At first, they "thought the debt would magically go away," Danny admits. "We just assumed that we would both have high earning potential after we graduated and that it would all work out. We never looked realistically at our debt until the end."
Then they became parents.
"Our beautiful son was born my third year of law school. Having a child is not the cheapest thing I have ever done, but it is the most incredible," Amber writes on Red Two Green, the couple's student loan advice blog. "[Our son's] birth was the start of us looking more seriously at our finances, and starting to make a plan for how we were going to manage [them]."
Most people told Amber and Danny to pay the debt gradually with an income-driven repayment plan, or not at all. "We scoured the internet, talked with colleagues, financial advisers, our school's financial aid offices, anyone at all who was willing to talk to us," the couple writes. "But in the end, most people agreed that there was basically no way on earth we would ever be able to pay off our debt on our own."
The couple knew that not paying the debt wasn't an option, either.