Posted in Finances

Do You Know the Song “You Are Not Alone” by Michael Jackson? People Today Buried in Debt—That’s 15% of All Americans with Credit—Are Confessing That They Feel Very Alone - By Steven Ciantro

Steven Ciantro is a certified credit counselor, a management representative of American Debt Enders, and a former finalist in Inc. magazine and Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year contest. He is also a Talk-Show Radio Host and successful published songwriter and musician (his album January Tyme can be heard on YouTube), the inventor of a patented medical device, a public speaker on debt issues, and the official debt expert for Motivational Speaker Gail Kasper’s Top 1% Club.


Yes, 15% of American households with any type of credit have gone into
collection, as noted on their credit reports. This is a new record; the previous record was set in the last quarter of 2012! Staggering. 


These little facts come to us by way of the Federal Reserve Bank. They have to monitor these parameters because they are literally printing record-setting amounts of cash—yes, actual money. Is it any wonder that the commercials for antidepressant drugs are now talking about combining two antidepressants because just one is not doing the trick?


People working hard and falling into this abyss are all feeling the same isolation and asking, “What can I do to stop this, or at least slow down the tide as it enters the boat?” In my consumer counseling sessions, many individuals are telling me that they feel like the only ones dealing with extreme money problems, and having done this for 10 years, I can guarantee you that the debt problems are getting more extreme. Regular, hardworking middle-class Americans say that they don’t know how they got into such a financial mess; they can’t point to a catastrophic event. This business about most bankruptcies being filed due to medical debt simply does not hold up in my view. It was an idea that was pushed to sell an agenda.


The factual problem is that your money is buying less, and you are not making more each year to cover the shortfall. The divide between those prospering and those not is growing by leaps and bounds. Without using lines of credit and other types of loans, the middle-class consumer simply has nowhere to go. Payday loans have become a huge growth industry, with companies loaning at 350% interest annually and then handling the loan debt settlement. 


Just look at the graph below. It shows the increase in the number of collection accounts reflected on US consumers’ credit reports over the last 10 years.

So, the bad news is that the credit counseling industry, both nonprofit and for-profit, is a growth industry. The heart of the problem is not going to go away or fix itself anytime soon. While there are solutions for individuals, each problem must be analyzed on its own and a solution or multiple solutions presented and implemented. With the FTC now regulating all types of debt resolution programs, the consumer can at least feel safe. 
Whether you are drowning in a debt problem or just starting to get nervous, 
you should be making that first call to a credit counselor who can offer help for much more than one type of debt. See where the conversation takes you. This is 2013, and many solutions are available.
You are definitely not alone. 

If you would like to subscribe to the FREE Credit Counseling Newsletter, simply leave your email address here. We never share your information. If you have a debt problem and need free credit counseling, feel free to contact me at or 877-766-246. 


ABOUT STEVEN CIANTRO: Steven is well suited to advising on debt issues. Growing up from humble beginnings, he personally made a fortune from nothing in his earlier years and lost it. The experience completely altered his value system. It seemed every professional debt expert Steven and his wife spoke to wanted to put them into even more debt to help them. It took years for them to untangle the financial mess, which they ultimately did on their own, gaining a tremendous education in the process. However, the experience left Steven with chronic kidney disease, which he still battles today. In 2004, Steven found work at a national nonprofit credit counseling company. After six months, he became regional manager; Steven had found a new calling. He is in the unique position of not only being a true expert on debt relief issues, but also understanding firsthand how oppressive debt can be. In 2006, American Debt Enders was started as a company that would offer free credit counseling; it was among the first companies in the nation to use the business model of offering multiple debt relief programs and solutions under the same roof.


This article is courtesy of the Top 1% Club and the Top 1% Club Mentor Gail Kasper. For additional information on Gail Kasper, her television appearances and speaking engagements, please visit