It seems a lot of the TalkBass family is older than I, but I started early and as such I'm dealing with quite a few things now that the older cats have dealt with and pulled through, and that is why I'm not afraid to talk about things here. You have all dealt with it in your own way and are not afraid to share your story so that others may try to benefit from it. I'm 28, a homeowner, already once divorced, father to a 9-month old, and now trying to deal with this next challenge. My debt. Might not be as much as the next man, but it's bothering me and I kick myself for even letting it spiral outta my control. I've had a credit card since before I went off to college. I thought it was a good idea. I didn't have to ask folks for money, and managed to pay the bill. They'd raise the limit, bill got a little higher, no biggie, still manageable. When the divorce happened I stopped working to the point where I could only pay the mortgage and utilities. I've been under the table for years until now so I'm trying to file my taxes soon and decide who to pay. But of course my girl has different plans for "our money". I ain't even worried about that, cause I don't cave easily, what does bother me though is that your credit doesn't improve quickly no matter what you do. Stuff lingers. 7 years or something like that. But new activity weighs heavier, but with a poopy score you can't get new activity hahaha. I can't even refinance my house like I'm contracted to do, that's about the only thing I need credit for right now, but when they say no, there isn't much anyone can do. I don't believe I need to do bankruptcy and definitely don't want to, like I said, I know folks have dealt with way more debt than I'm dealing with, but today I got another call about a card entering collections (one that I had been in contact with the company trying to start getting it right) and it pissed me off. The trap is there, it's set. Credit card applications got passed out in my high school. I thought I was smarter than the system, but life intervened and humbled me.