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Attorney Peter Daigle Talks With Katherine On “This Needs To Be Said” About Life’s Challenges And Bankruptcy.

Katherine: Hello everyone. Thank you so much for joining the conversation. Our friend Attorney Peter Daigle, has joined us again and I almost gave it away last time we were talking when we were discussing that you are not alone when it comes to facing life’s challenges and bankruptcy is the answer sometimes to life challenges. We even went over an avatar, if you will, of the types of people that go in for bankruptcy. So I was thinking he was going to say, a certain career or if you took this type of job that this kind of ends you here. It wasn’t that way. It was life circumstances happen, job loss, death in the family, just your debts have exceeded your income some kind of way. And you could find yourself, whoever you are, whatever job you have, male or female, you can find yourself in the situation of needing to consider bankruptcy or some form of debt consolidation.
So today we’re going to continue the conversation, but this time he’s going to share with us the emotional process, which I know is present. And I bet you’ve been thinking, hey, wow, this has given me knots in my stomach. And while I don’t want to consider bankruptcy because I’ve been taught that it’s a bad word or whatever, we’re here to let you know, one, you’re not alone and it’s not bad. It’s not a bad word. And you can get through this and you can reset your life.
Peter, with all of that being said, welcome back into the conversation. I just want to make sure I did a recap.
Peter Daigle: Well, thank you for the kind words-
Katherine: You’re welcome.
Peter Daigle: … and you nailed it as far as what we talked about before, so that’s great. Thank you.
Katherine: Well, I want to make sure they didn’t forget. So we got the recap. Today we’re going to talk about, I believe, you said the emotional experience of the process. I’m going to turn it over to you.
Peter Daigle: Thank you so much. So, there’s a number of reasons why we get emotional about things that we don’t want to occur, for instance, bankruptcy. And one is that, the first thing is we’ve always been taught to fight. Okay. Since we’re little kids, it’s like, you fight for your rights, whatever the case may be. And so you don’t ever want to admit defeat. Okay. The thought of filing bankruptcy is a sense of surrendering to something that you could continue to fight and that you could’ve fought harder and the would have, could have, should have. Part of the emotional connection is that you just feel like you’ve let yourself down by doing that. So, that’s always a difficult thing to do.
But sometimes we find ourselves in life, we have to surrender to the moment because it’s just something that is outside of our control. Whether you get a flat tire on the road and all of a sudden you’re late for the appointment. Well, you just have this almost surrender to the fact that that’s what’s happened. Inevitably it always works out on the other end, but in the moment time there’s that feeling of like, oh my gosh. So the feeling of having to surrender is not something that is really well baked into the human psyche. We want to try to fight and make it work. It’s just not in the human nature. So that’s always an emotional hurdle to overcome. And so surrendering is something that needs to be done.
The second reason that, of the emotional impact, is that anxiety, a lot of times is caused by misinformation. And when it comes to the word bankruptcy, it’s almost like cancer or some of the other words that are out there. All of a sudden we have this tremendous fear that sets in with that word, and it’s generally based upon misinformation. And so whether it be how we were taught as a child, or what we’ve read in the newspaper, or whether or not we’ve heard from our friends, there’s so much misinformation about a bankruptcy in which it causes anxiety immediately. I’m going to lose my house, I’m going to lose my car, I’m going to lose my dog, I’m going to lose all my money I the account, I’m going to lose my job. So that initial panic, and that’s based upon being domesticated, so to speak, that this is the way it’s supposed to be. It causes emotional distress that’s unnecessary.
So like anything in life, it’s always good to get as much information as you can. And a lot of the folks that we counsel here come with all the wrong information. Either they’ve gone on the internet, they Googled it, and they found out circumstances or states that just don’t apply to them, or they’ve asked their hairdresser, or their friend, or their mother and they come to us with the misinformation. So what happens is they have all this anxiety and emotion based upon misinformation. They don’t know what’s going to happen. So this fear of the unknown causes tremendous stress. Okay. So part of what we do is we will go through information and I always tell people, I’m not going to give you a solution, I’m just going to give you an answer. I mean, I’m going to give you some information. So it’s not like I’m trying to say this is what you need to do.
I try to break it down in a way in which we unpack all their fears and we trade it for good information. When they’re done with the consultation-
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Katherine: I like that.
Peter Daigle: … they may not have, I mean they may need to think about their options, but they have enough information to make an informed decision. And so what we try to say is listen the decision’s yours, we’re going to give you some information to better help you. And we always try to give them a number of options. So they don’t feel like they only have one. That information that they get, you can see the expression on their faces change as through consultation. They’re getting this information and realize that their fears are unfounded based upon what we tell them.
The good news about the bankruptcy is, is because the law allows us to do it. We take them through a process in which they’re protected. It’s a safe haven from creditors. And it’s because the law says they can do it. We’re able to impart information in which they have a right to do it and they are protected. And it’s not like there’s any sense of uncertainty. So that would be the second reason why is there’s an emotional impact.
And the third reason a lot of people come to us with emotional issues, is they’re concerned somebody else is going to find out about it. They’re like, oh my God, what is my friend going to say, what is my mother going to say, what is this, what is my husband going to say when he finds out. So a lot of times there’s a sense of anxiety or emotion as a result of who’s going to find out. Well, I can tell you that nobody will find out unless you tell them or unless your credit reports will show on it. So unless you have access to somebody’s credit reports.
Katherine: Right.
Peter Daigle: Which is very difficult to get, you’re not going to be able to know about somebody else. And so we try to alleviate that fear and the sense of anxiety, because that’s always an issue. Who’s going to find out? And will my car company know, and I don’t want to lose my car and my… It’s important that I keep my car, I need it for work. Having that armed with knowledge and understanding and in a sense of safety afterwards, it really will calm the fears of pretty much everybody that comes in.
It’s important that whoever you speak to takes the time to really go through everything and to not leave, don’t leave the consultation until all your questions have been answered, and especially when it comes to the uncertainties, because the good news is that a bankruptcy can, it can break it down based upon the law and a defined set of rules and procedures. Okay. So there’s just not a sense of, I have to go to the hospital for this test. I have no idea what’s going to happen. And then all that uncertainty comes in. It’s not that same way with bankruptcy. That’s sort of the, some of the emotional components of it. I don’t know if you have any thoughts or questions from that.
Katherine: I can definitely see all of that, wanting to surrender you want to know, I need to, whether you’re diving in the water or walking into an unknown space, which is what we would be doing with filing bankruptcy. Surrendering is like, wait a minute, you want me to just to give up. I’m walking with you as you’re talking in my head and I’m saying I could see that, I could see the anxiety and definitely the shame.
Now you were saying that probably like we go to the doctor and we’ve been on WebMD or something. We come in with, hey my arm has a sore on and I know I’m dying. That would be me.
Peter Daigle: Right.
Katherine: So we come in with the wrong information. So just to add a little humor, what has been some of the information that you gotten and was like, what? How did you… Okay, I’m glad you came in.
Peter Daigle: My employer is going to find out, my mother’s going to find out I’m going to lose my car, I’m going to lose my house, they’re going to take all the money in my checking account. They’re going to take my paycheck.
Katherine: And who is they?
Peter Daigle: They going to manage my checking account. The government. It’s always they. You know they, right.
Katherine: They, yeah, I’m going to change my name to they, because they are so influential.
Peter Daigle: They is everybody out there, the unknown, the boogeyman.
Katherine: They’re going to get me.
Peter Daigle: Yeah. So the creditors, the bankruptcy court, the mortgage company, the car loan people, all the people out there are going to just do all these things to me. None of those things occur. Okay, you don’t lose, they’re not going to come in and take your furniture. They’re not going to come into your house. They’re not going to come into your checkbook. Those are the kinds of things. They’re not going to take your car. So again, that’s all based upon misinformation-
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Katherine: Because bankruptcy is just the opposite. It’s to protect.
Peter Daigle: Exactly.
Katherine: When this gets out, this is, hey, my protection is out here.
Peter Daigle: Right, exactly.
Katherine: I can only chuckle because I didn’t know that before, so I’m thinking, wow, and I wonder how many times am I talking and people know I don’t know what I’m talking about.
Peter Daigle: Right. Well, I like to liken it to a surgical procedure. We’re going to just take, we’re going to do little small surgery here and all’s we’re going to do is we’re going to cut out your debt. Okay. Everything else in your life stays the same. It’ll just take a minute and we’re going to take all that debt that you have, all this credit cards and medical debt and utilities and some of the IRS debt that you have, and we’re just going to carve it out and remove it. And then the rest of your life will be the same. You won’t, none of your assets will be taken from you. You keep everything, keep your job, and we’re just going to take that debt away. Okay. So if you let me-
Katherine: Financial health will take time to recover, but you’re going to be fine.
Peter Daigle: Right, exactly.
Katherine: Yeah. Yeah. I think that that could bring a person peace of mind just sitting down and I’m sure someone has been with you and said, “Hey, I hear what you’re saying, but my situation is different. They’re going to come get me.” It’s like listen, calm down. I was just imagining that part of your job is to calm the client down.
Peter Daigle: Exactly, that’s what we do.
Katherine: Keep them calm. Wow. Well we want you to help us to resolve, but it’s amazing, oh gosh. It is really simple. I am in over my head. I have a legal right to go get protection so I can restart my life so I can breathe again and just contacting you. But that’s like three steps. I realize I’m in over my head. I want to solve it. I know somebody that can help me. One, two, three. But it sounds like we can create many more steps in between finally getting to you.
Peter Daigle: Exactly. Yep.
Katherine: And we don’t need to do that. Bankruptcy is not a bad word and it’s okay. You’re not alone. Other people have filed, which I don’t like comparing. I don’t really care what other people have done. I’m more concerned with does it make me a better person.
Peter Daigle: Exactly.
Katherine: And was my intent to get away with something, now you may, maybe if you’re feeling really bad, maybe because you thought about getting over-
Peter Daigle: Right.
Katherine: … or you feel like you’re taking something from someone and it’s undeserved, I don’t know. But if you didn’t have malicious intent, you weren’t saying, I’m going to go get this debt and I’m not going to pay them back. Yeah. You weren’t trying to get over or take something from someone you, you weren’t trying to have something in life you didn’t deserve or hadn’t worked for, but you weren’t able to maintain it. And it happens. It happens.
Peter Daigle: Exactly.
Katherine: And we could think of other things and just say, hey, and I made it through that thing, whatever it was. It’s okay. It’s okay. That’s what I want people, it’s okay, breathe and contact Peter Daigle.
Peter Daigle: That’s it right. You got it.
Katherine: That’s right. That’s right. Make it three steps instead of 10, 20, 30, years, you know. Peter, thank you. Thank you for adding humor to a very tough conversation to have with myself, with my friends, with my finances, with life thinking, oh gosh, if I had known better. Sometimes you can’t know better because we don’t know the answers in this adult life accept it.
Peter Daigle: Isn’t that the truth.
Katherine: Surrender.
Peter Daigle: So true.
Katherine: Yeah. Let people know how to get in touch with you outside of-
Peter Daigle: Sure, again, Peter Daigle. The best way is through my website at Daigle Law Office. That’s D-A-I-G-L-E And you can go through it and you can request a copy of my book or set up a time for consultation. I’d love to help you.
Katherine: It does not hurt to talk. Thank you so much, Peter, and until next time, have a wonderful day.
Peter Daigle: Okay, Katherine. Thank you. Okay, bye-bye.
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