Millions of Americans need financial help to make the American dream become a reality. Thus, Americans are bogged down by student loan debt more than ever. Attaining student loans are always presented as the obvious option to choose when eager college-goers need money to finance school.
Of course, student loan borrowers have every intention to repay their loans when they graduate and land a job, but unforeseen circumstances may get in the way. So you missed a payment; and this means you’re now considered delinquent. As soon as you missed a payment, your student loan status changes from current to “delinquent.” With federal student loans, you have up to 9 months before you go into default and it gets reported to the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion). You don’t want to go into default as once this happens your entire student loan balance will become due! If you have private loans, you need to act quickly. When you miss a payment on a private loan, most of the time those get reported 30, 60 or 90 days past due. The timeline of how a missed student loan payment gets reported will vary from lender to lender. In either case, don’t let your delinquency ride out as it could potentially remain on your credit report for up to 7 years, affecting your financial future in a negative way.
Here is a list of steps to help you recover after you’ve become delinquent on your student loan.
Make Your Payment
The easiest way to get out of delinquency is to make your missed payment as soon as you can. As soon as you make your payment your status will switch from delinquency to current. Of course, there is a reason you missed your payment. If you missed it because you didn’t have enough money to make the minimum payment, you might want to consider creating a budget or if you already have one, take time to re-work it.
If you missed your payment because it simply slipped your mind, do your best to pay off your outstanding monthly payment as soon as possible. If your financial situation allows, you may want to consider making more than the minimum payment. This will help you get back on track with your student loans, and your payment will go towards the interest and principal payment.
If you missed your payment because it simply slipped your mind, do your best to pay off your outstanding monthly payment as soon as possible. If your financial situation allows, you may want to consider making more than the minimum payment
Call Your Lender
Once you are delinquent on a student or personal loan, your lender will try to get in touch with you typically within the first fifteen days of a missed payments. If they try to contact you, use this to your advantage! If they haven’t called you yet, make the first move and contact them. You want to be on good terms with your lender. Explain to them the situation, and listen to what they recommend so you don’t become a repeat offender of missing payments.
You should consider talking to your lender to see if there is a better way for you to repay your student loans. For example, an income-sensitive repayment plan is based on your total gross monthly income, which can help to ensure that you make your monthly payments. If you aren’t in too deep with your delinquency, then you may be able to qualify for deferment or forbearance. These two options will allow you to completely stop making payments for a period of time; however, with forbearance, your interest will still accrue. Additionally, when you speak with your lender, ask them if your delinquency has caused any late charges or fees on your account. If fees did accrue, you may want to cut back on some of your non-essential expenses to help pay this down.
Prevent Missing another Payment
You may want to consider signing up for automated payments to ensure you stay on track with your loans going forward. Depending on the lender, if you choose this option, you might also qualify for a lower interest rate. If you do decide upon automatic payments, be sure to check that you have enough funds in your account each month to make the payment. Consider setting a reminder on your phone to help make timely payments. If you don’t want to make automatic payments, consider changing the due date of your payment to one that lines up better with your payday.
Don’t get too worked up, becoming delinquent on your student loan isn’t always the worst case scenario. There are ways you can recover if you take action quickly and don’t procrastinate when it comes to missing a payment. It’s essential to avoid defaulting on your loans which generally happens after 270 days of consecutive missed payments. Consider speaking with your lender or loan servicer and figure out the best way to make your loans current and your payments more manageable.
For decades, women have been unknowingly suffering from PSD and intergenerational trauma, but now Dr. Valerie Rein wants women to reclaim their power through mind, body and healing tools.
As women, no matter how many accomplishments we have or how successful we look on the outside, we all occasionally hear that nagging internal voice telling us to do more. We criticize ourselves more than anyone else and then throw ourselves into the never-ending cycle of self-care, all in effort to save ourselves from crashing into this invisible internal wall. According to psychologist, entrepreneur and author, Dr. Valerie Rein, these feelings are not your fault and there is nothing wrong with you— but chances are you definitely suffering from Patriarchy Stress Disorder.
Patriarchy Stress Disorder (PSD) is defined as the collective inherited trauma of oppression that forms an invisible inner barrier to women's happiness and fulfillment. The term was coined by Rein who discovered a missing link between trauma and the effects that patriarchal power structures have had on certain groups of people all throughout history up until the present day. Her life experience, in addition to research, have led Rein to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which men and women are experiencing symptoms of trauma and stress that have been genetically passed down from previously oppressed generations.
What makes the discovery of this disorder significant is that it provides women with an answer to the stresses and trauma we feel but cannot explain or overcome. After being admitted to the ER with stroke-like symptoms one afternoon, when Rein noticed the left side of her body and face going numb, she was baffled to learn from her doctors that the results of her tests revealed that her stroke-like symptoms were caused by stress. Rein was then left to figure out what exactly she did for her clients in order for them to be able to step into the fullness of themselves that she was unable to do for herself. "What started seeping through the tears was the realization that I checked all the boxes that society told me I needed to feel happy and fulfilled, but I didn't feel happy or fulfilled and I didn't feel unhappy either. I didn't feel much of anything at all, not even stress," she stated.
Photo Courtesy of Dr. Valerie Rein
This raised the question for Rein as to what sort of hidden traumas women are suppressing without having any awareness of its presence. In her evaluation of her healing methodology, Rein realized that she was using mind, body and trauma healing tools with her clients because, while they had never experienced a traumatic event, they were showing the tell-tale symptoms of trauma which are described as a disconnect from parts of ourselves, body and emotions. In addition to her personal evaluation, research at the time had revealed that traumatic experiences are, in fact, passed down genetically throughout generations. This was Rein's lightbulb moment. The answer to a very real problem that she, and all women, have been experiencing is intergenerational trauma as a result of oppression formed under the patriarchy.
Although Rein's discovery would undoubtably change the way women experience and understand stress, it was crucial that she first broaden the definition of trauma not with the intention of catering to PSD, but to better identify the ways in which trauma presents itself in the current generation. When studying psychology from the books and diagnostic manuals written exclusively by white men, trauma was narrowly defined as a life-threatening experience. By that definition, not many people fit the bill despite showing trauma-like symptoms such as disconnections from parts of their body, emotions and self-expression. However, as the field of psychology has expanded, more voices have been joining the conversations and expanding the definition of trauma based on their lived experience. "I have broadened the definition to say that any experience that makes us feel unsafe psychically or emotionally can be traumatic," stated Rein. By redefining trauma, people across the gender spectrum are able to find validation in their experiences and begin their journey to healing these traumas not just for ourselves, but for future generations.
While PSD is not experienced by one particular gender, as women who have been one of the most historically disadvantaged and oppressed groups, we have inherited survival instructions that express themselves differently for different women. For some women, this means their nervous systems freeze when faced with something that has been historically dangerous for women such as stepping into their power, speaking out, being visible or making a lot of money. Then there are women who go into fight or flight mode. Although they are able to stand in the spotlight, they pay a high price for it when their nervous system begins to work in a constant state of hyper vigilance in order to keep them safe. These women often find themselves having trouble with anxiety, intimacy, sleeping or relaxing without a glass of wine or a pill. Because of this, adrenaline fatigue has become an epidemic among high achieving women that is resulting in heightened levels of stress and anxiety.
"For the first time, it makes sense that we are not broken or making this up, and we have gained this understanding by looking through the lens of a shared trauma. All of these things have been either forbidden or impossible for women. A woman's power has always been a punishable offense throughout history," stated Rein.
Although the idea of having a disorder may be scary to some and even potentially contribute to a victim mentality, Rein wants people to be empowered by PSD and to see it as a diagnosis meant to validate your experience by giving it a name, making it real and giving you a means to heal yourself. "There are still experiences in our lives that are triggering PSD and the more layers we heal, the more power we claim, the more resilience we have and more ability we have in staying plugged into our power and happiness. These triggers affect us less and less the more we heal," emphasized Rein. While the task of breaking intergenerational transmission of trauma seems intimidating, the author has flipped the negative approach to the healing journey from a game of survival to the game of how good can it get.
In her new book, Patriarchy Stress Disorder: The Invisible Barrier to Women's Happiness and Fulfillment, Rein details an easy system for healing that includes the necessary tools she has sourced over 20 years on her healing exploration with the pioneers of mind, body and trauma resolution. Her 5-step system serves to help "Jailbreakers" escape the inner prison of PSD and other hidden trauma through the process of Waking Up in Prison, Meeting the Prison Guards, Turning the Prison Guards into Body Guards, Digging the Tunnel to Freedom and Savoring Freedom. Readers can also find free tools on Rein's website to help aid in their healing journey and exploration.
"I think of the book coming out as the birth of a movement. Healing is not women against men– it's women, men and people across the gender spectrum, coming together in a shared understanding that we all have trauma and we can all heal."