't exist. 80 percent of that is my fault; I worked in a tech industry where my abilities were strong but are now obsolete. Prior to that I worked high-end office jobs but those skills are obsolete now too. We're talking 30 years ago. No employer cares what you did 30 years ago, and you've basically told them you're old by sharing that information.
 
So in reality, what they said AFTER I graduated is true. I'm qualified for entry level clerical jobs. Or retail. That's it.
 
Unless, they say, I pursue a Masters degree. And triple my debt. Then the whole world is my oyster (to hear them tell it).
 
I wake up in cold sweats every morning with this hanging over my head. I work part time, minimum wage. Almost 3 years out from graduating, now at 60, I know I'll never be able to pay this back. No refinancing is possible because I need someone to co-sign because I don't earn enough. I have no one to do this, and I refuse to saddle my husband with this. He's not going to co-sign. In the same situation, I wouldn't either.
 
I have a small nest egg I have I to hold on to, since I have no savings, no retirement accounts. I'm having to use it already for food, gas, medical insurance. At some point I will have to leave my current home and try to find a tiny house or apartment or rent a room and my survival will depend on having that to live on. It'll last maybe 5 years. I can't afford to retire till at least 65. Mike is retired. It's not enough for both of us to live on.
 
So I'm not taking much stock in anything you'll do, Joe. Because in my situation it won't matter. They only talk about student debt being a burden for young people. What about older people like me? We don't count?
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