Never the Right Word

Never the Right Word

Scripts & Templates for Life’s Uncomfortable Conversations.

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Most of us have been in a position at least once in our lives where it was difficult for us to meet our self-expenses, meaning we need to ask for financial help. As hard as it can be to put our queasy feelings aside, there is no shame in asking for a loan from your loved ones in times of need.

Asking politely, honestly and without making them feel guilt or an obligation could result in a positive outcome. After all, if friends and family are not going to help you in your difficult times, then who would?

But this conversation is going to be a lot different than your regular discussions. This conversation will consist of a lot of “um,” uh,” “you know,” “yeah right,” stuttering, and long awkward pauses.

Well, we do understand all that, and that is why we are here to walk you through it. To convert this uncomfortable dialogue to a positive one, we have crafted out the following five scripts for you. We hope it will help you out!

Script 1 | Tell Them Why You Need the Loan


You know how difficult it has been for me recently to meet my living expenses. I’ve been working two part-time jobs to cover my tuition fee and hostel expenses.
This has had a detrimental effect on my studies. The situation got a lot worse last month when I was fired from one of those jobs as they are shutting down the cafe.
Now with that loss of income and the recent news of upcoming expenses in my research project, it’s difficult for me to cover all my outgoings.
This is not something I ask lightly, however if you can help me out by lending me (amount), it would be forever appreciated.
We could agree how I may be able to pay you back or how I could help you in some way.

Trust is the core of any relationship, be it your other half, siblings, parents, or friends. And the truth lays the foundation of it. So, what’s better than telling them the real problem you need money for?

Well, if they can help you out with it, they likely will. Furthermore, showing a completely honest explanation will support your case and create a basis of mutual trust.

On the contrary, creating false problems will result in more questions, making the conversation more awkward than it already is.

Your particular issue may not be the same as our example, but we’re sure that you got the idea, right? Just explain the whole scenario to them instead of beating around the bush, and they will understand, for sure.

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Script 2 | Inform Them About the Number of Options You’ve Already Tried


You’ve known me for a couple of years and how I always keep some savings for the hour of need.
However I have been relying on my savings for considerable time now and within the last week that safety net of my savings came to an end.
I’ve spoke to a couple of banks for a loan but they are offering it on very strict terms that right now I am unable to meet.
So, I feel like I have no other option left but to ask you if you’re able to help me?

Explaining your options to your loved ones will demonstrate that it’s not a recurrent thing for you to ask for loans from them since you have made numerous efforts to avoid it.

Furthermore, letting them know about your unsuccessful attempts will make them understand how seriously you need the money for this particular circumstance.

Even if they are not able to assist you financially, there is a chance that they will give you a suggestion that can lead to improving your financial situation.

Perhaps they know about a part-time job opening in a nearby restaurant, a new government policy to give an easy to return loan payments to their citizens, etc.

At the end of the day, if you thoroughly explore the options available and the suggestions your loved ones may give you, the chances are you will seek the financial aid to get yourself back on track. Problem solved!

Script 3 | Fix A Date for Payback


Since you know me as well as you do, you’ll know that asking for a loan isn’t something I’d normally do. But as I feel there is no alternative option left for me; I’ve had to consider reaching out to you.
I anticipate receiving a few payments but they are going to take a month or two before I have them. I don’t want to give you any false hope of being in a position to pay you back before the (this date) of (this month).
If you’re able to help me out on this occasion with (amount) it would mean a lot to me. I assure you that I will return the amount to you by the date above.

Consider yourself in the shoes of your friends and family for a while and suppose someone else is asking you for a loan. What would be your first thought if you have that much spare amount in your account?

“When are they going to pay me back,” Right? And who are you going to trust; a person who gives you a fixed date of payback or a person promising you to return as soon as they can?

Well, surely, the answer be would the person with a fixed date. It would help the situation too if you can give clear and necessary reasons as to why you require the borrowing.

So be that person on whom you can trust because if you can, the others certainly will.

Script 4 | Give them Flexible Conditions


I know I am asking for something out of the ordinary here, as I appreciate that you have many responsibilities to fulfil…
But it would really help me out if you were able to lend me (amount) which could be in easier to manage monthly instalments over the period of (number of months).
Even if the full amount is not possible for you, perhaps you can help with some (eg.40-60%) of that amount?
I do not wish to put a burden on you but any help would go a long way and not be forgotten.

When your loved ones come to know about the severity of your problem, most of them will obviously want to help you in any way possible.

But it will be difficult for them too, to cut out their monthly expenses and lend you money all at once. So it is advised to offer them several flexible conditions that are convenient for them as well as practical for you.

A number of them are mentioned above, including easy installments or a percentage of the amount needed. This way, it would be easy for them to offer you their help without putting stress on their pockets.

Script 5 | Ensure Them There Is No Pressure Involved


Although I’ve been in desperate need of money, I was very reluctant to ask this favour from you because I didn’t want to put extra pressure on you.
In all the time I’ve known you, you always went an extra mile for me but this time, if you feel you cannot help me, I will fully understand.
However if you are able to help me by lending (amount) you would really be helping me out. I know you are at the initial stage of your career yourself.
So I want to assure you one thing that no matter what your answer will be, it will not cause any difference in the depth of our relationship. And I will still always be only one phone call away whenever you need me.

Most people avoid mixing personal and professional relationships because you can risk losing both.

The same goes for loaning money to our friends and family, as many of us believe that asking your loved ones for a loan is like putting your relationship to a huge test.

And that’s the major reason that has made this conversation so awkward.

Because it’s difficult for them to say no and even if they do, an unknown kind of tension starts growing between you. So it’s better to address these issues from the very beginning.

After all, no matter how huge or small the amount is, it is definitely not worth losing someone who cares about you as true friendship has no monetary value.

No matter what, your family and friends are the only people who have your back at every instance, and it is better to ask them for help than a stranger who doesn’t know you. And if these are the people with whom you can share everything, why not share your financial problems too.

Moreover, with these scripts, we really hope that you get a kick start to your conversation, and once the awkwardness is all over, you can discuss the details. But remember the key is to be very kind and not demanding at all because it’s you who needs help, not them.

At Never the Right Word, our aim is to give you practical examples of how to handle life’s difficult conversations. If you have an awkward situation that you’d like example templates for, request a topic here.   

If you’re interested in further reading, we’ve also included links to our trusted resources and related posts below. To find out more about NTRW and our recommended tools, you can do that here.  

Lastly, if you found this content helpful or want to share your own examples, let us know in the comments. We’d also be delighted if you shared this article and joined us on social media too!

Never the Right Word

Never the Right Word

Hi there! I’m Amy, and I’m the person behind Never the Right Word. I’m a designer-by-day who’s fascinated by human psychology; you’ll find me learning about what makes others tick through all types of media and good old-fashioned conversation.

In 2019 Never the Right Word was born to fill the gap of ‘how-to’ websites with copy and paste examples showing you EXACTLY what you need to say to steer difficult conversations into positive outcomes.

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