My husband and I finished our IVA in May 2013 and what a feeling that was. We felt joy and elation but were also apprehensive and scared. To this day we still keep a spreadsheet of our outgoings and still think do we need this before we buy expensive items. We are not tight with money but the lesson learned from our IVA years was handing over cash is far harder than signing on a dotted line!
Our most difficult hurdle post IVA was applying for a credit card to go and visit our son in America (we were advised this). I didn’t want to. It felt so wrong and I was a nervous wreck. I wondered if this is what an ex alcoholic felt just walking into a pub. So I got accepted straight away which made me angry as I didn’t want it. I had to use it once and logged in to the account a week later and paid off the balance. It didn’t sit well with me. To this day it is in the bottom of my wardrobe as I won’t use it.
We manage our money well and have savings now. We have become mortgage free and enjoy outings and holidays; this now being my priority over possessions like pre IVA having the best car, the biggest house, the best TV etc etc.
My only regret is that I didn’t do an IVA sooner when my children were younger but on the plus side as my teenagers had to live through the IVA they are also very good with money which makes me very proud.
Having been in debt I recognise friends/colleagues who are in debt. I am not ashamed to admit I have been down this road and have been able to help signpost then to gain advice for their situation. It feels good to help and I always carry extra tissues as once they unlease the burden it results in a few tears but at least the head comes out of the sand and they look for a positive way to tackle the debt.
The IVA journey is a long one and you will laugh and cry throughout your journey but I can assure you it will be the best thing you have ever done. Stick with it. Check in regularly with the forum as it helps keep you sane knowing other people are in the same situation you are in and also listen to all the valuable advice.
Wishing you all well in your IVA journey.
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