Welcome to ‘Ask Jenni’, a new blog series where I try to help you resolve your big money dilemmas. This week, let’s have a chat with Claire who made a nightmare discovery when having a spring cleaning session…
My girlfriend (28) and I have been together for 2 years and we recently started renting a small flat together in London. Over the weekend I decided to have a huge sort out while my girlfriend was at work. While tiding the wardrobe, I found a handful of bills that showed she’s in over £30,000 worth of debt from credit cards, store cards and payday loans. When she came home, I confronted her about the debts. It didn’t go well. She’s mad at me for looking through her stuff and refuses to talk about the debt. She says there’s nothing she can do about it right now because she’s living pay cheque to pay cheque as it is. Since we first got together, she’s always found enough money to go on nights out and treat herself to new clothes though.
I’ve always been sensible with my money and aside from my student loan, I don’t have any debts at all. I don’t want her finances to ruin mine, but I also don’t feel right breaking up with her over money. Every other aspect of our relationship is perfect so I feel like I should help her. But I’m annoyed that she kept this from me for so long and I don’t know how to fix the problem. From looking at the statements, it seems like most of the debt was accumulated before she and I met.