To The Parents Struggling To Make Ends Meet, I get it. This Might Help

To the parent struggling to make ends meet this holiday season,

I’m sorry. It sucks. 

I get it.

The fear and anxiety of just paying the bills and feeding your family are keeping you awake. Smothering you. 

As if that’s not bad enough, you have beautiful children you’re desperate to shower with holiday cheer and gifts. Oh, wait...  AND pay for the holiday events, class party supplies, teachers gifts and still be able to buy a few gifts for under the tree.

It’s a terrible fucking place to be.


Keeping the normal family budget on track month-to-month is hard enough, but doesn’t have to stay this way. You can and will survive this. I did. Here's how.

You have two choices:

1. Ignore it. Continue to wake up at 3am crippled by debt, stress, and anxiety. Day in. Day out.

2. Face the motherfucker head on. It’s a fact. You’ve got this debt. Not only is it going to go away on its own, It’s not going away before Christmas, however, if you make a plan the stress and anxiety will.

So, what's this plan I speak of? 

1. Get Your Head Around The Facts. It’s time to look at your budget over the next three months. Start a spreadsheet and get your head around everything. Look at it, and tell yourself, this time next year, I will be in a much better place. Now, believe it. 

2. See Where You Can Save. Go through each bill and see if there is a way to lower it. THINK: If your cell phone bill is more than $65 you might want to look around because so many major carriers offer $50 plans with high or unlimited data. Do this with each bill. Just saving an extra $20 a month will add up. In a way, it will pay one of your electric bills. Call the credit card companies and ask for a lower interest rate. Yes, it works.

NOTE: With credit card bills always round up twenty to fifty dollars minimum in your budget, you have got to pay that off. Look into a Balance Transfer. I got the The Chase Freedom Card for our Balance transfer. It offers 15 months no interest and free balance transfers. This means EVERY PENNY YOU PAID goes to paying off the debt. Make sure you CLOSE the old card once you transfer. Two maxed out cards is not the goal here.

3. Set Your Spending Budget. Add up your bills and subtract the total from your income. Divide it by four. That is your weekly budget. Is there enough to feed your family, have a little fun on the weekends and save 5%-10%?  That's the goal. If not, go back to step two and try to shed a few more dollars. 

4. Go Debt free. If you stop adding to your debt each month, then you are going in the right direction. As long as you pay the bills, stick to your monthly budget then you have essentially stopped the bleeding and set your family on a course to financial freedom. That alone will help you sleep through the night. 

5. Play Mind Games. Once you have a clear picture of your financial situation, and a plan to get on track, I know this is gonna' sound crazy, but, tell yourself you are officially out of debt. Tell yourself you’re not going further into debt. If you can’t afford it, you can’t have it. That includes cable and huge cell phone packages. 

Make 2018 the year you get a hold of your finances. Stop the bleeding, be accountable, make a plan and stay focused on no longer being in debt. And last, please, enjoy this holiday season with what you have and the people you love, because that's what's important. Tell yourself next holiday season will be a blowout, just be happy today and don't let debt ruin this time, it's supposed to be magical and filled with miracles.

To learn more about the Chase Freedom Card click here. They did not pay me to tell you about it. It worked for me. Bottom Line, balance transfers can be HUGE if you have credit card debt, look into it. 

April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit