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Lately I’ve been reading a lot about student loan debt, ways to pay it off quickly, ways to get help paying it off (things such as upromise) and horror stories about people who did everything right and still wound up on their asses, flat broke, bankrupt, homeless, whatever, all because of a few hidden fees that went crazy and raised their payments by thousands.

The options for help are slim, paying it off quickly is unlikely and the horror stories… those are one in a million. My student loans are… fine. I can afford my payments for now, and as long as the amount of my payment doesn’t rise faster than my income does, I’ll continue being fine. I don’t LIKE them, but I’d rather HAVE them and have my degree, than not have them and not be where I am today.

My boyfriend and I say, quite often actually, “How in the world are we the only ones?” Obviously, we aren’t the only ones who are in debt to student loans, but sometimes it genuinely feels like we are. The majority of our friends didn’t get loans to pay for college, or they only had to get a few grand. We’re baffled by how the managed the costs, assuming their parents must have paid for it or something similar. But, if that’s not the case, then they definitely did something right while we definitely did something wrong.

Continuing on with this thought, in my recent readings about student loan facts and statistics, I have learned that student loan debt recently hit 1 Trillion dollars in the United States, and the average borrower owes about $26,000

This is the part that makes me ask “What?”

$26,000??? Seriously, where did I go wrong? I have a bachelor’s degree from a small university that, at the time of my first year there, was one of the cheapest universities in the state. I graduated five years later $79,000 in debt. I don’t know the exact number, but my boyfriend went to school at a much more expensive university and for a longer amount of time to include his internship, and I’m pretty sure he owes more than I do.

Either the majority of those ‘average borrowers’ only went to school for one year, or, again, I did something horribly, horribly wrong to accumulate this much debt in five years. I worked multiple part time jobs through my entire college career in order to pay my bills on top of what my stipend paid for, and still consistently ran out of funds and had to eat ramon noodles for weeks on end. I was the definition of a broke college student, and I know my boyfriend was too. Yet, now we’re both graduated and have enough debt to equal a pretty nice house that we’ll never be able to buy because we already owe that much.

Anyone else out there in a similar boat? The articles I read said only 10% of student loan borrowers have debt that is in excess of $62,000. Does anyone know of anyone who wants to pay towards my debt? Okay, okay, kidding. Like I said I’m fine, it’s just strange to see the numbers in the articles so different from the numbers on my own bills. It really does make me feel like I am the only one dealing with it. I’m 1 of only 10%. Darn.