There was a time when to talk of having debts was like openly admitting that you liked to pull the wings off flies. People simply would not confess to having debt, even if it turned out that they did have debts, and quite substantial ones at that. Now, it really doesn’t seem that way. Debt is seen as an accepted hazard and a fact of life by many people – and there have been some good outcomes to that, with many responsible people on lower incomes able to spread the cost of necessary outlays. The problem comes when the debt cannot be managed.
It might be more beneficial for everyone if we started to differentiate more between kinds of debt. Rather than assuming that all debt was bad, if we could all tell the difference between unmanageable and manageable debt, necessary and unnecessary debt, then we would be able to judge when debt was an acceptable step, when it was the best option, and put together some ideas on how to stop people getting into damaging, excessive debts of the kind which can blight a life.
It would not be true to say that the present-day prevailing view on debt was the right one. Nor would it be right to say that the old-fashioned attitude was strictly fair or correct. What we can hopefully all agree on is that debt awareness is more important than anything, and that we should all learn to apply the common sense that none of us are shy of handing out to everyone else.