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Let’s Not Judge - Debt in Britain

Let’s Not Judge – Debt in Britain

Authored by Phil Meekin

Phil Meekin

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Approximate read time: 3 minutes

If you have ever experienced debt and financial problems then you will know just how much it can affect your health and well-being.

As we are all aware, debt is becoming more and more of a major problem in Britain. There are many causes for this including low or stagnant wages. This is added to a dramatic rise in the cost of living and the ease of obtaining cash loans for goods.

More than ever there is a growing gap between the haves and the have-not’s. Although I don’t want to turn this piece into a political rant, I feel something more has to be done to educate the masses about money and their financial management skills.

I remember a joke I heard on the TV the other week, when a southern comedian agreed there was a north/south divide. He said he wanted to build a giant wall across the country around the Watford gap area. He added to this; “that them “Up North” should build it and the rich people “Down South” would pay for it”

Staying with TV, I watched the Channel 4 programme “Benefit Street” and was absolutely amazed at what I saw. Obviously it was aimed to shock. I know that, but apparently when the members of the street were contacted and asked if they wanted to make a programme about a street where everyone living on it was claiming some sort of benefit, it was going to show the community spirit that existed between the less well-off and the unemployed of the community.

Although the programme flirted with this ideal, it picked up on the thread that all benefit claimants were thieves. Vagabonds with no sense of pride, actually enjoying living on sixty pounds per week.

I agree certain people suit this kind of lifestyle but let’s not tar all with the same brush. There’s a train of thought if you call someone a bad person for long enough, they will become a bad person. Call someone a scrounger and they will stay a scrounger.

It showed some residents with drug dependency and obviously, this was the path they chose to take. But I have a few friends taking prescribed strong medication because of forms of long term depression. One is the result of a bad relationship with a former partner and now finds himself unable to work. As a result, he is getting deeper in financial trouble and has bankruptcy looming. It’s all due to this illness – and that’s exactly what it is – an illness. I feel some doctors find it simpler to give out pills rather than find the cause of the problem.

Debt is bound to have a negative impact on people’s health as it can lead to enormous pressure. Some common conditions that can be caused by debt include stress, high blood pressure and anxiety. I’m sure we know what these symptoms can lead to.

The normal thing to do when you are experiencing the symptoms above is to see your doctor for advice. Although, they may be able to offer you some relief from your problems with the aid of medication, you need to tackle the root cause of the problem.

Should you find yourself with debt problems then the best thing you can do is face them head on. Seeking help from professional debt advisors could be the best way of regaining control of your finances. This can help reduce your stress levels and relieve the detrimental effects on your health.

Asking for free financial advice from insolvency practitioners, such as Wilson Field, is nothing to be ashamed of. It is becoming a more common practice in recent times too. Contacting a professional body for help could affect your life in many ways – not just financial.

Please remember when you see these “Fly on the wall” documentaries, some of the people may not be as bad as they are portrayed. Mental health is a contributing factor in the story of financial hardship and with the right advice and education perhaps together we can narrow the countries financial divide.

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