Biggest Mistakes You Don't Know You're Making: Kathy

Friends and Finances
Kathy writes:
 
Dear Dr. Phil,
 
Over a year ago, a friend asked to borrow $1,000 from me, because she was having trouble paying her bills while making a job change. Feeling sympathetic, as well as caught off guard, I wrote her a check right on the spot. Right after she borrowed the money, she quickly sent me a check for $50, and that was it. It's a year later now, and I have yet to see any effort to pay me back the rest. I am too uncomfortable to ever bring it up to her, and she has never mentioned it to me again.
 
Dr. Phil, is there a right way to ask for my money back? As you would say, I guess I have "stupid" written on my forehead.
 
[AD]"I just have to tell you not in all cases, but in most cases, you are going to lose $1,000 and a friend. People generally don't succeed in borrowing their way out of trouble," Dr. Phil says. "That doesn't mean there aren't times when you have to help somebody. You have to make a decision in your mind if you do that that this is a business deal, and therefore they can go to a bank. If a bank wouldn't lend them money " they're professionals " why should you?
 
"You have to make a decision: ‘I'm either going to give this person $1,000, and if I ever get it back, that's great.' Don't do it expecting that it's going to be a business deal," Dr. Phil continues. "If it is, you need to at least sign a promissory note. What's going to happen is they're not going to be able to pay you, now they're going to be embarrassed, and therefore, you're going to lose a friend. I don't think it's a good idea."