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I have a large amount of Credit Card debit, and it's to the point where I cannot pay the monthly payments.  I'm not looking for a bailout.  I did this myself, and I know there are consequences.  I have about $60,000 in credit card debit, and over $100,000 in my 401k. I was making really good money, and started living above my means.  My income was cut in half due to a change in commission structure.  I should have never lived the lifestyle of the rich and famous, but I did.  I have learned my lesson, and now its time to pay the price.  I want to withdraw funds from my 401k, but Vanguard says that my Employee plan will not allow me to do that.  Does anyone know if there are anyways around this?  I know there are tax consequences, and a withdraw fee, but it's getting to the point where I cannot sleep at night.  I have not missed a credit card payment yet, and my FICO score was over 800, and now it has dropped significantly because of my credit utilization.  Are there any other options that I have? If I contacted an attorney, would he/she be able to do anything to allow me access to my 401k?

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Actually, you would just default on the loan and owe taxes on the amount you defaulted on.  No liquidating and selling n... (more)

vipercon (Mar. 21, 2017 @ 11:50p) |

That's definitely and option.  You'd have to see which loss was the least: the income tax+10% penalty or the losses and ... (more)

IDontPayRetail (Mar. 22, 2017 @ 12:50a) |

Update from Op?

jman220 (Apr. 23, 2017 @ 8:42a) |

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OK - first off, pulling from your 401k should be your LAST RESORT.

You need to review any income-earning option to pay this credit card debt. How about getting a new gig if your comp plan changed? Any other avenues available? 

We do not have much data to operate and/or provide an opinion - but you will regret pulling from your 401k later in life. I would explore every other possibility before doing this. 

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I am fully aware of the consequences of pulling from my 401k. I need this debt paid off, and am willing to pay the penalties.  I will put the money I was paying on the interest of the credit cards (about 1500 a month) right back into my 401k.  The problem is, I am paying off the debt, but it is going no where.  I am paying interest only at this point, so the principal is not moving.  In order to gain any traction, I need this to be gone.

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It sounds like in your current situation you wont be buying a house in the near future. With that in mind, you might consider your option to stop paying your CC Bills. I am not saying dont pay them ever, but if you stop paying them for 30-90 days, then you can work with each of them to offer you a much lower interest rate and payment plan. Some might be willing to lower the balance, but that is not something I would count on. If you truly are to the point that you income is not sufficient to make your payments, you could also consider a bankruptcy.

Most 401k plans will not allow you to withdraw the full balance. Most have a limit of a certain %, which I think mine is around 50%. In this case that would only allow you to take out 50k, of which you should count on half of that going to taxes/penalties, so you would end up with 25k to pay off some debt. But taking that 50k out of your 401k will cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars over the next 20-30 years and could set back your retirement for many many years.

I would take the credit score hit, and work with the issuers or BK to help pair down the debt, and arrange a payoff structure with a lower interest rate you can afford. This might cause you some stress over the next 3-6 months, but taking that big of a hit to your 401k might cause you years of stress down the road, in a time you body isnt near as physically fit to handle it.

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Personally, paying off that high interesr credit card loan should be high priority. Cant you take a loan from your 401k?

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First, to really help you, you need to lay out all the cards balances and interest rates on the table along with your monthly income, expenses, etc.  And then ACTUALLY take the advise given!

If you're current employer is your 401k owner (i.e. this 401k with 100k in it is not from a previous employer) your only option to get the funds is to quit your job, which I doubt you want to do.

Consider your 60 year old self, what will he think looking back on this situation while he's struggling with saving for retirement and maybe not retiring until he's 70+.

Does the employer allow a 401k loan?  If so you can generally borrow 50% of your balance, which isn't ideal but at least it better then taking the IRS penalties and tax hit!

You say your credit scores are still above 800, can you sign up for some of the 0% balance transfer cards, you'll pay 3%-5% but you'll save a lot of money over the course of a year.  Get the highest balances moved over there so you get some breathing room.

You didn't dig this hole overnight, don't expect to be able to fill it in quickly.

Anyway, update your OP with ALL your information and the collective FWF will help you, if you really want to be helped.

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Ok, no reason to lie.  Here is the real issue.  My wife does not know about the debt.  If she found out about it, there is a good chance that she would divorce me (and I don't blame her).  I know I sound like a total asshole, and maybe I am, but I love my wife beyond measure. We have been married for over 15 years,  and I don't deserve her.  We have 2 sons and 1 girl, and they are my world.  I did not realize how fast or how dangerous gambling addiction can be.  I am done with it.  I can 1000% with certainty say that I no longer struggle with it, and have not placed a bet in over 1 year. I have never in my life received any handout, and don't intend to now.  I am a grown ass man, and am literally in tears as I type this, because I know I have let my wife and family down, and I feel like there is no way out.  100% of me wants to tell my wife, but I know that she would leave me, not because of the debt, but because I have not been truthful to her (I cannot blame her for that). That is why I want to clear this up now, and I feel that if I can use the money from the 401k, the best way.  Financially smart, no...but at this point, I'm willing to cut the losses to keep my family intact.

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AverageGuy09 said:   First, to really help you, you need to lay out all the cards balances and interest rates on the table along with your monthly income, expenses, etc.  And then ACTUALLY take the advise given!

If you're current employer is your 401k owner (i.e. this 401k with 100k in it is not from a previous employer) your only option to get the funds is to quit your job, which I doubt you want to do.

Consider your 60 year old self, what will he think looking back on this situation while he's struggling with saving for retirement and maybe not retiring until he's 70+.

Does the employer allow a 401k loan?  If so you can generally borrow 50% of your balance, which isn't ideal but at least it better then taking the IRS penalties and tax hit!

You say your credit scores are still above 800, can you sign up for some of the 0% balance transfer cards, you'll pay 3%-5% but you'll save a lot of money over the course of a year.  Get the highest balances moved over there so you get some breathing room.

You didn't dig this hole overnight, don't expect to be able to fill it in quickly.

Anyway, update your OP with ALL your information and the collective FWF will help you, if you really want to be helped.

  Thanks for trying to help. My credit score was over 800, but now it has dropped, because of my credit utilization. I no longer get offers on 0% cards, and I tried to call up a "debt consolidation" company, but they all seem like a big joke.  I will update shortly with my specific bills, but if you read above, it's not as easy as just paying off a debt.

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OP, I really hope you're trolling. But, if you aren't trolling, you need to lay your cards on the table (ha- gambling joke) with the wife/family now. Explain that you were hiding it and you've gotten help, but you need her support to execute.

How did you not discuss the 1/2 pay to her in the past? Just kept rollin' large?  Also, 60k isn't awful.  Pickup a 2nd full time job or something.  The first thing you need to do is obviously cut all the cards up so no-one can use them - including the family.  Yes, you'll see your family less, but you'll PYBDB.  Make sure the money from the additional job goes to paying bills only- don't get caught in the trap of "oh hey, I'm making more now- time to spend it!"

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The sooner you tell your wife, the better. Its highly unlikely you will be able to hide this for the next 30 years. If you each really love one another then it shouldn't be to hard to work through this if you are really sorry for your actions, and understand the consequences of what you did. If she leaves you over this then its highly likely that she already has some doubts that this could put her over the edge. The longer you wait the more pissed she will be when you tell her.

If you really plan on being with her for the rest of your life, she also deserves to be part of the decision. Taking a large chunk of your 401k will almost certainly delay your retirement and/or lower your standard of living in your retirement years. She deserves to know that, and be part of the process for determining to take the financial pain now, or delay it and take it when you in your retirement years.

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PhDeez said:   OP, I really hope you're trolling. But, if you aren't trolling, you need to lay your cards on the table (ha- gambling joke) with the wife/family now. Explain that you were hiding it and you've gotten help, but you need her support to execute.

How did you not discuss the 1/2 pay to her in the past? Just kept rollin' large?  Also, 60k isn't awful.  Pickup a 2nd full time job or something.  The first thing you need to do is obviously cut all the cards up so no-one can use them - including the family.  Yes, you'll see your family less, but you'll PYBDB.  Make sure the money from the additional job goes to paying bills only- don't get caught in the trap of "oh hey, I'm making more now- time to spend it!"

  I wish I was trolling. She doesn't know, because I had a portion of my check going into a seperate account, and when i would get a good bonus, I would put some of it in there, and that would cover the miniums on the credit card bills for a few months.  Now, there is basically no more bonus from work, so I am not able to do this.  I feel horrible.  Maybe I'm on here, just to tell someone, anyone...and get it out.  I've been holding this in for a while, andI have not told a single person.  Again, my wife will not be happy about the $60k, but that is not why she would leave me.  She would leave me, because I have been hiding this all from her. I have never cheated on my wife, but this honestly feels worse.

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imscrewedarentit said:   
PhDeez said:   OP, I really hope you're trolling. But, if you aren't trolling, you need to lay your cards on the table (ha- gambling joke) with the wife/family now. Explain that you were hiding it and you've gotten help, but you need her support to execute.

How did you not discuss the 1/2 pay to her in the past? Just kept rollin' large?  Also, 60k isn't awful.  Pickup a 2nd full time job or something.  The first thing you need to do is obviously cut all the cards up so no-one can use them - including the family.  Yes, you'll see your family less, but you'll PYBDB.  Make sure the money from the additional job goes to paying bills only- don't get caught in the trap of "oh hey, I'm making more now- time to spend it!"

  I wish I was trolling. She doesn't know, because I had a portion of my check going into a seperate account, and when i would get a good bonus, I would put some of it in there, and that would cover the miniums on the credit card bills for a few months.  Now, there is basically no more bonus from work, so I am not able to do this.  I feel horrible.  Maybe I'm on here, just to tell someone, anyone...and get it out.  I've been holding this in for a while, andI have not told a single person.  Again, my wife will not be happy about the $60k, but that is not why she would leave me.  She would leave me, because I have been hiding this all from her. I have never cheated on my wife, but this honestly feels worse.

  
So instead of coming clean, and clearing the slate, you want to keep lying to your wife, and making more financial decisions that will impact her future without her knowledge.  You actions have not changed if this is the coarse of action you decide to take.  You are just continuing the lying/betrayal that is currently eating you inside.  No matter what you do, even if the debt poofed tomorrow, you most likely will, deservedly, still have the same anxiety about your actions until the day you finally tell her the truth.

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It was asked and ignored once so I'll repeat it...

How about a 401k loan?

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PhDeez said:   OP, I really hope you're trolling. But, if you aren't trolling, you need to lay your cards on the table (ha- gambling joke) with the wife/family now. Explain that you were hiding it and you've gotten help, but you need her support to execute.

How did you not discuss the 1/2 pay to her in the past? Just kept rollin' large?  Also, 60k isn't awful.  Pickup a 2nd full time job or something.  The first thing you need to do is obviously cut all the cards up so no-one can use them - including the family.  Yes, you'll see your family less, but you'll PYBDB.  Make sure the money from the additional job goes to paying bills only- don't get caught in the trap of "oh hey, I'm making more now- time to spend it!"

  I appreciate the advise.  We are going on a family vacation in May, and I really don't want to ruin that, because it's been something she has looked forward to for the past 2 years.  I will tell her when we get back.  This all feels like a bad dream.  I'm a very prideful person, and even though this is "anonymous",  it took a lot for me to lay everything out.  Just the thought of me losing my wife has made me want her more.  We have had a bit of a rough patch the past 2 years in our marriage (just like most marriages)---alot of the problems are my fault, because I do not pay enough attention to my family, and do not spend the quality time I should. At one point, we considered a divorce, but we know it would not be good for our children. I feel like we are just now getting back to where life is "great" again, and  I am so afraid that this will push her over the edge (which I wouldn't blame her).  I'm sorry...I know this is a finance forum, and most of this is not finance related.  

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The 401k loan is definitely worth investigating, but it would be a 5 year term, so monthly payments may not be much better or even different from current CC minimums. But the rate will surely be much better, so it would be a track to have it all paid off in 5 years. CC minimums probably would not.

But it seems this is not the top priority. You're right that your wife will probably be angry about the secrecy. Raiding your retirement to pay off the CC bills doesn't resolve that in any way. You need to come clean at some point, and the longer you wait the worse it is. If she wants to stick with you, she may have better ideas or resources for dealing with the financial problems too.

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jerosen said:   It was asked and ignored once so I'll repeat it...

How about a 401k loan?

  I'm already maxed out on my 401k loan.  I tried to do a "hardship" withdraw, but they won't let me.  As someone earlier mentioned, the only way for me to withdraw the funds, would be to quit the company, which is not an option.

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imscrewedarentit said:   Ok, no reason to lie.  Here is the real issue.  My wife does not know about the debt.  If she found out about it, there is a good chance that she would divorce me (and I don't blame her).  I know I sound like a total asshole, and maybe I am, but I love my wife beyond measure. We have been married for over 15 years,  and I don't deserve her.  We have 2 sons and 1 girl, and they are my world.  I did not realize how fast or how dangerous gambling addiction can be.  I am done with it.  I can 1000% with certainty say that I no longer struggle with it, and have not placed a bet in over 1 year. I have never in my life received any handout, and don't intend to now.  I am a grown ass man, and am literally in tears as I type this, because I know I have let my wife and family down, and I feel like there is no way out.  100% of me wants to tell my wife, but I know that she would leave me, not because of the debt, but because I have not been truthful to her (I cannot blame her for that). That is why I want to clear this up now, and I feel that if I can use the money from the 401k, the best way.  Financially smart, no...but at this point, I'm willing to cut the losses to keep my family intact.
 

I feel for you, married 21 years myself, but I doubt there is going to be anyway to not tell her.

You can't get the money from your 401k without leaving your current job and many 401k plans that do loans don't let you take out a loan without your spouses approval because the spouse has special rights under the law to that money.

If you're not willing to come clean with her, then you haven't owned up to the situation.  I question is you've really dealt with the core problem.  Even if you manage to pay everything off without her knowing, you still lied to her.  It will come out eventually and it will get exponentially worse the longer you keep it hidden!
 

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daw4888 said:   
imscrewedarentit said:   
PhDeez said:   OP, I really hope you're trolling. But, if you aren't trolling, you need to lay your cards on the table (ha- gambling joke) with the wife/family now. Explain that you were hiding it and you've gotten help, but you need her support to execute.

How did you not discuss the 1/2 pay to her in the past? Just kept rollin' large?  Also, 60k isn't awful.  Pickup a 2nd full time job or something.  The first thing you need to do is obviously cut all the cards up so no-one can use them - including the family.  Yes, you'll see your family less, but you'll PYBDB.  Make sure the money from the additional job goes to paying bills only- don't get caught in the trap of "oh hey, I'm making more now- time to spend it!"

  I wish I was trolling. She doesn't know, because I had a portion of my check going into a seperate account, and when i would get a good bonus, I would put some of it in there, and that would cover the miniums on the credit card bills for a few months.  Now, there is basically no more bonus from work, so I am not able to do this.  I feel horrible.  Maybe I'm on here, just to tell someone, anyone...and get it out.  I've been holding this in for a while, andI have not told a single person.  Again, my wife will not be happy about the $60k, but that is not why she would leave me.  She would leave me, because I have been hiding this all from her. I have never cheated on my wife, but this honestly feels worse.

  
So instead of coming clean, and clearing the slate, you want to keep lying to your wife, and making more financial decisions that will impact her future without her knowledge.  You actions have not changed if this is the coarse of action you decide to take.  You are just continuing the lying/betrayal that is currently eating you inside.  No matter what you do, even if the debt poofed tomorrow, you most likely will, deservedly, still have the same anxiety about your actions until the day you finally tell her the truth.


Spot on daw4888 (both posts).  Maybe you should take a little time to gather all your info (mainly debt, interest rates, min payments), along with maybe a suggested plan (401k loan would be a great option as you don't pay penalties and just a token interest rate).  But, if you INVOLVE her she'll not only appreciate it, but might feel valuable in the decision making process and at the same time see how bad you feel over the entire situation.

Flip side is do it all on your own, but still feel nagging doubt about the entire situation now AND later when you want to retire.  Either way you're going to need to come up with some explanations - instead of letting it bury you for decades, deal with it now.  You're already causing yourself problems which will quickly lead to health issues and then where would that leave your family?  Bump up that life insurance policy.

/edit/ Oh wow, so the 401k loan option has already been tapped.  You need to air this situation out ASAP.

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imscrewedarentit said:     I'm already maxed out on my 401k loan.  I tried to do a "hardship" withdraw, but they won't let me.  As someone earlier mentioned, the only way for me to withdraw the funds, would be to quit the company, which is not an option.
 

So, more data is coming out with each of your posts changing the story.  Do you still owe $60,000 on the CC's after maxing out your 401k loan or did you get the loan and blow it on gambling before the $60k on the credit cards.

Like I said before, if you seriously want help with the financial stuff, you need to put it all out there.  Edit your OP and put ALL the details, all the debts, monthly expenses and the FWF community will help.

There isn't a magic wand that will fix, even if you could get all the money out of your 401k, it doesn't "fix" the problem.   If you truly want real useful advise you need to give all the information.  If you don't, you're only hurting yourself.

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It looks like there is no other option for me at this point, but to come clean. Thank you all for your time, and helping with "non finance" related issues. I don't know what will happen, but I do know I can't continue to live like this. I am not sleeping, and I can't look my wife directly in the eyes. So, best case scenario, she will be fully understanding and will to help. Worst case scenario, she will leave me and take my children. At this point, I guess I don't have a choice. I really wish life had a "redo" button. I want to be a better husband, and father. I can't live with myself any longer with every day being a big lie. Thanks again for taking the time to read and try to help me out.

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AverageGuy09 said:   
imscrewedarentit said:     I'm already maxed out on my 401k loan.  I tried to do a "hardship" withdraw, but they won't let me.  As someone earlier mentioned, the only way for me to withdraw the funds, would be to quit the company, which is not an option.
So, more data is coming out with each of your posts changing the story.  Do you still owe $60,000 on the CC's after maxing out your 401k loan or did you get the loan and blow it on gambling before the $60k on the credit cards.

Like I said before, if you seriously want help with the financial stuff, you need to put it all out there.  Edit your OP and put ALL the details, all the debts, monthly expenses and the FWF community will help.

There isn't a magic wand that will fix, even if you could get all the money out of your 401k, it doesn't "fix" the problem.   If you truly want real useful advise you need to give all the information.  If you don't, you're only hurting yourself.

  You're right.  I came on here for advise, and although it's not what I wanted to hear, its what I needed to hear.  There will be no "magic" solution to this, and even if I list all of my debts, thats not my real issue at this point.  My real issue is myself, and that I have let my wife down.  Owing the money sucks, but I will be able to pay that off eventually.  I took the 401k loan to pay out CC, but ended up gambling again *more than a year ago.  

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Have your tried to budget on how long it would take to pay off 60K? I get the feeling that besides your gambling, you have been treating your family to a rich lifestyle and you don't want to go tell your wife that your family needs to cut back on some of the frivolous expenses - that is when she might throw you out!

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imscrewedarentit said:   It looks like there is no other option for me at this point, but to come clean. Thank you all for your time, and helping with "non finance" related issues. I don't know what will happen, but I do know I can't continue to live like this. I am not sleeping, and I can't look my wife directly in the eyes. So, best case scenario, she will be fully understanding and will to help. Worst case scenario, she will leave me and take my children. At this point, I guess I don't have a choice. I really wish life had a "redo" button. I want to be a better husband, and father. I can't live with myself any longer with every day being a big lie. Thanks again for taking the time to read and try to help me out.
I highly doubt she would walk out directly after 15 years of marriage.  Yes, she'll probably be pissed for awhile, and maybe you'll need to go to counseling, but at least you'll know you're doing the right thing.  People make mistakes, it happens.  Deal with it (together) and move on.

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If your not a troll, I have one last piece of advice.

I have been on your wives side of this equation. I had a significant other who ran up some CC debt, and attempted to hide it for a couple years, which in turn almost doubled the amount owed. It was easy to tell something was going on in our relationship. She stopped talking as much, and like you said, wouldn't look me in the eyes when I did talk. I assumed she was doing something behind my back, and like any person, I assumed the worst that she was cheating physically or emotionally with someone else. When she finally fessed up I was actually rather relieved. She screwed up bad, but it was far from what I spent almost half a year envisioning. It was causing multiple times more stress in the relationship(multiple verbal fights), than what happened after she told me. No everything was not instantly better, but at least once the cards are on the table you can attempt to move forward. Until that day you will make zero progress.

I bet you wife already knows something is going on. If she has been with you 15 years, she knows you better then you might know yourself. If you are aware that you cant look her in the eyes, she has been aware of that the whole time also. No she most likely isnt going to jump in your arms and thank you for telling her, but it might finally give her some closure to the thoughts of what you might be doing behind her back. Also the kids know something is wrong to. Kids are smart and can sense tension in the relationship, which is not good for them at all. If your worst case comes true, and she leaves you, this still might be a better outcome in the long run for your kids. You will still see them, but it will most likely be in a much happier and less stressful environment than what they are currently living in.

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Also, don't forget- gambling like this is an addiction. In the off chance you don't tell your wife and manage to fix the financial problems, without help and support you will likely be back in this mess again. Just tell the wife. I would never leave someone if they were honest about something like this. But if SHE discovers the coverup then youre screwed.

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imscrewedarentit said:   I am not sleeping, and I can't look my wife directly in the eyes. 
  On the positive side, she may very well be relieved with this news. If you are acting this way, she knows it and may be suspecting an affair. The real reason for your behavior might actually make her happy (in a weird way).

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Second the "come clean" advice. Your wife needs to know so she can be supportive and help. Gambling is an addiction and like any addiction you will need support. Your wife should be at the center of that support. If you belong to a church, check for any groups there as well. If not, I would get involved somewhere. You need some folks to help you stay "clean".

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I doubt after 15 years and three kids she would assume you were out gambling when you "had to stay late for work again". More likely she would assume you were having an affair. Let us hope that an "assumed infidelity" on your part did not lead to a "real infidelity" on hers.

Your best move is to stop lying to your wife and yourself; fess up to your wife and get some real gambling help. Life may not have a "redo" button, but at any time you can choose to activate the freely available "I can do better" button. You used it for us on FWF, now use it for your wife and kids.

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Sounds very trolly. But best of luck!

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For those of you saying troll... this isn't how you do it. A troll is supposed to get you riled up. OP coming clean in a straightforward manner without triggering language or actions, and then actually accepting the advice is the exact opposite of what a troll would do.

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OP, sorry for what you brought onto yourself! But, why would you assume she will just pick up the kids and leave just like that? That is just one of the possibilities.....there can be other outcomes as well which are better...

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One big point that others seemed to miss is that the wife might have good ideas and be able to bring in some money as well to improve the situation.

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OP, you need to have this conversation when the kids are not present, and will be gone for an extended period of time. Are grandparents near by? Can they spend a few days with them while the two of you get thru the most heated first moments/days?

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OP, does your wife work? I saw no mention if she did, does she have any skills?

I know you feel responsible and you are but in crisis everybody grabs a shovel. If your kids are in school there's no reason she can't grab a shovel. You mention your wife might divorce you and 'take' the kids. If you tell her and divorce is likely, come back here and make a new post before making a rash decision like moving out. Lots of divorced guys here can give you great advice.

Good luck.

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OP, I don't have a lot to add, but I do know that the FW community can still be helpful in helping you and your wife get out of this hole. Like others have mentioned, I would be curious to see your monthly expenses to see what could be cut. $60,000 is a lot of money but it is also manageable with some sacrifice and a solid plan. Good luck to you!

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OP, I see all too clearly from your posts where you are reluctant to lay it all out there until it becomes necessary to the forum to do so. This is the type of thinking that has gotten you into this mess and has kept you from getting out of it.

As an alcoholic 6 years sober, I am not unfamiliar with addiction. Believe me when I say you cannot keep this from your wife any longer. It is the worst thing you can do if you honestly do want to save your marriage. Whatever the consequences and results of coming clean, accepting the full weight of your actions, the guilt, shame, whatever else, is a necessary part of stopping your gambling addiction. It brings you a humbling relief to all those feelings that are tearing at you now.

I commend you for 1 year of not gambling. Some people can do it without losing everything but until you fully hit your bottom, wherever that bottom may be you are still at high risk and may always be at risk of gambling again and you will not be at peace with yourself until you are fully honest with yourself and with your wife and family. The burden you are bearing in silence will drive you back to your addictions again.

With that said, don't be so hard on yourself but also don't make any excuses for your actions. Face things head on. We all make mistakes in our life but it is how you handle those mistakes that makes the difference. You say you don't deserve your wife. I don't know your situation and I can tell there is still a lot more to the story that you haven't fully laid out but if you truly love her and have any hope of an honest and fulfilling marriage, she doesn't deserve to be lied to any more. You must rebuild that foundation and the only way to do it is to come clean. If she leaves you in the end that is something you must accept but realize that it is completely selfish and unfair to her to continue this lie.

The debt you have accumulated is only one part of the problem. The addiction is the real problem and you need to seek out help for that. See if the are any gambling anonymous groups in your area. The problem also lies with your dishonesty and hiding all of this from everyone. Come clean and take your licks and then you can begin to dig yourself out of the financial situation. Don't pretend that everything is OK financially and go on an expensive vacation. If your wife is on board with working things out with you in the marriage, she will also need to be on board with you in digging yourselves out of the financial debt. 60k plus whatever your 401k loan balance and any additional loans or debts you may not yet have mentioned, it not the end of the world but before we can offer financial advice for your situation you need to take the first steps in coming clean with your wife and if she is on board with you in following the financial plan set forth by this forum.

I empathize with your situation OP. You have taken the first step down a difficult road but believe me, there is a light at the end of the tunnel no matter how hard it may be to see it. I hope you stick with your posts and this can all work out for you. This forum has helped many people change their ways and come out on top financially but they also all had one thing in common -- they humbled themselves in their mistakes and were completely honest with their financial situation and their spending.

*Mentions the obligatory IBJANKY STORY*

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imscrewedarentit said:     I took the 401k loan to pay out CC, but ended up gambling again *more than a year ago.  
  
imscrewedarentit said:     I want to withdraw funds from my 401k
  
If the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior, then it would appear that the gambler in you wants to withdraw funds from your 401k so that you can gamble some more.  And perhaps part of the reason that you don't want your wife to know what you are doing is because she might manage to stop you from using any additional funds for more gambling.  Or at least she would try, which could lead to heated arguments.

It is good that you have been faithful to your wife.  That part of your life gets an A+ grade.  And it is good that you are earning a living and seem to have an intellectual understanding of credit cards.  But you have been failing to exercise financial self-control.  In your more lucid moments, you need to figure out some way to set up your finances so that it is not possible for you to raid your earnings and savings when you get the urge to gamble.

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I just wanted to say thanks to all that have responded, and even PMed me offering their support. Even though I have not confessed this to my wife, just getting it out there, and telling "someone" has helped me out a lot. I will confront my wife, and as was suggested, I will do it when the kids aren't around. We are doing a family vacation in May, and will do it shortly after that. This will not be easy, and I honestly don't know the outcome, but most of you have helped with, what I think is sound advice. Thanks again!

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imscrewedarentit said:   ... We are doing a family vacation in May, and will do it shortly after that. 
  
I would not advise waiting three more months. Do it now; there will be plenty of time to start mending if the two of you chose to get serious. In addition, if I was married to someone who diclosed a large debt only after taking on more vacation travel debt, I would not be giving them the benefit of the doubt. Even if the intention was to keep the peace and try to make fond family memories.

Becuase you wont be happy, and likely a nervous wreck thinking of the fallout that is soon to come.

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Update from Op?

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