Flat Broke and Out of Options
October 15, 2013 4:55 PM Subscribe
I lost my job, am having trouble finding a new one, am running out of freelance jobs, have $60 in my bank account, and don't know where to go from here. What on earth is my next step? Please help me think.
posted by pineappleheart to work & money (42 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
I was laid off three weeks ago. I got two weeks of severance, most of which went towards rent in my very expensive city and some of which is now paying for my meager food rations. I had no savings (I know, I know) as I was attempting to pay off credit card debt I earned when I was a Master's student; the credit card debt is now down to $9k, but I still need to pay it off, of course. I have $60 in my bank account and am expecting the next check I earn from my freelance position to go directly into next month's rent. The freelance position is not steady work, and the director will likely run out of new work to send me next week.
I'm actively looking for a job, and have had two interviews at separate places. Unfortunately, I was told at both interviews that I was overqualified for the position and would likely be bored there. (I have an editorial background and an MSW, neither of which really make me overqualified for anything, to be truthful.) I apply to waitressing, etc., jobs, but have never heard back from any of them. I've contacted several temp agencies, including those which have helped me before, and have followed up with each, but I haven't gotten any responses yet. I've contacted any friends and friends of friends who might know of an open position. I'm considering cashing out my 401(k), which should have around $1800, just so I can pay rent for one more month, though I know I'll lose money as a penalty. I'm estranged from my family, so cannot ask any relatives for a loan. My boyfriend generously offered to pay our full rent for November, but that is my absolute last resort; we don't typically share finances and he's not exactly wealthy. Along with rent, we need to make bills and COBRA payments, and I'm scared of ignoring the credit card debt. My new therapist also just informed me that my insurance doesn't consider her a provider even though she thought she was, so I owe her $500 for our five sessions.
If you were me, what would your next step be? I'm not awesome with finances and don't really have anyone to guide me, so there might be some really obvious answers here. I'll keep applying to jobs, networking, and following up with temp agencies, but what else can I do? I don't think I can file for unemployment with my freelance job. What do I do about credit card debts? Can I tell my therapist that she falsely advertised as in-network and I won't pay the $500? Do I cash out my 401(k)? Do I agree to let my boyfriend pay rent? This is the first time I've really been broke, and I'm woefully undereducated about how to deal with it. Please give me some tips on how to get past this crisis point!