Would you give up an organ to pay off your student loans?

A few weeks ago, I had a nice meal with some friends whom I had not seen for a while. After a few drinks, we started talking about the usual, our lives post-graduation. It was not surprising that our lives had not taken the immediate trajectory we had once expected with the degrees we had amassed from our university program – at least not for most of us.

There were of course the select few who had made it, others who had grown to love a slightly different career path, while the rest coped with what they had while hoping to transition into the career of their dreams.

As we talked and the alcohol sank in, one friend jokingly asked, “Would you give up an eye to clear off your student loans?” It sounded so absurd and obviously hilarious that we couldn’t help but laugh.

“Nah, maybe if in addition to that, I was offered my dream job with a hefty six figures, then why not.” Another friend inserted. Again, we laughed and nodded.

“Now, that seems more plausible.” Another friend added. “ Let’s take it a notch up, what if in addition to losing that eye, you had the option to lose a leg for an even better cash deal? That’ll certainly complete your pirate look as you pull in with that BMW you’ve always wanted” – we all bursted out laughing once more.

It was funny then. However, as the alcohol started to slowly wear out, and the hangover began to take hold the following morning, there was a sudden realization that it was no longer a funny affair. It never was.

For young adults to sit around and think of giving up an organ just to repay student loans speak to the volume of distress many of us are facing. All I can say is “It’s a vicious cycle of poverty which forces people to live a life of minimalism, especially with the unending expenses that come with being an adult.”  Seriously, something really needs to change. 

So, as that night progressed, we continued our discussion about life, relationships (always the topic of the table) and useless conversation, ignoring the elephant in the room after a few laughs. 

By Daniella D.

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