Are you interested in student loan forgiveness? In 2020, I officially paid off $60k of student loan debt. This took me about 4.5 years and lots of side hustles, sacrifice, and even a part-time job scooping ice cream while I worked full-time as a data analyst.
After the recent announcement of student loan forgiveness by the U.S. government, many people have asked me how I feel about it, knowing that I won’t be able to benefit from it.
With that said, this post is a collection of my honest and open thoughts that I have on the recent $10k student loan forgiveness. Please note that this is from a purely personal perspective.
This post is all about how I feel about the recent student loan forgiveness given that I paid off $60k of student loan debt.
1. I wasn’t afforded student loan forgiveness, but I have had many financial privileges in my life
This is something I’ve been thinking a lot about recently since reading the book Financial Adulting by Ashley Feinstein Gerstley. In it, she writes about some of the privileges she has had financially and I realized just how much I could relate to some of those things.
Things like, my parents giving me a paid-off car my sophomore year of college, which I still have to this day, meaning I’ve never had a car payment in my adult life (almost 10 years).
Additionally, my parents paid for me to attend college. I paid for my student loans, but they paid for my food, housing, books and whatever else I needed to pay for while in my 4 years of undergrad.
I never had to work a job through school or save up a bunch of money during the summers because my parents were always there to pay for the things that I needed.
Another one I’ve been thinking about lately thanks to Financial Adulting is that I’ve never had to help my parents financially. I’ve never been asked to cover a bill for them or to help them out with a substantial financial expense. This is a huge privilege. I can’t imagine having to pay for all of my own bills while also helping out my parents financially, but I know this is a serious reality for many.
Thinking this way helps me put things in perspective. No, I may not have benefited from $10k in student loan forgiveness, but I have been very blessed financially in other ways and at other points of my life.
2. Imagine someone you love with tens of thousands of dollars of student loan debt – would you be happy for them to get $10k of forgiveness?
Another thought I have been having about the student loan forgiveness is — I may not be able to get $10k of forgiveness, but I know a lot of us have loved ones who will be able to benefit from it.
When I think about this, it makes me feel really happy for them. I think we all want our loved ones and the people who matter most to us to not have major financial struggles, and if $10k in student loan forgiveness can help them, then that’s great.
3. I do feel bad for people with private student loans
People typically refinance their student loans because they want a lower monthly payment or a lower interest rate. And oftentimes, this can be extremely helpful.
However, when you refinance your student loans from federal ones (those owned by the U.S. government) to private ones, you lose protections that you might receive from the federal government, like a payment pause or student loan forgiveness, which many people are very familiar with the last few years.
Of course, no one could’ve predicted what happened to the world in 2020. So, all of the people who had refinanced their student loans from federal ones to private ones prior to that time didn’t get to benefit from any paused payments or forgiveness.
This bums me out, because I know people who refinanced their student loans to private ones who have a lot of student loan debt and could’ve really used some help the last 2 years, but I suppose it is what it is.
4. The choice to not be upset
When people ask me how I feel about the recent student loan forgiveness, knowing I won’t be benefiting from it but have paid off $60k of debt, I can tell that some of them expect me to be upset.
But here’s the thing – no matter if I’m upset about it or not, I cannot control what the U.S. Government decides to do. So, I’ve thought to myself, I can be bitter for weeks or months or years over something I can’t control, or I can choose to be at peace with it and accept it for what it is.
When I think about it this way, the choice is easy; I’d rather be at peace than be bitter. I am debt free, after all, and that was my main goal from day one. Mission accomplished, ya know?
5. I had private loans any way
This one’s important. I refinanced my student loans a few years before I became debt free in order to get a lower interest rate and lower my monthly payment.
Like I mentioned above, student loan forgiveness is reserved only for those with federal loans, so I wouldn’t have been able to benefit from it any way.
6. I’m simply relieved to be debt free
Lastly, there’s a part of me that feels a little exhausted with student loans. Becoming debt free was my main focus for so long that I think I’m entirely burned out on the issue from a personal standpoint.
Having student loans taught me so much about personal finance and I am incredibly thankful for them AND very grateful that they are no longer a part of my life.
I am so proud of the past version of me who worked hard to get rid of them so that the present version of myself can exist debt free. And with that said, I’m kind of “over it” in a lot of ways.
I knew that student loan forgiveness might be coming for many months now, so I took this time to really think long and hard about how I felt about it. The thoughts above are the result of that thinking, and I feel really good about where my head’s at.
This post was all about how I feel about the recent student loan forgiveness given that I paid off $60k of student loan debt.
Other posts you might like:
- 5 Life-Changing Lessons I Learned From My Student Loans
- 7 Insane Student Loan Debt Statistics That Will Blow Your Mind
- Student Loans: What I’d Change If I Could Do It Again
- How to Budget Using Zero-Based Budgeting