Credit Card Debtors Finding Emotional Support Online

June 13, 2008 01:06 PM
by Shannon Firth
Online and in-person support groups for people saddled with credit card debt are increasing in number and popularity thanks to America's current credit crunch.

30-Second Summary

According to the Wall Street Journal, the strain of 2 million housing foreclosures and 11.8 million unpaid credit card accounts over the past year has debtors so overwhelmed they’re seeking support from outsiders.

Organizations like Debtors Anonymous and, which hosts meetings on and off the Web for debtors, address these needs.

And with credit card debt on the rise, the need for such services is likely to keep pace. David Brooks, a columnist for the New York Times, recently explored a report from the Institute for American Values and other think tanks. The report cited a near tripling of credit card debt between 1989 and 2001. And now that home equity credit has been depleted by the current housing crisis, higher-interest credit cards seem to be the only option for many consumers.

As Americans fall further into debt, more may be turning to support groups for help. But do they work? The “Women in Red Racers,” an online support group especially for women, helped its network of about 400 women to settle approximately $1.6 million of debt in the last year.

BusinessWeek explained, “Half a century of spend-with-abandon attitude may be winding down” due to more stringent lending policies among credit card companies mortgage lenders, and student loan organizations.

Headline Link: ‘Americans Find Solace in Support Groups”

Background: How did things get so bad?

Opinion & Analysis: Do support groups work?

Related Topics: A U.S. recession

Reference: More help for credit card debt


Most Recent Beyond The Headlines