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Bacolod City, PhilippinesWednesday, May 22, 2013

We’re deeply in debt

Dear Tita,

My wife, Thelma, and I were happily married for 15 years. We were blessed with two sons and were living a comfortable life. I trusted Thelma so much that I entrusted to her everything that had to do with running our home. I was so busy with my job, travelling all over the region and coming home only for a few days before leaving again.

I could see that she handled things very well and seemed very organized. Every time I asked her about our savings and our monthly bills, she assured me that there was no problem and that I should not bother about it. I had no reason to doubt her so I didn’t think to check on this.

A few months ago, Thelma had to go to her hometown in General Santos as her father had a heart attack. I took a leave from my job so I could attend to our kids while she was away. After a week, she told me she couldn’t come back yet as her mother was also hospitalized after she was diagnosed with cancer.

It was during this period that I found out about Thelma’s big debts. Our housing loan with Pag-IBIG had not been paid for three months, and most of our bills were overdue. There were a lot of people calling the house, asking when Thelma would pay what she owed them. The huge amounts they mentioned gave me a scare. I went to the bank to check on our savings and was shocked to find out that we were almost zero balance. She had not been depositing any savings for us for some time.

I immediately called Thelma to ask her about our being deeply in debt. She got mad and put the blame on me, saying I was at fault because I was always away. She said I shouldn’t have left everything to her as I knew she was not fit to handle everything by herself. We were shouting on the phone when she suddenly slammed down the phone and wouldn’t answer when I called her again.

I have been calling and calling her to no avail. My leave is over and I have to go back to work. How can I focus on my job when my household is in a mess? Please advise me on what to do.


Dear Too Trusting Husband,

What a situation you are in. You trusted everything to your wife, who is either too immature, or too much of a spendthrift.

First of all, you must ask her to come home and both of you can try to find a solution to this mess you’re facing. Did you try to find out if she has been gambling? Or spending money on expensive things?

I know of a wife in a similar situation, who had been victimized by a scam and lost all their savings to con artists. They lost everything – their home, their car, her jewelry and even their appliances. There are so many probable causes why she is mired in debt.

You have to ask yourself if you still want to make a go of your marriage. Some men might want to give up on it. But if you still love her, you have to find a way to solve this problem.



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