How to Shame Someone Who Owes You Money

Last Updated on July 5, 2023 by Jerome Donovan

Generally, people will say that you don’t have to shame someone who owes you money. That’s because it not only messes with the relationship but also puts you in a bad light. Moreover, the course of action largely depends on the sum of money involved. If your loss doesn’t significantly affect you, it’s often best to consider letting it go. Just write it off in your negative balance. This experience might deter them from ever asking you for money again, saving you future worries.


Those who borrow and don’t pay can be quite audacious though. It’s astonishing how the once humble debtor can turn hostile when approached for repayment. But you want to be careful not to become the “bad one” in the story.

In this post, you will learn the tips to deal with someone who owes you money but refuses to pay it back. Be aware, these tactics can be severe, so only use them once all other means of getting your money back have been exhausted.


How to Shame Someone Who Owes You Money

How to Shame Someone Who Owes You Money

The various ways mentioned in this article can either be severe or mild. You just have to be cautious while applying them to protect your reputation at the same time. That said, below are the ways to shame someone who owes you money:

1. Let social media know about it

How do you get the social media’s attention? Leave comments on any of their posts that seem to involve spending money, reminding them of the debt they’ve held for eight months. Take it slowly but gradually and give more details about the incident.

The goal is to have them embarrassed. Considering how quickly any type of gossip can trend, nobody would appreciate being publicly shamed for owing money, being dishonest, or causing a rift over an owed sum of money. Either they repay you or block you. It’s a win-win situation.


2. Publish their image and phone number online

The money-lending probably took place in person via cash or transfer. But now you need to take it online to shame someone who owes you money. Simply publicize their photos and phone number to embarrass that debtor who refuses to pay.

If your debtor doesn’t react, the next step is to post their photo, phone number, and links to their other social media profiles. On the photo, you may choose to tag it with “Debtor” followed by a detailed description of how they have refused to pay you your money back. You could also highlight the emotional distress this has caused you and why you’ve been driven to such extreme measures.

You can shame them by posting about their debt on platforms like Reddit or Twitter. Internet trolls might pick up on this and exaggerate the situation, causing the debtor considerable embarrassment. If using Twitter, make sure to hashtag the trending terms so that thousands, if not millions of other users, can easily come across the post.

By now, the debtor would realize your determination to get your money back, making them more responsive.

3. Make your stubborn debtor look bad

Anyone who borrows money under pretenses and refuses to repay is being deceitful. Promote their deceit by posting their image on platforms like Craigslist, eBay, WhatsApp status, or even your Instagram feed. People who recognize them will contact the debtor, while others will do their best to avoid them.

4. Confront them at their workplace

The workplace is an environment where most people would dread being embarrassed. If the debt is significant, confronting the debtor at their place of work can be effective. Under the FDCPA, it is not legal for a debt collector to go to someone’s workplace to collect a debt. You are not a debt collector, but only a friend who is being owed, so it is not unlawful to make this move. Nevertheless, you want to check your state laws before making this move.

In extreme circumstances, discussing the situation with their manager might help. Some supervisors may intervene, further shaming the debtor for their failure to repay their debt.

5. Just express your genuine feelings

Sometimes, a gentle request for repayment may not suffice, and it’s necessary to speak your mind. Expressing your feelings about the situation and the reasons why they need to repay you may cause them to feel some degree of shame.

If you articulate your points well, it could spark a sense of guilt that motivates them to repay. Directly addressing their selfishness can be surprisingly effective.

6. Put a debtor’s sticker on their car

A car is a highly visible possession. Placing a sticker on it about their debt can spark public conversation. Fellow drivers and their colleagues at work might inquire about the sticker, leading to embarrassment. You would need to do this more often, especially if they live a few blocks from you.

But they might call the police on you for vandalism. So rethink this method of having to shame someone who owes you money. Moreover, if you are going to put a sticker on their car, it must not damage their car paint. Otherwise, why then should you be repaid in full or paid at all (depending on the amount of money) if you have damaged their car paint?

7. Involve their family or friends

Individuals often try to hide their less-flattering actions from their loved ones. The prospect of family and friends knowing about their unpaid debt can be mortifying. If you know their family, informing a close relative about the situation could speed up the repayment process and incite a feeling of shame.

You may even be fortunate that the family member or friend offers to repay on their behalf. However, this can quickly come hard on you as they may now have the audacity to face you for bringing a personal issue to their friends’ notice.

8. Express financial distress in their presence

If you frequently spend time with the debtor, continually discussing your own financial troubles can stir feelings of guilt. Indirect mentions about how their owed amount could aid your current financial situation might make them uncomfortable enough to consider repayment.

You could say:

I wish I had some extra money right now for this necessity; my paycheck isn’t coming until next week.

That might be enough reason for them to offer to pay even part of the debt or make a full repayment.

9. Question them about the debt publicly

It can be a bit extreme to question someone about your money in public, especially to the hearing of everyone. This unexpected inquiry, coupled with public embarrassment, might provoke them to pay you back immediately.

10. Sue them as a final resort

If you’ve attempted multiple times to retrieve the money and allotted reasonable time, it might be best to move on. Hopefully, this serves as a lesson and prevents a repeat in the future. If you have documented proof of the debt, small claims court could be an option. But if you took steps to shame someone who owes you money, suing them might backfire. If they have evidence of you creating embarrassing scenes online or in person, the judge may use that to rule in their favor. So, give this a good thought. Moreover, unless the amount of money is significant, it might not be worth the effort.

Read alsoHow to Remind Someone Who Promised You Money

Final Thoughts

Before you take shaming someone who owes you money to another level, be persistent when asking them for your money back. Merely continually reminding them of their debt might provoke them to repay. If this strategy fails, it might be best to cease interactions with them.

And most importantly, learn from this experience. Avoid lending money that you can’t afford to lose. Be cautious about lending to friends or family as they may take advantage of the relationship to evade prompt repayment. Always document your transactions and avoid lending to untrustworthy individuals. If asking politely for your money doesn’t work, treat it as a costly life lesson.

Read alsoHow to Make Someone Give You Money Without Asking

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like