Lending Money To Friends

I made this terrible mistake a few months ago of lending money to my friend. What happened was my friend had gotten into some money issues with his credit card and could not make his payments. He came to me and asked me for an interest free loan for 6 months so he could pay off his credit card debt completely. I agreed because he was a friend, yet asked him to sign a contract with me and had both of us sign the contract.

The contract went as follows: Mr. XXXX XXXXX agrees to pay back (ME) by Sept 15, 2013, the following amount ($XX).

We then signed and dated the contract at the bottom.

Why I am upset?

Not only has my friend not contacted me since I lent him this money, but they have also not responded to a single email I have sent them. I reminded them that the date of our contract was coming up and that they owed me this amount and they still have not responded.

This entire process has really upset me. Not only do I not trust me friend, but I also have lost money unnecessarily. Has anyone else ever dealt this this sort of situation in the past? I don’t know what to do.